Sarah McWhirter, MBACP (Accred), BSc (Hons), BA (Hons)
Welcome: Set backs, unforeseen problems and certain events in life such as difficulties with relationships, loss and bereavement, anxiety and depression can affect many of us, often occurring at times when we are least expecting it. When left unresolved our sense of well-being, happiness and health can be adversely affected both in the short and longer term.
Experience has shown me that some people can suffer for many years from the often debilitating effects of anxiety, depression, loss and bereavement, together with difficulties with relationships; issues which could all benefit from gentle exploration with a well qualified professional, as a means of finding resolution, peace, and a more positive way forward in life.
I am a well-trained, empathic and experienced counsellor working in private practice in Hampshire. Someone who can help you to have a greater understanding of the areas in your life that are troubling you, to come to terms with and overcome certain difficulties, and can help you to find a degree of clarity. Working together, I can enable you to find a more positive way through a challenging and difficult period in your life.
I practice from a welcoming studio in a tranquil setting just outside Alresford, offering a confidential, discreet and safe space from which to work with clients. My areas of expertise focus on clients experiencing loss & bereavement, depression, anxiety, difficulties with relationships & marital breakdown, and the after effects of separation and divorce. I also work with clients suffering from a range of eating disorders, those suffering from long-term illness, and those who need to find some form of direction and re-orientation in their lives. I also offer Couples Counselling where appropriate.
My practice also includes work with young people & I have considerable experience with younger clients experiencing problems relating to low self-esteem, depression and anxiety-related issues. This includes younger people with eating disorders, those that self-harm, and those considering drug abuse. In addition, I also offer a safe and confidential place for younger clients to talk about difficulties with relationships both within and outside the home.
With many years' previous experience in the commercial sector, I have also worked with clients experiencing problems within the work-place, with their careers, and for people coming to terms with empty nesting and retirement.
How I practice:
I work 'Integratively' & 'Reflectively', which means giving very careful consideration to the therapeutic approach best suited to each client, while involving the client in this process. I place considerable importance on the strength of the relationship between the client and counsellor, as this in itself can be very therapeutic and healing.
I can offer short-term counselling, 6-12 sessions, for clients wishing to address and work on a particular goal or difficulty, and mid to longer-term counselling and psychotherapy where a range of deeper, more complex issues can be explored and resolved.
Having also trained extensively in CBT, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, I offer CBT where appropriate, finding it particularly successful in helping to achieve specific shorter-term objectives. I also draw on Transactional Analysis, TA, and Person-Centred Counselling and Psychotherapy, together with a range of creative tools which I believe can greatly assist the therapeutic process.
My objective is to enable each client to achieve a sense of release from the problem or range of issues being addressed, while at the same time helping the client to gain a sense of greater personal understanding, with the objective of providing achievable and and sustainable well-being in the longer-term.
Training, qualifications & experience
BSc [Hons] in Reflective Therapeutic Practice [First], Metanoia Institute, London
Accredited Diploma in Integrative Counselling, University of Southampton,
Certificate of Higher Education in Counselling, University of Southampton,
Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Skills,
Transactional Analysis 101 Certificate,
Certificate in Couples Counselling
Short Course in Working with Eating Disorders
Developing Skills in Couple Work, International Summer School, Tavistock Institute
CBT 4th Level, Assessment of Competency covering 4 levels of CBT skills,
CBT 3rd Level, working with Fractured Relationships,
CBT 2nd Level, working with issues around Food, Loss and Trauma,
CBT Core Skills,
For the past 7 years I have been involved with a voluntary counselling agency in Winchester offering counselling across a range of areas such as bereavement, loss, difficulties with relationships, divorce, depression, anxiety & mental health issues. I have also worked within a large University Counselling Service offering shorter-term counselling to students and members of staff.
BA [Hons] French & Politics, University of Reading, fluent French speaker.
Accredited register membership
Areas of counselling I deal with
- Affairs and betrayals
- Anger management
- Anorexia nervosa
- Antisocial personality disorder
- Avoidant personality disorder
- Binge-eating disorder
- Bipolar disorder/Manic depression
- Bulimia nervosa
- Carer support
- Child related issues
- Chronic fatigue syndrome/ME
- Drug abuse
- Eating disorders
- Emotional abuse
- Family issues
- Generalised anxiety disorder
- Low self-confidence
- Low self-esteem
- Narcissistic personality disorder
- Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder
- Panic disorder
Other areas of counselling I deal with
Younger adults suffering a lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem.
Couples with difficulties in communication and strains in their relationship
French speaking clients
- Cognitive and behavioural therapies
- Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
- Couples counselling
- Existential therapy
- Humanistic therapies
I am able to offer one reduced cost Initial Consultation at a cost of £40
In this way you will be able to find out if you would like to begin working with me and you can also ensure that my skills and experience match your particular needs.
Individuals: each subsequent 50 minute Consultation : £50
Couples: each subsequent 50 minute Consultation : £60
I can offer a reduction for students and other concessions where appropriate.
I adhere closely to the terms of the BACP Ethical Framework at all times
My counselling rooms are situated 2 miles South of Alresford. Free parking is always available. Disabled access can be provided.
I will always try to contact you within 24 hours of your e-mail or phone call.
For further directions please contact me via e-mail or by telephone using the contact details as given above.
I hold an enhanced CRB certificate.
Maps & Directions
Type of session
|Face to face counselling:||Yes|
Day-time appointments and some evening appointments.
Types of client