FAQs

This page is still under construction…

If you have any specific questions about my practice or counselling in general please do check out the FAQs below.

However, if you can’t find what you’re looking for here please do visit my Contact Me page to see how to get in touch by phone or e-mail.

About James Field Counselling

There is a stereotype of a psychologist or psychiatrist as a cold analytical machine in a white coat looking down on us from a pedestal. You might think of the iconic image of Sigmund Freud sitting behind his patients scribbling in a note pad whilst his clients talk.

This approach has its merits but it’s not how I work.

One of the most powerful, healing experiences that we can have comes from deep connection with others and I try to be as present as I can be as both your counsellor and as a fellow human being.  I believe that I would be doing you a disservice if I left a big chunk of what makes me human outside when I entered the counselling room.

Boundaries are important and we will probably talk about these during therapy but I’m not afraid to say that I care deeply about my clients and I will almost certainly be affected by your story. The difference between me and a good friend or loved one is that I am trained to put aside my own prejudices, views and any issues I might have and to stay focussed on you and your needs.

I am not an expert whose job it is to diagnose and fix you. I like to think of myself more as a companion and a guide accompanying you on your counselling journey.  When I work with a client I may occasionally share a little of my myself and my life with you if and when I think it might be helpful to you. After all I don’t think I could do this job so well if I didn’t also know what it is to suffer and to struggle.

I recognise that life has a habit of getting in the way of things like counselling sessions so I will always work flexibly around your holidays and other life commitments.

 

I find that most clients benefit most from weekly sessions.  When sessions are less frequent it can be harder to establish real momentum in the therapy.  However, everyone is different and if, for any reason,  you’re unable to attend weekly sessions, we can discuss whether this is likely to work therapeutically for you.

I see the beard is something of a give away. I am happy to work with clients of either gender or those who see themselves as non-binary.

The most important thing is that you feel comfortable working with me. If you think you would feel more comfortable with a female counsellor then I am probably not going to be the right person for you. If you’re not sure then please feel free to arrange a free, initial session so you can make your mind up after you’ve met me.

I love working with both men and women but I am particularly aware that many men view counselling as something that wouldn’t be for them. As a man myself, particularly one working in a female dominated profession, I have had my own struggles with what masculinity means today. I welcome any men who would like to work with me on this area.

Yes. I am a volunteer at the Margaret Jackson Centre (MJC). My work as a private practitioner is completely separate from my work for the MJC and any complaints or questions about my private practice should be directed to me rather than the MJC.

Yes. I work part time for Iron Mill College (IMC) where I manage the Iron Mill Counselling Service (IMCS). My work as a private practitioner is completely separate from my work for the IMCS and any complaints or questions about my private practice should be directed to me rather than the IMC. This applies even when I occasionally rent a counselling room from the IMC.

I have an Advanced Diploma in Integrative Counselling from Iron Mill College, a specialist independent, training college. The course was accredited by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and required me to undertake my own personal counselling and to complete 150 hours counselling practice for which I was assessed.

I am also a registered member of the BACP which requires me to operate within their Ethical Framework; to undertake regular supervision and CPD (Career Progression Development) to make sure my skills are regularly updated. I also hold professional liability insurance and have regular supervision with a qualified supervisor.

You can view the BACP Register here.  My membership number is 291319.

Yes.  As long as you are not a student of Iron Mill College in Exeter. I work for the college and there could be a conflict interest if I were to take you on as a private client.

No.  Not at this time although I hope this might change in the future.

I have helped individual clients to work through difficulties with their relationships  but I don’t work with couples.

Not usually although I will always listen to and consider representations to reduce my fee.

I am passionate about making counselling as accessible to people as possible and I recognise that, for many people, the cost of private counselling can be prohibitive. For this reason I have, for a number of years, offered my services as a counsellor for free to the Margaret Jackson Centre (MJC), a charity providing low cost counselling. I also manage the Iron Mill Counselling Service (IMCS), another affordable counselling service in Exeter.  I feel that this is my contribution to making counselling as accessible as possible.

I recommend contacting either of the above services if you are looking for counselling in Exeter and private fees are beyond your reach.

I believe that my standard rate is a fair one for the quality of service and care that I offer.

I charge £40 for a one hour session.

I will never surprise you with any hidden costs and you may cancel our contract, without penalty, at any time providing you have paid any outstanding fees.

Yes. However, please let me know that you require wheelchair access before attending your first session so I can make sureI am using one of the wheelchair accessible rooms.  If my usual location doesn’t have an accessible room I can sometimes use a different venue near by.

It depends on the nature and seriousness of your illness. If you’re suffering from a diagnosed mental health condition you deserve counselling as much as the next person.  However, I would need to be sure that therapy would not compromise any medical treatment you might be getting.

I would not usually consider working with someone who was suffering from psychosis.

Please feel free to contact me for a confidential discussion.

The short answer to this question is no. I take your right to confidentiality with the utmost seriousness and I will never sell any of your personal information to another organisation or individual.

The slightly longer answer is that there could be circumstances when I might need to break your confidentiality in order to protect your safety or wellbeing or if I am compelled to do so by the law. I will talk to you more about confidentiality when we meet and you can view my confidentiality policy here.

I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and comply with current data protection legislation in the UK as well as with the BACP’s ethical framework.

No. I only work with adults over the age of 18.

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