One must do it for oneself; but one cannot do it by oneself.
Beginning therapy can be an adventure, a leap into something unknown. It will certainly challenge; it may also be painful. But the work thrives in a supportive and mutually engaged atmosphere. The challenges are always shared and experienced together. Therapy can offer the time to examine and explore things together, without pressure, and with time to create trust and understanding.
Psychoanalysis works through establishing an open, questioning conversation between the therapist and the client. In that dialogue you are invited to speak about yourself and your difficulties, at your own pace and in your own way. Psychoanalysis addresses the client and their situation in their particularity and absolute uniqueness and places emphasis on close and detailed listening to your own speech and language as the access to that particularity. It is not the therapist's job to offer glib solutions nor to impose their view of things, but through the back and forth of conversational exchange to facilitate a new thinking about your behaviours and motivations; a knowledge that enables you to make free choices in your life about how you want to be for yourself.
I work with individuals & couples presenting with a range of difficulties which they find they need support to deal with. These issues have included (but are not restricted to):
addictions; depression; bipolar disorder; obsessions/compulsions; gender issues; sexuality; compulsive sexual behaviour; difficulties with intimacy; work problems; stress; recovery from abuse; self-harm; personality disorder; relationships.
Some people come with the issues they want to explore clear in their mind; others because they feel lost or confused; some because they feel a disappointment with their lives or because they may be having difficulties developing or maintaining sustaining friendships or relationships.
I offer a safe space in which a client can begin to understand the motivations and meanings behind their behaviour. The client dictates the pace of the work, how quickly and how deeply we go. I don't use complex jargon or obscure psychological terms but I work to help the client use their own language to understand their own experience. I am happy to do long-term work or to do short-term work focusing on specific issues.
I work in a way that does not pathologise sexuality or transgender.
I have substantial experience of working analytically with psychosis and bi-polar disorders.
I work regularly with people with some learning difficulties, including autism spectrum disorders.
Training, qualifications & experience
I trained as a psychoanalyst with The Site for Contemporary Psychoanalysis (www.the-site.org.uk), where I served on the governing council and am a member of their training committee, and teach on their London and Cornwall psychotherapy training. I am registered with the Council for Psychoanalysis & Jungian Analysis college of the UKCP and sit on their Training Standards & Membership Committee and the Executive Committee.
Other areas of counselling I deal with
I have a strong interest in, and experience of, working with writers and artists to explore their creativity.
I regularly offer therapy to counselling/psychotherapy trainees on a variety of psychodynamic, integrative and existential training at institutions including Terapia, Minster Centre, Birkbeck, Regents & Roehampton Universities.
In my work with people in recovery from addiction, I am happy to work with with people continuing with other forms of support, including 12-step programmes.
I frame the plurality of psychoanalytic voices by reading psychoanalysis alongside and as part of, the tradition of European philosophy incorporating ideas from existentialism and phenomenology as well as the contemporary critique of psychoanalysis from within that tradition.
I have experience of working with clients from diverse cultural backgrounds and have published work exploring the impact of race and class on psychotherapy.
In addition to my work in private practice, I manage and supervise a counselling service for a voluntary agency.
I believe psychotherapy should be as affordable and accessible to a broad a range of people as possible and so try to keep my fees as low as I can. I charge £45 for a 50-minute session, £60 for a couple. I reserve a limited number of spaces for clients on low incomes, benefits or in education/training. In these cases, we can negotiate fees based on individual circumstances. Please get in touch to check current availability.
I am always delighted to chat or meet with people considering beginning therapy and to answer any questions or concerns they might have. To arrange a meeting why not e-mail me? Or phone and leave a message; I'll get back to you as soon as I can.
An initial consultation to meet and discuss working together is free.