• How often do we meet?
The sessions always take place on the same day and at the same time and last 50 minutes. During our initial interview we usually discuss the cancellation periods, absence and confidentiality, in a form of a verbal contract between us.
• How long does the therapy last?
The length of therapy is usually discussed at the very beginning, where we set the goals of therapy and provisionally agree the number of sessions, which we can then revisit every 6 sessions or so, when assessing progress. The client always has the last word on this and I always try and discuss the ending well in advance to prepare the client for the life ‘after’ therapy, where different levels of support can be identified if necessary.
• What format do the sessions take?
The nature of the sessions varies and depends on the client. Everybody is different and therefore requires a different approach but generally, the pace is governed by the client where the counsellor takes the role of a facilitator of the process rather than an advisor or coach. However, as an integrative counsellor and due to my previous educational background, I have a tendency for being more proactive with the client if required, as long as this is done in a sensitive manner and is helpful to the client. In counselling, we tend to encourage the expression of feeling, whether it is pain, anger, sadness or any other, whenever it is deemed safe for the client to do so.