Gillian Beckwith MA Accred. Relationship and Sex Therapy
What I Work With
All types of relationship and sexual problems. People present with dilemmas in a range of ways from slightly unhappy to deeply distressed. None of these problems are unique. It can be common that my new clients, while feeling overwhelmed, also describe being frustrated and weighed down with guilt when they accept that they need to get help to resolve matters. Fortunately, holding these particular feelings does not prevent clients from getting to some positive change.
Over more than 19 years of practice I have had experience of working with clients from varied sexualities, cultures, spirituality, age, abilities, illness and backgrounds. I take a special interest in being respectful and affirmative in approach to difference/diversity.
It can take a little courage sometimes to make the first step in involving a third party and I respect and admire couples and individuals for stepping up and taking part in professional conversations with me. My clients tell me the process pays long-lasting dividends that far outweigh their initial anxiety. Much can be gained. I feel the clients have got it right.
It is clear that communicating about intimacy and the whole area of sex is problematic for many. Often, success with intimacy is very much wrapped up in comfort with relationships. Whether sexual dilemmas are at the root or vice versa, or a bit of both, my expertise can help assess the best way forward, whether with couples or individuals.
Finding contentment with sexual elements usually has a beneficial impact on overall relationship — with self and others.
Clients need not be in a current relationship to talk over difficulties.
Examples of Intimacy Dilemmas
With a two-year post-graduate diploma, I'm fully trained and qualified to deal with the specialism of sexual therapy. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but gives some examples:
Arousal and desire (including differences of desire between partners);
Sexual satisfaction, including orgasm (rapid, delayed or not achieving);
Pain on penetrative sex;
Change from the impact of illness, disability, ageing, fertility challenges.
In all areas of my work, I offer non-judgmental, approachable ideas and observations using well-sourced research evidence. I find often that with this kind of support clients’ anxiousness wears off to be replaced with more useful emotions and thinking such as humour and resilience for making the changes ahead.
Training, qualifications & experience
Post Graduate Diploma in Psychosexual Therapy (Relate Institute), accredited by University of Hull.
MA in Relationship Therapy (Relate Institute), accredited by University of Hull.
Relate Certificate in Marital and Couples Counselling.
Ethical Code of Conduct
As an accredited member of the College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists (COSRT) and a full clinical psychotherapist registered member of UKCP I am governed by the ethical guidelines of these organisations at all times.
As part of COSRT and UKCP rules of commitment: I invest in continuous professional development courses to keep up to date with new research and thinking and extend my learning. Using a clinical supervisor I maintain regular sessions about my client work to ensure consistently effective therapy. It is accepted that the style of discussion will protect client identity and anonymity. I maintain industry-standard insurance for therapy work.
Additional clinical hours
I first worked for Relate in 1989 and have been employed by the charity agency at various centres over the years, most recently, Richmond and Westminster. I am a member of the Relate Practitioner Register, which requires counsellors to uphold the guidelines of British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists (COSRT).
I am regularly checked with the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
The research evidence on what makes therapy work
Research shows that experiencing a sense of alliance* is proven to be the most effective tool — whatever the therapy style — in resolving difficulties. I work collaboratively — I aim to convey that we are in this dilemma together, that we all have something to contribute to success. My clients’ feedback suggests that the shared generosity at the heart of this practical approach is enjoyable, robust and brings success.
*In various ways, participants usually describe alliance building as feeling that they are listened to, acknowledged, respected, allowed to show themselves in lots of ways including letting down their guard to talk over vulnerabilities. There’s room for getting it wrong and it becomes easier to share alternative thoughts because there is a sense that all viewpoints count. Participants offer me feedback that it is not like having a friend but it is like having a supportive anchor or influence in their routine 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.
College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists
COSRT is the UK’s leading membership organisation for therapists specialising in sexual and relationship issues.
All members must abide by their Code of Ethics and the performance of accredited members is regularly monitored.
UK Council for Psychotherapy
The UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) is a leading professional body for the education, training and regulation of psychotherapists and psychotherapeutic counsellors. Its register is accredited by the government's Professional Standards Authority.
As part of its commitment to protect the public, it works to improve access to psychotherapy, to support and disseminate research, to improve standards and to respond effectively to complaints against its members.
UKCP standards cover the range of different psychotherapies. Registration is obtained by training or accrediting with one of its member organisations, or by holding a European Certificate in Psychotherapy. 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
Other areas of counselling I deal with
Psychosexual therapy; sex therapy.
Ranging from £65 to £120 per couple or individual, dependent on the meeting time and venue, per 50-minute session. I offer daytime, evenings and weekend times.