What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy


The main difference between psychotherapy and counselling is that psychotherapists often have longer training, to Post Graduate level and would work with clients for short, as well as much longer term work. Long term work could involve the client exploring the patterns of how they relate to people in the present (such as feeling oppressed by their manager or being with non-committing partners) and understanding what that might be about in relation to their past (such as low self-esteem because they were told they were useless over and over by significant people earlier in their lives). By being able to emotionally understand where that pattern comes from and challenging earlier critical voices, this can then limit repeating the destructive life choices, open up new ways of seeing themselves and different paths in how to live in the present.


What happens in therapy?


There are many different types of therapy and different perceptions of what occurs in therapy.  Psychotherapy offers an opportunity for you to explore losses/anxiety/specific experiences in a confidential setting. The initial assessment is an opportunity for you to assess if you feel we can work together and for me to assess if I am able to enter into a therapeutic partnership with you.  You decide what you want to talk about and focus on and by giving your needs some space the aim is for you to understand yourself and how you can live in the world in a less distressed way. There are clear boundaries in therapy to ensure you can build up a sense of trust to explore feelings that are distressing, confusing, that might bring feelings of guilt or shame. So meeting at a regular time, for the set time, in the same space will help support that.


Initial Assessment

In an initial session you would identify in as little or much detail as you feel able to, about what you feel brings you to therapy. We would then talk about this and try and understand what you are looking for from therapy. If you felt I was someone you would like to work, with we would agree a regular weekly day and time to meet for 50 minutes.  I would then give you a copy of the client-therapist contract for you to read and ask any questions about and I would also ask for your GP’s details and any other mental health professionals you are currently working with. I will give you four weeks’ notice of any holiday I have and I would ask you to let me know of any holiday you have planned with as much notice as possible.


How long will the therapy last?


With each person who enters therapy the time we work together can be different so I cannot give you a definitive answer. Open ended counselling has no set time limit.  This means that when you feel you might want to end the therapy we will discuss ending together.  Time limited counselling can range from 6 to 12 weeks. Until we have met I am unable to say what whether open ended or time limited therapy might be more appropriate for you.



How does therapy come to an end?


When you feel you would like to end therapy, we would talk about how you might feel. It is very important to have a boundaried endings so  there are no sudden abandonments towards the end of therapy. We would work together identifying at least 4 sessions to explore how you feel and what life would be like walking a new path. The longer the therapy has been, the more time we will give to discussing and palling a supportive and boundaried ending.


What qualifications do you have?

Each path I have taken always involves trying to understand everyone as an individual and support their emotional wellbeing. I have worked in healthcare for over 20 years and have been a qualified psychotherapist since 2011. I first trained as a nurse, then as a senior lecturer and then as a psychotherapist.  I trained for four years in Therapeutic psychotherapy and qualified as a therapist. I worked as a bereavement co-ordinator for a hospice and as a psychotherapist for a psychodynamic charity. I have worked in private practice since 2012, with clients who have experienced  an array of issues such as: limited self-worth, anxiety, depression, sexual abuse, PTSD, domestic violence, anger issues, OCD, phobias and losses such as bereavement and divorce.

My qualifications:

PgDip in Contemporary Psychotherapy.
Accredited BACP therapist. 

EMDR therapist having completed part 1,2 and 3 of the EMDR training.

Trained in Attachment Focused EMDR with Lauren Parnell and Mark Brayne.

Trained with Jonathan Hoban in Walking therapy.

MA in Teaching in Higher Education

BSc (Hons) in Nursing and Social Sciences.