Counselling is known to help. It helps people who are dealing with the death of someone they love. And someone they had very mixed feelings about. It helps when your relationships are all over the place. It helps when you are want to explore your gender identity or when there are conflicts between your sexuality and your faith. It helps when you can’t face work, or leaving the house. It helps when you find it horribly hard adjusting to being a parent. It helps when your children have all left and you are not quite sure who you are any more. It helps when you face the challenge of retirement or redundancy. It helps when you live with chronic illness or when you or someone you love is diagnosed with a life changing or life threatening condition.
But how do you find a counsellor?
- Ask around. These days more and more people have been to counselling themselves and they may be willing to give you the contact details of someone they worked with.
- Try contacting charities. I’ve been a counsellor with Age UK and with the LGBT foundation. Both offer counselling that is free and time limited. So do many other charities. Counselling trainees often work for charities as do fully qualified counsellors. You should be told if your counsellor is a trainee or not.
- Local shops and newsagents sometimes display posters with details of counsellors who practice locally.
- Probably the easiest thing to do though is to search online. There are several directories of counsellors including that of my own professional organisation the BACP.
- IMPORTANT! It is advisable to make sure that the counsellor you choose is registered by one of the counselling organisations which means they follow an ethical code and abide by a complaints procedure. The organisations also ensure they are qualified to practice. You can check registration using this NHS site.
If you think counselling will help you – then take that first step and start finding someone who works with the things you want to look at. Someone who you can travel to or who can travel to you. Or even someone who will provide counselling online. Find someone you can afford or someone free. Make sure they are a registered practitioner. And then get in touch. It could really make a huge and very positive difference to your life. Just call.