Myrena Mercken UKCP (Reg’d), AFT, MSc Family and Systemic Psychotherapy

Myrena Mercken UKCP (Reg’d), AFT, MSc Family and Systemic Psychotherapy

6 Hollis Drive
Isle Of Wight
PO30 4AS

01983 740670 / +447543730606

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6 Hollis Drive
Isle Of Wight
PO30 4AS

01983 740670 / +447543730606

About me

Anyone can face challenges at any time or experience a sense of being stuck. As fully qualified, accredited and UKCP registered Family and Systemic Psychotherapist I assist individuals, couples or families to find ways to manage situations more efficiently. I undertake both brief (solution-focussed) and long-term work and draw on a range of approaches (including techniques of CBT, cognitive and behavioural therapy) and years of experience in therapeutic work, suitable to the clients’ needs and situation.

Your challenge may have come about through a specific event in your own life or that of a family member or person close to you. It may always have been with you or may have developed over time. You may feel stuck, on a long waiting list for additional support or just in need of some help at this moment in time. You or your family member may already have accessed other forms of help but not seen the benefits of it in your relationships.

The difficulties you or a family member are facing may relate to one of the wide range of issues I work with including anxiety and worry, adoption, separation from parents or children, depression, stress, mental health issues, relationship issues, identity problems, spirituality, faith, parenting issues, cultural issues, anger management.

Family Therapy offers opportunities to explore - in a safe, confidential and supported setting - a range of different situations that are close to your heart and affect your day to day life.

Whilst bringing my professional expertise, I recognise that clients have the best knowledge of their own situation. Respecting your particular needs and insights, I help families to mobilise their resources to tackle difficulties and find constructive ways to help each other in a way that fits the situation, the values and norms you hold as a couple or family. Where these clash, there is a way through.

Sometimes you may want some time to discuss issues that arise, on your own.

Family Therapy opens space for clients to move into conversations that are too difficult to have together. Clients tell me how this has enriched their relationships and brought about significant change for their family. For others it has opened opportunities to make difficult decisions and to move on.

Family Therapists draw on a wide variety of approaches according to the needs of their clients. Current Research evidences a solid basis for the efficiency of Family Therapy for both adult and child difficulties. Therapy is not restricted to a specific condition; research is showing that the benefits of Family Therapy reach beyond the problem clients seek help for and that there is continued improvement after the completion of Therapy. There is also good evidence to show that Family Therapy enhances the effectiveness of other intervention when combined together.

When I think of family or couple, I go beyond the stereotypical meaning of the words. ‘Family’ may include your grandchild, someone else's child you look after, an aunt, uncle or grandparent or close friend, or it may be the group of friends that are closest to you. Family can include all ages, or just be a group of all grown-ups. ‘Couple’ includes same sex partners.

The work I do can stand alone or be part of a wider plan, with or without other services involved.

Whatever your problem or situation is, it is never too small or big to attend to.

Training, qualifications & experience

MSc Family and Systemic Psychotherapy (University of Bedfordshire/Institute of Family Therapy London)
Accredited Triple P Practitioner (Positive Parenting Program)
Mellow Parenting/Incredible Years (Parenting Programs)
Language Acquisition made Practical (Delhi/Kathmandu)
Cross-cultural living and world religions (Hertfordshire)
Dip Social Work (Ghent, Belgium) - HCPC Registered
Post Qualification 1 Social Work (Bournemouth University)
Continued Professional development in different employment contexts

Registered UKCP (UK Council for Psychotherapists)

Full member of the Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Psychotherapy (AFT)

Enhanced DBS

In my practice I adhere to the ethical guidelines of the UKCP and the Association for Family and Systemic Psychotherapy. I remain keenly involved in Continued Professional Development and monthly Clinical Supervision.

My experience includes research, life and work in Asia, work with families with a wide variety of high levels of need and in crisis situations (including dependency on drugs and alcohol), support with parenting and emotional self-regulation relating to anger, anxiety and depression.

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited


Accredited register membership

Other areas of counselling I deal with

I work with a wide variety of presenting issues that have an impact on
relationships between people, in particular within couple relationships or families.
Please contact me, also if what you want to talk about does not necessarily fit what is listed above. You do not need a diagnosis to be seen.

Family Therapy allows for different approaches to be drawn from, depending on the
need of the client and what is best fitting for those attending.


Initial contacts free, free parking

£30 Initial assessment (up to 90 minutes)

Subsequent sessions

35£ for 1:1 session (one hour)

£45 Couples counselling (one hour)

£50 Family Counselling (one hour)

Prices are guidelines and can be discussed depending on your situation and needs. Concessions may be available for unemployed or those on income benefit.

Face to face session fees are payable at the end of each session. I offer a 20 min free phone consultation. Planned sessions by phone are payable in advance.

I am happy to provide a receipt.

If I am not available by phone, please leave a message and I will reply as quickly as possible.

Further information

here are a few questions about Family Therapy that arose out of other's curiosity. If you want to know more or have very different questions, feel free to contact me for further information.

Who can attend?

Families (I use this word in the widest possible meaning, including any variation to the stereotypical mother-father-children setting, it can also include significant others)

Sometimes it may be useful to only see the parents or one family member for a few sessions.

What happens in the first session?
When you come for a first session, I will most likely already have spoken with one person in the family and I will be most interested to hear everybody's ideas about attending the session, what you would hope happens and what you hope to achieve. There will also be some 'housekeeping tasks' like taking some details, explaining about confidentiality and answering any questions you may have. A first session takes usually an hour and a half.

This first session experience, may help you to decide whether this the kind of support suitable to you.

How often would I attend a session?
In Family Therapy, sessions are usually at two or three week intervals. However there are no rigid rules and sometimes it is useful to have weekly sessions, it depends on your situation and how you yourself think about it. We may start off weekly and increase time in between appointments up to three weeks. When we are nearing the end of our work together appointments would be spread further apart. Some clients like to return for a review several months later. Even one session can be beneficial.

How long does Family Therapy take?

Family Therapy can be useful in 6-10 sessions with a midway review, depending on the presenting problems. You may benefit from fewer session and on the other hand some families or part of the family may want to attend more sessions. For some longer term engagement may be beneficial. However, how long the work goes on for will be part of our conversation so that it is fitting for you and your situation.

The Association for Family and Systemic Psychotherapy (AFT, of which I am a member) has published 'What is Family Therapy', which you may want to have a look at. Whilst on the mainland Family Counselling or Therapy are well integrated in Health, Social Care and the Voluntary Sector, I hold the hope to see this evolve on the Island as well. In the meantime I am independently available but keen to work in partnership with services.

Maps & Directions

Newport, PO30 4AS

Type of session

Online counselling: No
Telephone counselling: Yes
Face to face counselling: Yes

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: English, Flemish (Dutch) and Nepali


Appointments Monday-Friday 8am-9pm, Saturdays 9am-12noon. Whilst I see clients mainly at my home, home visits across the Island are also an option

Types of client

Young people
Older adults
Employee Assistance Programme