Dr Suzanne Brown (Chartered Clinical Psychologist, DClinPsych, MSc, BSc)
I am passionate about creating a safe space to explore the difficulties that have been getting in the way of you leading the life you want. Therapy is not something that is done to you, but is a process that invites full engagement and collaboration from the start; facing feelings and thoughts you’ve long struggled with.
Together, in a supportive atmosphere, we will make meaningful sense of your previous experiences, understand where the difficulties began, and explore the change you want from therapy. I look to work with the whole person, not just the difficulties that bring you to therapy. At the heart of my work, I look to provide a new experience, where you are contained and challenged in equal measure; you will find therapy focused, often helping many people who have tried therapy before and been unsuccessful.
As a Clinical Psychologist, I have been trained to assess a wide range of psychological problems and to make recommendations regarding the most appropriate forms of help.
The process of the assessment will be collaborative, as we work to explore and understand your goals and difficulties. My stance is one of care, compassion and, honesty as we seek to understand what is keeping you stuck through self-defeating habits or obstacles to change and growth.
I aim to make the assessment process a therapeutic experience in itself, which means that you will be helped to address the symptoms that arise in the room with me. This will help you to build the skills necessary to alleviate your difficulties right from the beginning.
By the end of the assessment, I will aim to give you a better understanding of what may have contributed to the development of your difficulties and provide you with recommendations regarding the best way forward for you. If I am not best placed to help you I will be open and honest with you about this, and offer suggestions about what may help.
Areas of Expertise:
- Relationship difficulties often referred to as 'personality disorders'
- Anxiety related to social situations, health, panic attacks, specific phobias, obsessions and compulsive behaviour, dissociation
- Depressed mood and low self-esteem
- Guilt, shame, and self-criticism
- Identity, including sexual and gender diversity using intersectionality frameworks
- Post-traumatic stress including sexual abuse, domestic abuse, refugee experiences and survivorship
- Physical symptoms with no adequate medical explanation
Using an emotion-focused framework to understand the internal difficulties you are facing, you will be helped to experience the full range of emotions that have often been warded off as they have been too painful or perceived as dangerous. It is intensive as it keeps a specific focus on your difficulties and goals with full expression of feelings; it is short-term as we work to your highest capacity; and it is dynamic as it communicates to your unconscious (the part of the mind which is inaccessible to the conscious mind but which affects behaviour and emotions) and accounts for transference processes within the room.
ISTDP is an ambitious therapy, aiming for more than symptom reduction, instead, enabling you to achieve freedom from your distress and get to the root of the difficulties. This approach requires a therapist that is highly engaged, present and attuned moment-to-moment in therapy. Immediate and focused feedback is given as resistance and blocks to achieving your goals emerge. You will be supported with compassion, respect and a commitment to encourage you to work within your capacity to achieve the changes you want as quickly as possible.
Background to the model
The method of ISTDP was developed during the 1960s and 1970s by Habib Davanloo, a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst from Montreal who grew frustrated with the length and relatively limited efficacy of psychoanalysis. ISTDP applies his clinical interpretations and techniques while incorporating insights from interpersonal neurobiology and affective neurosciences.
While ISTDP shares roots with classical psychoanalysis, it also differs in important ways. The ISTDP therapist is an active advocate of change rather than a neutral observer. Instead of making interpretations, the therapist relies on non-interpretive techniques including encouragement to feel; challenge to take responsibility to change; and confrontation of resistance to change.
More information can be found here:
Training, qualifications & experience
Working with complex presentations for over twelve years in both NHS and private settings, I have experience working across the age range, in teams, and at an organisational level.
Recently working across business, education and sport sectors with a focus on leadership, performing under pressure, formulating culture change projects and sustainable performance. I am currently the psychologist with Arsenal Women's Football Club.
I am a guest lecturer, teaching workshops on the Coventry and Warwick Clinical Psychology Doctorate and Masters programme. An active podcaster, blogger and researcher publishing in the domains of attachment and trauma, parenting, and transgender experiences.
- DClinPsy Warwick University
- MSci Psychology and Psychological Practice University of Birmingham
- BSc Psychology University of Birmingham
- EDT (Year 1)
- ISTDP post qualification training (2018-2020)
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
Initial assessments in Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy can be up to 3 hours long and provide the opportunity to delve deeper into your current difficulties. This initial evaluation gives you the chance to see how I work and enables us to see whether this is a suitable approach.
Following this, hourly sessions are recommended.
Non ISTDP assessments and sessions are offered in 60 or 90-minute appointments.
Hourly fee £100
What to do next:
You can contact me by email firstname.lastname@example.org where we can arrange an initial 15-minute consultation free of charge, to better understand why you are seeking help at this time. We can then arrange an initial assessment.
At the initial assessment, we will get clear on your why and what it is you want to achieve from therapy. We can discuss session frequency and the likely duration of treatment.