Feel Welcome, Feel Listened to, Feel Safe
Turning to counselling or psychotherapy may be a daunting prospect. Yet, it sometimes feels like it is the only avenue left, whether struggling with malaise, unhappiness, or a violent crisis, we need help to find a way forward. Not only do we need to be listened to, understood, accepted and supported, we also need to be challenged, surprised, and to see our lives and behaviours under a different light.
Between therapist and client, a relationship is created which will facilitate meaningful changes and potentially lasting relief from emotional and psychological difficulties: to build inner strength and resilience, to be able to overcome life's upheavals, to be more present and engaged.
By looking at this website, you have already made the first step. To take it further, contact me to arrange an initial assessment either face to face, on the phone or online. During the assessment, we will discuss what brings you to therapy and ways in which I can help you. If we agree to work together we will also discuss the terms of our contract including location, duration, fee, cancellation policy, confidentiality and anything else you might want to know.
The duration of the contract depends on our mutual assessment of your needs. Some issues can be successfully explored in six sessions, others require a more open-ended framework.
I came to therapy following the break down of a significant relationship and the pervading sense of loss of purpose and meaning that followed.
Therapy helped me to re-assess my life choices and find a new direction. This positive experience led me to the realisation that I would love to be able to share this wonderful journey with others and decided to start training.
I began practicing as a volunteer in 2006. Volunteering for the Mental Health charity Mind for several years has broadened my understanding of mental health issues and my ability to work with clients from very varied backgrounds and with a wide range of presenting problems.
Many years down the line, I now work in private practice where I have found the right balance between a rewarding and useful professional life and a rich family life
My orientation is Integrative. I have learned from Object Relations theory, Psychodynamic theories, Humanistic and Person Centered approaches and have developed my own Relational therapeutic mode of intervention. I am a qualified Integrative Counsellor and Psychotherapist, holding a diploma in Integrative Counselling from the Minster Centre as well as an MA in Integrative Psychotherapy from Middlesex University.
I have also completed levels 1,2, and 3 EMDR training (Eye Movement Desensitization and reprocessing), a technique particularly recommended for the processing of trauma. I am a member of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) and registered with the UKCP (United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy). I receive clinical supervision and regularly expand my understanding of new theories and practices through continuing professional development.
My belief in the therapeutic benefits of talking therapies is anchored in personal experience both as a client and a professional.
I am a French national and have developed a particular sensitivity to issues of difference and diversity. This has made me more able to accept difference in others, and to cultivate open-mindedness and a non-judgemental attitude. I practice in English or French as needed.
Throughout my training and in the continued growing and understanding involved in the practice of counselling and psychotherapy, I have developed an interest in particular theoretical and therapeutic models which emphasise an exploration of an individual's life through dialogue and the telling of personal stories. Through this exploration, we may discover significant events (traumatic or otherwise) or modes or relating (with parents or carers) that may have influenced a person's development and growth and affected their ability to cope with current difficulties.
In the course of this extended conversation, the building of a genuine relationship between therapist and client will allow the identification of patterns, behaviours, cycles, blocks. Also it will allow experimentation with different behaviours and open up the possibility of change. My aim is to help the client find answers that will facilitate this change and offer challenges to their habitual mind sets.
First and foremost, I welcome as much of yourself as you are able to bring to our relationship, feelings, thoughts, sensations, perceptions, it all matters in the pursuit of exploration and insight.
I also like to share any of my feelings, thoughts, sensations and perceptions that seem useful to facilitate your process. To me, it is impossible to separate the body from the mind and the heart.
Following from these foundations, my practice rests on the following tenets
I aim to be present with you on your journey and bring the whole of myself to our relationship, using transference and countertransference to inform intervention .
I offer accepting and welcoming listening to encourage you to bring the whole of yourself to our relationship
I help you explore significant and sometimes seemingly less significant events in your past to try and make sense of current situations
I like to share and explain theories, models, and any knowledge I have gained on any topic that might be relevant to our exploration of your world
Tell a story, pick up crayons, write some words, listen to a fairytale, invite curiosity and playfulness and bring to life a freedom you didn’t know was there
Our bodies and minds are intimately intertwined and so are our feelings and physiological processes. Through the lens of Polyvagal Theory I help you notice, identify and understand the shifts in your feelings and the connected shifts in your physiological responses, opening the door to the possibility of change
Generally, Counselling is considered to be more short-termed, solution-focused than psychotherapy. However in practice, the methods are very similar. A good analogy would be that if you went to a counsellor with a ripped coat, the counsellor would endeavour to patch it up. If you went to a therapist, he/she would endeavour to give you a new one.
Integrative counsellors and psythotherapists have been trained to create their own therapeutic method by
integrating different theoretical models. In this way, they can better adjust their approach to meet the unique needs of their individual clients
The duration of a course of counselling or therapy depends on the assessment of the client's needs. Some clients may find 6 or 12 weeks sufficient to address one-off concerns, others may benefit from more in depth exploration of deep-rooted issues necessitating months or years of work. However, the process is flexible and may be changed either way as work progresses.
The sessions are usually 50mns and take place weekly at a regular time agreed during the assessment. This time is yours.
I currently charge £50 per session. There are some concessionary fees available which can be discussed during the assessment. Payment can be made by cheque or in cash at each session or at the end of the month. The assessment session is charged at the same rate as regular sessions.