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ReGain Review: Best online relationship counseling in 2022?

Find out the pros, cons and all details of ReGain’s online couples therapy service

Last Updated: Jan 31, 2022
Regain Review

Back in 2017, almost half of people in a serious relationship surveyed stated they’d been to couples counseling before. A majority of those were Millennials – and that number continues to grow as more Gen Z-ers, who are the most likely to seek therapy, begin to enter serious relationships and marry. Alongside more convenient opportunities to access health services like therapy online, couples counseling as a field continues to grow.

ReGain is an online counseling platform focused exclusively on couples counseling. It aims to help people with their relationship and marital concerns by facilitating easy access to relationship counselors, avoiding the difficulties of scheduling and attending conventional face-to-face counseling in an office. Individuals or couples can access ReGain counseling through their computer or smartphone whenever and wherever it suits them.

We thoroughly tested ReGain so that you can make an informed decision whether or not to give it a try.

Editor's Summary

Overall Rating 9.0 / 10

ReGain provides convenient and high-quality relationship counseling at a lower cost than out-of-pocket therapy no matter where you are. Their laser-like focus on relationships influences their site design, reconnecting you and your partner for an all-around harmonious experience.

Pros

  • Flexibility to access counseling from anywhere with an internet connection.
  • All counselors are experienced and highly qualified relationship counselors.
  • Both partners can participate in counseling at no extra cost.
  • No limit to the number of messages or live sessions between you and your counselor.

Cons

  • Not suitable for counseling ordered by courts or other authorities.
  • Your partner has access to all messages sent between you and your counselor.
  • Three-way live sessions not supported: you and your partner must be in the same room.
Our Top Picks

ReGain

ReGain connects you with very qualified and specialized relationship counselors from the comfort and convenience of your home.

You’ll get unlimited messaging and weekly, real-time counseling sessions via your choice of live chat, phone call, or video call. ReGain is more affordable than a lot of traditional couples therapy. Schedule counseling sessions when it’s convenient for you and your partner -- or just you alone. ReGain makes counseling accessible where and when it works for you.

Couples Counseling
Reviewed by Innerbody Research
Individual Relationship Counseling
Reviewed by Innerbody Research

Why you can trust us

Over the past two decades, Innerbody Research has helped tens of millions of readers like you make more informed decisions to live healthier lives. We extensively test each health service we review.

Our team has spent over 224 hours testing and researching ReGain and its close competitors in order to give you an unbiased exploration of your online therapy options, free of marketing jargon or gimmicks. Through a thorough and deliberate approach, we evaluate services based on adherence to quality, the latest medical evidence and health standards, and a simple question: would we buy the product or service ourselves if it weren’t part of our job, and would we recommend it to family and friends?

Additionally, this review of ReGain, like all health-related content on this website, was thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy.

How we evaluated ReGain

In order to give you the most insight into ReGain’s clinical platform, we focused on the things that matter to you: the quality of therapy you’d receive, how easy ReGain is to use, how expensive it is, and how private your information remains.

Quality of therapy

9.0 / 10

With over 10,000 licensed counselors on their platform, you’re almost guaranteed to find a professional who fits your needs. ReGain does not restrict the content or methods used by counselors, so while it may take a few tries to find someone whose approach works best for you, this provides a unique opportunity to try different styles of therapy without having to wait.

All counselors on ReGain are licensed with Master’s or Doctoral degrees, have at least three years and 1,000 hours of experience, and are especially interested in relationship counseling. You can use ReGain as long as you find it useful, and can change counselors at any time if you feel it’s not working out.

Ease of use

9.0 / 10

ReGain makes finding and getting relationship counseling easy. All you need to do is take a survey on your goals and background information and the service will automatically match you with a counselor who meets your needs. Their site is relatively minimalistic and streamlined, so there’s not much excess for you to have to navigate around. Just begin chatting with your counselor to start getting the care you deserve.

No matter where you are in the world, ReGain can help your relationship. There are no restrictions on location, unless you’re on a live phone or video call with your counselor and partner. Currently, ReGain doesn’t support three-line calls, so your partner will need to be in the same physical location as you.

Cost

8.3 / 10

ReGain’s prices have recently increased by $10 to $20 per week, which adds up quickly. Like with most counseling, ReGain isn’t cheap, costing up to $360 every month. They don’t take insurance, even if you have a low copay. That said, they don’t charge a different rate for individual versus couples counseling, which is common practice, and their costs are still less expensive than out-of-pocket rates for traditional counseling.

If you are struggling financially, they offer an immediate-response financial aid application that can give you a significant discount.

Privacy

9.2 / 10

ReGain excels in both confidentiality and technological privacy. All of your information remains confidential as long as legally possible, up to ReGain refusing to work with insurance providers so that your information remains under wraps. The only exception is if you’re a danger to yourself or others or there’s active child or elder abuse happening. If you want to delete messages, you’re encouraged to; you don’t have to list your real name for your therapist to know.

ReGain uses top-of-the-line banking-quality encryption in their browser and on their servers. They also scramble their databases across multiple physical locations so that in the unlikely event of a hack or data theft, any information someone finds is essentially unusable.

Customer care

8.5 / 10

There’s only one way to get in contact with ReGain’s customer support: an in-browser email form. While you can get some quick answers from their FAQ, getting help from someone other than your counselor isn’t particularly easy. However, any other administrative tasks, like changing counselors and requesting a copy of all of your personal data, are done through similar online forms and completed within 48 hours. Your counselor will be able to assist with a lot as well.

What services does ReGain offer?

While the organization is based in the United States, ReGain’s services are available worldwide. No matter where you are, you can work with a therapist for individual counseling, couples counseling, or general therapeutic advice. These sessions last as long as you need them to, provided that you’re still paying your monthly subscription. You and your counselor can discuss any relationship issue together, no matter how large or small it may seem. Since ReGain is such a large organization, they have therapists who specialize in every sort of topic, including but not limited to:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Relationships
  • Parenting
  • Depression
  • Addictions
  • Eating problems
  • Sleeping problems
  • Trauma
  • Anger
  • Family conflicts
  • Grief
  • Religion
  • LGBT matters
  • Self esteem

However, ReGain is specifically designed for relationship counseling, so if you have concerns about your own personal mental health or wellbeing, you may find better results taking them to another therapist.

Online advice

ReGain also features a blog offering general relationship advice and short articles on a wide range of topics, from friendship to minor relationship advice to psychology. Some of these articles are quite light-hearted, while others are more informative, explaining things such as the differences between counseling approaches and psychology terminology.

Who shouldn’t use ReGain

Relationship counseling can help people in all sorts of situations. You might be seeking an open space to discuss communication concerns, or you might need help facilitating an amicable separation. However, there are a few times you should seek help elsewhere:

  • You are a minor or under the care of a legal guardian.
  • You are in an urgent crisis or an emergency situation.
  • You are required to undergo therapy by either a court order or any other authority.
  • You are in an abusive relationship or are otherwise concerned for your safety in the relationship.
  • You do not have internet access.

In these circumstances, we recommend that you seek counseling in person. If you are currently experiencing thoughts of suicide, please reach out to a friend or loved one, a text or phone crisis line (text HOME to 741741 or call 1-800-273-8255), or your local emergency department.

How ReGain works

Founded in 2016, ReGain is a branch of the long-established and reputable online therapy platform BetterHelp. As a broader company, BetterHelp holds all of its counselors to very high standards regarding experience and credentials. You can read more about their parent company in our BetterHelp review.

ReGain is an entirely online relationship counseling service. To access their services and start talking to a social worker, psychologist, or therapist (counselors), you’ll first need to sign up for an account.

Creating an account

Account creation starts with a questionnaire, which asks deeper questions about the concerns you are experiencing and gathers broad background information that the platform should know about you and your partner. You can also specify any preferences you have about your counselor (such as gender, LGBT+, spirituality, and so on).

The questionnaire is checkbox-style, so though it is thorough, it only takes five minutes to complete. If you and your partner plan to attend counseling together, you’ll be able to send them a link to join through an email link. The two of you will share one account.

Regain Questionnaire

After you’ve finished the questionnaire, you’ll be prompted to create an account. All you need is your email address and a name you want the counselor to call you; your legal name is not necessary here, so you can use a nickname for complete anonymity. You can also sign up through Facebook or Google rather than providing an email address, though your name will match whatever is set to appear in them.

You’ll be directed to a payment page next. ReGain will match you with a counselor once your payment method has been confirmed as valid. Upon matching you with a counselor, your subscription will begin.

Getting started

The subscription pays for a “room” with your counselor. Here, you can send them unlimited messages and live sessions via chat, phone, or video call. Most of your communications will take place over chat, where both you and your partner can see all of the messages. These chat conversations do not take place in real time, and communication times with your counselor can vary.

If you want to speak with the counselor privately, you can do a phone or video call with them. ReGain does not offer third-device calls, so if you and your partner both want to speak with the counselor together, you’ll both need to be in the same location.

Are ReGain counselors qualified?

Yes! All counselors on ReGain must be licensed to practice in their home state and must have:

  • A Master’s degree (LMFT, LCSW/LMSW, LPC, LPCC) or PhD/PsyD
  • At least three years’ experience
  • State accreditation as psychologists, counselors, social workers, or therapists

State accreditation also includes at least 1,000 hours of practice. While every counselor’s practice history is different, you can rest assured that everyone has specific interest and experience in relationship counseling.

How much does ReGain counseling cost?

ReGain costs between $60 and $90 per week, charged once a month ($240 - $360 per month), depending on your location and therapy needs. This has increased this year from $40 to $70 per week ($160 - $280 per month). Previously, they allowed you to use a few different payment plan options for your subscription, but they’ve moved to a once-a-month subscription service. This is still substantially less expensive than a traditional relationship therapist’s out-of-pocket costs, which average about $150 per week ($600 per month).

If you can’t afford ReGain’s monthly fees, they have a few options for financial aid, which can decrease your cost based on your current income, veteran status, dependents, and demographic information. This financial aid processes immediately – no need to wait for a person to review it.

You can cancel your subscription at any time and continue to have access to the services until the end of the month you have paid for. You can use any major credit card, PayPal, or Google Pay to pay for your ReGain therapy sessions, but you’ll need to input your payment information before you’ll be matched with a therapist. Have no fear, though – ReGain won’t start charging you until after you’ve been matched and your subscription actually starts.

Unlike many other forms of relationship counseling, there is no extra charge for both partners to take part in ReGain therapy.

Individual relationship counseling

If you can’t or don’t want your partner to be involved, ReGain offers individual relationship counseling. Here, you can work on your relationship one-on-one with a counselor to figure out the best strategies for you.

ReGain acts as a platform to connect clients to counselors, but does not directly employ the counselors. Before you start sessions – and as you progress through counseling – you’ll have access to information about your counselor. This information includes:

  • A multi-paragraph written summary of their experience, techniques, and specialties
  • Specific conditions and circumstances they work with
  • Clinical approaches
  • Preferred methods of communication
  • Licensing information, including expiration date
  • Degrees and educational information
  • Real client reviews

Each counselor has the freedom to provide counseling to you in their own way. As with traditional face-to-face therapy, each counselor is individual and employs different clinical approaches, techniques, and materials to help you through the process. Some counselors have preferred methods of communication (such as live phone calls), some may offer worksheets or homework assignments, and some may follow your guidance and take a back-seat while you process. These techniques may or may not work for you, depending on your goals.

If at any time you feel you’re not getting what you need with your current counselor, you can request a change. Even if you haven’t started counseling, you can change if you feel that the profile of the counselor you’ve matched with doesn’t fit what you are looking for. ReGain makes it easy to switch to a different counselor in their service – just click the easy-to-find “change therapist” button, fill out a brief form explaining why, and they will take care of the rest within 48 hours.

Messaging

Counseling with ReGain takes the form of online messages at your convenience, as well as scheduled live chats, phone, or video sessions with your counselor. When your counselor has responded to your message, you’ll receive an email notification. These messages will remain available in your counseling room unless you choose to “shred” them, making it easy to review and reflect on the advice you have received.

There is no limit to the number of messages or live sessions you can have with your counselor. However, your counselor won’t respond to most messages immediately; most counselors try to respond within 24 hours. Thanks to this flexibility, you have the option to speak more with your counselor during hard times and less when things are going smoothly while still having that back-up support network. You and your counselor will work together to find a method and frequency of communication that’s right for you.

Couples counseling

With ReGain, both partners can access counseling through the same account. You can choose whether to invite your partner to the counseling from the beginning, or instead to have individual counseling first and invite your partner later. We will note that ReGain makes some linguistic assumptions about your partner, as the invitation form automatically assumes you’re in a heterosexual relationship and will fill in your partner’s pronouns to reflect this.

Written communications between each partner and the counselor are visible to all parties. Each partner can also have individual sessions with the counselor by live chat, phone or video, which are private.

The platform cannot accommodate three-way phone or video calls, so the couple needs to be in the same physical location to have live sessions together with the counselor. For couples who are not currently living together, this is a barrier to accessing the live sessions together.

Privacy considerations

Like with traditional therapy, everything you tell your counselor is confidential (with the exception of mandatory reporting for things such as elder abuse, child abuse, or serious plans with intent to hurt yourself or others). While your partner will be able to see every message in the chat, if there’s one you’ve sent in particular you don’t want anyone to see, ReGain offers a “shred” option to permanently delete it from your account.

ReGain does not cooperate or work with any insurance companies. While this isn’t welcome news for some customers, those with privacy concerns can find a real silver lining here: it means there is nothing that will be shared, reported, or filed with outside companies like that. Your counseling experience is completely confidential. If you choose to remain anonymous, using a nickname rather than your real name, your counselor will not have access to any identifiable information.

The only exception to your complete confidentiality is that, upon starting sessions, you’ll need to input emergency contact information. This is required in case your counselor believes that you or someone else is in danger; they will not have access to any information about you otherwise. Any information you want to share with a third party will require you to fill out an authorization form first.

Not only are the services almost fully confidential, but ReGain also has extremely secure software and hardware practices. All messages between you and your counselor are secured and encrypted by banking-grade encryption, and their browsing encryption system (SSL) follows best modern practices. Their databases are encrypted and scrambled to the point of unusability in the event that they are stolen or used inappropriately. Even the servers are spread across multiple data centers for the strongest security possible.

No information is ever sold to third parties.

HSA, FSA and health insurance

ReGain does not work with any health insurance companies or employers. This is to ensure maximum privacy and confidentiality. However, their prices are often comparable to copays for traditional face-to-face relationship counseling, as many couples counselors charge for both individuals in the session.

It’s worth checking with your health insurance provider to see if they will reimburse you for online counseling. Some providers will cover online therapy, particularly if recommended in the context of a mental health diagnosis, but know that it is rare.

How ReGain stacks up to alternatives

TalkSpace

TalkSpace is the primary competitor of BetterHelp, ReGain’s parent company. Both platforms provide phenomenal online therapy, but ReGain still ekes out on top if you’re specifically looking for couples counseling. TalkSpace provides couples counseling but is not solely dedicated to the service. However, TalkSpace allows you to select your own therapist (rather than having one picked for you) for a more personalized and specific counseling experience. You can still have an ongoing dialogue with your therapist through TalkSpace’s online messaging platform alongside regularly scheduled video calls.

For a more thorough look at TalkSpace, visit our full review.

Cerebral

If you’re concerned about your relationship on top of other mental health concerns, a standard couples counseling situation might not work best for you. Enter Cerebral: a full-service online mental health organization which provides both therapy and mental health medication. Here, you can work either with medication, therapy, or both to get holistic care through licensed providers.

Cerebral currently only operates on a therapy front in 35 states, and there are no options for formal couples counseling (meaning sessions where both you and your partner can work together). The monthly cost – not broken down by week to hide the overall fee – depends on the level of care you receive, but is on par with the range offered by ReGain. Cerebral does work with a few insurance providers which vary depending on your state.

For more information, check out our review of Cerebral here.

OurRelationship

Rather than just a relationship counseling service, OurRelationship provides both coaching and self-driven relationship counseling guides. These guides come in a variety of tiers, from free to $199, to help personalize your workshop with exactly what your relationship needs. Like ReGain, OurRelationship offers both couples and individual counseling specific to your relationship; OurRelationship also offers a specialized version of their couples counseling work for same-sex couples, which is free and funded by the US Administration for Children and Families. Most of the work is done individually, with you and your partner coming together once a week to discuss the activity. If you work with a counselor or coach, expect to receive five 20-minute phone sessions over the course of eight to ten weeks.

Relationship Hero

RelationshipHero provides coaching on every part of a relationship, from teasing apart the meaning behind early flirting stages’ mixed signals to healing mid-relationship communication issues to helping you move on from a breakup. This service focuses on helping you to build skills related to dating and relationships, but it also provides couples counseling under the same skill-based framework.

Relationship Hero operates with a pay-per-minute model rather than paying weekly or monthly; you get a free initial 10-minute consultation, and then can purchase minutes in bundles of 15 ($29), 60 ($97), or 240 ($289). Considering the average therapy appointment lasts an hour, your minutes can rack up quickly if you’re looking for ongoing couples counseling.

Growing Self

Growing Self provides both counseling and coaching services online for all relationship situations: marital counseling, couples therapy, premarital counseling, relationship counseling, and dating coaching. They focus on positive affirmations and helping people grow into their best selves, allowing three-way video calls for long-distance or separated relationships (unlike ReGain) as well as two-way calls for couples who live or can call together.

Sessions take place once a week for 45 minutes. All clinicians offer sliding scale rates depending on your income and financial situation, but costs vary depending on the clinician’s skill (a recent Master’s graduate, for example, costs less to see than the doctoral practitioners with over a decade of experience). As a plus, Growing Self works with several different insurance companies to help make counseling affordable and achievable.

Read this next

BetterHelp Review: Should you try this online therapy?
BetterHelp vs Talkspace: Who’s best for online therapy?
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