Myrena Mercken Systemic Psychotherapy MSc UKCP Individuals, Couples & Families

Myrena Mercken Systemic Psychotherapy MSc UKCP Individuals, Couples & Families

6 Hollis Drive
Isle Of Wight
PO30 4AS

01983 740670 / +447543730606

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6 Hollis Drive
Isle Of Wight
PO30 4AS

01983 740670 / +447543730606

About me

each individual's different perspectives, beliefs, views and experience. It may result in managing challenges more efficiently or finding appreciation and support from those they care about. Change sometimes comes in ways we did not expect as we work together towards change that fits all, not just one...

As fully qualified, accredited and UKCP registered Systemic Family Psychotherapist (also know as Family Therapist or Systemic Psychotherapist) I keep an open mind about someone’s need for assistance as it can be triggered by many factors; a specific event in one’s own or a close person’s life, a problem that has existed for a long time or one that has developed gradually….

I open space for couples and families to safely move into conversations that may be too difficult to have without support. Sometimes someone wants to just come on their own and find words for their thoughts. Formulating ideas before joining with their partner or other family members is often found to be useful.

I bring my experience, professional expertise and training in different approaches.  Clients are the experts of their own situation, they bring the best knowledge of their own situation. Their feedback is essential in tailoring the work we do together to their needs.

Family therapy focuses specifically on relationships. It works from the point of view that a problem lies within relationships, rather than with a single person. And so, in the process of therapy I help families to mobilize their resources. Their strengths  offer a healthy basis to build on in finding new ways to relate and communicate with each other.

The work I do can stand alone or be part of a wider plan, with or without other services involved.

Some of the issues I work with are:
anxiety and worry, adoption, separation from parents or children, depression, stress, mental health issues, relationship issues, identity problems, spirituality, faith, parenting issues, cultural issues, anger management.


When I think of family or couple, I go beyond the traditional and stereotypical meaning of the words. ‘Family’ may include your grandchild, someone else's child you look after, an aunt, uncle or grandparent or close friend, or it may be the group of friends that are closest to you. Family can include all ages, or just be a group of all grown-ups. ‘Couple’ includes same sex partners.

Evidence for the effectiveness of Family and Systemic Psychotherapy

Current Research evidences a solid basis for the efficiency of Family Therapy for both adult and child difficulties. Family Therapy is not restricted to a specific condition; research is showing that the benefits of Family Therapy reach beyond the problem clients seek help for and that there is continued improvement after successful completion of Therapy. There is also good evidence to show that Family Therapy enhances the effectiveness of other intervention when combined together.

Training, qualifications & experience

  • MSc Family and Systemic Psychotherapy (University of Bedfordshire/Institute of Family Therapy London)
  • Post Qualification Diploma in Systemic Practice  with Families and Couples (Institute of Family Therapy London)
  • Post Qualification 1 Social Work (Bournemouth University)
  • Dip Social Work (Ghent, Belgium) - HCPC Registered
  • Accredited Triple P Practitioner (Positive Parenting Program)
  • Mellow Parenting/Incredible Years (Parenting Programs)
  • Language Acquisition made Practical (Delhi/Kathmandu)
  • Cross-cultural living and world religions (Hertfordshire)
  • Continued Professional development in different employment contexts

Professional accountability

Registered with the UK Council for Psychotherapists (UKCP)
Full member of the Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Psychotherapy (AFT)

Enhanced DBS

In my practice I adhere to the ethical guidelines of the UKCP and the Association for Family and Systemic Psychotherapy. I remain keenly involved in Continued Professional Development and attend monthly Clinical Supervision.


My experience includes research, life and work in Continental Europe, Asia and the UK, work with families with a wide variety of high levels of need or in crisis situations, support with parenting and emotional self-regulation relating to anger, anxiety and depression.

Member organisations

Registered / Accredited


Accredited register membership

Other areas of counselling I deal with

Please contact me, also if what you want to talk about does not necessarily fit what is listed above. You do not need a diagnosis to be seen.


Session 1

£30 Initial assessment (up to 90 minutes)

Subsequent sessions

35£ for Individual  (one hour)

£45 for Couples  (one hour)

£50 for Families (one hour)

Home visits can be arranged. A fee may be charged to cover travel (beyond 5 miles) and travel time.
Students and families on a tight budget may welcome the opportunity of concessions, just ask about that in the first session.

Planned sessions by phone are payable in advance.

Prices will be reviewed in April. Existing clients will be seen at the previously agreed rates.

If I am not available, please leave a message; I aim to reply within the same day.

Further information

here are a few questions about Family Therapy that arose out of other's curiosity. If you want to know more or have very different questions, feel free to contact me for further information.

Who can attend?

Families (I use this word in the widest possible meaning, including any variation to the stereotypical mother-father-children setting, it can also include other people you have a close connection to)

Sometimes it may be useful to only see the parents or one family member for a few sessions.

What happens in the first session?
When you come for a first session, I will be most interested to hear everybody's ideas about attending the session, what you would hope happens and what you hope to achieve. There will also be some 'housekeeping tasks' like taking some details, explaining about confidentiality and answering any questions you may have. A first session takes usually an hour and a half.

This first session experience which is very useful in itself, may help you to decide whether this the kind of support suitable to you.

How often would I attend a session?
In Family Therapy, sessions are usually at two or three week intervals. However there are no rigid rules and sometimes it is useful to have weekly sessions, it depends on your situation and where we are in the work together. We may start off weekly and increase time in between appointments up to three weeks. When we are nearing the end of our work together appointments would be spread further apart. We would talk about this and decide what is most suitable for yourself.

Some clients like to return for a review several months later. Even one session can be beneficial.

How long would I need to attend Family Therapy?

Family Therapy can already be useful in 6-10 sessions with a midway review, depending on the presenting problems. You may benefit from fewer session and on the other hand some families or part of the family may want to attend more sessions. For some longer term engagement may be beneficial. However, how long the work goes on for will be part of our conversation when we review our work together so that it is fitting for you and your situation.

The Association for Family and Systemic Psychotherapy (AFT, of which I am a member) has published 'What is Family Therapy?', which you may want to have a look at. On the mainland Family Therapy is well established and integrated in a wide range of services.

Maps & Directions

Newport, PO30 4AS

Type of session

Online counselling: No
Telephone counselling: Yes
Face to face counselling: Yes

Practical details

Sign language: No
Other languages: English, Flemish (Dutch) and Nepali


Appointments Monday-Friday 8am-8pm. Weekend sessions on request. Please enquire about home visits if needed. Wheelchair access available.

Types of client

Young people
Older adults
Employee Assistance Programme