I’ve tried to answer some of the questions that might occur to you as you consider whether you would like to contact me about counselling. If you think of any more that you would like to ask here, please feel free to add them in the comments box below or use the contact form on this website.
I am based in North Herefordshire and my private work takes place in Leominster
The rooms are all on the ground floor, including toilet facilities – but there are two shallow steps on the way in, so please check with me beforehand
Sessions take place usually on a weekly basis (though this is flexible) and are 50 minutes in length. The number of sessions varies according to your own needs and what you want to get out of the counselling. To give you an idea of timescale, if you go to your GP and he or she refers you for counselling under the NHS, the funding normally covers 6 sessions, but can sometimes be extended under some circumstances. If you are coming privately, there is more flexibility, but in either case the lead will come from you as counselling progresses, either to finish earlier or to carry on further. There is no fixed answer. Some people just have one or two sessions; others continue counselling on and off over a number of years.
Yes. I am a Registered Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. As such I work in accordance with the BACP ethical framework; you can find out more about this by visiting the BACP website. The BACP is the largest professional body in the UK covering counselling and psychotherapy.
Yes, absolutely. It is extremely important for you to know that the sessions and everything talked about within them are confidential (with two important exceptions which will be explained in the first session). This aspect of counselling will be something I will discuss with you from the outset so you are clear about it, as it is a paramount condition for counselling.
If you get referred for counselling by your GP, the level of counselling you will receive will be the same as in private practice; though nowadays the type of counselling available on the NHS may be more limited than in previous years. In the NHS You will usually receive therapy through an agency, rather than in an individual counsellor’s private practice, often via the IAPT programme (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies). Many counsellors, like myself, work in a variety of settings. What will vary in each setting will be the availability of choice of therapist, the type of therapy available, cost, and flexibility with regard to length of therapy. Waiting times under the NHS tend to be quite long, usually two to three months but sometimes as long as six; if you go privately, you will be able to see me or another counsellor very quickly, if not straight away. Your GP may be able to recommend a counsellor, but if you do not want to go through your GP, research online is also a good way of finding out what different counsellors offer. If you are not sure which route to take, I am happy to talk it through with you without any pressure and help you decide the best route for your own counselling.
However, you need to know that in more recent years, the NHS referral system has changed somewhat. You may not always be referred directly for counselling, or the type of counselling you receive may be limited (at least initially) to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), or even group CBT, before other options are made available to you. You will need to check with your GP and local Health Authority to find out what is now offered in your area.
No, currently I only counsel individuals. The charity RELATE is a good place to start looking for couples counselling.
The first session will be a chance for us to meet each other and I can answer any questions you might have before we start, therefore the amount of time in the session for counselling will be shorter than usual. After you have got a feel for the counselling process in this way, you can decide if you want to go further. From there on, you decide for yourself how often and when you would like to see me (it’s usually weekly), and when you feel ready to stop. You can stop at any time.
My client hours for private work are Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays 9 am to 6 pm with the last client starting at 5pm.
The charge is £45 per session. Payment will be made at the beginning of each session, and can be paid in cash, cheque or, in certain circumstances, bank transfer. For businesses, the work can be invoiced.
PLEASE NOTE that I may also charge a cancellation fee of £10 per session if there has been less than 24 hours’ notice.
Please use the contact form on this website if you want to ask me any more specific questions, or ring me on 07795 324 575 for an informal discussion about it.