Couples CBT counselling

I am one of the few experienced practioners in the UK offering enhanced couples cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), supporting partners through relationship stresses and crises, and helping them to develop new and effective ways to interact.


CBT is a practical talking-therapeutic approach with a strong body of research evidence demonstrating its effectiveness. By using an evidence-based therapy, you can be sure that your efforts to improve your relationship will have the best chance of success.

In the course of my therapeutic career, I’ve had the privilege of seeing CBT work for all kinds of couples and in a variety of circumstances. Please take a few moments to read through my site to see how this approach might work for you, and then consider arranging an initial consultation. If English is not your first language, I can work with you through an interpreter. I practise in Harley Street, London, and in Buckinghamshire.

How does relationship therapy work?

Every relationship goes through its difficulties. Hopefully, a couple can work through them without help. But during particularly challenging times, meeting with an impartial professional can provide a safe place for couples to think and talk about their feelings without being judged.

Traditional relationship therapies involve building an understanding of the issues and appreciating the concerns of your partner, commonly using psychodynamic and systemic theories. I am one of the few practitioners accredited to incorporate couples cognitive behavioural therapy into the therapeutic process. By combining both approaches, I can work with you using traditional systemic and psychodynamic therapies to help you understand what has happened in the relationship, recover from traumatic events – such as affairs, terminations and deaths – and then use CBT to identify patterns or cycles of interaction.

I can work with you to implement new, more helpful thoughts and behaviours which will then effect change for the better. Also, help you understand why you think and feel the way you do to help you make sense of past and present life experiences. By working with you in this way, you can address the difficulties you are experiencing in your relationship. You will build strategies and actions to help manage the issues you face, and so discover ways to move forward.

If separation is already your goal, and what you want as a couple, I can help you manage that too. You can find out more about that on the Help with divorce and separation page.

Whatever your sexual orientation, background or marital status, and whether you come with or without a partner, relationship counselling and therapy can help you. You might want to improve an ongoing relationship that has been foundering for a while, or find a way through a more immediate issue.

Issues you might need help with

  • Difficulties in an existing relationship
  • Recovering from a relationship breakdown
  • Difficulties in sustaining relationships
  • Difficulties in getting over relationship issues
  • Difficulty in expressing feelings and thoughts
  • Loneliness
  • Personal development
  • Postnatal depression (PND)  
  • Perinatal depression
  • Sexual abuse or domestic violence
  • Online relationship problems
  • Online dating issues
  • Virtual relationship issues

What will happen at our first session?

A typical initial discussion would cover: 

  • The problem: what are the issues you need help with?
  • The timescale: how long you have been experiencing problems?
  • Previous attempts to seek help: have you been to relationship counseling or therapy before?
  • Your efforts at resolution: how have you both attempted to solve the problem so far?
  • Your expectations: what do you hope to achieve through the counselling process?

An enhanced therapeutic approach

I also work with clients where one or both suffer pathological problems. The work then includes simultaneously overcoming the problem and rebuilding the relationship. Such conditions might include:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress at work
  • Low self-esteem
  • Panic disorder
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)
  • Agoraphobia
  • Health anxiety
  • Body dysmorphic disorder (issues with body image)
  • Trichotillomania (compulsive hair plucking)
  • Trauma/post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Psychosis 

Please take a moment to look at the testimonials and sample scenarios page so that you can see how my approach has already worked with couples, and at the FAQ page. You can email me at carla@harleystreettherapy.co.uk or phone me on 07803 895 800 to arrange your first appointment.