Online counselling simply means that instead of meeting face-to-face, we use computer technology to communicate with each other. Some of the advantages of online counselling are that you can do it from anywhere (you don’t need to travel to see me), and you can do it at a time that suits you (especially if you choose email counselling), and you may feel more comfortable (less embarrassed) talking about very personal issues this way.
There are three main ways that we can arrange online counselling (and you’ll find a page about each one on my website under this page):
- We can use secure email to send messages to each other, usually once a week. The advantage of email is that it gives you plenty of time to think about what you want to say, and to read and think about whatever I’ve said.
- We can use Skype chat to “meet” online with each other and communicate by typing text messages. This means we are both online at the same time, usually for an hour, and it’s more like a normal conversation.
- We can use Skype video for our online meetings, which means that instead of typing, we can talk together and see each other on-screen. So if the technology works well this can be quite like a face-to-face meeting.
Clearly if you’re not happy using computer technology, then online counselling probably isn’t right for you. And it’s also not suitable if you’re suffering from a severe mental health condition, and particularly if you’ve been thinking seriously about committing suicide. In this case you may find it helpful to contact the organisations listed on my Other Help page, which also lists organisations that can help if you’re under 18. And if you’re not sure whether online counselling is right for you, please feel free to contact me to discuss your situation.
But if you’re happy using a computer to communicate, and you would feel more comfortable discussing your issues with me online rather than face-to-face, I’ll be very pleased to hear from you to arrange some online counselling.
The practical bits
My fees are £20 for each secure email exchange (of course this means a proper counselling email talking about your issues, not for instance a short email simply to arrange a counselling session), and I charge £30 for each 60-minute session of Skype chat or Skype video. I will ask you to pay in advance (before each session or email) on my Online Payment page.
If you’ve decided what kind of online counselling you would like, and you’re ready to go ahead, then simply send me an email, and I will send you a Counselling Agreement form to complete. Once I’ve received your completed form, I’ll contact you to arrange one or more online sessions, and you can get started with making changes in your life.