Counselling gives you the opportunity to explore aspects of life that may be troubling you in a supportive, confidential non-judgemental way. It can help you understand why you think, feel and behave as you do and lead to positive change.
My role is to support you through this process. There can be a tremendous value in sharing in a safe, secure environment with someone who is there to help and who is independent of family and friends.
My job isn't to tell you what to do rather it's about helping you to understand yourself and others with a view to making positive change for you.
We will agree on what you want to focus on during sessions. This may change as we do the work. This ensures you get to direct attention to what you want - it is your session, your time and is more likely to lead to clear, positive outcomes. Together we will review as we go and check where we are in the work. Where it works well clients have reported feeling "mentally stronger", "at peace": it can be a life changing experience.
By seeking counselling, you are committing to attend scheduled sessions which are normally weekly; regular attendance is essential for the work to be successful.
There is no magic formula in counselling! It really is about the quality of the relationship between us that develops and the degree of emotional honesty we can both bring to the process. I look forward to working with you.
If you are considering couples counselling it might be you both see the advantages. Often though one party is reluctant and this can stop couples seeking the help they need. My advice would be to try a session to calm your fears and check how it might help.
Relationship therapists aren’t judges. Being non-judgemental is a fundamental of the work. The therapist is there to help your relationship. This is the focus. There won’t be much your therapist hasn’t heard before, so what is gut wrenchingly embarrassing to you will be business as normal to him or her. They should provide a safe space to help you explore what’s going on. The therapist should lead the sessions and be proactive.
We don’t always show our best selves in relation to those closest to us. Affairs, abusive behaviour, disrespect, lack of understanding and communication failure are common features of relationships in trouble. We know we should try to be our best selves and those entering into counselling generally want to improve themselves and their relationships. We might also feel our partners need to work on themselves as well. (They may of course disagree!)
Therapy can help identify issues and help you address them. Generally it’s directed towards keeping couples together but can be used to facilitate an “Ok” breakup.
Couples work is often a bi-weekly process. The reason for this is to give the couple enough space to discuss their issues without the therapist becoming part of the relational drama. That said sometimes weekly sessions can be helpful, especially if it helps keep new ways of beneficial behaviour on track. Session lengths vary from therapist to therapist. I find fifteen minutes longer than a standard individual session of fifty minutes (sixty-five minutes) long enough to allow both parties time to speak. There are some providers who focus on several long “intense” sessions offering a "24/7" service. Look at these carefully and critically. Are they designed to help you or generate substantial revenues for the provider?