Specialist Knowledge and Experience
Disability and Neurodiversity
I started my career in special needs teaching , working with both children and adults to identify strengths, improve well being, and move from the experiences of frustration or anger around unmet needs, to experiences of communication and participation, where students wishes were acknowledged. I draw upon those skills in my therapy practice, ensuring I offer an experience of being really heard to neurodiverse clients. I have a special interest in working with clients with Aspergers and autism, as well as clients with physical disabilities.
I have experience of working with clients with cerebral palsy and MND around anger and isolation. I offer a ground floor room with ramp access if required.
I see many 14-20 year olds who struggle with issues around bullying, self harm, exam stress, low self esteem, gender confusion, panic attacks and anxiety. With CAMHS having long waiting lists and a service currently limited to extreme cases, and with school and college mentors often unavailable, it can be important to see an experienced registered counsellor when you really need to see one ,without having to wait. By developing a regular, non judgemental supportive therapeutic relationship and at the same time giving them some helpful tools to enable them to cope, I have helped many adolescents at the times when they have needed support most.
Parents of Children with Disabilities/Adoptive Parents
I have worked extensively supporting parents of disabled children and adoptive parents who frequently neglect their own needs.
Counselling, more than anything, gives you the space and permission to prioritise yourself.
In your special role you have often grown used to putting others before yourselves as a matter of course. It can become easy to lose sight of who you are, and what you need to keep you well. I am committed to giving you the space to discover where YOU are, in amongst the many needs and demands of others. To listen to the often difficult narrative of your day to day life with an experienced caring ear. To help you access your existing inner resources, and find workable ways to cope and relax.
As both an adoptive parent and a special needs parent myself, and the daughter of an adopted person, I can offer an understanding of what you may be struggling with. I am a peer mentor/counsellor for One Adoption West and North Yorkshire and run a local support group for SEN parents..
Mindfulness and Meditation
I have studied mindfulness and meditation for three decades,beginning with academic studies of Buddhism and Hinduism for my first degree at Lancaster University and I have seen it work both in my own life and the lives of many others with a number of issues such as anxiety, depression and trauma. I have always believed strongly in taking meditation off the cushion and into every day life. It seems that all the latest scientific research is now endorsing this view.
I run classes and workshops in both secular and Buddhist forms of meditation and mindfulness and can offer individual and corporate sessions too. Please contact me for further details of future classes and events.