“History, despite its wrenching pain, cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again.”

Maya Angelou

Different Therapies offered

What does counselling offer?

A safe and confidential setting where you will discuss, explore and understand your feelings and thoughts. With many trainings I draw on many different models depending on my clients. Along with traditional ‘talking therapy’ I can use different ways of allowing expression including Gestalt’s famous ‘Chair work’. I am also an EMDR trained Therapist so there is flexibility in how I work.

A therapeutic relationship drawing on our joint humanity, experience and understanding.

Support and constructive challenge which helps you explore difficult feelings/thoughts and discover new perspectives.

Enhanced awareness helping you to explore, recognise and accept more aspects of yourself.

Helps to improve the quality of relationships with important people in your life.

Increased self responsibility so that you understand more fully how you are the author of your life and how you can empower yourself to move forward with a sense of meaning and purpose.

What is couples counselling?

Intimate relationships are capable of giving much joy and also can be the cause of much unhappiness. Martin Buber says  ‘Our relationship lives in the space-in-between us which is sacred. The meaning is to be found neither in one of the two partners, nor in both together, but only in their dialogue itself, in this ‘between’ which they live together’

Couples counselling is the same as individual counselling except its function is to allow the couple to see what is happening in the relationship. To bring awareness to couples about the qualities that they have created in the space between them, which is their couple relationship.

Bringing the dynamics that were out of awareness into awareness allows them to be changed. The focus of the sessions is often how you communicate with each other, which builds a solid foundation from which you can resolve your difficulties. You will learn a way of communicating that enables you to talk about anything in a safe, respectful and empathetic way.

I work with heterosexual, same sex and cross cultural couples. Couples come to therapy for many different reasons :- infidelity, difficulty in communicating, feeling distant or having lost the vision for their relationship to name a few. Wherever you may find yourselves as a couple my intention is to support you both in a new way of being in your relationship.

I also offer ‘marathon couples therapy sessions’ which works well for those unable to commit to weekly couples therapy. You can decide whether you would like an intensive four hour session or one that lasts for a whole day. This provides an intensive, condensed and highly focused approach to issues in your relationship enabling couples to move quickly through specific issues as well as learning new skills in a short period of time.We will look at what bought you together, practical tools for dissolving conflict and explore how to be your partner’s best friend, which in turn, allows for a new depth and passion in your connection to emerge.

With the divorce rate being as high as it is I also offer Marriage Preparation Sessions. These sessions are designed to support couples considering getting married. The sessions include discussions on communication, how to resolve conflict, acknowledging differences, discovering your ‘Love Languages’, finances and sex.

What is psychosexual therapy?

Our sexuality is central to our identity as a person. Although our cultural mindset about sex focuses mainly on technique, research shows that a satisfying sexual relationship requires an integrated approach that uses both the physical and emotional connection. It is an area of our life that we rarely talk about and yet an area that can raise significant problems. Sex/Pyschosexual therapy is a specialized area incorporating a professional and ethical treatment approach to problems of a sexual nature. Both couples and individuals may find themselves in need of psychosexual therapy for many different reasons. Examples of some of the psychosexual issues I work with :- women with vaginismus, dyspareunia, anorgasmia and loss of desire, as well as body issues, virginity and sexual abuse. I work with men experiencing erectile difficulties, retarded ejaculation, premature ejaculation, performance anxiety as well as loss of desire, sexual identity issues, porn addiction and out of control sexual behaviour.

What is Trauma therapy?

Trauma is the response to a deeply distressing or disturbing event that overwhelms an individuals ability to cope.

There are three main types of trauma :-

Acute which is trauma resulting from a single incident.

Chronic which is repeated and prolonged trauma.

Complex trauma which is when you are exposed to varied and multiple traumatic events.

Each of us is different and trauma will affect us differently; there are some symptoms that are common along the board.

Emotional signs can include. Shame, denial, fear, anger and sadness. These often lead to difficulty with sleep and nightmares. Challenging relationships and emotional outbursts, along with physical symptoms. Psychological signs can include. Depression, anxiety, addictions, dissociative disorders and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

I have much experience in working with people (men and women) either individually or in groups who have experienced a wide range of traumas and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Some of the topics covered go from sexual abuse in childhood, survivors of sexual violence, torture and rape; relationship events like divorce, infidelity, conflict; legal battles, financial troubles, work stress or conflict; having been involved in an accident, having an illness or injury, losing a loved one; traumatic childhood experiences and survivors of recent or historical mass traumatic events.

I have recently worked with survivors and service men and women of the Grenfell Tower Fire. The London Bridge Terrorist attack and the Bataclan theatre terrorist attack in Paris. I worked with individuals as well as being called upon by restaurant chains and local offices to work with small groups of employees who were affected.

What is EMDR?

As a therapist most of my clients develop a cognitive understanding of the roots of their unhappiness. In some cases this is the solution they have been looking for, but in some cases, part of the affective element of their initial problem has remained. I use EMDR as a solution to this problem. The mind can often heal itself naturally, in the same way as the body does and EMDR utilises the natural healing ability of your body. Much of this natural coping mechanism occurs during sleep, particularly during rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. EMDR was developed by Francine Shapiro utilising this natural process.

For clients who have endured traumas whether ‘big T trauma’ or ‘little t trauma’ the therapy process can feel arduous. For those who gain insight into their history, some still had intense feelings that feel difficult to shift. EMDR can be a solution to this problem. It is a way to break through, relatively quickly, and help tame flashbacks and the disturbing emotions that have resulted from previous life experiences.

Most of the time our bodies routinely manage new information and experiences without being aware of it. However, when something out of the ordinary occurs and you are traumatised by an overwhelming event or by being repeatedly subjected to distress, our natural coping mechanism can become overloaded. This overloading can result in disturbing experiences remaining frozen in your brain or being unprocessed. These unprocessed memories and feelings are stored in the limbic system of your brain in a ‘raw’ and emotional form, rather than in a verbal ‘story’ mode. As a result these traumatic memories can be continually triggered when you experience events similar to the difficult experiences you have been through. Often the memory itself is long forgotten, but the painful feelings such as anxiety, panic, anger, despair, shame are continually triggered in the present. EMDR helps create the connections between your brain’s memory networks, enabling your brain to process the traumatic memory in a very natural way.

During an EMDR session you will be asked questions about a particular disturbing memory. Eye movements, similar to those during REM sleep, will be recreated simply by asking you to watch my fingers moving backwards and forwards across your visual field. With repeated sets of eye movements, the memory tends to change in such a way that it loses its painful intensity and simply becomes a neutral memory of an event in the past. Other associated memories may also heal at the same time. This linking of related memories can lead to a dramatic and rapid improvement in many aspects of your life.

During EMDR treatment, you will remain in control, fully alert and wide awake. This is NOT a form of hypnosis and you can stop the process at any time. EMDR can be a stand alone treatment or part of your psychotherapy process.


What is conflict resolution?

Conflict is a normal part of any relationship. After all, two people cannot be expected to agree on everything, all of the time. Learning how to deal with conflict, rather than avoiding it, is crucial. When conflict is mishandled it can cause distress and harm to a relationship, but when handled in a respectful, positive way conflict can provide the opportunity to strengthen the bond between two people. Conflict arises from differences, both large and small. It occurs whenever people disagree over their values, motivations, perceptions, ideas or desires. Sometimes these differences can appear trivial, but when a conflict triggers strong feelings, a deep personal need is often found to be at the core of the problem. As conflict triggers strong emotions we need to be aware that if handled in an unhealthy manner it can cause irreversible rifts, resentments and relationship break-ups.

Effective communication is essential to a good relationship as it increases our understanding of one another, builds trust and strengthens our relationships. Good communication skills may not solve problems or resolve issues, but without communication nothing will be solved or changed.

Communication is received both verbally and non verbally and is vital for all relationships. Most people are unaware that the much of the information exchanged during conflict is often communicated non verbally whether it be by facial expressions, body posture, gestures or tone of voice.

We often don’t realise how little we listen as we are instead listening to our own internal responses and defenses, which keeps us from being fully present whilst another is talking. Good communication requires us to be able to fully hear the message that our partner/friend or family member is sending so that they feel heard. The feeling of being heard is deeply healing for whoever is speaking and allows the listener to gain a greater understanding of another’s point of view. Agreement is not necessary. It is not about making one person ‘wrong’ or ‘right’ but giving space to be able to listen and accurately understand not only what is being said but what he or she means which deepens your connection and allieviates future conflict.

If you feel stuck in a particular relationship, whether it be with your partner, a member of your family or friend and want to have a third party facilitate a difficult conversation or help with conflict resolution, I am skilled at being able to help.

What is Soul Midwifery?

It is difficult to think of a more intensely emotional and stressful time than when someone is facing his or her decline and eventual death. It is not always easy to talk to someone who is dying. Conversations about future plans and wishes may appear insensitive and cause great pain and distress especially when it is with someone we love. As a result the D word becomes the elephant in the room. I believe we need to get over our fear of talking about dying. I want to be able to contribute to end-of-life care after illness is diagnosed and treatments begin, during advanced illness and the dying process, and after the death of the patient, with bereaved survivors. One of my specialities is as a grief/bereavement counsellor. In addition to the work that I already do I am also working with families whose loved ones have been impacted by Covid-19 and am supporting them in the challenges they are facing along with some of the decisions that need to be made.

Soul Midwives are holistic and spiritual companions to anyone at the end of their life. They draw on traditional skills, now largely forgotten, applying them to our modern world to lovingly ease the passage of the dying, and to ensure that their death is a dignified and peaceful experience. This service is used within people’s own homes, in hospices and care homes. Soul Midwives can work from the point of diagnosis all the way through to death, and any stage in between. I offer practical, physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual support and assistance for both the person dying and family members depending on what is needed. I can be of service through the various stages whether it be in the pre-active stage of death when someone is still fairly well and able to make decisions about death planning. During the various stages of dying I can offer encouragement and assistance to resolve issues and overcome fears. In the active dying stage or at point of death I can help create a sacred space along with gentle therapies to comfort, relax and ease pain. For carers this time can often be particularly challenging and isolating and my desire is to offer both the person dying as well as their loved ones support at any stage during this process.