Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is Counselling?

A: It's sometimes described as "the listening cure" or  "a talking therapy". It gives you the  opportunity to talk, in a safe place, and in confidence about the issues affecting you, to a trained professional who is devoted to your emotional good health and wellbeing.

 

Q: What's the difference between Counselling and Psychotherapy?

A: Frankly, and in practice, not much. Counselling tends to focus on the listening side of our work whilst Psychotherapy is a bit more "hands on" and uses techniques which require a bit more intervention. You will probably have heard of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) for example which is  a more common example of this work.

 

Q: Is it for me?

A: Probably. Most people derive benefit from "being heard". Counselling takes this to a deeper level and helps you to really explore, come to terms with and hopefully resolve your difficulties.

 

Q: What will it be like?

A: You may be a little apprehensive at first, especially if you are not used to sharing your feelings with someone else. It will also be exciting and exhilarating when you feel it start to work and you know you are coming to terms with your difficulties, discovering resources you didn't even know you had. Remember, we don't see ourselves as experts and you can say "stop" at any time.

 

Q: How will I be treated?

A: We will treat you with care, dignity and respect; we meet you as an equal, not an "expert" and we will use our knowledge, experience and best efforts to help you, according to the BACP Code of Ethics.

 

Q: What about confidentiality?

A: Everything we talk about together (barring a couple of exceptions which will be explained to you) remains confidential; we will not share with anyone else what you say unless we have your express permission to do so e.g. to give information to your GP. This aspect is covered in greater detail at the first half-hour consultation - which is free of charge.

 

Q: How long does it take?

A: Everyone is different and it depends on what you bring to talk about. Some people find they achieve what they wish in, say, 8 or 10 sessions; some take a little longer. Almost invariably,we find, you will uncover different things to explore from those you initially came with.

 

Q: Will I have to sign a contract?

A: We usually make a verbal agreement at the first session as to how long we will see each other. However we don't ask you to commit to a fixed number of sessions - just the next one you have booked. It's up to you at any time to withdraw if you want to, for whatever reason. 

 

and finally.......

Q: Do Counsellors have Counselling?

A: YES, we do! We have regular therapy ourselves; we see it as preventative medicine for our own emotional health - a bit like taking regular exercise to keep physically fit. We also receive Supervision to monitor our professional work and ensure we maintain our effectiveness to the highest possible standards.