Charlotte Dunsby-Ferguson || Counselling CBT MBACP
07989 055 639
Most of us go through periods when life seems to lose its meaning or purpose. Memories from the past, painful events in the present, and worries about the future can all make it difficult to cope with everyday life. You’ll find that talking things through with someone who’s been trained to listen and support can leave you less confused and better able to make the changes you need to improve your life.
Counselling provides a safe and regular space for you to talk and explore difficult feelings. As a counsellor I am there to support you and respect your views. I won’t give advice, but I will help you find your own insights and understanding of your problems. Counselling can often involve talking about difficult or painful feelings and, as you begin to face them, you may feel many different emotions. However with help and support, you should gradually start to feel better.
When do I come and how often?
Sessions are scheduled for the same day and time once a week.
In the beginning you might want to come more than once a week - this can be discussed in your consultation.
Sessions are usually 50 minutes long.
What kind of problems can I talk to you about?
There are no hard and fast rules. There are, however, a number of issues that frequently come up, for example:
Relationship difficulties: family and friends, colleagues, commitment, jealousy, abuse
Family issues: partners, children, parenting, separation and divorce, homesickness
Lack of confidence: worried about failing, never being good enough, feeling judged
Depression: feeling isolated, lonely, empty, tearful, unloved, suicidal
Repeated destructive behaviour: binge eating, harming oneself, abusive relationships, alcohol, drugs
Work/study stress: lack of control, panic attacks, feelings of inadequacy
Bereavement: loss, anger, loneliness, sadness, depression
What do I say?
It doesn't really matter how you present your problem. You can say whatever you like.
Sometimes there is silence; sometimes you might find yourself saying things you had not expected to say.
I will help you explore the matter and will keep referring to you to clarify my understanding.
The sessions are long enough for you to return to the different areas until you are happy that you have expressed what you are really feeling.
How many sessions do I need?
There is no single answer to this question.
Ideally, counselling ends when the problem that you pursued counselling for becomes more manageable or is resolved. During the first few counselling sessions we will discuss the length of treatment that may be needed to achieve your goals and to begin to feel better.
Therapy can bring up unexpected and unresolved memories or feelings, so we will discuss length of treatment along the way.
Will you give me advice?
Counsellors don't ever give advice. The purpose of counselling is to help you make your own decisions.
I will never make a moral decision about the course of action you ought to take, although I might sum up what I understand you have been saying so far in order to help you move on and form a plan of action.
I can offer pointers to how others have successfully dealt with common problems and may also make suggestions. These suggestions will be drawn from my training in what is helpful and my experience of what has helped others in the past, and of course can be rejected if you feel they are unhelpful.
Doesn't having counselling mean that I am admitting failure?
Paradoxically, it can be seen as an indication of strength to ask for counselling.
Many people think that they are being strong in not seeking help whereas in fact those who can admit to their difficulties could be considered the strong ones.
Asking for counselling often means you have taken the first difficult step on the road to resolving the problem.
Does counselling work for everybody, all of the time?
No, but it does offer some help to the majority so it's definitely worth a try.
I will check out with you to see if talking is helpful – and if not will help you look for something else.
What about talking to friends or family?
Many of the reasons that make counselling effective also apply to talking with friends. A talk with a friend may well be helpful and counsellors often encourage clients to use their social support network. However there are some drawbacks to using friends as your only confidants and support.
- Friends might feel a conflict of loyalty and find it hard to keep things confidential
- Friends might become upset themselves by what you are telling them
- Friends might be put out if you don't accept their advice
- If you need lots of help, friends might begin to feel resentful and you might feel guilty
Counsellors have had professional training in helping others. They also have formal support and a work structure which helps them deal with upsetting and difficult situations; friends may begin to feel overburdened, especially if they have their own problems too.
Finally, sometimes we need slightly more specialist help than friends can provide.
Is counselling psychiatry?
Counselling bears little relation to psychiatry except that both deal with emotional and mental processes.
Psychiatrists are trained doctors who work largely through diagnosis of illness and then by prescribing a treatment, usually involving medication.
Training, qualifications & experience
My Integrative practice and training incorporates client-centered counselling, multi-modal CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) and psychodynamic theory which considers conscious and unconscious processes along with early life experiences.
No two people are the same, and therefore using an integrative approach enables me to be flexible with the client and their individual therapeutic journey.
Following 4 years of advanced study I qualified as a Counsellor and Psychotherapist and gained a further qualification in CBT. I am committed to continued learning in this area and I am completing ongoing post-graduate training. I have several years of experience working as a counsellor within an NHS referral service. I have also worked with Victim Support, offering emotional support to those affected by crime. I have professional development training in attachment theory, FGM, working with children of borderline personalities, pornography addiction OCD and varions other areas - I regularly add to my training.
I am a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), who ensure that all members are sufficiently trained and work within an ethical framework.
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Antisocial personality disorder
- Avoidant personality disorder
- Borderline personality disorder
- Carer support
- Child related issues
- Dependent personality disorder
- Domestic violence
- Eating disorders
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Gender dysphoria
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Histrionic personality disorder
- Internet addiction
- Learning difficulties
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Narcissistic personality disorder
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder
- Passive aggressive behaviour
- Personality disorders
Day-time sessions: from £40
Early morning/evening sessions: from £50
Some concessions and low-cost places available - please feel free to get in touch.
I can offer a free initial session which will provide you with the opportunity to establish how we will work together and ask any questions. During that first session, we can discuss your goals and expectations, how therapy works and my policy on cancellations, appointment times, confidentiality and fees.
I work holistically, which means that I look at emotional issues as parts of a greater whole, and regard the mind, body and spirit as fundamentally interconnected.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
Wednesday and Friday 8am - 7pm - Please check for availability
Types of client
|Employee Assistance Programme|