Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Your Questions Answered
I have put together a list of questions that people sometimes have about counselling, along with the answers.
Beginning counselling can be a difficult or confusing experience and often clients will have questions about what they should expect when beginning therapy. Finding the right counsellor is important to most people, and often factors like cost and location of appointments will play a role in deciding when and where to begin counselling.
What kinds of people go for counselling?
All sorts of people find counselling useful and my clients are of all ages and come from all walks of life. Personal life events can cause anyone problems or distress and time spent with a therapist can be invaluable in sorting these issues out. Counselling is a popular and acceptable way of getting help and support for any life issues. There is no shame in getting counselling!
What will happen at my first appointment?
At your first appointment with me l will ask you a few questions, discuss some of the events that have brought you to therapy and look at how my services might be able to help. You will have an opportunity to ask any questions you have about counselling. In many ways, your first appointment will be straight-forward: I collect some information from you and help you determine your best options for going forward.
At the end of this initial consultation, you will be able to decide whether you would like to continue with further appointments. And, of course, my services are completely confidential.
Why are there different approaches?
Different therapies have different ways of addressing issues. For instance, cognitive behavioural therapy is about how you think and behave, and attempts to address recurring thought or behaviour patterns. In bereavement therapy, there would be more emphasis on supporting you through very difficult emotions. Psychodynamic counselling looks at your past while other therapies concentrate on the future. Everyone’s counselling needs are unique.
Is there a therapist for my situation?
I am trained and experienced in situations as diverse as coping with stress and anxiety, bereavement and loss, relationship problems, depression, concerns around work and career, challenging life events, retirement, self-esteem and self-worth issues.
What should I ask when I meet the counsellor for the first time?
You have a right to any information you might require. Ask about the location, cost and duration of appointments. Ask about professional memberships or qualifications. It’s important to be clear about what you want.
Is counselling painful?
Sometimes, depending on the issues and emotions that need addressing. I support my clients through many painful emotions.
Is counselling confidential?
Yes. Everything you discuss in therapy is confidential — between you and your therapist. There are certain legal exceptions to this policy and I will clarify these exceptions to you at your first appointment.
Is counselling non-judgemental?
I do not judge behaviour or personal life experiences and I respect each client for their individual choices. I operate a policy of non-discrimination. I do not discriminate on grounds of age, race, gender, sexuality, religion, illness or ethnicity.
How much will it cost?
I offer an initial assessment session at a reduced cost of £20 for 50 minutes.
Afterwards, a 50-minute session costs £40 and my fees are reviewed annually.
I understand that clients sometimes need to cancel their appointments. Please let me know of any
appointments you are unable to keep, with at least 48 hours’ notice or the fee may still be payable.
What if I do not want to continue with my counselling sessions?
Clients may end therapy at any time simply by letting me know.