We are a team of experienced Systemic Psychotherapists, often referred to as Family Therapists. Family Therapists also work with couples and individuals, but whomever we are meeting with we tend to think from a relational perspective. If you would like to know a little more about family therapy, information produced by the UK Association for Family Therapy can be found here. Some FAQs about family therapy are answered here.
We offer psychotherapy to individuals who want to think about the impact of violence and abuse on their lives and relationships.
We offer couple psychotherapy to couples who want to make changes in their relationship, to move beyond violence and abuse. Our work starts with agreeing a no violence contract.
When we work with couples or families we work as a mixed gender therapeutic team of two psychotherapists. Whether you are a heterosexual couple, a same sex couple, or however you describe your gender and sexuality, we believe that violence in intimate relationships has a gendered aspect, that men and women experience relationships and violence differently.
We encourage everyone we work with to explore their ideas about the relationship between gendered identities and violence, and to explore their own learning about gender in the course of their developing as a person.
In all our therapeutic work we privilege creating a safe context for everyone involved. As a minimum we require a ‘stable third’ party to the therapeutic relationship. This means involving a third party, someone trusted by everyone involved, who is able and willing to bring to our attention any episodes of abuse or violence during our work together. An episode of violence or abuse does not mean that we would stop the therapeutic work, but it does mean that we would re-focus the work in the short term on reviewing safety plans, re-working our shared and agreed ideas about how everyone involved in the couple, the wider family, and with the therapy can be safe.
If you are interested in talking to us further about psychotherapy please contact us.
Evidence for Systemic Psychotherapy in contexts of domestic violence and abuse
In 2016 Gunnur Krakurt and colleagues at Case Western Reserve University conducted a systematic review of the outcomes and effectiveness evidence for couple therapy in contexts of domestic violence and abuse. Selecting only “moderate- to high-quality studies” to include in their review, they concluded that the analysis of the data “provides evidence supporting the idea that couple therapy is a slightly better treatment approach than standard treatments.” (2016, p. 578) For couples who want to stay together and make changes to their relationship, to live together without violence, then the evidence suggests that having therapy together is more effective than therapy apart, or therapy just for those who use violence and abuse in the context of family and intimate relationships.