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Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some commonly asked questions about psychotherapy and counselling. If you have any more, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Psychotherapy and Counselling is:

  • A way of working whereby we can meet for 50 minutes once a week in a private, confidential space. Appointments are on the same day and time each week.
  • If you choose to work with me, we will agree how many appointments are suitable for you based on what you would like to work on.
  • Helpful in helping you manage a wide range of difficulties such as: stress, relationship problems, personal development, anxiety, traumatic experiences, and low moods.
  • An opportunity to collaboratively help you make changes in the areas of your life that you are struggling with and help you feel supported as you do so. Together we can look at things from your past to help you understand how you react and think about things in your current life.
  • Often a challenging process as you will be talking about things you find difficult from your past and present experiences. However, this will be kept this in mind during our work to ensure that you are able to manage things inside and outside of your appointments as much as possible.
  • A space to help you better understand your past experiences, what is going on for you now, and the link between the two. Therefore, it can help you gain a new perspective about you and your experiences which may be useful in thinking about how you'd like to make them different moving forward.
  • Sometimes a challenging process which means you may feel worse before you feel better – this is completely normal. If you start to feel things are becoming particularly unmanageable you can bring this to therapy, where any concerns can be addressed collaboratively.

Everyone has their mental health alongside their physical health. Psychotherapy and counselling assists in promoting good mental health by improving our understanding of ourselves, and finding ways to manage the things we find difficult.

Psychotherapy and counselling offers a private and confidential space in which to speak to someone outside of your current situation about something you want to be different or is worrying you. It can help you gain new perspectives and insights about things that happen in your life. It can also help you gain new skills so that you can better manage the things that you find difficult.

Psychotherapy and counselling can be challenging at times which means you may feel worse before you feel better. This is completely normal as we go through difficult thoughts and feelings, and the main aim is to ensure you can manage this if it happens. If you start to feel things are becoming particularly unmanageable this is something we can discuss, in order to make sure you are fully supported.

Whatever words you use (if you have any) to refer to what's happened is up to you. I appreciate part of the process of recovery is making sense of what happened, so we can build on wherever you happen to find yourself in this process.

Psychotherapy and counselling can be helpful in recovering from the impact of sexual abuse, sexual assault, and sexual violence. Many people refer to the impact of this as 'traumatic', but whatever words you have (if you have any) are absolutely fine.

My starting point is to always believe someone when they choose to tell me about past experiences of this nature. I also understand that the words used to refer to what happened are important in making sense of it. Sometimes, 'sexual violence' can be a misnomer as many of these experiences are not stereotypically violent - but they are always violating to the person experiencing them.

The impact of such experiences are felt at a psychological and/or physical level, and we can attend to both of these as required. What recovery from such experiences looks like differs from person to person, so we will agree on what to focus on at the outset of our work.

It is possible to work on the impact of sexual abuse/violence/assault without actually talking about what happened. Therefore there is a way to get the support that you need without going over the details, which for some can be distressing and (at worst) re-traumatising.

I am also available to offer pre-trial therapy, in line with the guidelines set by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS). If you have reported to the Police and are also seeking counselling and psychotherapy alongside this legal process, then please get in touch.

I do not offer an emergency or crisis service for people who have just experienced sexual abuse/violence/assault. If this applies to you, please click here for information on who can help.

Psychodynamic psychotherapy and counselling is centred on the notion that what has happened to us in the past influences who we become later on in life. It also focuses on how we experience ourselves, and process things in our minds, as both of these affect how we understand and manage everyday life. These areas are explored to gain clarity and create better relationships with yourself, others and the important things in your life.

Integrative psychotherapy and counselling is an approach whereby several theories are integrated to create a unique approach to working with you and addressing any areas of concern. I aim to work in a way that suits you as much as possible, as each person is different in what they need and how they work best.

Working from an embodied perspective means being aware of what happens in your body, as well as your mind, during the process of talking therapy.

This is part of working from a trauma-informed perspective, but is not limited to working with the impact of trauma. For example, the impact of anxiety and depression are experienced physically as well as psychologically.

We can start by noticing what you experience in your body within your concerns about your mental health and general wellbeing. We will then find ways to understand, manage, and alleviate any body-based symptoms that you struggle with. It does not involve any physical contact, such as touching.

UKCP is the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy and BACP is the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy. They are both organisations based in the United Kindgom where trainee and qualified practitioners can be registered and/or accredited and as such are bound by their respective organisation's ethical and professional guidelines, which are have many similarities.

For more information on either organisation, please visit their websites:

www.psychotherapy.org.uk (UKCP)

www.bacp.org.uk (BACP)

 

As I am linked to both BACP and UKCP as a practitioner, I abide by both organisations' ethical and professional frameworks. The best first step to take if you have a complaint or concern is to discuss it with me so that it can be addressed collaboratively. Should you also wish to liaise with an external organisation, you can contact:

BACP

Telephone: 01455 883300
E-mail: complaints@bacp.co.uk

UKCP

Telephone: 0207 0149493
E-mail: complaints@ukcp.org.uk