Claire Thomson B.Sc. M.Sc. PG Dip. MBACP (Senior Accred.)

Claire Thomson B.Sc. M.Sc. PG Dip. MBACP (Senior Accred.)


07969 954320 / 07969 954320

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About me

Relationship counselling Edinburgh is a private practice based in EH15 and specialises in working with couples and individuals who wish to learn and change in order to create happier relationships for themselves, their partners and their families. I also offer Discernment consultations for people who are unsure of what direction to take with their relationship.

Relationship Counselling Edinburgh is an inclusive practice and welcomes everyone over the age of 18 years of age, individuals and couples of all sexual orientation and who are at any stage of their relationship.

There are many reasons why relationships breakdown and most of them are listed under the category "Areas of Counselling You deal with". If you are stressed for any reason, have ill-health, financial difficulties, have low self-esteem, or have recently experienced loss or trauma then your relationship will be put under pressure. If you and your partner have a calm, open way of handling stressful times, then your relationship has the best chance of remaining connected and strong. However, couples often deteriorate into negative reactive dynamics which, over time, have the potential for eliminating joy/wearing down emotional bonds to the point of threatening your relationship.

I have 30 years of training and experience in working with people therapeutically. I have a strong knowledge base with solid mainstream professional training (please see below for full details of my credentials and career). My main goal with clients is to be effective and to provide a valuable service from start to finish. I do this by offering a safe, confidential environment for our work together and by setting up the therapeutic process in a way that is pro-active and collaborative with you as the client. I work to establish what therapy can provide for you by engaging with you about what your unique wants and needs are in the following way:

How can I help you?

We/I are unhappy in our relationship but we/I are not sure if therapy is what we/I want/need or if you are the therapist we/I want to work with?

I am happy to meet with both individuals and couples for a 90-minute one-off consultation to help establish if therapy at this time is what you need. This meeting is also a chance for you to meet with me to figure out if I am the person you would like to work with. Finally, we can establish if any other help at this stage is more appropriate for you i.e. a referral to a psychosexual therapist, GP etc.

We/I are confused and upset and don't know if we want to save our relationship?

This is a common starting point when a relationship has reached crisis point. Coming to therapy is not just about saving a relationship. If you are confused about how to move forward with the problems you are experiencing we will work together to clarify the issues for each of you and your deeper feelings about these (and each other) in order to establish a sense of the way ahead. You may decide to move into couples therapy to save your relationship or you might decide to stay in therapy to work toward separating. This is called discernment counselling. I can provide information around mediation, the process and cost of divorce in Scotland, as well as information of the emotional consequences of either staying together or separating to help you make your decision.

We/I are in crisis but definitely want to make this work!

Some couples already know they want to save their relationship and so we embark on finding out what interactions the couple are engaged in which are destroying their emotional closeness and connection. We work to really get to know and understand these destructive dynamics in order to eliminate and replace them with new positive ways of being with each other. This creates a new positive bonding between you and your partner that allows you to regain emotional closeness and improve your general intimacy.

Does it matter that I come with my partner?

Some people come along as a couple and when both people are willing to attend therapy I always strongly recommend working with the couple together. However, other clients who are in relationship crisis do come by themselves. They work on their situation from their own point of view. It can be a great help to have a special time and place each week where you can get support and with my help, make meaning of what is happening with your partner. You can start to change your understanding and interactions at home which is usually an empowering and positive experience.

We/I are not in crisis at the moment but we/I know there are problems and we/I would like help to explore and resolve these.

I am very passionate about being proactive about the health of a relationship. It is an excellent idea to come along to work on resolving any recurring issues that you may be experiencing and that are detracting from your experience of happiness with your partner. Obviously, the sooner problems are tackled the better. Coming along early helps to avoid the bigger relationship breakdowns that can happen.

We are in love and are planning to move in together/planning a wedding/planning civil partnership and we would like help to plan our future relationship too : )

It is a pleasure to work with all couples but especially with those who are making a lifetime commitment. We can work together to increase your emotional strength as a couple by making sure you have successful, positive ways of relating in place. This will promote the happy future that you are looking forward to together!

I strive to give all clients an experience of feeling emotionally safe and of being "heard". My aim is to use knowledge, empathy and compassion to achieve my ultimate goal ..... to gently guide you through a process towards the resolution of the difficulties that are threatening your relationships and your happiness.

Training, qualifications & experience

I originally trained as a Speech and Language Pathologist & Therapist working in the NHS in Fife and in private practice (abroad) for 11 years. After some years, I re-trained as a psychotherapist and I have worked in a variety of settings as a therapist in Edinburgh: voluntary agencies including No 21 & Couple Counselling Lothian, student counselling at Queen Margaret University.

My specialisation is in Relationship Psychotherapy.  My specialist training began with Relationship Scotland and I developed this through ICCEFT, the International Centre for Excellence in Emotion Focused Therapy. ICEEFT is a North American organisation specialising in therapy for relationship and marriage problems.  This approach to Couples work has been developed by Dr Sue Johnson a Professor of Clinical Psychology at the University of Ottawa.   Please go to for more information.

EFT (Emotion Focued Therapy and not to be confused with EFT Emotion Freedom Technique!)is a way offering psychotherapy that combines structure (steps and stages) and excellent clinical reasoning with a strongly compassionate and respectful attitude for all clients and their feelings. The academic strength of this approach is what underpins it's rapidly growing popularity in Canada and the US, Europe, Asia and now in Scotland! Dr Johnson and others have spent 30 years producing evidence from research which demonstrates EFT's effectiveness for successfully helping couples and individuals out of relationship crisis and onto lasting happy partnerships.

  • ICEEFT Levels 1-4 EFT Training for couples (2013) Milan 2012, Dublin 2013
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Relationship Counselling. (2011) Relationship Scotland, Edinburgh
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling and Psychotherapy (2004), Edinburgh University, Edinburgh
  • M.Sc. Human Communication (1986) City University, London
  • B.Sc. Speech Pathology & Therapy (1981) Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh
  • MBACP – Registered and Accredited Member of the British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy

As a Registered and accredited member of BACP, Claire Thomson follows their code of Ethics and Practice and is subject to the Association’s complaints procedures.

Claire Thomson has been cleared through the Enhanced Disclosure Scotland Scheme.

Please go to the website for more details.

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited


Accredited register membership

Other areas of counselling I deal with

I have not specified each individual "counselling issue" as listed in this directory. This is because I have worked with the most "counselling" issues listed above, through my work with individuals and couples.


£110 for couples, £80 for individuals for 50 minute sessions or pro rata for longer sessions.

Further information

Please note that, unfortunately, it is not possible for couple clients to attend any appointments with children.

Maps & Directions

Edinburgh, EH15

Type of session

Online counselling: No
Telephone counselling: No
Face to face counselling: Yes
Home visits: No

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: None


Accessibility information
Wheelchair access: Unspecified


Strictly office hours only. Monday to Friday, 9-6pm.

Types of client

Older adults