Frequently asked questions
How long will counselling last?
That very much depends on you. You may decide to have just a few sessions of practical, solution-focused work, or to commit to longer-term counselling. A good relationship between counsellor and client will be safe, but stimulating, enabling you to look at the issues and feelings you want to, at your own pace and over the time span you feel is right. This can be discussed and agreed between you and your counsellor. Counselling can be a rewarding experience, but also a challenging one, so it’s important that you find a counsellor with whom you feel comfortable.
Is counselling confidential?
Yes. What you say in counselling remains private between counsellor and client. Otherwise only in rare circumstances, where the client may be at risk of hurting herself or himself or another person, might the counsellor have to break confidentiality.
Do you need to be mentally ill to have counselling?
No. It doesn’t mean you’re mad, stupid or weak. It means you’re taking control of your life, by seeking help for yourself.
Do I have to lie on a couch?
No. Although some psychoanalysts work with clients lying on a couch, most face-to-face work is literally that, with counsellor and client seated opposite each other.
Will I get addicted to counselling?
In all relationships or periods of personal change there may be times when people feel dependent or vulnerable. It is part of the counsellor’s responsibility to be aware of that, and to support the client in becoming more self-sufficient. The ultimate aim of counselling is for the client to no longer need counselling, but to have made changes, so that she or he can get on with their lives and be more confident and at ease with the world.
Can I finish counselling whenever I want?
Yes, you can certainly finish counselling anytime you want. However, all clients are advised that when they want to finish counselling, they have a final session to wrap up. This helps prepare them to continue to use what they have learnt in counselling.