I remember having lots of questions pop into my head when I was thinking of contacting a counsellor. Ive answered some common questions for you here, but if you have a burning question that isn’t answered here, please do contact me. No question is too silly! Just click on a question below to see the answer.
How can I reach you?
Via the contact page on the website.
Via phone or text: 07503 704482
Via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
What will we talk about in therapy?
We will talk about whatever you want to. The therapy session is guided by you, and what you bring to therapy. (I won’t ever tell you what to talk about or set the agenda). Sometimes it takes a while for people to build up to talking about what is troubling them, and thats okay, its normal. Often people will talk about more minor troubles, whilst building up the trust and relationship to talk about the more difficult stuff troubling them. Sometimes people also sit quietly for periods in therapy, and thats okay too. The time is yours, however you would like to use it.
How long will therapy take?
There is no simple answer to this. Some people find a short course of therapy (6-12 weeks) is enough to resolve whatever is troubling them. Other people benefit from, and choose, long term therapy. This is something we will check out together and is dependent on what you feel you need. I see many clients long term if that is what they choose. You are free to end therapy whenever you would like.
How do I know if therapy is right for me?
Is there something specific troubling you which you don’t feel able to get support from friends or family for? Are you feeling low, lost, or that you don’t have a sense of purpose in life? You know something feels wrong, but cant put your finger on what it is? The joy of therapy is that it gives YOU time for YOU. Time where you can explore whats going on for you, in a space that is calm, kind and non judgemental – and most of all, confidential. What you say in therapy, stays in therapy. You have the freedom to express yourself without worrying about the feelings of friends or relatives, and the space to explore your thoughts, feelings and needs.
I don’t feel like I have a major problem. Can I still benefit from therapy?
People come to therapy for all sorts of reasons, including just generally feeling a bit ‘lost’ and unsure of themselves, or a bit ‘flat’ and low in mood. If its important enough to you, that you feel you need support – then therapy is likely to help. It doesnt have to be a big traumatic event, or major depression or anxiety. Sometimes people just need some space to figure out what they want and where they are headed in life.
What are your fees?
£45 per hour. £67.50 per 90 minutes, £90 2hrs. A standard therapy session is one hour. Longer sessions are arranged by mutual agreement.
At the start of therapy, payment is required in advance, to reserve your session. Payment is then on a rolling basis to reserve the following session. This can be at the start of the session, and can be by cash or credit/debit card. Alternatively you can pay before the session, by bank transfer.
What if I cannot make it to a session? What is your cancellation policy?
I have a standard cancellation policy – cancellations with at least 24hrs notice will not be charged. Eg, if your appointment is at 3pm Wednesday, please cancel by 3pm Tuesday.
Cancellations made with less than 24 hours notice will be charged at the normal rate.
If we are able to reschedule your appointment at a mutually agreeable day and time within the same week, no additional fee will be necessary. Please be aware that while I will try and accommodate this if I can, it is unlikely due to other client appointments.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?:
Yes, everything you talk about in the therapy room is confidential. The only time this changes is:
If you disclose that you will cause serious harm to yourself or to another person
If I/we believe a child or protected adult is at risk of harm or abuse
If the courts instruct me to give information
If you share information about a proposed act of terrorism or other illegal act.
I am also required by my professional body (NCS), to have clinical supervision, where cases are discussed. Any identifying details will be removed, & your name will never be used.
You can find out more about privacy and my website here, and if you come for therapy, you will also be given information about how your privacy is protected by me.
What if I don’t want to talk about something?
Thats okay. You bring to therapy what you want to talk about. Often if something is difficult or traumatic to talk about, it takes people time to feel able to do so. I will never make you talk about something.
Will you think I’m ‘crazy’?
No. I can reassure you that while people who attend therapy may sometimes feel that they are going crazy, I will not make that judgement of you.
What if therapy doesn’t work for me?
If you find that the therapy isn’t helpful to you, either because of the style of therapy, or mix of personalities, you are free to end therapy whenever you wish. All I ask is that you give me notice, so that we can end the therapy positively, and I can signpost you to other support services if you would like them.
What’s the next step in getting started?
Call, text or email me – whichever feels easier for you. You can either just ask for me to contact you back, or if you want to give some details about your reasons for seeking therapy, thats okay too.
I aim to respond to all contacts within 48hrs. Let me know how you would like me to respond, and I will be in touch.
When can we have sessions?
I am pretty flexible and offer both daytime, evening and some weekend sessions – we will arrange sessions to suit your schedule.
Do you work with children?
At the moment, I work with young people over the age of 15yrs, in addition to adults. I have completed a certificate in working with children and young people, and have an enhanced DBS.
What happens if I am late for a session?
Sometimes unforeseen circumstances happen, and we are running late, it happens to us all. However it is important to plan so that you get the most out of your session, by arriving on time. I will always need to close the session at the allotted time, as there may be other clients booked in after your session.
Do sessions have to be on the same day/same time each week?
It helps most people if this is the case – it gives consistency and reliability, which most people prefer. However if for example you are a shift worker, or have lots of commitments, we can work round those to meet your needs.
Will I need to come every week?
To gain the most benefit from counselling, it is usually recommended to have weekly sessions. Sometimes as counselling progresses towards the end of our time together, we can agree to reduce sessions to fortnightly, as part of a planned closure. Some people find hourly sessions aren’t long enough for varying reasons, and prefer longer sessions fortnightly. This is something we can explore together if you think this would be preferable to you.
How many sessions will I need to have?
I cant answer that one easily – it depends on the individual, and the difficulties they are experiencing. So this is something that will be discussed with each client on an individual basis – we can talk about this at the start of your counselling and agree a plan. Some people find a short course of 6-12 sessions is enough, others benefit from long term or open ended counselling.
Do my problems have to be really bad to have counselling?
Not at all. People come to counselling for all sorts of reasons, including just generally feeling a bit ‘lost’ and unsure of themselves, or a bit ‘flat’ and low in mood. If its important enough to you, that you feel you need support – then counselling may help.
Can I book counselling for my spouse/friend/relative?
It can be really difficult when you see a friend or relative in difficulties and you think counselling may help them. Perhaps this is a conversation you could have with them, and suggest they have a look online to find out more – sites like the National Counselling Society, the UK Council for Psychotherapy, and British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, are good places to start. But unless it is for an individual under the age of 18yrs, its important that the person themselves take that first step in contacting me. They can do this via my website, by email, or phone.