Catherine Bechirian M.A. (HCPC and BAAT Registered)
I am an HCPC and BAAT registered Art Psychotherapist with over 15 years experience. I have worked with patients individually and in groups for NHS mental Health Services, Prison and Probation Services, in Education, Fostering Services and for various charities.
Currently in private practice I continue to support people with a wide range of needs and diagnoses, working with adults (including older adults), and young people. I can offer short-term work, as well as open ended psychotherapy.
My way of working is always informed by my initial training as a psychodynamic art psychotherapist, and by what we decide together would be best for your specific needs. I aim to have an integrative, adaptable and empathic approach, using a variety of therapeutic perspectives based on my further training and research, including CBT, Transactional Analysis, Mentalisation, Attachment Theories, Psychoanalysis, Mindfulness and mind/body integration, Positive Psychology and so on.
Each person brings to therapy their own unique story. You may want to explore feelings of stress, anxiety or depression, low self worth or anger. You may have experienced trauma, relationship problems, or loss, and would like to talk and understand the effects of these experiences better, perhaps working towards a change in your way of coping and reacting. Or you might be experiencing uncomfortable feelings or thoughts, or meaninglessness, or even despair, in your life but don’t know why.
At present many people are having an ongoing struggle with the psychological impact of the pandemic. There may also now be anxieties about reintegrating. Or you might have been dealing with other problems or issues on your own for a very long time, but haven't been able to utilise your usual distractions or coping strategies, because of recent restrictions.
In sessions I aim to offer a safe space where it's possible to be heard, and with support to explore and work through anything that is causing you distress or confusion.
As a member of the HCPC and BAAT I abide by their ethical principles and code of conduct. I have regular supervision to ensure that I work in a way that is safe, and that will benefit my clients.
I am DBS checked, and am fully insured for private practice.
Why use art?
We can't always find the right words to express something we feel or think, or remember, especially where memories are stored as images, or are pre-verbal.
Making art is another way of communicating, and can help us express, or understand better what might be difficult to put into words, giving us a link to the unconscious mind. Sometimes the process of making an image or object and observing it can be enough in itself, and we don't need to talk about it. Sometimes it helps us find what it is we do want to talk or think about, if we can't quite access it.
It isn’t about being 'good at art', or about your skill being judged, or about a therapist analysing your images.
Sometimes people just would rather talk in the sessions, which, of course, is also fine!
Training, qualifications & experience
Relevant Training qualifications and experience
- MA Art Psychotherapy
- CPD: Continuous further training, which has included bereavement counselling; mindfulness ;mentalisation; brief work; online work; working with depression, stress and anxiety; attachment theories and relationships; eating disorders; post partum depression; working with trauma and PTSD; guilt and shame; as well as conferences and research in specific areas of interest, and relating to issues and specific needs of clients. CPD is a condition of my professional membership of HCPC and BAAT, and is necessary in order to work safely and effectively.
- Experience. I've been working in private practice for around ten years after gaining experience seeing clients through charities, the NHS, Prison and Probation services, in Education services working with children, young people and families, for Fostering services working with families and Social Services, with older adults with age related concerns and/or dementia. In my private practice I have worked with people with a wide range of issues. I have a particular interest and experience in working with the effects of early and/or current trauma (including abuse), complex trauma, PTSD, eating disorders and addictive behaviours, selective mutism, anger, relationship issues, loss, depression and anxiety disorders. Through the pandemic I've been working with adults online, many of whom are experiencing stress, anxiety depression and a loss of, or altered meaning to their lives.
Registered / Accredited
Being registered/accredited with a professional body means an individual must have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by their member organisation.
Health and Care Professions Council
The HCPC are an independent, UK-wide health regulator. They set standards of professional training, performance and conduct for 16 professions.
They keep a register of health professionals who meet their standards, and they take action if registered health professionals fall below those standards. They were created by a piece of legislation called the Health Professions Order 2001.
Registration means that a health professional meets national standards for their professional training, performance and conduct.
Areas of counselling I deal with
Other areas of counselling I deal with
Loss, which can be associated with life transitions such as divorce, separation from loved ones, or retirement. Or a change of personal circumstances such as moving location, changing jobs. Or a loss of something we feel we never had, leaving us feeling bereft and empty, but not knowing why.
From £55.00 to £75.00
Free initial telephone session
Concessions offered for
Fees for 50 minute sessions are £55 - £75, depending on the session location, and upon your circumstances.
Some concessions will be considered. Please feel free to email me if you would like to discuss this.
Free initial telephone consultation, lasting twenty minutes.
I'm currently offering sessions online, or by phone, not face to face.
I offer sessions on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
Please contact me for available session times.
If you'd like to find out more, please email me and we can arrange a free 20 minute consultation, during which we can discuss what brings you to therapy now, you can ask me questions, and we can both get an idea of whether I'm the right therapist for you - whether I can help you and if you feel comfortable talking to me.