I have been working in mental health for twenty years, the last fifteen of these as a therapist. I love my work and I have always taken care to spend the majority of my week with clients once becoming senior (relatively unusually). I have a long-standing commitment to LGBTQI+ affirmative therapy, intersectionality and working with people from oppressed communities. My clinical posts in the NHS and academia include:
I work with clients with a wide range of difficulties including anxiety, depression, disconnection, dissociation, mood swings, interpersonal problems and psychosis. Many of my clients come with a question about life - a feeling of stuckness or deadness, an artists block or lack of purpose. Others come in acute crisis. I provide individual, couple and family psychotherapy in my private practice.
The beauty of clinical psychology and integrative psychotherapy is that therapists are trained to work from a number of therapy models. This allows therapy to be created anew for each and every client.
For some clients, initial work needs to focus on short-term stabilisation techniques such as mindfulness or externalisation useful to allow enough distance from distress to make life bearable again. Such short-term work may be sufficient in itself, or may lead to a reinvigorated curiosity about life and what symptoms may be trying to communicate to the client. This sometimes produces a desire for medium- and long- term psychotherapy.
Most of my private clients receive medium- or long-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy at a frequency of sessions from one- to three- times weekly. This work is of a far more explorative nature examining how stories we tell ourselves, relationship patterns, dreams and slips can give clues about our lives. It also often involves exploring how micro-aggressions and discriminations that we may have experienced as a result of our race, gender identity, disability, sexuality or class can get inside our heads and bodies creating havoc. Both types of work can help shift patterns we continuously get stuck in to give renewed creativity and interest in life and its possibilities.
All my work is informed by an interest in language and the gap between language, our attempts to communicate to one another and our bodies. Integrative psychotherapy allows different therapeutic techniques to be weaved in 'as and when' they are useful. I work to give people more curiosity in their lives and more flexibility in their thinking to enable life to get moving again.
As well as a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, I have post-qualification trainings in Lacanian Psychoanalysis, CBT and Systemic Psychotherapy. However I have learnt at least as much from my contact with clients as from my formal trainings.
I experienced significant distress when younger, and spent years in the psychiatric system. These experiences continue to inform my work, especially the need for a practice which combines depth analysis with practical, survival skills.
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