Welcome, as you can see, I like mountains – to look at and even occasionally to climb! I have had my own mountains to struggle up and overcome over the years, and with each experience I have found new learning about myself and others.
Counselling can offer you insight into your own challenges, and greater clarity about how high you want to climb to make positive changes in your life.
Please find below some information about me, which I hope you will find helpful in deciding whether to contact me.
If you have any questions or want to ask me anything further, I am very happy to have a brief confidential initial telephone or email discussion with you.
My Professional Experience –
I am a professionally trained and qualified Counsellor, holding a First Class Honours Degree in Counselling and Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling. I also have over thirty years experience as a professional Practitioner, Manager and Supervisor in the social care field.
I have a vast range of experience in working with individuals and families encountering distress and struggling with personal problems. My counselling experience has encompassed working with people who have a wide range of mental health issues, including complex conditions; depression; anxiety; stress; panic attacks; low self esteem; bereavement and loss; children and adults who have been abused; women and men experiencing domestic abuse; OCD; PTSD/trauma; addiction; eating and image issues; and people who are struggling to find a reason to stay alive. I also have experience of counselling male and female clients who have experienced sexual assault and rape, working with both recent and historic assault and trauma.
I have experience counselling women and men going through various life transitions; coming to terms with medical diagnoses including cancer; disability; menopause; ageing; death of a partner; miscarriage; infertility; relationship difficulties; children leaving home; divorce. Having worked as part of a Hospital Counselling Service, I also have experience of counselling carers of people who have had strokes, TIA’s, heart attacks, as well as with clients coming to terms with a life changing medical diagnosis, pain management and loss of mobility.
Increasingly, many clients find themselves facing work issues which impact on their relationships and lives, for example, through redundancy, loss of job and status, financial issues, bullying and harassment, a demanding work schedule. Or it might be personal issues that are affecting how they carry out their work. I have experience of providing confidential counselling as a member of an in-house Occupational Health Counselling Service. However, I know that it is not always easy to talk with someone in HR or Occupational Health attached to your place of work. Private counselling, independent and not associated with the workplace, can be helpful as it is more arms length.
In addition to the above, I have extensive experience of working with and counselling children, adolescents and families whose lives are affected by fostering or adoption. I offer a warm and supportive approach to those of you struggling to find the missing pieces of your jigsaws, your identity, feelings of rejection, low self esteem, maybe issues of attachment. For adoptive parents, you might be trying to come to terms with not being able to have birth children, the impact of fertility treatment on self and relationships, the challenges adopting a child can present. I am also experienced in counselling birth parents and offer a non judgmental space to explore the impact of losing a child.
My Approach To Counselling –
is Integrative, which means that I am trained in utilising aspects of different psychological therapies. In this way, I can work with you at your pace, based on your needs, rather than trying to make your issues ‘fit’ one particular approach. You may require only short term counselling or you may wish to see me for a longer period of time. Private counselling does ensure that you are offered a responsive and flexible professional service.
Underpinning my practice is the Person Centered Approach, a Humanistic therapy, which offers respect, empathy and a relationship based on genuine care and support. Working together, the therapeutic relationship that we would create, can enable you to feel more positive about yourself, uncover your own solutions, and improve how you feel about your life. It really can be an empowering experience, increasing your self awareness, and leaving you more in control of making positive changes in your life.
In our work together, if appropriate, I might also suggest using techniques from Mindfulness, eg breathing or relaxation exercises, or you might find that you would prefer to express yourself through artwork, a piece of music or maybe an object, to uncover and express thoughts and feelings. That said, nothing will be forced on you, and we will only go with what you are comfortable and relaxed with.
Naturally you would expect everything you say to me to remain confidential, and as a Registered Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, I abide by their Ethical Framework for Good Practice, and therefore have high standards for my practice in relation to confidentiality.
However, circumstances where I would be ethically bound to break confidentiality, would be if I believed either yourself or someone in your life was at risk of harm. This might be in relation to, for example, child or elder abuse, suicide risk, domestic abuse or terrorism. We would discuss all of this at the start and we would both sign a ‘Confidentiality Agreement’. I would wherever possible and safe, discuss any need to break your confidence with you before doing so. I will off course answer any questions you might have in relation to confidentiality with complete honesty.
All Counsellors and Psychotherapists are required to undergo regular supervision with an appropriately qualified, accredited and experienced Supervisor. As part of supervision, a client’s case history might be discussed to ensure that a Counsellor or Psychotherapist is offering their clients an ethical, safe and quality service. However, I would only discuss non identifying information with my Supervisor.
To the Future and Beyond…..
I look forward to hearing from you and maybe working with you in the future, to support and guide you as you climb as far as you decide, toward making positive changes to your health and well being.