Not all counselling is the same. There are a number of approaches. Listening Ear’s counsellors sometimes specialise in one, or they may use an integrated approach. This brings different approaches together into one supportive pathway.
When you are referred for counselling and we undertake an assessment, we use the information that you provide us with to allocate a counsellor to you who will deliver an approach that’s best suited to your needs.
Here are some of the approaches that our counsellors may use in sessions:
Devised by Carl Rogers, this is based on the view that everyone has the capacity and desire for personal growth and change, given the right conditions. Rather than being seen as the expert directing the therapy, the counsellor offers unconditional positive regard, empathy and congruence to help the client develop and grow in their own way.
This therapy promotes positive change rather than dwelling on past problems. Clients are encouraged to focus positively on what they do well, set goals and work out how to achieve them. As few as three or four sessions may be beneficial.
Using a systemic approach can help to improve relationships by taking a whole-family approach to therapy, increasing understanding of other people’s feelings/ behaviours with the aim of improving communication and reducing conflict. We often use systemic therapy in our children and young people’s service.
Mindfulness is a way of intentionally focusing on your thoughts, feelings and the world around you, moment by moment. It encourages clients to be aware of each thought, so they can manage negative thoughts before they become overwhelmed by them. This can help to reduce stress and anxiety and help clients to positively change the way they see themselves and their lives.
Mindfulness can work with individuals and groups and will often be integrated with another therapeutic approach.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) focuses on current problems rather than past issues. It aims to change the way clients think about these (the cognitive element) and how they behave in the face of them (the behavioural element). In short, it aims to help people to deal with their problems in a more positive way over a dedicated period of time, allowing them to learn new techniques and then test them out.
CBT has been proven as being an effective treatment for stress-related ailments, phobias, obsessions, eating disorders and (in combination with drug treatment) major depression.
This is when several distinct models of counselling and psychotherapy are used together in a converging way rather than as separate approaches.
EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing. It is a specialist therapy, typically offered for adults with a diagnosis of PTSD OR clinically important symptoms of PTSD who have presented at least 1 month after a non-combat-related trauma, if the person has a preference for EMDR (NICE Guidelines).
EMDR uses repeated in-session bilateral stimulation (normally eye movements, lights, tapping or sounds) for specific troubling memories or negative beliefs until the memories are no longer distressing. The bilateral stimulation aims to simulate the Rapid Eye Movement we experience during deep sleep, supporting the client to re-process and heal from emotional turmoil safely.
Adult Counselling FAQs
Listening Ear’s adult Counselling service has full accreditation under the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (registered number 102805) and operates within The Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions 2018. Listening Ear was the first agency in Merseyside to achieve accreditation in 2001.
There are three exceptions when Listening Ear would break confidentiality. You would be asked to sign a contract in your first session that would allow us to do this. The three exceptions are:
- Where you have discussed your part in an illegal activity within a session such as drug trafficking or fraud
- Where you have disclosed your intention to harm another person
- Where you have disclosed your intention to harm yourself
Each adult session is 50 minutes which you would usually attend once a week.
All of our services are in high demand and we are not an NHS service. We offer community-based charitable support to as many members of the community as possible who are in need of our help. We endeavour to keep waiting times to a minimum. The more flexible you can be about where and when you can attend an appointment, the quicker we will be able to see you.
If you feel that you cannot wait and feel that you are at risk, please make an appointment with your GP immediately. Listening Ear is not able to offer a crisis service.
If you would prefer to pay privately to see a counsellor, either through your employee assistance programme at work or from your own funds, then we can arrange this for you. Visit this page for more details of our private counselling. We will contact you to arrange your appointment straight away.
Children’s Counselling FAQs
We will offer an assessment for your child. We complete this assessment with the parent/carer usually over the telephone. Assessment appointments take between 30 and 45 minutes to complete. We will then offer six group therapy sessions. These take place weekly at the same time, in the same venue.
In some instances, children are offered one-to-one therapy. The assessment appointment takes place as above and then we offer 3 initial therapy sessions. During this time, we will see how a child engages. If a child is attending and progressing well, we will offer three more sessions.
We have strict rules about missed appointments. Many children approach Listening Ear for help and so it is important that all appointments are attended.
Listening Ear currently accepts referrals for children and young people who have experienced bereavement (including murder, manslaughter and suicide) or loss (including divorce/separation, domestic abuse in the home, children looked after and parent in prison).
Please be aware that our resources for supporting children from outside Knowsley with bereavement and divorce/separation are limited. It is likely that group support will be offered and children will be expected to travel to Whiston to access support.
Listening Ear has a generic referral form available via our website. Please click the referral button.
Make a GP appointment as soon as possible. Explain to the G.P. receptionist that you require an urgent appointment. If you become more concerned about the child/young person prior to this appointment, please take your child to A and E. Unfortunately Listening Ear does not currently offer a crisis service.
We would recommend a period of six months following a bereavement when children will naturally grieve the loss of someone close to them. If following this period you have concerns about how a child is coping following a bereavement, then you can make a referral into our service.
AMPARO means shelter or safe haven in the Portuguese and Spanish languages. AMPARO can place support around any person affected by a suspected or completed suicide. This can be family members, friends or colleagues.
Support is provided 1:1 and our staff can assist with a range of practical matters such as dealing with Police and Coroners, helping with any media enquiries, help with overcoming isolation experienced and contacting and signposting to other local support services.
What to expect from Amparo?
A discreet and completely confidential service! The Coroner will offer access to AMPARO immediately following a death by suspected or completed suicide. We can also accept self-referrals using the Referral’s link above. Following a referral, a member of the AMPARO team will call you and offer a home visit or a further telephone call initially if you prefer.
AMPARO can also support communities, schools and workplaces in the event of a suspected or completed suicide. Contact details are provided below.