Frequently Asked Questions
What sort of problems do you deal with?
Some people come with a particular problem they want to address. Others want to look at their emotional life in general. And sometimes people are not very clear what the problem actually is but that there is something that is not quite right. I have been trained to deal with all sorts of emotional difficulties, such as depression, bereavement, problems with relationships, eating disorders, self-harm, anxiety, stress, etc. Quite often, a person may talk about a particular problem, which is related to other difficulties or aspects of their lives. In these cases, I will help the client to make links between their initial complaint and what goes on in their lives, so to gain a better understanding of why, how and when the problem started.
What happens after I make the initial contact?
You can make the initial contact via email or telephone. On this first enquiry we will have a brief talk about your reasons for seeking therapy, and if I think I can help you, I will suggest that we meet in person. On this first meeting, which I call initial consultation or assessment, it will be a chance for you to speak about yourself and to explore what is troubling you. I may ask you questions or encourage you to say a bit more about a particular topic.
The consultation lasts 50min. The first session is a chance for you to have a feel about what therapy is like. It is also an opportunity for you to ask me any questions and to decide whether or not you would like to work with me. If you are looking for open ended therapy I may suggest that we have 2-3 sessions as part of the assessment before we agree to commit to a long-term treatment.
Once you decide to start therapy we will then agree on a regular day and time for your sessions, length of treatment, fees, holidays, notice period, etc.
What happens if I can't attend my session?
If you are unable to attend to your regular session you will need to contact me and let me know you are not coming. As our sessions take place at a regular day and time each week, I will not see anybody else at the time allocated for you. Therefore, you will still be charged for missed or cancelled sessions. However, if you contact me in advance, I will try to offer you another session on the same week, subject to availability.
Can you keep confidential everything I tell you?
Confidentiality is a very important aspect of the work of psychotherapists. In order to build a trusting relationship it is paramount that the therapist can offer a confidential space where the client feels free to say anything they want without worrying that someone else will know about it.
However, there are times where confidentiality needs to be broken. If you tell me that you intend to do something, which will put your life or the life of others at risk, I have the responsibility to try to stop it. I will always try to discuss the matter with you before I contact anyone else. But in case of emergency or if I cannot get hold of you, I may need to contact other parties without your consent, these being your doctor or emergency services.
When working with children, the confidentiality agreement also has its exceptions. If a child tells me that they, another child or a vulnerable adult have been abused in any way I have the responsibility to inform the relevant services, i.e. Children Social Care.
British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)
COUNSELLING & PSYCHOTHERAPY
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