Frequently Asked Questions
What happens in the initial session?
The initial session is an opportunity for you to outline what has brought you to counselling and ask any questions that you might have. It also allows us to address practical issues such as number of sessions required, cost, missed sessions, etc. We will also establish whether I am the right counsellor to work effectively with your particular issue(s) and, if not, I can signpost you to another counsellor who has the appropriate skills to match your needs. If you are happy to proceed, we would identify your specific goals of what you'd like to achieve during your counselling sessions.
How many sessions will I need?
It's difficult to say how many sessions you will need. A useful rule of thumb is to consider the type(s) of problem(s) you are bringing to counseling. If you have a specific problem that is based in the present, for example, difficulties with a colleague at work, then it is likely that a fewer number of sessions will be needed than if you are presenting with deep-rooted issues related to childhood trauma, for example, which is likely to require a longer course of therapy.
The first session will enable us to establish a minimum number of sessions which we can work towards but which we will review and adapt as necessary as you move through your sessions. You are, of course, free to change this and leave counselling at any point although it's useful to have an 'ending' session to 'tie-up' loose ends and create a positive ending to your counselling journey.
What is your cancellation policy?
If 48 hours notice is given that you intend to miss or change a session, then no charge will be incurred. However, I will need to charge the full fee if less than 48 hours notice is given as it is unlikely I can fill this slot within this time-frame.
Will counselling be able to help me?
Our problems can sometimes feel too big or overwhelming to manage ourselves. We may not even know what the problem is but we know that we are finding it difficult to cope, and that we don't feel that sense of well-being and control that normally enables us to manage our lives and relationships in a positive way.
Talking to a trusted and valued friend may help but often we are left struggling with difficult emotions and thoughts which may lead us to feel stressed, anxious or depressed with low self-esteem and low confidence or we may notice that we are repeating the same unhelpful patterns of behaviour without understanding why or knowing how to change them.
Working with a counsellor in a safe, confidential and non-judgemental environment may help you gain a deeper understanding of your thoughts, emotions and behaviour, thereby enabling you to begin the process or bringing about lasting change in a direction that feels meaningful for you.
Do you offer any discounts to fees?
Yes, there are a limited number of reduced fee sessions priced at £35 available to students and low-income clients. If all the reduced rate slots are full, then I can place you on a waiting list until a spot becomes available.
Are the sessions confidential?
Yes, everything we discuss is strictly confidential. However, there are a number of exceptions to this confidentiality rule as follows:
- if a client discloses risk of serious harm to themselves or others
- if I am required to do so by a court of law
- to prevent or help in the detection of serious crime