Couples Therapy Hebden Bridge

Couples therapy and relationship counselling, coaching and psychotherapy in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire, HX7 8HJ

And all over the world via telephone, email and Skype 

“Couples therapy and relationship counselling is particularly important in the modern world, because we have reached a 50% divorce rate, and family misery is greatly increased by couple conflict.  Many couples (in marriages, cohabiting, and civil partnerships) expect to be able to ‘operate’ a successful relationship without having the slightest idea what a ‘relationship is’, what ‘marital commitment’ means, or even how to ‘actively love’ their partner (other than in a brief, amorous, sexual manner, on an occasional basis).  Amorous and sexual love comes naturally to all primates, and many other animals, but the ability to achieve a happy relationship in a human community has to be learned!”

Dr Jim Byrne, December 2018 (updated)

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Modified Couples Therapy Service

Updated 12th December 2018

drjim-counsellor9If you need help to understand why your couple relationship is not working as well as you would like, and you are determined to improve it, then I can help you with both of those goals.

To make an appointment to work with me, please:

Telephone 01422 843 629

Or email me at jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

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Unsolicited client testimonial

♣ Verbal feedback: “Every time we come to see you, our relationship gets better and better.  We did not expect this.  We have now reached a kind of comfortable plateau, and we don’t know if things will get any better.  But we have talked about it, and we don’t know what you said or what you did to help us to get to this much nicer place in our relationship”.

Dr. A.D.; North Halifax, West Yorkshire. UK. (Five sessions of face to face couples therapy).

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BlueLogo13CIn the light of my recent experience of providing couples therapy services, I have decided to make the following changes to my service:

1. Instead of an open-ended offering, I now offer a specific structure.

2. The structure is as follows:

Session (1): A 45 minute session with one member of the couple Attendance by one partner only.  This will normally be the person who contacted me to set up the therapy series (unless there are very good reasons why it has to be the other partner).
Session (2): A 45 minute session with the other partner. Attendance by one partner only.
Session (3): A 90 minute (double) session with both partners present. Both partners attend, but I only work with one at a time, as in my previous process.

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3. If you come to see me; and complete three sessions; and you find this three-session process is helping to heal the problems in your relationship, then you would most likely opt to attend for a further three sessions, following the same structure shown in Sessions (1)-(3) above.

4. There will also be a new emphasis in my revised process upon asking you to complete questionnaires, so I can quickly and reliably come to understand:

(a) Your attachment styles: (Please go to to this web portal, and take Survey Option A. It would help if you could then inform me of your attachment style, and that of your partner).

(b) Your Personality Adaptations: (Please go to the the Southeast Institute website, and click to buy [for US $10.00] one use of the Joines Personality Adaptation Questionnaire. It would be helpful if you would then send your results to me before we meet).

(b) An assertiveness questionnaire: (Please go to this website to download an assertiveness questionnaire.  Read the 60 statements and tick the box that applies to your normal way of being.  Then fill in the mark sheet to determine your style of relating to others.  It would be helpful if you sent your results to me before we meet. It would also help to know your partner’s style of relating, using the same questionnaire).

(c) Your conflict resolution styles: (Please go to the Conflict Styles Questionnaire blog post on this website. Download the quiz, fill in the table, use the mark sheet to figure out your personal conflict style, which can, of course, be changed [over time, with some effort] if you don’t like it!  And again, it would help if you let me know your conflict style before we meet).

(d) Your emotional needs profile;

(e) The experiences that went into shaping your ‘Inner Couple’;

(f) And anything else that seems to be needed, or potentially helpful.

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The origin of our relationship styles

Where do you think we learn about how to establish and run a sex-love relationship?

Why, in our family of origin, of course!  See Postscript 2  further down this page for ways to change what we got – in terms of ‘relationship skills and attitudes’ – from our family of origin.

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Contact me today

drjim-counsellor9If you want me to help you, then please contact me to set up an appointment, face to face in Hebden Bridge, or via the telephone or Skype.

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Telephone: 01422 843 629

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

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Eighteen Key Principles of Happy Relationships through Couples Therapy

by Dr Jim Byrne

Introduction

What is couples therapy, and how can it improve relationships between married and cohabiting couples?  According to the Mayo Clinic:

Marriage counselling, also called couples therapy, is a type of psychotherapy. Marriage counselling helps couples of all types recognise and resolve conflicts and improve their relationships. Through marriage counselling, you can make thoughtful decisions about rebuilding your relationship or going your separate ways.”

couple-relationship

According to Life Hacker: “The main purpose of couples therapy is to put you and your significant other in a room with a neutral mediator to help you make sense of what’s going on. If you’re having trouble communicating with each other, then the counselor is going to help guide you through talking about it.”loving-couple3

In the system of counselling that I use, there are three definitions of relationship, which help you to know what is a realistic expectation of your partner, and what your partner is likely to expect from you to make the relationship equal and viable.

Then there are eighteen principles of happy relationship, which teach you the core beliefs that can guide you into a happy and peaceful sharing of your future life with your partner.

The Eighteen Key Principles of Happy Couple Relationships

Over a period of more than nineteen years, working with married and co-habiting couples, I have identified a number of key problems with the way individuals and couples understand (or, rather, misunderstand) what a relationship is.  Because they define relationship inaccurately, they often have grossly unrealistic expectations of their partner and their relationship.

There are many ways to define relationship, and almost any conscious definition is better than allowing yourself to use your infantile – built in childhood – non-conscious model of relationship, now that you are an autonomous adult.

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If you cannot get to a face-to-face counselling session with me, you can still learn my approach to building happy relationships from my brief Workbook:

How to have a happy relationship, Workbook coverTo get a copy of this PDF Workbook, please click the link next to the PayPal Buy Now button that follows, below.  It will cost you just £4.95. As soon as you pay your fee at PayPal (with a credit or debit card, or with a PayPal account), I will send you your copy of this valuable Workbook, as an email attachment.  (This is much cheaper than a divorce; and for this very small fee, you will get years of happy relationship).  Please click the link below to order your copy:

 

PayPal Buy Now button***Buy this Workbook, on ‘How to Have a Happy Relationship’; via PayPal, for £4,95***

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Contact me today

drjim-counsellor9If you want me to help you, then please contact me to set up an appointment, face to face in Hebden Bridge, or via the telephone or Skype.

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Telephone: 01422 843 629

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

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Postscript 1, 2018

During the year 2017, I’ve been experimenting with a new approach to helping couple-clients to ‘reprogram their Inner Couple’, which is their guide to current relationships (based on what they saw in their family of origin).  When couples do this work, they begin to related to each other in much more constructive and healthy and happy ways!  (See Postscript 2, further down this page).

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The details

happy-couple3Over the years (since 1984) I have tried to identify the most helpful insights on managing happy, loving relationships, and I have passed these on to my couple-clients (since 1999).

At the last count, I had collected, and/or developed, eighteen principles, or things you can do, which make the biggest and quickest contribution to improving your capacity to manage a happy couple relationship.  (The number eighteen does not include those principles mentioned above).

Here is the first one, as an illustration:

1. A marriage (or marriage-like relationship) is a “house” that is built every day. What actions did you consciously take to build the “house” of your marriage today?

Couples-therapy-principle1When you wake up in the morning, remind yourself that all you have are ‘the foundations’ of a relationship.  You now have to build that relationship all over again; every single day.  The house of your relationship is never complete.  You can never ‘clock off’.

A relationship is not something you HAVE, it is something you DO!  It is a process rather than a thing.

If you go to sleep in your relationship, you will wake up to find it has collapsed from want of repair.  Having destructive arguments with your partner about who is right and who is wrong, and especially who is ‘top dog’ and who is ‘under dog’, is equivalent to trying to polish the walls of your “house” with sledge hammers!  You will wreck it in no time.  So I ask again:

What actions did you consciously take today to build the “house” of your relationship?

What actions did you take to stop swinging the wrecking ball against the walls of your relationship?

Dr Jim's photoIf you need help with conflict or dissatisfaction in your marriage or couple relationship, then I can help you.

Counselling services for couples – help with conflict and communication problems.

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Contact me today

drjim-counsellor9If you want me to help you, then please contact me to set up an appointment, face to face in Hebden Bridge, or via the telephone or Skype.

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Telephone: 01422 843 629

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

~~~

It has often been said, including by Werner Erhard, that people can’t communicate because what they call communication isn’t communication at all; and they cannot manage relationships, because their definitions of relationship are naive and simplistic.  I can teach you how to communicate effectively with your loved ones, and to have great relationships at home and at work.

Dr Jim Byrne, Couple Counsellor

December 2018

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Here are two more of my key principles:

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To learn the remaining 15 principles of happy couple relationships, please contact Dr Jim Byrne for a coaching, counselling or psychotherapy session.

Contact me today

Contact me today

drjim-counsellor9If you want me to help you, then please contact me to set up an appointment, face to face in Hebden Bridge, or via the telephone or Skype.

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Telephone: 01422 843 629

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

~~~

If you cannot get around to visiting me, or contacting me via the telephone or Skype, you could still learn what I know about building successful couple relationships, by reading my new book on this subject:

Top secrets for

Building a Successful Relationship: 

Volume 1 – A blueprint and toolbox for couples and counsellors: C101

By Dr Jim Byrne

With Renata Taylor-Byrne BSc (Hons) Psychol 1543762369 (1905x1383)

The full paperback cover, by Charles Saul

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On this web site, you will find enough information about our new book on couple relationships to inform your decision about buying it.  We have posted the full Preface; plus the full set of (revised) Contents pages; plus a brief extract from each of the main chapters (1-13).

Pre-publication review

“I have recently finished reading Dr Jim Byrne’s immensely useful book (about love and relationship skills).  This book is full of cutting edge thinking and priceless wisdom about couple relationships; which inspires us to believe that we can undoubtedly shape and improve our most important relationships.  The approach is comprehensive (despite being Volume 1 of 3), covering as it does: the nature of love and relationships; common myths about love and relationships (which tend to lead young people astray); some illuminating case studies of couple relationships that have gone wrong; and very helpful chapters on communication skills, conflict styles, and assertive approaches to relationship; plus a very interesting introduction to the theory that our marriage partnership is shaped, for better or worse, in our family of origin. I particularly liked the chapters on how to manage boundaries in relationships; and how to change your relationship habits. I can highly recommend this ‘must read’ book to couples and counsellors alike”.

Dr Nazir Hussain

Positive Psychology and Integrative Counselling Services, Whitby, Ontario, Canada.

September 2018

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Here’s a quick preview of part of the contents of Chapter 1:

This book has been designed to be helpful to two main audiences:

1. Anybody who is curious about how to build and maintain a happy, successful couple relationship, like a marriage or civil partnership (civil agreement), or simple cohabitation; and:

2. Any professional who works with individuals and couples who show up with problems of marital or couple conflict, breakdowns of communication, or unhappiness with the couple bond.

…For more information about this book, please go to Top secrets for Building Successful Relationships.***

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The Eighteen Key Principles of Happy Couple Relationships

Over a period of more than nineteen years, working with married and co-habiting couples, I have identified a number of key problems with the way individuals and couples understand (or, rather, misunderstand) what a relationship is.  Because they define relationship inaccurately, they often have grossly unrealistic expectations of their partner and their relationship.

There are many ways to define relationship, and almost any conscious definition is better than allowing yourself to use your infantile – built in childhood – non-conscious model of relationship, now that you are an autonomous adult.

How to have a happy relationship, Workbook coverTo get a copy of this PDF Workbook, please click the link next to the PayPal Buy Now button that follows, below.  It will cost you just £4.95. As soon as you pay your fee at PayPal (with a credit or debit card, or with a PayPal account), I will send you your copy of this valuable Workbook, as an email attachment.  (This is much cheaper than a divorce; and for this very small fee, you will get years of happy relationship).  Please click the link below to order your copy:

 

PayPal Buy Now button***Buy this Workbook, on ‘How to Have a Happy Relationship’; via PayPal, for £4,95***

~~~

Contact me today

drjim-counsellor9If you want me to help you, then please contact me to set up an appointment, face to face in Hebden Bridge, or via the telephone or Skype.

Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling

Telephone: 01422 843 629

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

~~~

Couples Therapy and Marriage Guidance in Hebden Bridge

By Dr Jim Byrne – Doctor of Counselling

July 2016 (Updated September 2018)

Introduction

Hello,

jim-nata-couples-pg-w300h245My name is Jim Byrne, and I am a very happily married Doctor of Counselling. I completed my own couple’s therapy work in 1984, and I’ve had 34+ years of very happy marriage since that time.

I have now been in private practice as a coach/ counsellor/ psychotherapist for more than twenty years, in Hebden Bridge, near Halifax, West Yorkshire; and all over the world via the telephone and internet systems.

During that time, I’ve been pleased to help lots of couples with all kinds of marriage, relationship and communication problems. Here’s a little video introduction to the kinds of ideas that I teach to my clients in couple’s therapy:

 

 

Here are just three of the testimonials I’ve received from some of those couples:

♣ Email feedback: “Dear Jim, … PS: We consulted you by telephone a few years ago, for relationship conflict, involving a very serious rift … And we are now happily married with a nine month old child.  Your help was fantastic, and we still use the phrases and descriptions you used then.  In fact, we have a list of insights on a laminated poster on our living room wall, to keep us on the straight and narrow! We will always be grateful for those insights.”  S.W. (and P.W), Sheffield. (Six sessions of telephone counselling [using speaker phone] for couple conflict and relationship advice).

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♣ Verbal feedback: “Every time we come to see you, our relationship gets better and better.  We did not expect this.  We have now reached a kind of comfortable plateau, and we don’t know if things will get any better.  But we have talked about it, and we don’t know what you said or what you did to help us to get to this much nicer place in our relationship”.

Dr. A.D, North Halifax, West Yorkshire. UK. (Five sessions of face to face couples therapy).

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♣ Postcard (in an envelope!): “Hiya Jim, Thanks for everything you’ve done for me.  Without you and this (counselling) work, I wouldn’t be here now.  I would have killed myself weeks ago!”

P.C., Rochdale, Lancs. UK. (Six sessions of face-to-face counselling for anger, rage, attachment issues, couple conflict and suicidal intent).

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It may be that most systems of couples therapy are not very effective, for a variety of reasons.  But my approach has the advantage of being an educational process, in which the partners learn to be more loving, more caring, and much more skilful in the way they relate to each other.  This is novel and unique.

I also outlaw any form of conflict in the therapy room.  (And, in my new process, instituted in September 2018) I now spend two sessions working with the individual partners to every one session at which both partners attend.  This is designed to increase the freedom of the individuals to work on their emotional problems, without feeling that they may be critically scrutinized by their partner!)

In sessions (3), (6), (9), and so on, time is shared equally between the partners; and one partner works with me at a time.  When I am working with one partner, the other one is required to remain silent and respectful of their partner’s right to share their perspective and their perceptions.  The silent partner is also required to refrain from any form of non-verbal leakage of argumentative responses to the one with whom I am working!

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Furthermore, I now offer a new, revolutionary approach to reprogramming couples for happy relationships, based on radical new ideas in this field.  Please see Postscript 2, below).

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My background

Couples-investmentI am in no doubt that I have a special talent for helping couples in distress, conflict and deteriorating communication.

I earned that special talent by growing up in a loveless home, and learning about love the hard way later on.  I learned that special talent by going through marriage guidance with my own wife, back in the mid-1980s, and learning how to relate to her in more realistic, reasonable and loving ways.  I learned that special talent by studying some of the most potent and powerful approaches to couples therapy that have been developed on this planet so far. (And, in 2017, I have expanded my talent and skill in this area, by studying and applying a whole new approach to helping couples to reprogram their non-conscious goals for relationship, and what is called their Inner Couple Model! See Postscript 2 below).

Now I want to teach what I have learned to you!

Does this sound interesting to you?

If so, you can contact me today,

By email to jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

Or by phoning 01422 843 629 (And if you are outside the UK, you can work with me over the telephone or Skype, or via email.  Call me on 44 1422 843 629 today!)

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Do you have any problems of relationship conflict, or communication difficulties, or romantic or sexual issues?

Do you feel your relationship is declining in satisfaction for you or your partner, and you want to revive the excitement of the early years?

If so, then I can help you.

jim-nata-couples-pg-w300h245I look forward to meeting you (individually or as a couple) and to helping you to have the kind of highly successful marriage that I have enjoyed every single day of my (post-couples-therapy) blessed life, for more than 33 years!

Yours sincerely,

Jim

Dr Jim Byrne

Doctor of Counselling

And Couples Therapy coach/counsellor/psychotherapist

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

Telephone: 01422 843 629 (And If you are outside the UK, you can work with me over the telephone or Skype, or via email.  Call me on 44 1422 843 629 today!)

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POSTSCRIPT 1B

Dr-Jim-Counsellor27001If you still do not have enough information to make a decision about whether or not to consult me with your problems with couple relationship, then here is some additional information:

To buy a full copy of Jim’s 18 principles of happy relationships, please click the PayPal link after the next section:

The Eighteen Key Principles of Happy Couple Relationships

Over a period of almost twenty years, working with married and cohabiting couples, I have identified a number of key problems with the way individuals and couples understand (or, rather, misunderstand) what a relationship is.  Because they define relationship inaccurately, they often have grossly unrealistic expectations of their partner and their relationship.

There are many ways to define relationship, and almost any conscious definition is better than allowing yourself to use your infantile – constructed-in-childhood – non-conscious model of relationship, now that you are a relatively autonomous adult.

How to have a happy relationship, Workbook coverTo get a copy of this PDF Workbook, please click the link next to the PayPal Buy Now button that follows, below.  It will cost you just £4.95. As soon as you pay your fee at PayPal (with a credit or debit card, or with a PayPal account), I will send you your copy of this valuable Workbook, as an email attachment.  (This is much cheaper than a divorce; and for this very small fee [and the effort of implementing my solutions], you will get years of happy relationship).  Please click the link below to order your copy:

PayPal Buy Now button***Buy this Workbook, on ‘How to Have a Happy Relationship’; via PayPal, for £4,95***

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Dr Jim’s Counselling Division.***

About Dr Jim Byrne (his education, training, accreditation)

Accreditation and Ethics (describes my ethical codes of practice and complaints procedures)

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

About the system of counselling and therapy that I use (which is Emotive-Cognitive Embodied Narrative Therapy [E-CENT])

Back to homepage

Site Map 

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POSTSCRIPT 2: JANUARY 2018

Couples Therapy

Reflections on Anne Teachworth’s first exercise

By Jim Byrne, January 2018

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Introduction

In her book – Why we Pick the Mates we do: A step-by-step program to select a better partner or improve the relationship you’re already in – Anne Teachworth argues that we choose our ‘life partner’ on the basis of something called our ‘Inner Couple’.  And our Inner Couple happens to be the ‘video film’ we made in the first five to ten years of our lives, while watching how our mother and father (or main carers) related to each other.

Think about that.

If you grew up watching a loving couple, in your family of origin, then you will effortlessly replicate that in your own adult life, when you come to choose a partner and a pattern of relating.

But if you grew up watching a dysfunctional, or unhappy, or conflicted couple, in your family of origin, then you will reliably replicate that unhappiness in your own relationship(s) with significant others – like lovers, and marriage partners.

In some ways, this seems like a profoundly depressing thought – except that there is a way out!

Using Gestalt reprogramming

It is possible – according to Anne Teachworth – to “reprogram your Inner Couple”.  And her book is a step by step process to do just that, so that, at the end of the process, you will have a happy Inner Couple, and this will lead you to have a happy and successful marriage, or marriage-like relationship yourself!

This has to be good news for you, if you are struggling with unhappiness in your current romantic life!

And according to Anne Teachworth, she has helped hundreds of couples to change their current relationships from unhappy to happy, using her Gestalt reprogramming approach.

drjim-counsellor9Recently I have been experimenting with this approach with my couple clients, and I have had positive feedback on my clients’ experience of the process. They like it and find it helpful!

Our conscious and non-conscious goals

We humans have a ‘design fault’ which causes us to believe we are wholly conscious beings, who make our choices consciously.  However, there is lots of research evidence to show that we are not capable of consciously processing all the information that we actually process every second of our day. In fact, we probably are conscious of about one-millionth of the data that our body-brain-mind processes, second by second.

There is research evidence to support the conclusion that individuals have both conscious and non-conscious goals, including goals for relationship.  That is to say, a person may tell you that they consciously are seeking a ‘perfect partner’, with particular positive qualities.  However, if you then watch what they do when they are presented with a choice between somebody with those positive qualities (in a speed dating context, for example), and somebody who totally lacks those positive qualities, you will too often find that they go for the person who lacks the qualities that they believe they are seeking.  And what is the explanation for this strange behaviour?  They also have non-conscious goals for relationship, and the non-conscious goal is normally very much stronger than the conscious goal.

This is the best explanation for the reason that advising individuals to carry a list of the desirable qualities of their ideal love match will not help.  They will make their choice on the basis of goals which are below their conscious level of awareness.  Isn’t it true that you have seen this perverse behaviour in yourself, and/or some of your close friends or relatives?

A shift in understanding

Most couple therapists, from the psychodynamic tradition, in the past, have argued that we choose our partner to complete something that was left incomplete between us (as an individual) and our parent of the opposite sex.  It certainly most often looks like that is the best explanation, but Anne Teachworth has refined our understanding in this area, and we now know that the non-conscious goal is not about finding a ‘perfect mate’, but about finding a perfect ‘match’ between the two memorized members of our Inner Couple (mum and dad; or our equivalent; or main carers while we were growing up [from birth to about age ten years]).

I now teach this model to many of my couple clients – (I also teach other models when they are more appropriate).  And my aim is to help my couple-clients to reprogram their Inner Couple for happy relationship, instead of the kind of misery and conflict that so often results from that kind of non-conscious choosing of a ‘perfect match’ with the conflicted Inner Couple from childhood!

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Jim & Renata's logo
ABC Coaching and Counselling Services

That’s all for now.

Jim

Dr Jim Byrne

Couples Therapist

01422 843 629 (or, from outside the UK: 44 1422 843 629)

Email: jim.byrne@abc-counselling.com

3rd December 2018

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