The Keys to Successful Therapy
There has been a lot of research conducted to discover what makes therapy work and the findings consistently show that the key factor is the relationship that develops between therapist and client. The other most important thing is that the therapist adapts to the client’s characteristics, culture and preferences.
Our Commitment to You
All relationships are based on trust, and the therapeutic relationship is no different so we will always do our best to understand you and your issues without making any presumptions. Everyone is different and you are entitled to be you and to hold your views about the world. If we struggle to understand, we will ask. We will not judge you. This doesn’t mean that we condone “bad” behaviour, but it does mean that we will presume good intent. We will also be honest so that you will always know where you stand with us.
What You Can Talk About
It is common for clients to be worried about disclosing information, wondering if it is safe to do so. Some therapists ask lots of questions but we feel that is too intrusive so we offer you this list of some things (and there are others) which clients may have experienced and which can be discussed:
- Abuse: domestic, sexual, physical or emotional, past or present;
- Self-harm or suicidal thoughts/attempts;
- Guilty secrets;
- Problems with eating (e.g. binging or purging);
- Criminal convictions (see below for current criminal activity);
- Disturbing thoughts or wishes;
- Sexual issues;
- Anything not listed below.
Requirements for Disclosure
Having given examples of all the things that you can discuss with us, it is important that you know that the law may forbid our normal confidentiality in the following circumstances.
If we become aware, or have good reason to suspect, that you have knowledge of:
- A past or future incident/situation that may be dangerous or harmful to a child, you or another adult, and that is not known to the relevant authorities;
- Future or past criminal activity that has not been resolved in law. This means any criminal activity, of which the relevant authorities are either unaware or a case they know about which they consider not to be closed (provided you do not present information in therapy which would reasonably re-open the case). This does not include parking or traffic offences unless there is intent, by you or anyone else, to cause danger to yourself or others, or that it is deemed to be a “serious offence”. For our purposes, a serious offence is something for which you could be imprisoned and for which the sentence (not necessarily imprisonment) hasn’t yet been served.
In these circumstances we will work with you to see if we can work together to make appropriate disclosures.
It is also compulsory to report terrorism, potential radicalisation, money laundering and female genital mutilation to the appropriate authorities.
Other than as required by law, we will routinely discuss your case with our supervisor(s) (in order to ensure that you get the best service), our supervisor(s) will have access to your details if we are suddenly unavailable (to contact you and offer you ongoing care) and we may talk or write to your GP (but we will not give any personal details beyond what you are working on).