07507 862480

Safe place therapy

Suzanne Gray BPC, MBACP. Counselling and psychotherapy in North East london


040How long will counselling last?

The answer to that depends on what you are looking for. I have worked in settings where counselling is time limited to just six sessions (for example in the NHS). For some people this can be very effective, particularly when there is a specific issue that can be addressed in a limited space of time. Many other people  feel that six sessions of counselling isn’t  enough time to explore things in  depth. Often in this case they choose to continue open ended counselling privately. In my practice I offer both time limited and open ended therapy. In an initial appointment there will be an opportunity to explore if either of these options are right for you.


Will Counselling work for me?

Counselling and psychotherapy have a proven track record of being effective for any number of issues; there is a huge evidence base to support it as an intervention, whatever therapeutic model is used. However research also concludes, time and again, that the single most significant factor in influencing outcomes is the  relationship between therapist and client. This is why it is so important to feel comfortable with your therapist and to feel that they are someone you can be open with.  An initial meeting should give you some sense of whether this is so. You may need to see two or three people before deciding who feels right for you.


What will happen in an initial meeting?

An initial meeting is not an obligation to begin counselling. It should be an opportunity to discuss what you are looking for in therapy, and for us  to assess if this will be right for you. It is a chance for you to ask any questions, and to talk through practicalities like suitable times and the fee. It should help you decide if you think you are going to feel comfortable working together. If you have questions or would like to know more before deciding to meet, you are welcome to call me. 


Is it confidential?

Yes. The professional body I belong to- the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP)-holds strict requirements on confidentiality, which are embedded in their codes of ethical practice. 


How frequent are the sessions?

At least once a week, This is because counselling and psychotherapy are not always effective at less than once a week. Sometimes people choose to have sessions more than once a week because they find this in depth approach works better for them. In this case it may be possible to negotiate a fee that allows you to have more frequency.


How long do the sessions last?

The sessions last for 50 minutes and are usually on the same days and at the same times each week.


How will I know when to end?

Sometimes people fear that they will become dependent on a counsellor and never leave, or that the counsellor will never let them go. The truth is that every therapy comes to an end. Counselling is a way of investing in yourself now, and in the life you could lead in the future. While making that investment really work for you can take a substantial period of time, that should not mean that the therapy is without aim or end. Your feelings about the treatment and its end are never lost sight of, and form the basis of all conversations we have about the ending.