How do we get started?
You can contact me by email, text or telephone. If I am not able to answer the phone please leave a message and I'll return your call as soon as I can. I offer a free 15/20 minute initial phone call at a mutually convenient time so we can begin to get a feel for each other. During this phone call I find it can be useful if you share a brief outline of what has led you to seek counselling at this time. You can also ask any questions you may have. We would also try to set up an initial assessment session during this call.
What can I expect in our first session?
I will know that you are feeling nervous and I will do my best to reassure you and help you to feel relaxed. I understand that making contact with a counsellor and meeting me for the first time might feel overwhelming. You might not know what to say or how to explain what’s going on for you. Please don’t worry. Our first meeting will be about us starting to get to know each other and I will be able to help you begin to look at what’s troubling you.
In the first session we will discuss what has led you to seek counselling at this time in further detail. I will complete a simple assessment form with your personal details and will ask you some questions relating to your health, history and any issues you are experiencing. I will take some notes on what you tell me during this session but not during subsequent sessions. You will have the chance to ask me any questions you may have about the way I work or how counselling works. I hope after this initial stage we will be able to form an idea about what you need from our work together. You may not know what you want or need and that’s ok, we can begin to explore that together and take it one step at a time.
How many sessions will I need?
Everyone is different. The number of sessions you have will depend on what issues you bring and what you hope to achieve from the work we do. I usually find it can take 4/6 weeks for us to really get to know each other and begin to explore your issues and after this we will have a much clearer idea of how long our work is likely to take. Some people who want to deal with a specific issue that is troubling them might stay for up to 8/12 sessions, others may want to make significant changes in their lives which can take longer. Many clients begin to feel the benefit of counselling within just a few weeks. I like to work in a very collaborative way so we will review your needs and goals regularly to keep the work on track and to ensure your needs are being met. Ultimately these are your sessions and you have the choice about how many you have.
How much will it cost?
For adult individuals:
I offer a limited number of reduced fee slots, for example to counselling students.
Please enquire if this is something you might need, and I can let you know if I have any reduced fee slots available.
Is what I tell you kept confidential?
Everything you tell me is kept confidential. Confidentiality is a very important part of the counselling process and one of the things that makes this relationship unlike any other.
There are a few exceptions to confidentiality which I will explain further during our initial session. Basically these exceptions are about me looking after you, keeping you safe and offering you the best service I can.
How long are the sessions and how often do I need to come?
Counselling sessions are 50 minutes long. Sessions are weekly and usually take place at the same time each week. I can offer some flexibility on timings/days of sessions from time to time due to changes in work or other commitments.
What if I need to miss a session?
You can cancel a session during a session or by phone or email. A minimum of 48 hours’ notice is required for any cancellations as your agreed session time is booked and reserved solely for you. If you cancel less than 48 hours before the session I may charge the full session fee unless we can rearrange the appointment during the same week.
Life doesn't always go to plan so where less than 48 hours’ notice is give (in the case of one-off, irregular non-attendance, and subject to discretion) this fee may be reduced to an administration fee.