What I Help With
I offer help for a wide range of issues. I can help you understand the challenges you are facing and show you the steps you can take to make things better. I approach each client differently, taking into account their specific needs.
I work with individuals for one-to-one sessions, as well as with couples and families wanting to work together. An initial consultation can help you decide if I am the right therapist for you. Sessions can be done in person, on the phone or via Skype.
Individual sessions are normally 50 minutes every week, groups are also on a weekly basis, and run for two hours.
Addiction can take the form of many substances, including recreational or prescribed drugs, alcohol, sex and food. Addiction can be masking unresolved issues from either the past or present. Understanding how the addiction has evolved can be helpful in the healing process. Withdrawing from any addiction can be painful and isolating, so support through this process is crucial. Therapy can help not only the person affected by the addiction, but is also there for the support of the family, loved ones or carers.
Our culture teaches us to supress anger and keep a stiff upper lip and carry on. I am committed to transforming this culture so that we can live in a less violent society where people know how to express themselves. Anger is a natural emotion, but when we feel anger, tensions rise and our judgement is affected. Our world can seem distorted and we can feel under attack. Counselling can help you understand the root cause of the anger, teach you how to control it and defuse situations before the anger becomes destructive. Anger management can be explored in one-to-one sessions, or in group work. I grew up surrounded by anger and then went on to marry an angry man, so I know what it feels like to be on the receiving end of anger and to also feel full of anger. A professional counsellor helped me learn how to manage my anger and express my feelings and I am passionate about helping other people do the same.
Bereavement & Loss
The feelings we experience after the death of a loved one are very different for each individual, and no two experiences are ever the same. Because of this, we can often feel isolated and alone. Counselling can help you understand the grieving process and make sense of your own feelings, whether they are anger, sadness, depression or loneliness. Grieving for a loved one can leave lots of unanswered questions; counselling can help you work out some of the answers in a safe and understanding environment, to lead you back to emotional and physical wellbeing.
People who lack confidence may feel it’s a part of their genetic make-up. It isn’t. All children are born confident. They are naturally confident, self-expressive, uninhibited and curious. As they grow, their parents, teachers, friends and siblings may not offer the positive nurturing and encouragements that a child needs, but through therapy you can help rebuild this confidence and self-esteem. Confidence needs to be built by experiencing challenging situations, and achieving a sense of value. Therapy can help by giving you an opportunity to explore your own thoughts and feelings, and your environment, in order to give you an understanding of how you fit into this. Upon understanding and having an acceptance of yourself, you are more able to release positive feelings about yourself and your opinions, and share these with others.
Conflict situations can affect home, work, school and social activities. It can lead to a loss of sleep, absenteeism, or isolation. Understanding the conflict and the reasons why this may occur by exploring our learned experience of how to handle conflict is key in advancing towards conflict resolution, whether you perceive these problems as your own, or the problems of others.
We all go through spells of feeling down, but when you’re depressed you feel persistently sad for weeks or months. One of the most common but misunderstood conditions, depression can be frightening and painful, but it can be successfully treated. You need to know you have it, so if you have been experiencing symptoms such as feeling sad and hopeless, anxious, constantly tired, or sleeping badly, for more than two weeks or friends and family have been telling you that you seem to be unhappy, visit your GP. Sometimes there is a trigger, such as bereavement, divorce or separation, illness, job loss and stress, but depression is not a permanent condition. It thrives through absence of focus into its original source. Exploring the painful or unresolved issues of life experience can enable yourself to break through the cloud that holds you powerless. Ongoing counselling can help you work through these feelings in a safe, non-judgemental environment.
Gender & Sexuality
Understanding the needs and responses of our bodies, whether heterosexual, transgender, homosexual, lesbian or bisexual, can feel lonely and sometimes shameful. And if your gender or sexuality is not accepted by your friends, family, colleagues or classmates, this can lead to isolation and bullying. This can often lead to disturbed sleep, poor functioning and self-loathing. Therapy helps by having someone listen to you, understand your situation and accept you as a person. Through this, you can grow in your own individuality, and ultimately accept yourself, making the views of others much less challenging. Self-acceptance leads you to the life you want to lead and not the life others expect of you.
Becoming a parent is one of the most exciting times of our lives, yet one of the most daunting. As well as the fear that things can go wrong, there are challenges through every stage of our child’s development. Life changes such as divorce, bereavement or redundancy can also affect our parenting skills; therapy can help by someone listening and understanding your unique family circumstances. This can be done one-on-one or in family therapy, which gives you the space to hear what the other has to say. Having a mediator to manage conflict ensures every member has time to speak in a calm and uninterrupted space to work out new ways to strengthen your relationship.
There are times where we can feel that our lives have come to a halt. If you get stuck in a rut, it can help to explore your life choices to see how change can be made. The help of a professional gives you the space to think and challenge your own thoughts and ensures that there are no family influences in the choices you want to make or fitting in with family expectations. It can increase confidence, give maturity in the decisions you are making and overcome obstacles.
When a relationship breaks down or you go through difficult patches, you can be left with mixed feelings – everything from sadness or anger to relief or guilt. Counselling can help you to understand these feelings and make sense of your experience, as well as empowering you to support children through a difficult time. When you feel isolated and alone, counselling can help you regain confidence and empower you to make difficult decisions and explore your new identity. When relationships need help, counselling can explore unspoken issues or conflicts that are obstructing or contaminating the relationship. Healthy exploration can improve relationships and bring people closer together or facilitate an amicable separation.
A way of coping with pressures that are getting out of control, self harm can take the form of cutting, burning, or punishing your body with food or exercise to find a way of feeling better. This feeling can be a short-lived release but is no long-term solution. The UK has one of the highest rates of self harm in Europe, and although this may feel like the only way of releasing the pain that you are feeling, by working through the root cause by talking through the struggles you can release the unwanted feelings you experience and give you safer ways of managing. Therapy can help you work through the issues to create positive ways of behaving that will create new, safe ways of coping with pressures in your life.
It’s a modern-day epidemic that is leaving us feeling tired, exhausted and irritable. Research shows that around 12 million adults in the UK see their GP with mental health problems each year – and much of this is stress-related. Defined as a heightened response to a difficult or uncomfortable situation, stress occurs when this difficult situation is left unresolved. At its worst, stress can lead to burnout, so it’s important to understand how to manage your stress and identify the causes before life becomes too much to manage. Through counselling, you will be able to identify the root cause of the stress and allow yourself time and space to work through the process to recovery.