Relationship counselling

Relationship counselling helps people with their relationships. We can help you to work through problems in current relationships, explore the effects of past relationships or look at how to improve and enrich relationships for the future.

Counsellors working in local Relationships Scotland counselling services offer relationship counselling throughout Scotland. We work with individuals and couples across a wide range of difficulties – from difficult communication to dealing with affairs, from sexual problems to dealing with the end of a relationship.

Family mediation

We support parents and children through family change and disruption as a result of separation, divorce or family restructuring. Family mediation services are located in all parts of mainland and island Scotland.

The aim of family mediation is to improve communication, reduce conflict and to agree on practical, workable arrangements for the future, taking into account children’s views, needs and feelings. Our focus is on putting children’s needs first.  Family mediation is for parents whose relationship is over and is for all sorts of families – married or unmarried, separated or never having lived together , younger or older.

Child contact centres

Parents going through a tough divorce or separation can find it too difficult to see each other, so children need a safe, welcoming place to spend time with their non-resident parent.

Child contact centres can play an essential role in helping children affected by family breakdown to maintain relationships with the parent they no longer live with, or with other family members.

The central concept of a child contact centre is to offer a safe, friendly, neutral, child-centred environment for children to meet their non-resident parent or family member. They are designed to be a stepping stone to a more permanent arrangement for future contact.

There are 46 child contact centres in Scotland. If you need to use our services, there is probably one near you.

Parenting Apart

Parenting Apart is a one-off 3 hour session for groups of mums and dads to find out how best to manage their separation or divorce.  Ex-partners attend different sessions.  Parents gain an understanding about the impact of separation on their family and learn what they can do to support their children.  You will have the chance to chat to others who are experiencing similar situations. Groups are hosted by two trained family support specialists, so you can also speak to a professional about parenting problems or issues about your relationship with your ex-partner following your split. Parenting Apart sessions are available across Scotland.  Individual sessions might also be available.  For more information and to book a place follow this link.

Children and young people’s counselling

Some member services provide a counselling service for children and young people to give them time to explore their thoughts and feelings about changes they may be going through.

Counselling allows a child or young person to better understand their situation. It can help them cope with their emotions and enable them to make positive choices. Ultimately, it can help children and young people to feel more safe, secure and happy in the family home. Counsellors bring a wealth of techniques to promote emotional health, including art and play therapy.

Parents of children and young people attending counselling can access our range of family support services – family mediation, relationship counselling, child contact centres and parenting workshops. Supporting the family unit in this holistic way ensures we are not simply working with children and young people in isolation.

Intergenerational support

Relationships between all family members can come under strain at various times for a number of reasons. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, mums, dads, children and young people might be finding it hard to get along. We can help.

Several of our member services have experience of working with teenagers and, usually, their parents, to help them talk about the problems they face. This might be referred to as young people’s mediation, or even homelessness mediation, because it could be an intervention that supports a young person at risk of homelessness. Everyone has a chance to say what the issues are from their point of view, and the mediator helps them to understand each another better and agree what they might do differently in the future so that arguments and difficulties reduce.

Some of our member services offer support for other family members such as grandparents and their children or grandchildren. This might be about problems arising from separation or divorce, or it might be to do with conflict for other reasons. Often it helps to talk about concerns and clear up any misunderstandings with a third person – a mediator – in the room to keep things calm and make sure everyone gets listened to. New ways of communicating and new arrangements can be agreed.

Please contact your local family mediation service to find out if they can help.