Counselling & Therapy
Sometimes it can be hard to cope with all of the changes that happen during your life. If you’re finding it challenging in dealing with certain situations or emotions, you might find counselling to be a helpful way of sorting things out.
Why should I go to counselling?
If you’re thinking about whether counseling could be helpful to you, here are some questions to ask yourself:
Do you ever feel really sad, frustrated, or lonely?
Do you feel especially angry, annoyed, or out-of-control?
Do you feel very anxious, worried, or guilty?
Have you experienced some major problems at home, at work, or in your neighbourhood?
Have you noticed some changes in the way you sleep, eat, or think and feel about life?
Is it hard for you to talk about these feelings with your family or friends?
Are these feelings having a bad effect on your life-are they making your schoolwork and your relationships with family and friends hard?
If you answered YES to any of these questions, it may be a good idea for you to talk with a counsellor (also known as a therapist). A counsellor or therapist is an adult who has special training to help people sort through their feelings and problems. Men from all walks of life go to counseling for many reasons.
Counselling can help you to understand your feelings and problems and learn how to deal with them in your everyday life. You can expect that whatever you and your counselor discuss will remain confidential. Confidential means that the therapist cannot tell anyone about what the two of you talk about without your permission. The exception to this rule is that if the counselor feels that you are in danger of hurting yourself or someone else, or you or looking at committing a serious crime, the the counsellors notes are subpoenaed.
How do I find a counsellor?
Many professionals can help you find a counselor. You can ask your GP for a referral. Both the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP) and "Counselling Directory" list professional counsellors The counsellor’s specialties are sometimes listed, so you can choose someone who especially works with Anger, Addiction, Bereavement. etc.
What should I expect from counselling?
When you start talking with a counsellor you should expect to meet with one person who will get to know you pretty well. Sometimes you will talk about serious things and sometimes less important things: this is how you begin to build a relationship with your counselor. Most counsellors understand that it takes a lot of courage to go into counselling and often takes time to get used to talking and sharing with a counsellor! It can be hard to tell on the first session if you feel comfortable enough with your counsellor to talk about things that are important to you.
Try to give the counsellor a chance. If after a few visits you still don’t feel okay about talking with the counsellor, try another one - It's that simple. This is fine! Since you will be talking about sensitive issues, you deserve to feel totally safe and comfortable with the counsellor you choose.
What kinds of questions will the therapist/counsellor ask me?
At the first visit, the counsellor may ask you many questions about your life and how you’ve been feeling during the past year. He/she may want you to bring your parent(s) or guardian(s) with you on the first visit. The type of help you are offered by your counsellor will depend on what you tell them and the kind of relationship that you develop.
How long does counselling usually last?
Counselling lasts different periods of time for different people. Your counsellor will work with you to decide how the sessions will fit into your schedule. You might meet with your counselor once a week for 50-60 minutes. Sometimes you might choose to meet with your counsellor more often (2 or more days per week) or less often. You may continue meeting with your counsellor for a longer amount of time.
What else can I do?
Besides going to counselling, there are many activities you can do on your own to try to work through difficult feelings and solve problems. You might want to try talking with a parent, good friend, or another adult in your life. You might try writing down your feelings in a journal or diary. Other things to try are relaxation exercises, listening to music, watching a good movie, or exercising. Also try getting involved in an activity that you are good at such as a sport, drama, music, dancing, or hobbies (such as writing or reading). The combination of doing activities you like to do and talking with a counselor will help to improve how you are feeling and make your everyday life much easier.
Check out our "Recommended Counsellors" Page based in the South East / Kent.