Let’s go for the least painful way possible

No-fault divorce was the subject of a Ten Minute Rule Bill debated in the House of Commons.

We support this motion.

Divorce in England and Wales requires one person to accuse the other of adultery / unreasonable behaviour / desertion to have their divorce granted within two years of marriage breakdown.

Research has found that 27% of divorcing couples who assert blame in their divorce petition admit the allegation of fault isn’t true, but it’s the easiest option.

Relate contests that it’s important that couples are able to separate in the least painful way possible without having to make false allegations about one another.

For more, listen on iplayer here approx 35 minutes in:


How to stop arguments spinning out of control

Have you noticed that arguments with your partner often blow up before getting resolved?

Do disagreements easily pass the point of no return?

Do you sometimes both say things you’ll regret later before one of you storms out?

Many couples bring this destructive pattern of conflict to counselling, and we’ve witnessed how hurt and exhausted they feel when they’re trapped in it. When you can’t have healthy, constructive and respectful arguments, problems can linger and resentment can creep in. (more…)

10 tips for a happy relationship

Talk constructively

How you say things is as important as what you’re saying. If you and your partner are having a disagreement, don’t just attack them or go all-out criticising. Why not try using ‘I’ statements? By saying ‘I feel’ rather than ‘You always…’ you’re taking responsibility for your emotions and your partner won’t feel like they’re being blamed for everything.

Listen to each other

Listening is such an important tool in relationships. Sometimes, we find it hard to hear what our partner is saying because we’re so wrapped up in our own emotions. Remember that communication works two ways. Listening to your partner is the only way to know what’s really going on with them.

Don’t bottle things up

If something has upset you, you’re not doing yourself or your partner any favours by keeping it to yourself. This is only likely to cause resentment to build up that will come out in other ways. If it’s something that really matters to you, talk about it. (more…)

Don’t Waste Your Extra Hour – Dedicate It To loved Ones

As the clocks go back, Relate Bedfordshire and Luton suggest spending the extra hour on those who matter most

When the clocks go back on 25th October, we will be blessed with an extra hour. But how are we going to spend it? How about making that extra hour really count and using it to invest in your relationships?

This is the advice being offered by relationships charities, Relate and Marriage Care. Their The Way We Are Now 2015 study in conjunction with Relationships Scotland found that we spend more time with our bosses than with our mums (38% of those in employment see their boss every day compared to only 27% for mums). The same study also found that nearly half (47%) of people with children under five (and who are in a couple relationship) never or rarely engage in outside interests with their partner, compared to 27% without children. With this in mind, the relationship experts believe we should be making the most of any spare time we can get. (more…)

Tips for dating

Be positive – Make sure you’re in a good place and feeling fulfilled first before you try and get into a new relationship. Looking to another person to make you happy will not last and is likely to create unwanted pressures and resentments down the line.

Keep your friends close – Develop and maintain a strong network of friends and family support around you. These people are your counsellors, cheerleaders and your safety net to catch you if you fall. They can also be good for introducing you to new people.

Be real – When you’re getting to know someone be honest about who you are and what you think, don’t say things just to make the other person like you. In order to find a real lasting connection you have to be your most authentic self. (more…)

‘Age no barrier to love’

Research from Relate shows that 23% of 55 to 65-year-olds have met at least one partner through a dating website or app.

The statistics also reveal that nearly twice the number of men compared with women are getting married in their sixties.

Relate Bedfordshire and Luton CEO Angela Foll says that relationships are important no matter what age you are. “There’s an abundance of evidence indicating that good quality relationships benefit people and are good for your health,” she says. “Many people in their 50s and 60s are finding themselves single again after bereavement and increasingly after divorce. This may seem daunting but age should be no barrier to love and companionship.”




Government statistics show that the number of people getting divorced each year has been falling steadily since the mid-1990s. But the divorce rate among the over 60s has increased significantly in recent years compared to all other age groups.

Online dating is just one of many routes to finding love, says Relate. Retirement presents opportunities to take up new hobbies and meet new people. Relate can provide impartial and non-judgmental support for people of all ages, including individual counselling for people looking for love. Call 01234 356350.

Auction raises nearly £2,000 to help local young people

Definitely no one was asleep – some just look that way in the picture.



Instead, they were intently studying the brochure for 12 auction lots at our latest charity auction – including bottles of bubbly from the House of Commons donated by local MPs – which raised nearly £2,000 to help pay for free counselling services for young people in the area.

A framed photograph of the England international one-day cricket team, signed by local lad and England captain Alistair Cook as well as a host of players, attracted one of the biggest bids – £160. While a day out for five people at Center Parcs Woburn Forest attracted the top bid of £200.

Auctioneer for the event at the Auction Rooms, The Old Town Hall, Woburn, was Angela Foll, CEO, Relate Bedfordshire and Luton. “We’re grateful to so many friends and supporters who turned out to take part in our auction which raised a significant sum for what is a very worthwhile cause,” she says.

Relate Bedfordshire and Luton delivered 26% more hours of services during 2014-2015 compared with the previous year – and more than half of that time (57%) was spent supporting children and young people.

Getting It Right In Online Dating – by Relate’s Sue Reed

Online dating is hugely popular. According to YouGov one in five relationships in the UK now start on line, and meetings via the internet is the third most popular way of finding a date , the first two being finding a date through friends or meeting someone in a pub or club.

Many people find a partner successfully through online dating sites but many others have had difficult and unhappy experiences. Online dating has pitfalls as well as positives. Online dating has different rules to the more traditional ways of meeting. Surveys show that many people are economical with the truth when it comes to filling out their online profile to ensure they are seen in the best possible light. Reading a profile is very different to seeing a person.  The first communications will be by email or texting but most human communication is non-verbal so we miss out on body language, tone of voice and nuances of behaviour. It is hard to see if there is a real spark or to gauge the chemistry between people in online communication. (more…)

Great prizes for auction fundraiser

Just take a look… at the great prizes supporters have generously donated for our auction this month. The catalogue is here:

Woburn auction lots brochure

The 12 auction lots include bottles of bubbly from the House of Commons, family days out on the river and in country parks, and a framed photograph of the England international one-day cricket team, signed by local lad and England captain Alistair Cook as well as a host of players.

If you can’t be there, you can still bid – with a reserve price in advance. If your bid is not exceeded on the night, you’ll be the bid winner. To place a reserve bid please email peter.law@relatebedsandluton.org.uk with the number of the lot you are bidding for, then make your bid, together with your name, address, email and a phone number. Win or lose, we’ll let you know after the event.

The auction – on Thursday 15th October, 6.30pm, at the Auction Rooms, The Old Town Hall, Woburn, MK17 9PZ  – will raise funds for counselling of children and young people in Bedfordshire and Luton.

Your auctioneer for the evening is Angela Foll, CEO, Relate Bedfordshire and Luton.