Frequently asked questions

Relate Bradford is a registered charity with 70 years’ experience in helping people with their relationships. Our counsellor training is of the very highest quality and our practice conforms to the code of ethics and practice recommended by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
Relate Bradford is part of a national federation of Relate Centres and provides a range of Relate services from our city centre base in Bradford.
We’re the UK’s largest provider of relationship support, and every year we help over a million people of all ages, backgrounds and sexual orientations.

Counselling is a therapeutic process during which you and your counsellor work together in collaboration, to improve your wellbeing and strengthen your relationships. We offer a safe, quiet place where you can focus on whatever issues have been bothering you. Counselling is confidential. This means that we will not give your name or any other information about you to anyone outside Relate unless we believe that someone’s personal safety is at risk.

Relate deals with every client’s situation individually and the length of time therapy takes depends on your circumstances. Sessions are usually weekly or fortnightly (but can be longer). We are a short term therapy service.

The average cost of a counselling session is variable. To find out the cost of counselling in your area, please contact Relate Bradford directly.

The first session is an initial consultation to explore whether counselling will be helpful. We’d invite you to talk with us for around 50 minutes about what’s on your mind and what it is you want from counselling. Some people find this session is all they need to clear their head and help them decide what to do and that no further counselling is necessary. If you and your counsellor agree it would be helpful for you to come back, you’ll talk about how it might be best to proceed.

Our counsellors and therapists work integratively using mainly psychodynamic, systemic and CBT approaches.

Counselling helps you take time out from your situation and see it from a fresh perspective. Working with a counsellor gives you a chance to think about what you can do to change your situation for the better. It also gives you a chance to explore complex or difficult issues in a safe and confidential environment.

Relate counsellors have all received special training in relationship counselling. It takes two to three years to become a fully qualified Relate counsellor. They undergo further training to specialise in areas such as Family Counselling and Sex Therapy.

No. You don’t need a referral to make an appointment for any of our services. Just contact us and we’ll help you find the right service for your needs.

We work with every client differently, so how long counselling takes will depend on your specific needs. You’ll be able to find out more about how we can help you by coming for an initial consultation.

A counselling session lasts for around 50 minutes.

We can’t do this for you, but when you come to the first session and if appropriate, the counsellor will help you to approach and encourage your partner to come.

Yes. Counselling is a very effective way of negotiating a separation or a divorce. It can help you to process any emotions that you might be struggling to deal with, or bring the relationship to a conclusion with as little pain or misunderstanding as possible.

Yes, if the counsellor is available. Sometimes, you may have to wait until that counsellor has a vacant appointment to offer you.

Yes. We don’t discriminate between different types of relationship. We welcome all individuals and couples irrespective of how they identify in terms of sexuality or gender.

No. Counselling doesn’t mean you’re admitting failure. It simply means you’re willing to focus some time on improving your wellbeing and/or mental health, and/or improving the quality of your relationships with your partner or family member.

Sex therapy is very successful in helping people to re-establish an active sex life. Working with a Relate sex therapist will help you to recognise any difficulties you’re having and find a way to move on from them. Many people are surprised at how effective Sex Therapy is.

Our sex therapists have studied significant, specialist Sex Therapy training.

In Sex Therapy you and your therapist work on the issues you need help with. Your therapist will design a programme of exercises especially for you, which you’ll carry out in the privacy of your own home. At each session, the therapist will talk to you about how you’re getting on and discuss the best next steps. You will never be asked to undertake any sexual tasks during the sessions.

You will normally be expected to pay a fee to cover the cost of your Sex Therapy sessions. Many Relate Centres offer reduced rates depending on your household income. Please contact your local Relate to find out what payment options they provide.

We work with every client differently, so how long therapy takes depends on your specific needs. Sessions are usually weekly and therapists always work at your pace, so you’ll never feel rushed.

On average, Sex Therapy sessions last for around 50 minutes.

No. Many people are referred to Sex Therapy by their GP but you can also make an appointment with Relate to discuss any aspect of your sex life or relationship without a referral.

Yes, if you are single, or if your partner doesn’t want to come along, or if you simply want to see a Relate sex therapist alone.

Please read our privacy and cookie policy and our terms and conditions. These pages outline how (and why) we collect and process your personal information and keep it safe. If you have any questions about this, please email

We run a variety of Education and Training Workshops for the public, voluntary and public sector organisations, schools and businesses. We believe that relationship skills can be learned and developed – and that doing so is an important part of fostering happy and healthy relationships in people’s lives and careers.

Our Workshops will help you develop practical skills, gain a greater understanding of your relationships and meet others who wish to develop their skills in similar ways.

You will be together with up to 12 people at a similar life stage. Course materials are based on modern adult learning principles. During the course you may take part in group discussions, case studies, questionnaires, games. Some courses for professionals include role play in order to practise essential skills.

Workshops and Courses are run by qualified trainers, with expertise in relationship issues. Many of our trainers are Counsellors. Their approach is sensitive, understanding and non-judgemental.

We’d like as much notice as possible if you need to reschedule or cancel your appointment.

If you’re a parent booking an appointment for Children and Young People’s Counselling and the Young Person is below 16 years of age, yes. Otherwise, the person coming to the session will need to have given their consent.

First appointments are usually given within a week of contacting Relate.

Some centres provide this service. We recommend you enquire when making your appointment. 

If when the Counsellor calls at the agreed time and date and either there is no answer on the telephone no(s) provided or you indicate that you cannot/do not wish to proceed, no refund can be given. Counsellors will invariably try more than once to contact you and will leave a message if there is a message facility and you have agreed you are happy for us to do this.

Family Counselling often involves both adults and children, so, yes, it’s sometimes recommended they’re brought along, although it is not appropriate for children of any age to be present whilst their parent(s) attend for counselling.

We do, but the availability of counselling in other languages varies from Centre to Centre. We recommend you get in contact with your nearest Relate to find out more.

This is less common, but we can try to make arrangements if you let us know in advance. Contact your nearest Relate to find out more.

Generally, this isn’t something we have the capacity to provide. If you’re unable to visit your nearest Relate Centre, we recommend you try Telephone Counselling, Email Counselling or Live Chat.

We know that everyone’s schedules are different and we’ll try our best to accommodate you. We recommend you talk to your counsellor about what works best.

Yes, however, this may mean that you have to put on a waiting list until your preference is available.

If this is particularly important to you, we will always try to accommodate your request. However, it’s unlikely that many Centres will always be able to do so due to staffing availability. 

Each Relate Centre tries to keep the cost of counselling as low as possible, but we do need to charge a fee for services in order to cover the cost of what we spend. Relate is a not for profit charity and the money that we charge goes straight back into providing the best service possible. 

We aim to support everybody who comes to us for help and many Relate Centres offer reduced rates depending on your income or if you’re receiving benefits. Please contact your local Centre to find out what payment options they provide.

Each Relate Centre sets their own charges so to find out the cost of counselling in your area please contact your local Relate Centre.

Our services are completely confidential. We will not give your name or any information about you to anyone outside Relate, unless someone’s personal safety is at risk.

Relate aims to give you a good experience. Most of the time we do this, but sometimes we don’t get it right. If you have a concern or would like to make a formal complaint, please first read our complaints procedure. This will guide you through the steps you need to take.

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