Dorset has been my home for the past thirty years where I have brought up my children, worked in a variety of settings and experienced life and relating. In counselling others, I draw on the solid life experience that has shaped me as a person. This has given me an understanding about what we sometimes have to face in our lives and how that can affect us. I am particularly interested and curious about what makes us as we are and the impact of early attachment experience, as well as patterns and dynamics within relationships. My childhood was spent in the US followed by several years in Australia, which has helped me understand the impact living in different countries and cultures can have.
I have been a Visiting Counsellor at the Arts University Bournemouth for several years where I have enjoyed working with young adults. I have also been a Mentor at a local school, helping students develop their potential and a bereavement Counsellor for Cruse Dorset, supporting people who have lost a loved one. In my private practice I have worked with people of all ages across a broad range of client issues including: low self-esteem, depression, loneliness, early trauma, anxiety, panic attacks, self-harm, disordered eating, abuse, gender dysphoria and various types of loss, relationship difficulties and life transitions. Counselling has helped my clients in different ways and you can read some of their testimonials on my website about how they have found their experience of being in counselling with me.
How I work – Relational/Integrative Counselling
I am a professionally trained and qualified Integrative Counsellor, which means I draw on different strands of therapeutic thinking and practice, tailoring my approach to suit the needs of each unique person. My approach integrates concepts and ways of working from both Humanistic and Psychodynamic traditions alongside mindful awareness of the present. At its core is a valuing of the relationship between you as a client, and me as a therapist, as a means to your gaining a better understanding of yourself and your relationships.
I work with a holistic awareness of presenting symptoms being part of the whole person and of the interconnection of emotions, mind, body and spirit. The counselling I offer will not impose answers on you or try to fix your problems for you. Instead it will foster an attitude of self care and self compassion alongside building your inner resources and gaining self direction. Understanding more about yourself and increasing your self awareness within this supportive relationship will enable you to gain fresh insights and perspectives, and find new ways of addressing your concerns. We work together to identify and make real those changes you would like to see in your life.
Qualifications and Training
BACP Accredited Diploma in Humanistic and Integrative Counselling, Bath Centre for Psychotherapy and Counselling (my research dissertation explored Relational Attachment and Endings)
Bereavement Counselling Training, Cruse Bereavement Care
BACP Accredited Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills inc Transactional Analysis 101/Level 2 Certificate in Counselling Concepts, Peter Symonds College ACE
BA History (with Honours, US)
I am committed to my ongoing personal and professional development and have several years experience during my training as a client of psychotherapist and author Michael Jacobs, which enabled me to understand many aspects of myself, my relationships and therapy, and to experience what it is like to be in the client’s chair. I have undertaken further training in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy, Compassion Focused Therapy and Solution Focused Brief Therapy, which I incorporate into my work where appropriate. I regularly undertake CPD counselling and psychotherapy training to update my knowledge and practice; some workshops I have attended include:
- Working with Dreams (Matthew Harwood)
- Understanding Eating Disorders (Bournemouth University)
- Working with the Body in Counselling and Psychotherapy (Margaret Landale)
- Avoidance and Life Enhancing Decision Making (Ari Badaines)
- Working with Young People (BACP)
- Non-violent Communications (Annie Rankin, DACAP seminar)
- The Tragedy of Trauma and the Impact on our Minds (Andy Cottom, DACAP)
- Working with the Children of Narcissistic Parents (Julia Buckroyd, Salisbury Seminars)
- Trauma, Abandonment & Privilege: working with boarding school survivors (DACAP)
- Internal Family Systems Therapy (Matthew Harwood, DACAP)