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Certificate in working with Couples and Other Relationships


All courses run by The Grove are being delivered by online web conferencing via Zoom until further notice. This forms The Grove’s response to the current public health restrictions on travel and meeting in person. We are supporting the profession and the public by providing this training in order to resource practitioners in offering enhanced therapy to their clients.

This 8-day certificate course is designed for qualified counsellors, psychotherapists or psychologists who would like to become more skilled in working therapeutically with couples and other relationships. The course is offered as a CPD programme (Continuous Professional Development). It is not a certified qualification as such; rather, it is designed as evidence of having taken additional specialised training in relational therapy for couples and other types of relationship – to equip therapists with relevant knowledge and models when undertaking couple/relationship therapy. 

The starting point of the course requires that participants have competence in core therapeutic and relational skills. All students must have qualified as a counsellor, psychotherapist, clinical psychologist, psychiatrist, or in a related professional field. This assumes an understanding of the basic tenets of establishing safety and containment in therapy in order to provide a secure base for working with couples and other forms of relationship where there can be testing dynamics to be navigated with ethical competence by the therapist.

“This workshop has given me a useful insight in to working with couples, (what to expect, useful interventions and ways to cope when things get difficult). This will enabled me to start working with couples, an area that I have wanted to work in but until now was unsure of what extra skills I might need to move from 1-2-1 work.”

The Grove Practice is accredited by NCP (National Council for Psychotherapists) as a CPD training centre. As such, all The Grove’s courses are awarded NCP accreditation for CPD (Continuous Professional Development). This accreditation provides reassurance regarding high standards of teaching and course content.


This course is approved by COSRT (the College of Sex and Relationship Therapists) for 48 hours of CPD (Continuous Professional Development). This CPD approval by COSRT gives quality assurance of relevance of the material to the practice of sex and relationship therapy.

The Grove’s courses have been successfully recognised as CPD for members of the following membership bodies: BACP, UKCP, COSRT, NCP, NCS, AHPP, BPS, among others. Organisations such as Relate and MIND and Place2B have also supported their therapists in taking training with The Grove. This is a mark of unofficial validation of our courses as worthy of being listed on the CPD logs for these members.

Certificate in working with Couples and other Relationships


Key Information

Dates: 4 weekends, 8 days in total (48 CPD hours)
Time: 10:00am – 4:30pm
Tutor: Cabby Laffy has over 25-years’ experience as training facilitator and psychotherapist with individuals and couples and is author of LoveSex: An Integrative Model for Sexual Education (Karnac 2013). 
Venue: Autumn 2019 intake is at the Holiday Inn Mayfair. Spring 2020 intake is at Spiral Therapy Centre, 2 Shelburne Road, London N7 6DL
Fees: £1,200 + VAT = £1,440 payable in full before the start date or by instalments as long as the total is reached before the final weekend of the course.  The course fee includes all training materials and the CPD-certificate. Tea, coffee and biscuits are provided during the course. Lunch is not included in the course fee. There are many shops and cafes nearby offering refreshments and lunches.

2020 Spring intake

Saturday and Sunday weekend dates:
14 & 15 March
18 & 19 April
23 & 24 May
20 & 21 June

Times each day: 10am – 4:30pm.
Venue: Spiral Centre, Islington N7.
Scroll down for a map.

Enquire now by emailing [email protected]

This intake is now full. We are accepting applications for future intakes.


2020 Autumn intake

Saturday and Sunday weekend dates all in 2020:
19 & 20 September
24 & 25 October
21 & 22 November
12 & 13 December

Times each day: 10am – 4:30pm.
Venue: De Vere West One training centre, 9-10 Portland Place W1, just north of Oxford Circus.
Scroll down for a map.

Enquire now by emailing [email protected]

Previous intakes have been oversubscribed. So you are encouraged to register your interest sooner rather than later.


2021 Spring intake

Saturday and Sunday weekend dates all in 2021:
20 & 21 March
24 & 25 April
22 & 23 May
19 & 20 June

Contact us to register your interest.

Times each day: 10am – 4:30pm.
Venue: Spiral Centre, Islington N7.
Scroll down for a map.

Enquire now by emailing [email protected]

Previous intakes have been oversubscribed. So you are encouraged to register your interest sooner rather than later.




This 8-day certificate course, facilitated by Cabby Laffy, is designed for qualified counsellors, psychotherapists or psychologists who would like to become more skilled in working therapeutically with couples and other relationships. Through teaching and experiential work, including role-plays and skills practice you will gain some insights and tools to work with the dynamics of relationships, as well as common issues arising in couple therapy – such as desire, conflict, potential separation, lack of relationship vision, communication blocks, endings.

The course will include an introduction to working with sexually diverse couples, common presenting problems, such as differing sexual desire and managing conflict in relationships, a consideration of the therapeutic meaning of clients’ presenting issues, what may be achievable and a presentation of different models of working with relationships. The programme covers an introduction to psychosexual issues, with a greater emphasis on relational work.

The programme will include:

  • Presentations of multiple theories on couple relationships, and material by trainer Cabby Laffy
  • Considerations and process for intake, history-taking and assessment, therapeutic process with couples and other relationships
  • Practical skills for couple work: using triads, introducing communication skills, conflict resolution, working with different and culture
  • Discussion in the full group of the material being presented, including opportunities to ask questions and check understanding.
  • Experiential exercises to embed understanding of the material.

Work in small groups (dyads, triads) as skills practice using the taught material.

Theory ✓        Experiential components ✓         Skills Practice ✓        




Through teaching and experiential work, including role-plays and skills practice you will gain some insights and tools to work with the dynamics of a couple client, as well as common issues arising in couple therapy.

The “Certificate in Working with Couples and Other Relationships” is awarded by The Grove Practice as evidence of 48 hours of CPD in this field, giving confidence to the therapist about an ethical stance for their scope of practice – with evidence of having undertaken relevant training.

To give reassurance to the clients, the therapist can describe themselves as having taken relevant specialised training in couple/relationship therapy.

As with any topic, there’s always more depth and breadth to study. This CPD course is a foundation.



1. Introduction to working with relationships: Expectations, for therapists and for couples. Awareness of counter transference

2. Beginnings: Assessments. Contracts. History taking.

3. The Dynamics of working in Triads: Triads, Drama Triangle. Psychosocial development.

4. Philosophies and beliefs: Theories about working with relationships. Stages in relationship and life issues.

5. Working with Difference: Sexual diversity. Shame. Transference.

6. Desire, differentiation and conflict: Sexual desire and its connection with differentiation. Managing conflict in the therapy room.

7. Communication: Teaching and modelling Communication skills. Winner’s Triangle and Assertiveness.

8. Endings: Importance of Endings. Review of what you have learnt.

This course has a biopsychosocial underpinning – whereby the body’s physiology and the client’s psychological process are considered within the sociological context.

This course has a sex-positive philosophy, in which sex has a valid place within therapeutic work.

Assessment & Certificate

Learning is absorbed by attendance and participation on the course. There is no assessment other than attendance and participation. Although a reading list is provided, there is no formal requirement for further reading – although additional reading is recommended to enhance your professional development subsequent to the course.

We also recommend that anyone undertaking couple therapy seeks supervision from a suitable qualified professional, to support this important area of work.


cabby-2015Cabby Laffy has been a facilitator of trainings and workshops since 1991. She has also worked as a psychotherapist with individuals and couples, and a supervisor for individual and couple work, for twenty-five years. She is a UKCP registered and NCP accredited psychotherapist, a COSRT accredited psychosexual therapist, a supervisor, a group facilitator, and a member of PCSR. Cabby’s book LoveSex: An Integrative Model for Sexual Education (Karnac 2013) presents a model for psychosexual health. Cabby is available for one to one and couple therapy, training and supervision.

Cabby has created a Homeodynamic Model for Psychosexual Health, which offers an integrative understanding of human relationships and sexuality encompassing the physical, emotional, spiritual, and our social and cultural environment. This approach includes research from neuroscience, complementary and alternative health therapies and cognitive behavioural therapy, and draws from eastern sexual healing practices as well western approaches to psychosexual therapy. The Homeodynamic Model is taught at Cabby’s Centre for Psychosexual Health – – primarily through a two year Diploma in Integrative Psychosexual Therapy.  She is an experienced practitioner in her client work and training roles, with a speciality in psychosexual therapy.

Who is this course is designed for

This CPD training is designed for qualified counsellors and psychotherapists who are experienced in working with individual clients, but who wish to become confident in offering relationship therapy. The course covers different forms of relationship, such as same-sex couples, plus open or polyamorous relationships.

Diversity and Respect Statement

The Grove is committed to the provision of training which is inclusive for participants from a diverse range of professional and cultural backgrounds. The Grove’s diversity policy upholds participation by trainees which respects differences in ability and disability, age, sex, gender diversity, race, religion, culture, and theoretical modality. The Grove’s course terms and conditions provide for each participant being seen, heard and respected during their attendance at course events. These terms are shown in the course contract which every applicant is expected to sign when enrolling; and are described in the course handbook at the start of the training. Any participant may be suspended from the course if their behaviour is deemed by The Grove to be contrary to this statement.

Testimonials from previous course participants:

Cert Coup Rel 21

Cabby has been the most enlightening and generous of teachers, such a wonderful experience.

Cert Coup Rel 20

Excellent. Enjoyable and I feel more confident as a result to start working with couples and taking what I have learnt in to my 1-1 work with clients who bring their relationship and struggles.

Cert Coup Rel 19

It was a pleasure to meet you Cabby. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience in such an accessible and real way.

Cert Coup Rel 18

I really enjoyed the course and gained a lot from it. The outlook and stance taken by Cabby was refreshing and challenged me in lots of ways – great!.

Cert Coup Rel 17

Very good notes and material to accompany the theory presented. Cabby’s explanation of theory in relation to the work is second to none. It’s ‘straight up’ and she explains it with ease in a very knowledgeable but approachable way.

Cert Coup Rel 16

Thanks again for a brilliant training.

Cert Coup Rel 15

Many thanks again for a thought-provoking, interesting and beautifully taught and held course, I thoroughly enjoyed it

Cert Coup Rel 14

I’ve learned new things and had my basic assumptions challenged. It’s been a good experience.

Cert Coup Rel 13

It was a very useful experience and having a lot of experiential work, made it one of the best courses I have been onas a lot was packed into a short space of time.

Cert Coup Rel 11

I did enjoy and benefit from the course that I attended with you, thanks.

Course venue Spring  intakes

Spiral Therapy Centre
2 Shelburne Road
N7 6DL

The entrance to Spiral is actually in Annette Road on the corner with Shelburne Road, at the back of the Waitrose car park.

The Spiral Centre is the venue for the Spring 2020 intake. The venue for the 2020 Autumn intake is different. Please see below.


Spiral Therapy Centre

Spiral Therapy Centre

Course venue for future intakes when circumstances allow

De Vere West One
9-10 Portland Place
W1B 1PR.

This training centre is just north of Oxford Circus tube near the Langham Hotel and the BBC TV centre.

Click to see venue website


De Vere West One

How to apply

To enquire or apply to this course please use this form or email [email protected]. We will contact you as soon as possible.