How many sessions will I need?

We offer both short and longer term therapy. Our experience is that the number of sessions needed comes down to individual need and can vary widely. We usually suggest booking 6 sessions to begin with. On the 6th session we will review how you are finding counselling and you can decide at that point whether you wish to extend. We are however flexible and if you wish you can just book a single session and decide thereafter whether you wish to have more.

How regular are sessions and long does each one last ? 

Sessions are on a weekly basis. Each one will last for 50 minutes. This is what is considered to be the optimum amount of time for most people. If you wish to book a longer session you are always free to ask. It will depend on the availability of counselling rooms. 

How can counselling help me ?

Counselling provides a safe environment for you to explore your issues, helping you gain a greater understanding of them and of yourself. During this exploration, your increasing awareness can enable you to find ways to cope and to move forward, providing you with increased motivation and an improved sense of wellbeing. This can increase your resilience and confidence so you are better able to manage stressful situations.

Since you may choose to explore painful feelings, it is possible you will find yourself going through a period of feeling worse before you feel better. This can be difficult but it is not uncommon and can be an important part of the process of self-discovery.

How do I make the most of therapy?

Therapy can be a challenging experience and we find that those clients who commit to attending each session, engaging openly and fully, gain the most. This involves striving to be honest with yourself, to express how you are really feeling, and to give your therapist sincere feedback on how you are finding therapy.

How confidential is what I discuss in sessions ?  

Whatever you bring to the counselling room is always strictly confidential. The only possible exception to complete confidentiality is if your counsellor believes either your safety or the safety of another person is at serious risk. In such rare circumstances,  we would always discuss our concerns with you during the session, but are bound by a duty of care to inform your GP or other statutory services

Do you belong to any professional bodies?

We are all registered members of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), the largest professional body for psychological therapies in the country. This means we have met their requirements for training and follow their regulations around supervision and continuing professional development. It also means we adhere to their strict ethical and professional guidelines for practice. The BACP operate a register accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care. We can all be found on this.

Do I need a counsellor of the same background, gender, or sexual orientation as me ? 

Some people feel apprehensive about whether they will really be understood and receive the support they need if their counsellor is of a different background to themselves. This is especially the case when they have suffered discrimination or oppression in the past. 

We hold a strong commitment to working with diversity. Through extensive training, we have developed a keen awareness of how the cultures and groups we represent can influence the counselling relationship. Along with maintaining a non-judgemental attitude, this has enabled us to engage successfully with clients from a diverse range of backgrounds. If you have any concerns around such issues, then please feel free to discuss these with us.

How quickly can I start sessions ? 

This depends entirely on the availability of our counsellors. We always aim to reply to your initial contact within 48 hours and to see clients within 2 weeks of the initial contact

Can I take a holiday during therapy ?

 Yes, of course. However, we ask that you give us as much notice as possible if you cannot make a session for any reason. Sessions cancelled less than 48 hours beforehand will be charged at £25 to cover room hire costs and other expenses. Sessions missed without notice will be charged at full fee. If you wish to take an extended break we cannot guarantee to be able to keep your current session day and time available unless you are able to cover the £25 expenses per session missed.  

If your counsellor is going to have a holiday, they will always give you as much notice as possible. In the unlikely event that they cannot attend a session for any other reason, they will aim to give you at least 48 hours' notice. If this is not possible, your next session will be charged at a reduced rate of £25. The session missed by the counsellor would not count as one of your block of six and if you have paid in advance, you will be refunded the relevant amount

How do I end counselling ?

It can be important to pay attention to the ending of the therapeutic process so that you can gain maximum benefit. For this reason, we suggest that you give us two to three weeks' notice before deciding to end therapy.

This does not apply when in your first block of six sessions. In this case, you will be able to use your sixth session to review your experience during therapy and decide whether or not you need to extend.

How do I pay for sessions ? 

Session are payable in cash at Deptford and Greenwich. At Holborn, you can also pay by debit card. Counsellors may also accept payment by direct bank transfer. Please discuss this with your counsellor.

Sessions can be paid for individually or in advance in blocks of 6 sessions at a time.

Can I have someone with me for support at sessions ?

We understand that you may feel apprehensive about coming to therapy at the start. Although you are always welcome to be accompanied by a friend , relative or carer to the counselling rooms, the sessions themselves are strictly between the client and counsellor for reasons of confidentiality and therapeutic effectiveness.

More Questions ? 

If you have any further questions, then please feel free to contact us. We will be happy to assist you.

For general information on counselling and psychotherapy, you can visit the BACP website. Just click on the image here to find a comprehensive list of answers to frequently asked questions.

The BACP is the largest professional body for counsellors and psychotherapists in the UK and all our counsellors are members.