Ethical Standards I abide by the ethical code of practice of the BACP. These standards are available at www.bacp.co.uk
Contacting me Please contact me by email to make appointments or to inform me of your intention to cancel or change an appointment. I will make every effort to respond on the same day with the exception of weekends and holidays. I would prefer communication about therapeutic issues to happen in an appointment session face to face unless there is a reason why this is not possible.
What I offer The psychotherapy I offer is humanistic and integrative. Psychotherapy is most effective when there is a good therapeutic relationship between client and therapist. In any event, psychotherapy will vary according to the personalities of the psychotherapist and client and the particular problems you bring forward. I draw on many different models and techniques in helping you with the problems that you hope to address. Successful therapy usually depends on the willingness of the client to engage actively and adopt an inquiring attitude to themselves. Psychotherapy works best when there is a commitment and regularity in the appointments on the part of both client and psychotherapist.
Therapeutic Relationship The therapeutic relationship is intended to be healing, supportive and sometimes challenging. We need to be aware that there may be times, as in any human relationship, when things feel difﬁcult and it seems hard to persevere. These times, if worked through together, can be very fruitful and life-enhancing. We both need to have the intention of seeing things through in such circumstances.
Risks and Beneﬁts of Psychotherapy Psychotherapy can have beneﬁts and risks. Since therapy often involves discussing unpleasant aspects of your life, you may experience uncomfortable feelings like sadness, guilt, anger, frustration, loneliness, and helplessness. On the other hand, psychotherapy has also been shown to have beneﬁts. Therapy often leads to better relationships, solutions to speciﬁc problems, and signiﬁcant reductions in feelings of distress and anxiety. There are no guarantees of what you will experience. However, most people beneﬁt and feel empowered by regular psychotherapy work. It is important to remember that, ultimately, you are responsible for your own health physically, emotionally and psychologically. I cannot be held responsible for your well-being whilst in session or anytime afterwards.
Conﬁdentiality Our sessions are private and conﬁdential and nothing you say will be passed on to anybody else, except in the following situations:
1) In discussion with my supervisor who is bound by the same codes of conﬁdentiality as I am
2) Where you give your consent
3) Where I am compelled by a court of law
4) Where there is an imminent danger of harm to self or others
In the unlikely event that I am compelled to disclose information, I will always attempt to consult with you ﬁrst if this is possible.
The ﬁrst four sessions will be considered an assessment period for us both. I will be able to get a better idea of what our work together might involve and if I can be of help. You will need to decide if you agree with me about the anticipated direction of the work and if you feel comfortable enough with me to make a commitment. It is essential that you raise any questions or doubts during the assessment period and at any other time in the work
Please avoid taking affect altering drugs or alcohol before a session. If you arrive in what I believe to be an altered state that makes you psychologically unavailable the session will not take place and I will charge you for the time.
Length of Therapy
The therapeutic process may be for an agreed length of time, or it may be open-ended. You may come with a speciﬁc problem or objective that requires brief therapy or you may have an on-going issue for which you would like long-term support. Either way, it helps if you have an idea of what you would like to gain from psychotherapy so that this can be discussed and understood at the outset.
If either of us thinks it is time to bring the therapy to an end, we will discuss this together and decide if and how to do that. Sometimes one session is enough to make sure the decision is a good one. Sometimes it is better to have a series of sessions to review the work and either decide to go on with therapy after all, or else to ﬁnd a way of making a good ending. Ending the therapeutic relationship is a shared process and should never be a one-sided or impulsive act.
Session Cancellations & Rearrangements
Sessions missed or cancelled less than 48 hours in advance are charged as normal because I cannot make use of your session time in those circumstances.
If you are unable to attend a session due to illness or unforeseen circumstances, please email me and let me know as soon as possible and we may be able to re-schedule. Please bear in mind that such rearrangement may not always be possible. My ﬂexibility is limited by the fact that I see clients on a regular basis at the same time and day each week, so alternative appointment times are not freely available.
It may sometimes be necessary for me to re-schedule or rearrange our sessions but I will try to keep this to a minimum.
Fitness to Work It is my responsibility to monitor my health and ﬁtness to work. This means that I may have to cancel a session at short notice due to illness or other unforeseen life events.
Notes and Supervision I may take informal notes during the session, especially during the assessment period. Any notes I take are strictly for my own use. I am required to undergo regular supervision so that you can be assured I am providing you with the best possible service. I may use my notes when with my supervisor who is bound by the same codes of conﬁdentiality as I am.
Session Time Each psychotherapy session will last 50 minutes. No additional time can be given at the end if you are late for the session. We will normally meet once a week on the same day and time.
Payment The fee will be paid monthly in advance for six sessions by bank transfer.
Fees are reviewed according to my level of training and experience. I will give you advance notice of an increase in fees.
Changes to the Contract
I reserve the right to vary these conditions when necessary, in which case I will endeavour to give good notice and time for discussion.
I am a member of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy.