Relationship styles and counselling

Relationship Counselling

Rainbow Therapists recognise people are unique in building their communities and construct relationship frameworks of all kinds: friends with benefits, married and dating, polyfidelity with occasional swinging – the varieties are endless.

Rainbow Therapists recognise, respect, and value both monogamous and non-monogamous relationships.

We understand that, whatever the framework, healthy relationships are honest, dialogical, and boundaried; because trust, sharing, and feeling safe matters, regardless of gender or sexuality.

We also appreciate that fulfilling and supportive relationships don’t come automatically; they require good social skills, time, and energy to stay strong.

When meaningful connections break down people experience a range of difficult emotions and may find their decision making greatly impaired. Rainbow Therapists work with individuals and partners respectfully – exploring needs, enabling dialogue, and providing counselling support to help people get to a more comfortable place of being, whether together or separately.

We do not claim to have all the answers – we strive to help you find your own.


Ethical Non Monogamy

Ethical non-monogamy is about having multiple relationships that are both consensual and negotiated.

1) Polyamory (loving many) Polyamorous bonds are diverse; comprising commitments of caring and sharing time, they may be sexually flexible (accommodating both sexually active and non-sexually active partners)

A Poly Network may comprise a shared household or a network of polycules (i.e. smaller groups interconnected by some shared links)

2) Swinging (sex play with multiple partners) Some swingers are in committed relationships and go to swing parties together, some have committed partnerships but play separately, and some are solo swingers.

All relationships are negotiated and consensual.

3) Polyfidelity – describes a closed set of relationships comprising more than a couple (for example a vee, a triad, a quad or more)

People practicing polyfidelity are sexually exclusive with the people in their relationship system or polycule.


4) Primary Relationships and Secondary Relationships –  Some poly frameworks have a central (primary) relationship, with satellite (secondary) relationships around it; such systems may have more than one Primary, and multiple Secondaries.

The system is hierarchical with Primary partners having more power; conversely some secondary partners enjoy more freedom and less responsibility.

6) Open Marriage – comprises having an agreed flexibility in a marriage, allowing each spouse to engage in sexual encounters and/or romantic relationships with others.

Some open marriages lean toward poly (having emotional bonds with lovers), others lean toward swinging (having more sexual encounters0 and some sustain both,