Val Sampson, Couples Counsellor
Relationships are hard work. A new relationship may be a source of joy and transformation; a long-standing relationship may be much more of a struggle. Add the stress of work and family into the mix and many of us find ourselves looking at our partner and thinking 'it shouldn't be like this'.
I work mainly with couples to understand what's gone wrong in their relationship and then to take steps to put it right. One of the biggest predictors of a successful couple relationship is the ability to communicate and to manage difficult conversations. It is very hard to cope with states of high emotion and to problem-solve at the same time. Counselling enables you to understand the roots of distress you may be experiencing, and then to take a rational and objective look at what needs to happen to improve your relationship.
I also work with individuals whose partners may be unwilling to attend couples counselling with them, and with people who may not currently be in a relationship, but who want to better understand themselves and how they relate to others.
I am the author of four books on sex and relationships which have been published in the UK, USA and Europe.
Training, qualifications & experience
Qualified Relate Counsellor (University of East London Graduate Certificate: Foundation in Couples Counselling)
Qualified Executive Coach (The School of Coaching, accredited by University of Strathclyde and the European Mentoring and Coaching Council)
My training with Relate was in psychodynamic and systemic therapy. Since then I have attended a variety of courses, including some training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. I am interested in neuroscience and I adapt my theoretical approach according to the needs of my clients. I hope to remain flexible and fully attuned to what works best for them. I have many hundreds of hours of experience working with couples and individuals, and I believe it is vital to continue to remain open to new ideas and new ways of working to best support my clients.
I am an Accredited Member of the National Counselling Society and on its Accredited Voluntary Register scheme which was set up by the Government to improve standards and safety for the benefit of the public.
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.
National Counselling Society
The National Counselling Society
This Not For Profit association of counsellors and psychotherapists aim to support the counselling profession, members and training organisations.
In 2013 the NCS register was accredited by the Professional Standards Authority under the Accredited Voluntary Register Scheme. 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
My fee is £120 per session. Each session lasts for a full hour. I also offer ninety minute or two-hour sessions to clients if the circumstances are appropriate.
I am the author of four books and I have worked as a broadcaster specialising in relationships for the BBC, ITV, Channel 5 and national and local radio. My books are:
- The Breast Cancer Book (Vermilion)
- Tantra: The Art of Mind-blowing Sex (Vermilion)
- How to Have Great Sex for the Rest of Your Life (Piatkus)
- The Real Sex Kitten's Handbook (Quadrille)
I've also contributed articles on relationships to a range of national newspapers and magazines, including The Times, Good Housekeeping, You and Men's Health.