Frequently asked questions about therapy

How much does it cost?
All appointments are £50 per 50 minute session.

What experience/special interests do you have?
I’ve a particular interest in trauma, anxiety and depression. My clinical experience ranges from working with families and carers of substance users, young adults in an education setting, mothers and daughters, parents and women. More recently, working with staff members of a large NHS site. I’m fascinated by the stories we live by, how they were created and how therapy allows people to edit and re-author their narratives.

You can find out more about me here and here.

Are you qualified?
Yes. In order to be accredited by the National Counselling Society I had to evidence my training and work clinical hours on placement. I trained with the University of Nottingham, home to the Institute of Mental Health and the Trauma Resilience Centre. As part of my training, I undertook personal therapy, group therapy, personal development groups in addition to recording sessions for assessment and writing papers. My training was incredibly robust and diverse!

What model of therapy do you use?
I work from a Humanistic modality where the core principle is that with the appropriate conditions a person will always move to a place of growth.

How will you help me?
By co-creating a safe, authentic relationship we'll create conditions that are ripe for raising your self-awareness, becoming more in-touch with your emotions and thoughts, identifying patterns of behaviour and bodily awareness in order to promote your sense of autonomy. The side-effects of these things is a sense of being fully present in your own life, improved emotional language and better relationships. I genuinely want you to empower you to succeed in life!
I work dynamically and pluralistically, drawing on a range of theoretical models and approaches. Mostly we'll incorporate psycho-education into our session - understanding how the brain and body work. Sometimes we may use mindfulness techniques, free-hand art or journalling. I often suggest books or articles of interest and insightful videos.

How do I know if you’re the right therapist for me?
The National Counselling Society offer some useful points for consideration when looking for a therapist and you can find that information here.
I believe that the therapeutic relationship is vital in ensuring you get the most from your therapy. Clients describe me as warm, attentive and have expressed how safe they feel during session. I can also be challenging too, that's where trust in our relationship really comes into it's own as through my questioning and curiosity about your Self and life, it generates a reflective perspective.

What if I don't like therapy/you?
If you find that I'm not someone you feel you could work with, that's also a good thing - it means you’re one step closer to finding the therapist who is right for you ;) If you decide that therapy isn't quite what you expected it to be then I'd recommend we discuss this in session. Reason being, there may be an emerging contract that needs to come to light where you perhaps have an unmet need in our relationship.

How do I arrange our phone consultation or book a session?
You can contact me via my online form, drop me an email or call me on my contact numbers. I aim to answer all queries within 48hrs, (excluding Bank Holidays and weekends). Alternatively, you can book a session directly via Harley Therapy.

When do I see you and where?
Ideally, we'd see each other at the same time, on the same day, each week. The routine allows us to create a consistency with our work and is beneficial to the therapeutic process.
I'm based in central Brighton, just off the Steine, at 9a Princes Street. My room is part of Brighton Therapy Practice and there's a buzzer into the waiting area. Please note, there is a steep flight of stairs in the practice. I’m now also at a second location at 69 Church Road in Hove as part of Hove Therapy Practice.

How do I pay you?
Payment can be made in session as cash or card. You can also make payments ahead of sessions via bank transfer - please contact me for bank details if that's your preferred method.

If you’ve booked sessions through the Harley Platform, they arrange for your payment of sessions independent from me. If you’ve queries relating to their online payment/booking system then please contact them directly. I can provide you with the relevant contact information.

Is there parking?
At the Brighton Therapy Practice on Princes Street - There's a small amount of on-street parking in the surrounding area. If travelling by bus then the nearest stops are the Law Courts, Old Steine or St James Street and there are several cycle racks outside Sainsbury's.
At the Hove Therapy Practice on Church Road - There's on street parking, the nearest bus stop is Second Avenue and there’s a host cycle racks on The Drive.

What if I can't make an appointment?
All missed or cancelled sessions incur the session fee.

What if I'm running late/can't find you?
I have my phone on 5 minutes before our scheduled time. Please call or text to let me know. If you're late for your appointment, then you'll have the remainder of your allocated session time.

How confidential are you? Would you ever pass my information to anyone? (Police/ GP/ SS)
Confidentiality is key in our therapeutic relationship as it facilitates building trust. However, the Law states there are situations whereby I may need to inform other agencies. For example: if there's a risk of harm or neglect to a child then I have a duty of care under The Children's Act 1989. In any other circumstances, I'd attempt to speak with you in the first instance so that we can co-create the best approach for ensuring you get any additional support you may need.

How long until I can expect an answer to an email/voicemail/appointment booking? I aim to answer all enquiries within 48hrs. After that, I'd suggest an initial 10 minute chat on the phone so we can discuss your reason for seeking therapy and then we'd book our first session. It also means you can ask any questions that you feel haven’t been answered on this website.

What if I'm in crisis, can I have an emergency appointment?
If you feel you're in crisis with a risk of harm to your self or others then I'd recommend contacting the mental health rapid response service (MHRRS) on 0300 304 0078, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Whilst I may occasionally have some availability at short notice, it's important that if you're at risk that it's handled as an emergency. You're important.

How long do I have to be in therapy for?
Counselling tends to be open-ended with no set number of sessions. Some clients find it beneficial to agree a set number of sessions as it allows them to plan for the financial and time commitment. This is something we can discuss in your first session.

What if I want to finish counselling?
All good things come to an end. I'd suggest we discuss how and why you wish to end, as it all benefits the therapeutic process.

Can I follow you on social media?
I don't respond to client requests on my personal profiles which is why I have several public profiles as Kemp Town Counselling, and you're welcome to follow me on those.

Have you always been a therapist?
Nope. After my own 'spiritual awakening' and really enjoying what therapy offered me, I decided to change careers. I'd previously been a licensed project manager working as a planner on Government projects, a project officer, worked for a large financial service provider and even ran a bakery! My life has provided me with a very rich tapestry and a zest for life. My hardest job to date is parenting...