Yes, if they are coupled, then one needs as you sow in the first image posted.
The coupling they mean is probably the CP command, so coupled (dof) of points (Say point1 x = point2 x). You can do that in WB as shown below where the two end of the beams are coupled in X, via the coupling objects and only one beam is loaded via FE displacement - because of the coupling, the end of both beams move in the same way along UX.
Sometimes if this does not work, you can insert the command object (as shown below), where say we have a named selection called CPVERT containing all of the vertices/points to be coupled (it does the same as above):
As for the contact, run it first without any and then, see which beam elements might come into contact and apply a frictional contact between these contacting beams.
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