We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Couples counseling typically provides people with support from a licensed therapist. Sessions can include help with building communication skills and highlighting relationship goals.

Quick links

Couples experiencing relationship difficulties can speak with a licensed therapist who can use a range of techniques to explore any miscommunication, feelings of disconnection, or external stressors.

If a person in a couple feels they may benefit from talking therapy, multiple options are available. These include:

  • cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Gottman Method couples therapy (GCT)
  • emotionally focused couples therapy (EFCT)

A recent study on internet-based CBT has found it effective in managing psychiatric disorders. Studies on both GCT and EFCT have shown positive effects and improved marital status.

Online therapy is increasing in popularity, particularly in recent years. A 2019 study concludes it to be easier for people to access and less expensive than traditional therapy. However, there are still challenges when moving from traditional services.

Below, we look at some couples counseling services to consider.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

BetterHelp

Best for affordability

pricebetween $50–$95 per week, billed every 4 weeks
platformsphone call, text message, video call

BetterHelp is the largest online therapy platform worldwide. When a person signs up, the company will match them with a professional, licensed therapist. An individual also has the option of video, text messaging, or telephone sessions.

Price is dependent on location, therapist availability, and personal preferences.

Accessing services

To access any of these, a person logs on to their Betterhelp account and enters their personal online therapy room. A therapist will never be able to see their phone number. All communication will go through the online Betterhelp therapy room.

Pros and cons

Here, we look at some benefits of the BetterHelp service, along with some things to consider.

Pros

  • BetterHelp has multiple communication options.
  • There is an easy cancellation process.
  • There is a weekly cost instead of payment per session.
  • The website is in line with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, making it accessible for most people.
  • There is the option to remain anonymous.
  • Both marriage and family therapists are available.

Cons

  • BetterHelp services are unavailable if a person is a minor or under the care of a legal guardian.
  • There is no given timeframe for when an individual or couple will match with a therapist.
  • Insurance plans do not typically cover BetterHelp’s services.
  • While it is available, the option for anonymous therapy is not routine and may not benefit a couple.
  • There is no support available if there is a risk of immediate danger to a person or couple.

Talkspace

Best for finding the right therapist

pricearound $400 per month, per couple, or around $1,070 per quarter
platformstext message via the Talkspace secure platform or video call

After a brief assessment on the Talkspace website, a person can choose their therapist from a list of recommendations. Couples can choose to have their sessions through video or text messaging.

Pros and cons

Here are some advantages and drawbacks of Talkspace:

Pros

  • A person’s private medical insurance may cover Talkspace’s services, and they should contact their insurer to confirm their benefits.
  • Individuals or couples can switch therapists at no extra cost.
  • There is an option to use live video or text message communication between a couple and their therapist.

Cons

  • Talkspace’s website does not provide many specific details before people sign up.
  • Prices vary depending on the couple and their needs.
  • There are poor user reviews regarding therapist communication frequency and customer service.

As well as offering couples counseling, Talkspace also provides therapy for individuals, teenagers, veterans, and the LGBTQIA+ community.

ReGain

pricebetween $50–95 per week, billed monthly
platformstext message, telephone call, video call

Best overall

ReGain is the world’s largest couples therapy service. Although specializing in couples therapy, it also provides individual sessions. After a person signs up on its website, the provider will match them with a suitable therapist. A couple can choose between text messaging, telephone calls, or video sessions.

Pros

  • There are over 10,000 therapists available, specializing in couples therapy.
  • There are more than 150 learning modules and worksheets to help support a couple’s therapeutic journey.
  • There are individual sessions with a therapist for both partners in their shared couple’s account.
  • People can easily switch between therapists.
  • Sessions are reportedly more affordable.
  • The company has an easy cancellation process.
  • There are multiple communication options.
  • There is a choice of anonymity.

Cons

  • The company does not specify a set time between signing up and matching with a therapist.
  • Three-way sessions are not available, meaning both partners need to be in the same location.
  • The company may require an upfront payment.

Additionally, price is dependent on location, therapist availability, and preferences.

ReGain will designate an online room through its private platform, and a couple will share this space with their therapist. They will then use this room for all communications.

Relationship Hero

Best alternative

priceintroductory session: around $100
credit-based option: 180 credits cost around $350
subscriptions: starting from around $60 per week, billed monthly
platformstext message or telephone call

Unlike a typical counseling service, Relationship Hero trains and certifies their relationship coaches themselves. This means the counseling does not come from licensed therapists. It matches a couple with a relationship coach specializing in the areas they need support.

Couples can reach out for support 24/7.

Pros and cons

A person or couple may wish to consider the following advantages and drawbacks:

Pros

  • The company has an easy-to-use messaging system.
  • Although Relationship Hero does not accept insurance payments, it can provide documentation for use in reimbursement.
  • An introductory session may be available for around $100.
  • A couple can cancel their subscription anytime.
  • There are group sessions available.

Cons

  • The service’s coaches are not licensed therapists.
  • Subscriptions are not as cheap as some other providers.
  • Relationship Hero’s website does not provide information on the therapeutic techniques that coaches use.
  • Live video sessions are unavailable.

One of the ways Relationship Hero operates is on a credit basis, so a person can purchase credits to use toward their therapy sessions from the company’s website.

Alternatively, there are multiple subscription options that bill monthly.

The below table shows an at-a-glance comparison to the services in this article.

BetterHelpTalkspaceReGainRelationship Hero
subscription price$50–95 per week$400 per month or
$1070 per quarter
$50–95 per weekmultiple subscription options starting at around $60 per week
do they use licensed therapists?yesyesyesno
communication optionstelephone calls
video calls
text messaging
video calls
text messaging
telephone calls
video calls
text messaging
telephone calls
text messaging
extra featuresalso offers individuals sessionsinsurance may cover costs150+ modules and worksheets availablegroup sessions available

A couple may consider some of the following factors when looking for online therapy:

Therapy style

A couple can research different therapeutic styles to find which best suits their needs. They can then specify this when searching for therapists. Some common couple therapy techniques include:

  • emotionally focused therapy
  • discernment counseling
  • Gottman Method couples therapy
  • relational psychotherapy

Considering needs

Individuals may find it helpful to consider their specific needs. For example, if a couple requires specific help with gender identity, sexual orientation, or monogamy, seeking a therapist with experience in those areas would provide benefit.

Additional considerations may include:

  • whether or not the therapist holds a valid license
  • whether the therapist works with clear action plans
  • whether the therapist provides work to do outside of sessions

Cost and convenience

A couple looking for online therapy should consider their budget and whether or not the sessions are flexible and suit their schedule.

Below are some common questions relating to online couples therapy.

Is online therapy as effective as in person?

A 2016 study found client ratings of online therapy were roughly equivalent to the ratings of in-person therapy. However, due to limited evidence, further studies are necessary.

Should a person go to couples therapy alone or with a partner?

Couples should attend therapy together. However, there are options to speak to therapists separately on some platforms.

Does insurance cover couples therapy?

This is dependent on the insurance provider and the therapy service. A person should speak with their plan provider to confirm benefits.

Can LGBT couples attend couples therapy?

Yes. Some online therapy services specialize in LGBTQIA+ therapy, including:

Online couples therapy can be an affordable alternative to traditional, in-person therapy, and there are many companies offering convenient and reliable services.

Evidence suggests that online therapy options equally are as effective as in-person therapy while providing flexible sessions and ease of use.

Some providers offer manageable subscription services and other payment plans. Additionally, some private medical insurers may also cover online couples therapy, and a person should speak with their insurer directly about this.