"I do find it therapeutic, writing about stuff that was frightening and painful as a child, and managing to see it from an adult's point of view. To get it out of the closet, on to paper... is therapeutic.” Julie Walters
Online counselling is a way of obtaining help from a professional counsellor without leaving your home. It is convenient and flexible in terms of time and location. Counselling sessions take place in writing via email exchanges. (I also offer sessions via Skype). Online counselling/psychotherapy can work either short-term or in an open-ended way, i.e. longer term.
Email counselling can offer you many advantages:
- allows you to write an email in the privacy of your own home or in a safe and quiet private space of your choice
- works very well for most issues either in a short-term exchange or for longer-term work
- it can be a one-off exchange to explore a particular issue or a series of emails to get deeper level of understanding of yourself
- it can give you time to think what you wish to convey and reflect on your feelings and experiences
- writing thoughts and feelings down and being able to reflect on them can be very therapeutic
- time-saving, as there are no geographical restrictions or travelling time
- you can engage in sessions at any time and anywhere suitable for you therapeutically
- online counselling is an effective, confidential and convenient alternative to face to face (f2f) sessions
- allows time to reflect on therapeutic response
- you have a written record of email sessions, which you could refer to whenever you need to
- writing can help release some painful thoughts and emotions simply through putting things down on paper. It can be really healing and even cathartic
- it can feel really supportive to know that someone is going to spend time reading and responding to your thoughts and feelings
- offers a safe and trusting space to express yourself without having to engage in face-to-face interaction or commit to travel time
In my Email counselling sessions I will provide you with:
- a safe virtual place where you can express and I can listen
- acknowledgement and reassurance of your thoughts, feelings and experiences
- empathy, support and unconditional regard
- validation, understanding and insight
- just as in my face-to-face sessions I work with the whole person rather than symptoms in isolation. Your well-being is my main priority. Please visit the rest of my website for more information on how I work.
How Email Counselling Works
Once we agree to work together email exchange takes place with one email a week equivalent to a weekly session:
- you write and send your email to me in your own time and I will respond within a certain time period (agreed between us) and let you know when to expect an email from me
- I will spend at least one hour on my therapeutic response. This time period can be an indicator of how long your email to me should be. Think of it as a real session that lasts for 50 mins.
- I will send my therapeutic emails via an encrypted email account such as Hushmail to ensure your privacy remains intact. This is downloadable at www.hushmail.com should you wish to choose this form of contact. If you choose to use Hushmail as well, there is an extra level of security.
As with face-to-face counselling, it is important to have an email counselling agreement. This sets out what you can expect from email counselling and from me as your therapist. It also specifies what I expect from you as a client. Please read it carefully and include any questions you might have in your initial enquiry.
This is usually one therapeutic e-mail per week to start with unless we mutually agree to a longer period between e-mails. We may agree from the outset to work together for a number of sessions. I usually recommend committing to a minimum of 6 exchanges to start seeing improvements, however, it could be sooner or later. There is no way of saying for certain how long you might need support.
I will briefly respond to your e-mail to let you know I have received it and it would be helpful for me if you could also let me know when you have received my therapeutic response.
You may send an e-mail on any day of the week or you may wish to send it on a particular day. I ask however that you allow 72 hours (3 days) before receiving a therapeutic reply from me. I will let you know if this is not possible.
Each therapeutic e-mail from me will be sent as a word document in an attachment via an encrypted email programme. I will label my responses as Email1, Email2, etc. You may send me your e-mails as an attachment or in the main body of your e-mail.
I will spend at least one hour reading your e-mail and writing a therapeutic response. Use this time as an indication of a length of your emails sent to me, i.e. how much to write.
If I do not hear from you within 7 days of sending my response (unless we agree that e-mail transactions should be further apart) I shall send a brief prompt. If I do not hear from you again I will assume you feel that our counselling work is complete for now and that you do not wish to continue.
Payments for our email sessions are to be made via Paypal to the following email address [email protected] before you send me your weekly email. Fee £40.00 per email session
If for any reason I cannot send you an e-mail due to technical problems or ill health, I will send you a text message to let you know and we can make an alternative arrangement.
Similarly, if you experience any technical difficulties or illness please get in touch as soon as possible to let me know. My number is 07710490239 and can be found on this website.
Online sessions are bound by the same code of ethics as f2f counselling in that both parties agree to keep the details discussed within a session confidential. It is not permitted to share any personal or session-related material with third parties. As an ethical counsellor I do attend supervision in order that I can give the best possible service to you. However this again is totally confidential and any details discussed would be anonymous.
Online therapy is not for everyone and if at any time I feel that I am not able to provide you with the level of support you require (such as if I feel your mental health conditions change or a presentation is out of my area of expertise) I have the right to discontinue our work together. This would be done with your own best interests at heart and discussed with you. In such cases I will help you find alternative support where possible.
Please note that I will not be available for emergency contact and, therefore, I highly recommend you get in touch with your GP or nearest emergency services A&E in your area if at any time you find yourself in a major crisis and were considering serious self harm. Should this happen it would be vital to get immediate help without delay! You could also call the Samaritans on 0345909090 or email [email protected]
If you would like to enquire about email counselling sessions, please contact me via email or mobile number provided on this website. I look forward to connecting with you!