What Can Online Counselling Help With?
Online counselling may be able to help with a wide range of issues including, abuse, anxiety, stress, depression, eating difficulties, loneliness, relationship problems, bereavement, self-esteem, sexual orientation, sexual abuse, discrimination, traumas and many more.
However not all types of issues can be resolved through online counselling and I will advise you if face to face counselling, or some other form of support might be more suitable for you. Where I consider that online counselling would not be the most suitable means of support I will make every effort to assist you in a referral to a suitable alternative source of support.
How does online counselling work?
We will agree an appointment time. This is the time when you will receive my email reply, or the time agreed to meet in real time using Zoom or Skype. This could be weekly or more frequently if you request this. As I will need some time to read your previous email I will need you to send in your email at least 48 hours before the date you have chosen.
In the event if a technological breakdown occurring we would discuss how to rearrange the scheduled appointment. Where a block of four appointments are purchased these are valid for a period of 2 months.
If you choose email exchange counselling, we can use encrypted email like www.hushmail.com which is free, encrypted and more secure. Or we can use password protected email attachments where I mail you the password separately.
I am not able to provide online counselling to any person who is under the age of 18. If this applies to you I can help with information on referral to other agencies providing face to face counselling services or online work which is specifically directed to a younger age group.
Zoom / Skype
If you choose webcam sessions, we can meet on Skype www.skype.com or Zoom but it is important to know that Microsoft cannot guarantee Skype 100% secure. An alternative, free and considered to be more secure video is available with Zoom. This is easier and you dont even need the program pre installed on your computer of phone. I would simply send you a link to click on and the video session installs and runs.
If we work together on Skype it can be by text or live session as you prefer. We will agree an appointment time for you and I will meet you on Skype at that time for 1 hour.
It's important to ensure you have sufficient privacy and safety when in Zoom or skype counselling or composing a counselling email so I would recommend you choose somewhere that you are unlikely to be disturbed or that others can view your screen while typing.
Similarly, I will respect your privacy where no one can see my computer screen, I am the sole user of it and it is password protected with up to date anti-virus and firewall protection.
I am a registered member of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) and I work to their Ethical Framework for Good Practice and am bound by their Code of Ethics and Practice, a copy of which can be made available or found on their website here. I am also subject to the BACP complaints procedure.
Confidentiality and records
The contents of the sessions are confidential between you and me. I will need to discuss our work with my supervisor as part of the BACP guidelines but I will not identify you by name when I discuss our work together. If we discover there is a need to communicate with other professionals, this will only proceed after I have sought your permission and knowledge of what may be discussed.
Online Therapy : What happens next?
- To speed things up please download the agreement and personal details forms on the right of this page, complete them and return them attached to an email. The CORE form is optional but helps track progress. You do not need to fill in the first part of the CORE form , just simply put a check mark in the answer that fits how you feel. Once you contact me by email, I will reply to you as soon as possible and usually within 24 hours. You can also simply email me to discuss your initial enquiry if you prefer.
- Depending on your preferred format for therapy i.e. email or skype we will arrange to meet at an agreed time on skype or agree a day for me to receive your first email and I will send the therapeutic reply within 48 hours on an agreed day, which ever you prefer. A counselling email can be as much as you wish to type for about an hour as though you were in a face to face counselling session. When I reply to you I will also work for 1 counselling hour. We can regularly check out how it is working for you and if you wish to continue.
- If you are happy to continue and I am able to offer you support through the format you have requested we will then agree on times for future weekly sessions.
- You can send e-mails on whatever day of the week suits you. I will send you a short e-mail to tell you I have received it. It would be helpful if you could also do this so we both know the technology is working. I will then respond to you with a full reply within 48 hours on a working week – Monday to Friday