Hello, I’m Darren. I'm a Counsellor/Psychotherapist experienced in many areas, including:
Stress, anxiety, panic and phobias, family and relationship issues, sadness and depression.
I offer concessions, face-to-face and telephone/online sessions.
Whether or not you've had counselling before, it can be daunting trying to choose a therapist to work with, and then taking those first steps to meet your new therapist.
I want to help make the journey as easy as possible for you. That's why I offer a free informal consultation, which can happen over the phone or online, to help you decide if you'd like to work with me.
We can then begin face-to-face sessions at my practice in central Hove, as often and for as long as you like (most people come for an hour of therapy per week, for as long as feels right to them). Our sessions can be open-ended, or limited in number if that's what you prefer.
There are other options for you if my clinic in Hove isn't convenient. I can offer locations elsewhere in the city (and across East and Mid Sussex) for people who are seeking regular, long-term therapy. Sometimes I travel to people's homes or other locations, if that feels right for them. I'm glad to offer telephone sessions and online sessions if you live further away, if you have accessibility needs, or if you travel away often (for example). All these options are flexible.
Whichever way we work together, the relationship we build will be an important bedrock for the therapy. I hope that you'll find me to be warm, engaged, and genuinely committed to finding solutions that are helpful to you.
I will always aim to:
- Respect your wishes and work in a way that most suits you
- Respect your privacy (confidentiality) at all times
- Work safely and professionally
In my experience, most people come to counselling holding an intention – a hope – for what they want to achieve through therapy.
Sometimes this is very clear. Sometimes it is a vague feeling.
The first step in counselling, can be to help understand what it is you wish to achieve.
What are your 'counselling intentions?'
What change do you want to bring about for yourself?
That's a conversation I'd love to have with you...
Areas of counselling that I'm experienced in include:
- Anxiety and Generalised Anxiety Disorder
- Relationship issues (including affairs and betrayals, separation and divorce)
- Family issues (including difficulties with relatives, children and parents)
- Panic, panic attacks and Panic Disorder
- Depression and feelings of sadness (including Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and 'Winter Blues')
- Fear and Phobias
- Trauma and Abuse, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Self-image and low self-confidence / low self-esteem
- Body image (including Dysmorphia / Body Dysmorphic Disorder, and Gender Dysphoria)
- Eating Disorders (including Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge-Eating Disorder), with awareness of eating disorders in men
- Suicide, suicidal thinking and self-harm / self-injury (cutting etc.)
- Drugs and alcohol / alcoholism, substance abuse / substance misuse and addiction
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans / Transgender and Queer (LGBT/LGBTQ) Affirmative Practice
- Gender, Sexuality and Relationships Diversity (GSRD) including kink, poly / polyamory, BDSM etc.
- Autism / High-functioning Autism (HFA), Asperger Syndrome (AS) and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs)
- Teenagers and young people (including bullying, peer pressure, life goals, internet addiction, behaviour problems)
- Loneliness and isolation (including their impact on older people and disabled people)
Training, qualifications & experience
MA (Cult. Stud.), Dip. Int. Hum. Couns. (Accred.), MBACP (reg.)
I am proud to have gained my professional Counselling qualifications through the Wealden Institute’s renowned Diploma in Integrative Humanistic Counselling. This is a high-level (level 7) BACP-Accredited course, with an excellent reputation for the quality of its graduates.
My core models of counselling are Roger's Person-Centred Counselling, Gestalt therapy and Transactional Analysis (TA). I also draw on the work of Egan, Erikson, Clarkson and Bowlby (amongst others). My training places emphasis on the strength of the relationship - the 'working alliance' - between counsellor and client. It is Integrative and Humanistic.
'Humanistic' means I that I value your unique human potential, putting your own needs at the heart of the therapy we do. 'Integrative' means that I am trained in a range of complimentary techniques, and can draw on these to best meet your own particular circumstances.
I also hold an MA in Cultural Studies from Goldsmiths College (University of London), where I read subjects including Gender Studies, Existentialism and classical Psychoanalysis.
I have gained my counselling experience in a range of settings, working with a broad range of clients from diverse backgrounds.
I have worked with an internationally recognized charity, providing specialist counselling for children and young people under contract to the NHS.
I also trained in placement with two different organizations that work with LGBTQ mental health and wellbeing.
I have a background in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD's) in education.
Alongside my private practice I currently work as Counselling Administrator for a busy charity. I also volunteer providing therapy to clients who could not otherwise access counselling.
I have professional experience and/or additional training (CPD) in the following areas:
- Suicide awareness and prevention
- Asperger Syndrome and Autism Spectrum Disorders
- Trans mental health and wellbeing
- Children and young people
- Cultural Awareness (Race, Ethnicity and 'cultural competency')
- Gender, Sexual and Relationship Diversity (GSRD)
- Telephone and Online counselling
- Privacy and data protection
- Safeguarding issues
- Hearing Voices (auditory hallucination)
- Working safely with clients who've experienced trauma and abuse
- Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and 'winter blues'
- Eating Disorders, including eating disorders in men
- Animal-Assisted Therapy
- TA-101 (Transactional Analysis)
I am a Registered Member of the BACP (British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy), the leading professional body for counsellors in the UK. My being a member of the Register means that you can be sure I work to the highest standards of training, supervision and professional diligence.
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy
BACP is one of the UK’s largest professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy. Therapists registered with the Association fall into a number of different membership categories such as Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP and Registered Member MBACP (Accred), each standing for different levels of training and experience. MBACP (Accred) and MBACP (Snr Accred) members have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by the Association.
Registered members can be found on the BACP Register, which was the first register to achieve Accredited Voluntary Register status issued by the Professional Standards Authority. Individual Members will have completed an appropriate counselling and/or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but will not appear on the BACP Register until they've progressed to Registered Member MBACP status.
All members are bound by a Code of Ethics & Practice and a Complaints Procedure. Accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.
Accredited register membership
Accredited Register Scheme
The Accredited Register Scheme was set up in 2013 by the Department of Health (DoH) as a way to recognise organisations that hold voluntary registers which meet certain standards. These standards are set by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
This therapist has indicated that they belong to an Accredited Register.
Areas of counselling I deal with
Standard fee is £45 per counselling session (50mins).
Concessions are £30 per counselling session (50mins), subject to availability. I aim to offer at least one regular Concession rate at any time, to clients on a low income. Students are welcome to enquire.
I can offer you a free informal consultation online or by telephone, which can help you decide whether to work with me. If you’d prefer we can meet in person for a consultation, which I charge for at my standard or concessionary rate.