“Counselling and psychotherapy are umbrella terms that cover a range of talking therapies. They are delivered by trained practitioners who work with people over a short or long term to help them bring about effective change or enhance their wellbeing” (BACP).
Most people have times in their lives when they have difficulty coping and there are any number of good reasons why you might want to talk with a professional about your worries.
People typically see a counsellor because they have problems they would like to discuss with someone who is unbiased and impartial, someone who is not going to judge them.
Counsellors are bound by confidentiality, which means that unless you are a danger to yourself or others, and in certain circumstances governed by law, what you say in the therapy room stays in the therapy room.
This usually makes it much easier to discuss your problems. Going to therapy does not mean that you are “crazy”; quite the opposite, it means that you are acknowledging that you have a problem in your life that you would like to deal with, rather than letting it get worse.
It takes courage to go and talk to a therapist, but the rewards are usually worth the risk of telling someone else about your life. Most importantly, counsellors and psychotherapists are trained to help people with a wide variety of difficulties, including issues such as depression, anxiety, relationship issues, substance abuse, eating disorders, sexual/physical/emotional abuse, trauma and many others.
Counselling can give you space and time to help you explore your thoughts and feelings. Sometimes having a confidential space to do this with someone who independent of your situation is all you need.
For others counselling can help by exploring patterns of behaviour which may be causing difficulty in your life, patterns of behaviour which have formed through your life experience. Counselling can help you work towards a greater understanding of you and your situation, and to think about solutions and possible ways forward.
A Contracted & Professional Relationship
Counselling is a contracted, professional relationship between a therapist and client. It is where an appropriately trained and qualified practitioner uses therapeutic interventions based upon recognised counselling and psychotherapy theory to help bring about changes in the client’s life.
I am an integrative therapist, trained and qualified to integrate four counselling and psychotherapy approaches; psychodynamic, person-centred, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and systemic practice (family therapy).
I blend together elements from each approach to meet the needs of individual clients, depending upon what you the client want to explore in counselling and want to achieve.
I am also qualified to work with children and young people, as well as couples and family groups together.
What you discuss with me will remain confidential unless it was felt someone might come to harm. There are other rare exceptions all counsellors are required to observe when confidentiality cannot be assured. The limits of confidentiality will be discussed at the first session.
In line with BACP requirements my practice is supervised by a senior practitioner. Client confidentiality is maintained within my supervision.
I am a Registered Senior Accredited Member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and my practice is guided by the BACP Ethical Framework for Good Practice for the Counselling Professions. You will find more information about the Ethical Framework on the BACP website.
I am experienced in offering long term and short term counselling. I trained in focal brief therapy and solution focused brief therapy at the University of Birmingham and offer timescales to meet the needs of each client and their situation. I would normally ask that you commit to a minimum of 6 sessions. I am currently only offering short term counselling up to 12 sessions.
Our initial session together will be an assessment appointment. This is a 50 minute session in which we will explore your situation, what changes you would like to make and whether we feel we can work together. It is an opportunity for you to ask questions.
If we decide to work together we will agree a contract which will include the date and time of our sessions, the cost of sessions, the focus for our work together and timescales. We will periodically review our work together.