How Sex and Intimacy are Affected by Common Relationship Problems.


A new date is to be arranged


When couples or individuals come for counselling they frequently talk about general relationship problems. Often a lot of time is spent trying to unpick the underlying causes of disagreement and conflict and trying to cut through layers of resentment, accusation and blame. When the relationship is volatile sex and intimacy may appear to be the last thing we should be talking about. However, where there is a lot of conflict there is often very little intimacy and where there is little intimacy there is likely to be conflict.

Sometimes we only see one half of a couple, this makes it difficult to work out exactly what is going on in the relationship. We will look at ways to keep the “other” in mind to avoid being drawn into a possibly damaging collusion with our individual client.

When we have both partners in the room, it is easier to get the bigger picture, but how do we get a true picture of the whole relationship? Often couples come wanting to talk about the issues that are causing the arguments, but they don’t appear to link the rows with loss of intimacy and the resulting anguish this can cause. This can be because at least one partner is so angry or upset that they do not feel able or willing to be emotionally or physically close to the other.

Sometimes there is a moment of reconciliation in the cycle often referred to as “Making up sex.” However for many couples it’s more of a truce, or a way of avoiding looking further into the cause of the falling out. What tends to happen is a period of calm followed by a return to a cycle of rows, making up and then more rows. Eventually the couple may get tired of this cycle and it fizzles out, but what happens to intimacy and sex?

In some cases couples are using sex as a reward or punishment. Driven by anger and resentment this pattern of behaviour can be seen as a low level version of the abuse cycle. We will look at these patterns of behaviour and ways of helping couples to find more constructive ways to express their negative emotions.

This training day will explore the cycles to find out how to tell when lack of intimacy is fuelling rows and resentment and when rows and resentment are being caused by lack of intimacy. Which came first ….?

RuthHazelton (MSc Psychosexual and Relationship Therapy, MBACP (Reg) CORST (Accred) Dip Integrative Supervision

Ruth has been in practice as a relationship therapist for 19 years and as a psychosexual therapist for 13 years. She is currently has a private practice in Brighton and also works at the Macmillan Horizon Centre facilitating groups and counselling for the Sussex Cancer Trust.

Ruth’s particular areas of interest are in raising awareness of the needs of those with disability and long term or terminal illness in relation to their intimate relationships. She is passionate about en- couraging therapists to talk to their clients about their intimate sexual selves in order to ensure that this side of life is not neglected. Ruth has recognised over the years that sexual problems are re- sponsible for many resentments and feelings of isolation and sadness in the couple relationship and that resentments that build up over the years stifle the desire to be intimate.

Ruth has lived in Brighton with her husband for 9 years. She has a large and expanding family and step family.


Event Properties

Event Date 16/05/2020 10:00 am
Event End Date 16/05/2020 1:00 pm
Registered 0
Individual Price £35.00
Workshop Leader Ruth Hazelton
Location Holiday Inn Brighton

Location Map