Other Loves: Polyamory, Polygamy and Arranged Marriages 16 17 October 2023


Limited Places Left

This two-day Intensive is dedicated to exploring a wide range of relationship models taking into account culture, sexuality, gender rather than assuming that one size fits all.


Limited Places Left

Dates : Monday and Tuesday 16 & 17 October  2023 (Please note that the dates originally advertised were different, and were changed in January 2023).  Please be sure you have the correct dates in your diary.    

Alternative dates: Friday & Saturday 26th & 27th January 2024, Thursday 15th and Friday 16th February 2024, Monday 10th and Tuesday 11th June 2024,  Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th July 2024 Wednesday 11th and Thursday 12th September 2024, Saturday 30th November and Sunday 1st December 2024   

Timing : 10am – 4pm (BST) 

TRAINER : Bernd Leygraf Scroll down to see more about the trainer


Cost : £175 if booked by 16 August 2023 , £195 if booked by 16 September 2023 , £215 full price


Limited Places Left


By the end of the training participants will have

  • Learnt to differentiate skill sets appropriate to working with two-person intimate systems, multiple intimate systems and “arranged marriages”
  • Enhanced therapeutic skills in working with multiple partner relationships 
  • Critically examined a wide range of relationships styles 
  • Learned how to adjust couples therapy skills when working with arranged marriages
  • Appreciated the difference between individualist and collectivist cultures 

The workshop will lean into what we can learn from those cultures to expand our own understanding of conventional notions of coupledom.

This training includes theoretical presentations, working in pairs and triads, case studies and live supervision. 

Please note, that the general rules of engagement of the profession (confidentiality etc) apply when attending this workshop.


Consultant Psychotherapist co-founded a number of organisations (London Men’s Forum, UK Standing Conference on Sexual Abuse of Men, the Centre for Personal and Professional Development, the Whittington Hospital Psychotherapy Clinic, the Hungarian Gestalt Association, NAOS Institute). He co-authored with Judi Keshet-Orr the first MSc in Humanistic Psychotherapy and the first Masters programme in Psychosexual & Relationship Therapy in the UK. He also authored or co-authored, as well as led, several masters programmes in the UK, primarily at South Bank University, Middlesex University, Westminster and the University of Surrey. He was external examiner to various universities in the UK.

A former Chair of the Professional Standards and Accreditation Board at the European Association for Counselling, and Ethics Committee of COSRT, Bernd works currently with trainees, from over 40 countries. He is familiar with and interested in working with issues of cultural difference.  His principal influences in sexological and couples work are David Schnarch, Joseph Zinker, Ellen Bader, Judith Hemming, Joan Lachkar, Judi Keshet-Orr and, as ever, his clients. 

In 2023 Bernd was given the Liz McElligot Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Profession of Psychosexual and Relationship Therapy and for the support and guidance he has provided to the field.

Bernd is proud to have supported – alongside Judi – a significant number of sex and couples therapists in shaping their own professional identities and careers – both in the UK and further afield; some even have moved into offering specialist sex addiction clinics; others are now trainers in this field in their own right. 

Bernd is delighted to be (founder and) Honorary Member of the Hungarian Gestalt Association. Clinically speaking Bernd focuses on working with celebrity clients, and on men in leadership, both nationally and globally.


“The ‘Other Loves’ workshop was very rewarding for me
on multiple levels .  The content of the workshop widened my knowledge in the field of psycho-sexual diversity.
I enjoyed the Bernd’s balance of seriousness and humour.
And found great value in the richness and
openness of our group discussions.
Thank you!”

Dr. Irina Aron
Intercultural Communication Consultant and Psychotherapist

“I felt completely blessed to be in the company of
Bernd and those drawn to develop more
safety, skill, vulnerability,
tolerance of uncertainty, and
openness to working with Other Loves.
I learned and grew in this
inclusive, diverse and creative environment.”
Couples and Family therapist, Somatic practitioner,
Open Dialogue practitioner and trainer, Interfaith minister


We recognise that few of us had the training, the supervision or the experience to work with more than two in the consulting room and yet we are meant to work within our competence. Our view of relationships as always based on romantic or sexual attraction might not serve all client populations.  Most therapists will recognise that individual therapy skills are inappropriate to working with dual intimate systems, often referred to as “couples”.

The role of the therapist is different when the client is a couple (rather than two individuals) and the skills are fundamentally different. Many therapists will find the step from individual to couples therapy daunting in itself.  This course is suitable for therapists who work one-to-one as well as those who are established as couple therapists.  

Furthermore, our clients who identify as culturally different may challenge our way of thinking.  Some clients may identify as polyamorous and consider themselves as “multiple partnered”.  Others consider polygamy as the norm, and others may have met their partner through an arranged marriage.  Each of these require a different skills set. 

During the two days, we will explore and learn specific skills for welcoming and working with:

  • couples (an intimate dual system)
  • multiple partner relationships
  • non-eurocentric relationships
    • including arranged marriages and
    • polygamous ones
  • clients from collectivist cultures rather than individualist culture
  • erotically marginalised client groups

 Participants will be supported in:

  • recognising and adjusting our communication which may sound
    • discriminatory,
    • hostile,
    • including micro aggressions and
    • overt prejudice
  • exploring (counter)transference in this work. 


Thank you so much for a wonderful two days,
for sharing all your personal information and your knowledge. 
It turned out to be a much better course
than I could ever have imagined. 
Bernd you were an amazing leader.
It was fun, relaxed and very informative.”

Maggie Davies, Relationship and Psychosexual therapist 


 APPROVED FOR CPD : This course has been approved by NCIP-  National Council Of Integrative Psychotherapists.  A Certificate of Attendance form for Continuous Professional Development for 10 hours will be sent by email once you have filled in the feedback form.  

When powerful feelings are revealed and processed, it is not unusual that our own psychological issues are triggered and flow into the mix.  Wilfred Bion is a respected name in the world of group working. He wrote extensively and cogently on issues that invariably occur in groups. We would like to agree basic guidelines with you – based on his findings – to ensure the success of our work together. Bion’s central focus was the disruption (he called it ‘resistance’) that may arise within a group that shifts it away from its agreed task.  Our focus, our agreed task for this workshop is NOT therapy for the members or to criticise others.  OUR AGREED TASK IS TO OFFER TEACHING AND LEARNING RELATED TO DIVERSITY WITHIN CONTEMPORARY RELATIONSHIPS. 

To this end, our Certificate in Diversity within Contemporary Relationships welcomes and needs people to be courageous, and examine prejudice with tolerance and a minimum of defensiveness.  We need our workshops to be safe spaces, where participants can be vulnerable and supported if they make mistakes, as we all do.   We would like to remind you that we work within UK law and ethics (Gender Recognition, Equalities Act, MOU and Race) and will not tolerate non-compliance in any way.   We wholeheartedly support people courageously stepping forward, and anyone who is critical of this will not be welcome on this training and may be asked to leave.

     There are some online talks on zoom that allow you to come and go, or to choose not to participate in the exercise and breakout rooms.  This culture has started to creep into our workshops.  We have even had people say they want to leave to go and pick up children from school or walk their dog!  People dropping in and out is very disruptive – especially when there may be group exercises that are planned for the same group to participate in a number of times.  
     Because of this, we want to be clear about our expectations.  This workshop has been planned with the assumption that you, and everyone else, will attend for the full time.  SO PLEASE BE CLEAR, THAT IF YOU BOOK ON THIS WORKSHOP, WE EXPECT YOU TO ATTEND FOR THE WHOLE TIME, TO  PARTICIPATE IN THE BREAKOUT ROOMS AND EXERCISES AND HAVE YOUR VIDEO SWITCHED ON.
     Please also put your mobile to one side and on silent – checking your phone or texting will mean that you miss material.  So we request that you only check your phone during breaks.  

HANDOUTS : You will get a copy of the slides before the workshop

CANCELLATIONS : Any request to change (eg defer to alternative dates) or cancel your place at a workshop, that is made at less than 21 days before the course start date will be charged in full.  Any cancellation / amendments / requests to defer before 21 days, will be subject to a 12.5% handling charge.

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