A couple is made up of two individuals who both have their own strengths and struggles, but there is a third entity which is the relationship between the two members. In couple therapy, the identified patient is the relationship. The contract between the couple and the therapist is to work on strengthening and improving the couple relationship. At times the therapist will meet with each member of the couple individually, but the focus will be on improving the couple strength and vitality. If it should be determined that the relationship cannot be mended, then it might be necessary to negotiate a new understanding which might involve working with the members individually, or working together as a couple to engage the issues that arise in the ending process. In couple counseling, various modalities and approaches are used to improve communication, increase empathic understanding and work toward the aim of helping each member of the couple help heal the other and improve the quality of the relationship itself.