What is marriage/relationship counselling?

Marriage/relationship counselling aims to help couples understand and resolve conflicts and differences occurring within their relationship. It aims to facilitate dialogue in the relationship and allows you to gain an outside’ perspective that is very different from getting advice from friends or family. 

Some of the things marriage/relationship counselling will help you to do:

  • Learn to communicate better
  • Acknowledge your feelings and needs as well as those of your partner
  • Understand your past in terms of who you are now and how it may be influencing your relationship
  • Understand your relationship’s power struggles
  • Learn constructive ways to handle arguments and fights
  • Understand  how your children are being affected

A 'process' and not a 'quick fix'

It is important to understand that marriage/relationship counselling is not a quick fix’ but rather a process’ that you and your partner need to stay committed to. It is through a process that the relationship’s patterns and themes are best seen and understood. Unfortunately, many couples in conflict seek out counselling as an urgent last resort’. You should approach counselling with realistic expectations and discuss what your expectations are at your first session. You should expect that you will need at least a few sessions to start with (I generally recommend 6 initially). As your sessions proceed you will be in a better position to decide what are in your best interests as a couple and those of your children.

How do I know if I need marriage/relationship counselling?

Some signs that your relationship may be in need of help:
  • When communication has become diminished and/or negative
  • When you are both living past each other as though living separate lives
  • When there is destructive behaviour (e.g. physical abuse, alcoholism)
  • When an affair has happened or is believed to have happened
  • When you are staying together for the sake of the children
  • When separation seems to be the only solution



Rates for marriage/relationship counselling sessions are the same as those for individual sessions. Reduced cash rate, payable per session, is available, or you may use your Medical Aid Scheme. Please note, while many Schemes do pay for marriage/relationship counselling, a few (e.g. Polmed) do not. You are advised to ascertain beforehand.




Each couples session is 1 hour.