I have worked in a variety of settings that involve working with people and decided in my early twenties that I enjoyed work that involved being 'with' others.

I have worked in healthcare for over twenty five years primarily, as a Registered Midwife  with my preference being as a community midwife before moving into mental health. I enjoyed running parent craft groups for prospective parents and breastfeeding support groups for new mums, I also took some time to offer private training for prospective doulas.

As a student nurse I spent a lot of my time working on the psychiatric unit finding the time to listen and try to understand how and why individuals had been admitted to the unit and what it meant to them at the time..  

I have had the privilege to see individuals at their best, and at their worst which, in turn, has evoked feelings for me, sometimes of great joy and other times of great sadness. I have experience of working with patients and families in an HIV hospice and acute general hospital and of contributing to the setting up and running of a perinatal psychology service for mums and dads, and their families. 

My psychological experience spans over five years; working with individuals where one way of coping with feelings of distress may be to use alcohol to submerge difficult feelings. This type of work tied in with my work as a bereavement counsellor where individuals sometimes found it difficult to cope with ambivalent feelings about a relationships and the loss or abandonment of an other.

I have worked with individuals with such diagnosis as borderline personality disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, anxiety and panic attacks; behind all of these labels is a person who's world is in distress.

I have worked as an independent practitioner within these last five years which has meant I have seen clients both for short term and long term therapy. I like to work relationally with a CBT / Object Relations approach and really enjoy my work.

I have learnt and grown through my work and I am aware this will continue with each new experience.

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Attachment theory concerns the propensity to form strong emotional bonds with particular individuals, or with regard to children, their main caregiver. This is an innate characteristic present in infancy and continuing throughout adolescence, adulthood and into old age (Bowlby, 1973, 1982). The attachment system is activated in adversity or when an individual is distressed or ill, when there is the urge to seek comfort and support from the primary attachment figure or caregiver. However when the individual feels secure and not distressed there is the urge to explore the environment, to play, work and travel.

A secure home base is seen to be crucial for optimal functioning and mental health; however for some individuals this home base may have been the reason for distress.

Loss of an attachment figure or loved one is traumatic and tragic; this loss can be even more complex when it activates unresolved painful memories of earlier relational trauma and loss. The process of grieving and bereavement can be long and painful; the process can include such feelings as:

  • Denial: of the experience of loss.

  • Anger: wanting something to change.

  • Bargaining: an attempt to change this situation to avoid the pain of acceptance.

  • Despair: a painful experience, entering into a place where depression can accompany the working through and morning of a loss.

  • Acceptance: where the energy that was tied up in this stuck grieving is finally freed up for use elsewhere.

Therapy offers a space where you can begin to mourn and come to terms with your loss. Perinatal group support and therapy offers a space to explore intergenerational patterns of coping, and gain support in caring for your infant with a knowledge of your own past and why you may have felt depressed, anxious or alone.