I am not currently able to offer you face to face counselling due to social distancing so it is important that you consider if online working suits you or whether you would prefer to wait for in person therapy to resume. At this time, I don’t know when that will be. The information in this document is to help you understand what to expect from online working and to decide if this is the right way of working for you.
On line counselling may be able to help with a range of different issues including stress and anxiety, bereavement and loss, depression or feeling sad, loneliness, relationship issues, and low self-esteem. It may also help in areas around spirituality. However, not all issues can be resolved through online counselling and face to face would be better or some other form of support may be more suitable. With this in mind I am currently not able to offer counselling to anyone who is experiencing strong suicidal thoughts, anyone who has a personality disorder, anyone with an active addiction, or who is engaging in significant self-injury or anyone who is struggling with disordered eating. If any of this describes what you are currently experiencing, please talk to me about other sources of help.
INSIGHTS & OBSERVATIONS
What is Online Counselling?
This includes video calling or telephone counselling. Each modality is different, and one way of working may suit you better than another. Which way of working suits your style of expressing yourself more?
I work through the online video call platform, Zoom, because this is a secure platform. You don’t need to download zoom, but you do need to have a computer, tablet or smart phone, a webcam and a private and confidential space where you won’t be interrupted. Confidentiality and security remain central to all parts of the process. Before your appointment, I will send you a link inviting you to the session.
Video calling is closest to face to face counselling and is backed by research showing outcomes similar to those of the traditional in person talking therapies. You may want to consider if you are comfortable using this technology and expressing yourself in words.
For telephone counselling, we agree a time and you call me at the designated time. I am not available on that number at any other time. You will need to be able to provide a safe and uninterrupted place where you will not be overheard. Although the visual cues are missing in this way of working, some people find it easier to talk when they are not in the same room. This can lead to you sharing more freely and this can be both helpful for counselling but could leave you with a heightened or unsettled mood at the end and after the therapy session. Considering this before therapy begins, and during the session, will enable us to be mindful of this. Sometimes misunderstanding can occur without facial cues, so we may discuss the communication between us to enable the therapeutic nature of the relationship. You may need to consider whether anyone will see your phone records and whether this would be problematic for you.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT?
I am qualified to Diploma level and have completed training for Online Counselling as of May 2020. I will work with you by offering insights and observations which may help you to gain better awareness of how you manage life and when appropriate I may challenge a particular thought or belief. I may use some creative interventions to enable you to think through a particular issue e.g. life graphs (you may find it helpful to have pens and paper ready for each session). I will work with you in looking at tools that may help you once you have finished counselling and I will also offer some psycho-education when I think a particular theory may aid insight and understanding.
If you decide to proceed with Online Counselling, we will have an Initial Assessment. Following this assessment if we are a good fit for each other, we will agree a time that best suits your needs and availability. When ‘in person’ counselling resumes I may need to re-negotiate the time of your session.
Summary of qualifications & experience
Whilst I have had experience in working with children, I now only work with adults.