Elaine M. Spencer

Verified Professional Verified Professional
Verified Professional

Every professional displayed on Counselling Directory has been independently verified by our team to ensure they have suitable credentials to practise.

(MBACP) Individuals, Couples & Children/Families
Available for new clients
Available for new clients

This professional is available for new clients.

Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4
Available for new clients
Available for new clients

This professional is available for new clients.

About me

Welcome. With 20 years’ experience as an Integrative Psychotherapist, and specializing in attachment needs (relationships), human development and trauma, I offer warmth and understanding for you to explore yourself and your relationships.

What Benefits Can You Expect:

  • A reduction in distress; anxiety, tearfulness, anger, worry. In my experience, this can happen quite quickly, and then changes to our way of being can be addressed to prevent a relapse.
  • Understanding of ourselves and the root cause of our distress or unwanted patterns. Again, this is one of the first things achieved, providing a platform for further changes.
  • A reduction in unwanted or negative behaviour patterns.
  • A new relationship with ourselves, with our emotions and our thought processes.
  • Improved expression of our true self and our feelings.
  • Better relationships and the development of safe attachments with those around us.
  • Clearer and more successful communication.
  • Stronger and healthier boundaries.
  • Improvements in self-care.
  • And much more...


My approach to therapy is supported by my own personal development, which I have engaged in since my late teens. My passionate approach to my own development enables me to approach my work with integrity, flexibility and resilience.

Having studied extensively throughout my adult life in the human sciences, I offer an in-depth understanding of our developmental and relational needs. All my training in counselling and psychotherapy fall under the umbrella of Humanistic philosophy. As an Integrative Psychotherapist, I work using a developmental-relational approach that brings together Humanistic Psychology, child development and Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (an approach based upon attachment theory for work with children and their caregivers). I have also specialized in trauma and its effects, and use the trauma therapeutic model where appropriate.

Working in this way enables an understanding of how past experiences shape how we are today, while also focusing on here and now experiencing. The relationship that I offer is key and I strive to provide a space for you that is warm and safe. As a trusting relationship develops between us, we can explore together issues that may previously have prevented you from finding more fulfilling ways of relating with yourself and others. I am available to you with no preconceptions, judgments or agenda. The foundation of my rationale in practice, incorporates the core conditions as a way of being – acceptance, empathy, positive regard and congruence.

The rationale for my work evolves from the understanding that we are all relational beings with attachment needs throughout life. Our development throughout childhood depends on our attachment needs being met. Patterns of relating to ourselves and others, are set in our formative years, but will evolve in healthy ways given the right environment and with new understandings.


I am a registered provider of therapeutic services for Adoption: children/families provided through the Adoption Support Fund, Adoption East Midlands. I work using Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy, attachment theory inspired therapy created by Dan Hughes, and Theraplay techniques.

Who I Work With:

I work with individuals, couples, and children with their families/careivers.

How We Begin:

The relationship between us during our work together is the foundation of the work that we do, and as such, it is vital that you feel comfortable with me before we begin. We begin with a mutual assessment session where you have an opportunity to see whether you feel that I am the right therapist for you, and I feel that I have something to offer. During this session, if we decide to do so, we make a contract that is based on your needs and what you want to achieve. We may contract for shorter or longer term work.

Why Come For Therapy:

Individuals come to see me for a variety of reasons. Some people simply find that their lives are not going the way they want and need some time to take stock and review. Others are experiencing difficulties due to a recent event that is hard to process, or have historical events such as a loss, childhood trauma or sexual abuse.

People who have experienced sexual violence may find that the trauma has led to dissociation and/or PTSD, and the trauma model will safely set the pace of the process.

With couples and families, attachment theory will be at the heart of our work. We all have attachment needs throughout our lives, and relationship problems are both understandable and resolvable in this light.

Children brought to see me by their caregivers, may have suffered some sort of separation, loss or another trauma. Alternatively, they may be experiencing unexplained anxiety or behavioural difficulty. Working with the family enables the caregivers to gain understandings and skills to help their child between sessions.

What Therapy Offers:

My aim is to promote self-awareness, an improved relationship with yourself, and with others. Self-awareness is developed through the opportunity of being with yourself during sessions. Sometimes I may provide developmental, emotional, physiological, trauma or attachment theory information to achieve this goal and/or to normalize experiences.

It provides a warm, friendly and safe place for you to resolve traumatic experiences, overcome your difficulties and move forwards.

Training, qualifications & experience


Throughout my career, I have worked in private practice.

For more than 10 years I worked for Nottinghamshire post adoption social services team.

Adoption family therapy contracted through East Midlands Adoption and funded by the Adoption Support fund

For over 6 years I have worked with SV2 (formally rape crisis Derbyshire)

Also, for over 5 years, I worked for Derwent Rural Counselling Service, providing IAPT short term counselling.


BA Hons Sociology

Postgraduate Diploma Humanistic Person-Centred Psychotherapy

Certificate Counselling issues with Young People

Dan Hughes – Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy – Levels 1, 2 & 3.

Dan Hughes - Brain Bases Parenting: From Mistrust to Trust.

Theraplay – Levels Introductory & Intermediate, Theraplay in Adoption & Theraplay & Teens

Positive Outcomes for Dissociation – Trauma & The Body: Somatisation & Dissociation. Relational Trauma. Trauma, Dissociation & Recovery. Child Sexual Abuse: Hope for Healing. Trauma, Dissociation & Abuse Masterclass

Certificate Solution Focused Youth Counselling

Safeguarding training attended bi-annually

I am a registered member of the BACP and adhere to their code of ethics and professional practice standards. I am fully insured and hold enhanced DBS certificate.

Member organisations

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP)

BACP is one of the UK’s leading professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy with around 60,000 members. The Association has several different categories of membership, including Student Member, Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP, Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Accred) and Senior Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Snr Acccred).

Registered and accredited members are listed on the BACP Register, which shows that they have demonstrated BACP’s recommended standards for training, proficiency and ethical practice. The BACP Register was the first register of psychological therapists to be accredited by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).

Accredited and senior accredited membership are voluntary categories for members who choose to undertake a rigorous application and assessment process to demonstrate additional standards around practice, training and supervision.

Individual members will have completed an appropriate counselling or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but they won’t appear on the BACP Register until they've demonstrated that they meet the standards for registration. Student members are still in the process of completing their training.

All members are bound by the BACP Ethical Framework and a Professional Conduct Procedure.

Accredited register membership

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy
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.

British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

Other areas of counselling I deal with



Additional information

Individuals £50 per session

Couples & Families £55-£125 per session

When I work

Urgent, day and evening appointments available

Matlock, Derbyshire, DE4

Type of session

In person

Types of client

Children (0-12)
Young people (13-17)
Adults (25-64)

Key details

DBS check

In England and Wales, the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, formerly known as CRB) carry out criminal records checks for individuals working with vulnerable groups, such as children. To find out more, visit gov.uk , or contact this professional directly

Online platforms

Elaine M. Spencer
Elaine M. Spencer