Some examples are shown below.
Sexual abuse is defined as any type of sexual activity which is unwanted. Sexual abuse includes rape, being touched sexually without your permission, being coerced or exploited into sexual activity, it also includes having intimate images of yourself shared or posted online without your permission or receiving unsolicited explicit images (sexting).
People who have experienced sexual abuse often feel unable to share their experiences with others. Being able to talk, perhaps for the first time about painful experiences is possible in counselling. Sexual abuse can happen at any age.
Whether a recent event or something that happened a long time ago psychotherapeutic counselling will provide a space place for you to talk.
Depression is more than simply feeling unhappy or fed up for a few days. Most people go through periods of feeling low but depression is marked by periods of persistent sadness which might last for weeks or months. People can feel sad or empty, they might lose interest in daily activities. In some cases people may think about suicide.
Symptoms of depression also include difficulties sleeping, or even sleeping too much, anxiety, anger, unexplained physical symptoms such as migraines and muscle pain, changes in eating, for example overeating or food avoidance.
If you are suffering from depression you may have some difficulty dealing with daily stresses. Maybe getting out of bed is difficult at times, leaving you feeling overwhelmed and alone. Perhaps even old pleasures have lost their shine.
If depression is affecting your life counselling can give you a space to talk and sort through your emotions.
Illness and disabilities can cause significant difficulties in daily life. Perhaps a sudden illness has impacted your life and you are struggling to cope. Chronic illness can also represent a substantial challenge to daily functioning, perhaps you struggle to manage pain, maintain employment, or keep up physical activities.
Living with illness or disabilities can also be met with family and colleagues in ways that are experienced as hurtful. Therapy can help support clients who are managing distress as a result of illness or disability.
Anxiety is one of the most common psychological problems for which people seek counselling.
Anxiety symptoms include worry, panic, social anxiety, health anxiety, agoraphobia and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
Counselling helps you consider what the anxiety might be trying to tell you and why it is present at the moment.
Shame is a social emotion, it is often present in people who have experienced bullying, trauma or abuse. When shame is used to humiliate and degrade it can be experienced as overwhelming and unbearable. Shame can lead people to be fearful and hide.
Seeking counselling to work through feelings of shame gives you the chance to grieve the harm that was done to you.
Human beings experience all sorts of relationships through life, from parents, partners, the wider family, friends and work colleagues to the supermarket cashier. The quality of our relationships affects our lives.
Counselling helps people understand their roles in relationships and recognise any unhelpful patterns that might be present. The therapy provides a safe space to consider other ways to relate.
The added challenges of peri-menopause, menopause, and early menopause on women is very often underestimated. Symptoms and their impact seem to vary between women with many feeling deeply debilitated whilst others seem to sail through the transition. Perhaps you are mourning the loss of your childbearing years, find the lack of sleep affecting your working life or your moods difficult to manage. This sometimes-brutal reminder of ageing can be difficult to manage and women are notorious for not talking about it with their friends and family.
Experiencing an early menopause adds its own difficulties, including the loss of possible motherhood. Counselling can help you work through the frustrations and feelings menopause has brought up, and support you to get through the transition.
Loss is inevitable for all of us as we progress through life. Dealing with the death of a loved one can bring up feelings of deep sadness, confusion and even anger. Sometimes grief lifts over time and sometimes it can still cause upset many years later. Grief is not linear; it affects us all in different ways and can resurface when we least expect it.
I have had specialist training in supporting people who have been affected by suicide. As a qualified, BACP registered counsellor in Bromley, Kent I help you to work through the grieving process, whether you have lost a parent, a child, a good friend or even a pet.
Do you worry about your health? Do unusual symptoms spark concern that something serious might be wrong? Being hyper alert of our body, scanning for changes that might indicate a problem can cause us profound anxiety. Health anxiety is often a distressing, painful and misunderstood condition. It can become hard to concentrate on our jobs, our relationships and our lives if we are worried about cancer, heart attacks and other illnesses being just around the corner.
It is entirely normal to react to worrying symptoms, to look these up on the internet maybe and consult a doctor. If you continue to worry, even after test results discount a problem, counselling can help support you and give you a safe space to talk about your concerns.
Bullying behaviour might include being teased in a manner that is hurtful, being humiliated or put down without thought for your feelings, being ignored, intimidated or threatened whether explicitly or implicitly. Bullying might
occur in your workplace, in your relationships or in other areas of our lives such as online via social media (cyberbullying). Bullying can leave us feeling isolated and alone. Perhaps you experienced bullying in childhood and the experience
still remains with you, or you are supporting your own child through a bullying experience. Speaking out about your experience gives you the opportunity to feel supported and heard so that you can process your feelings.
Raising children can be a challenging and demanding time for many parents. Perhaps you are concerned about your child's behaviour and feel alone with the experience. Children with diagnosis of ADHD, ASD and other labels present demands on parents that they may not have expected to encounter. It is not uncommon for mothers and father to wonder what has happened to make their child 'different'. Guilt, loneliness and confusion are common. Perhaps you have adolescence that are struggling with anxiety or are self-harming. Talking about your feelings in therapy can help you process what is going on for you and your family so you are better able to cope.
* Affairs in your relationship
* Breakups as a result of betrayal
Betrayal is a common topic that comes up in counselling. Often it is not an affair that is the main issue but rather the betrayal of trust and the deception that hurts so deeply. Trusting a partner again after trust has been shattered is very difficult. People liken the experience to a bereavement or loss, the relationship has lost its firm ground and both individuals can find it difficult to reconnect. The betrayed partner may have suspected there was something not quite right for some time, with the guilty partner playing down or denying the problem. Perhaps the betrayal is around money, debt or gambling rather than an affair. The hurt and loss of trust is just as deep and hurtful. Counselling after a betrayal in a relationship will help you work out your thoughts and feelings so you can rebuild your life, and your relationship, or recover from a separation.