FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
WHAT IS A COUNSELLING PSYCHOLOGIST?
"Counselling psychologists deal with a wide range of...life issues including bereavement, domestic violence, sexual abuse, traumas and relationship issues. They understand diagnosis and the medical context to mental health problems and work with the individual’s unique subjective psychological experience to empower their recovery and alleviate distress." BPS 2015
Therapy is a confidential service, however what you talk about will be shared:
(1) with other people or professionals involved in your care, in the following circumstances:
- If I am ordered by a court of law
- In cases of terrorism, drug trafficking or money laundering
- If you are at risk to yourself or someone else
- Where the safety of others or yourself is in danger
(2) anonymously within my clinical / peer supervision.
Where possible, I will always attempt to inform you first that confidentiality will be broken and discuss it with you. During the initial consultation confidentiality is discussed and any questions answered.
If you are aged under 18 years I would also contact your parent/guardian if I believe you are at risk to yourself, someone else or form somebody else.
WHO CAN MAKE A REFERRAL?
A referral can be made by contacting me by email or phone (call or text). The following people are able to make a referral:
- Teaching professional
- Health and care professional (your GP, psychiatrist, occupational health professional, social worker or other health and care professional).
HOW DO I PAY FOR THE SERVICES?
Payment can be made by card, cheque, cash or BACS.
WHAT IF I CANNOT ATTEND OR NEED TO CANCEL AN APPOINTMENT?
Appointments cancelled more than 24 hours before the appointment, will not be charged. Any sessions cancelled less than 24 hours before the appointment, will be charged in full.
WHERE AND WHEN ARE MY CLINIC DAYS AND TIMES?
I consult in Saffron Walden, Cambridge and Chelmsford between Tuesday and Saturday. Where possible I attempt to accommodate clients with tight schedules and long travelling times. I also offer therapy via telephone and online (Skype/FaceTime/Zoom) for those who would prefer, and have access to, such mediums. Please be aware that disruptions may occur when consulting online due to connectivity.
WHAT HAPPENS IN THE FIRST APPOINTMENT?
At the first appointment there will be a discussion about your reasons for coming to see me. This will include your presenting needs and concerns. I will try and develop an understanding about the problems you would like to address. I will ask you many detailed questions about the nature and duration of the problem, about aspects of your mental state, your psychiatric, medical and personal history, and your lifestyle. I may also ask you to complete some questionnaires to get a detailed picture of your difficulties.
At the end of the first appointment we can discuss the number and frequency of treatment sessions required to help you. A course of 8-20 sessions is common for short to medium-term therapy, with possible follow-ups if necessary. I also offer long-term therapeutic intervention where necessary and appropriate. It is possible that the assessment will continue to the second session. However, we will have agreed on what course of action to take at the end of the first session.