Counselling and group work for depression, stress and anxiety in Sussex

During the COVID-19 outbreak we want to make sure As You Are is still able to provide couselling.

We are working to offer telephone or online couselling sessions. Online counselling will be via ZOOM, a third party, free-to-use website or application that is a secure way of offering a skype-type video chat service.  This is a free piece of software you can download on to your computer or smart device such as a smart phone or tablet.  It offers a video and voice interface, allowing you to talk and see me from your own home or another safe and confidential location.

If you are unsure whether it would suit you, a good idea is to set up a free first session via Zoom and see what it is like. A few things to consider:

  • You will need a device or computer with a web cam and microphone
  • You will need reliable broadband and a suitably private place to make the call or video call, this will need to be somewhere you feel sure you won’t be interrupted.

Online counselling could work for you, although you will need to consider the following:

  • Can you find a quiet, private space to make a weekly 50 minute video call, free of interruption?
  • Will you be able to build the trust you need without meeting face to face?
  • Is your computer or device private? If not, the browser history could show you have visited your counsellor.

How is it different from face to face counselling?
Apart from the obvious difference of us not meeting at the centre, the confidentiality, professionalism and experience of your counsellor is the
same. You will be able to pay for your session via BACs. It will feel different from our face to face sessions, but we are keen to continue to offer counselling during this difficult time.

Possible advantages?
Some advantages could be:

  • Convenience – with no face to face sessions available we aim to offer this as a good alternative.
  • There are no travel costs involved and no time lost to traveling.

Are there any disadvantages?
Again, this really changes from person to person, but some things to consider are:

  • If some of your issues are about relating to people, this might not be as effective over the phone or internet.
  • Some aspects of relating might be lost, such as body language, which might stop you connecting as well as you might need to do effective work in counselling.
  • It can be hard to find a confidential space to talk, especially if you live with someone. You might not feel safe to open up as much you would like.
  • You might find it difficult ‘just to talk’ – counselling face to face opens up other opportunities to work in creative ways which many people find extremely healing.
  • Sometimes it can be tempting to say more than we would face to face, and then feel over-exposed or too vulnerable.
  • Your issue might not be suitable for online sessions, for example trauma. Get in touch with us to talk about this so we can work with you to explore is online or phone counselling is an option for you.

Setting up your first session
Contact As You Are or your counsellor to discuss our online and phone service, if you don’t feel this is is an option for you let us know and we’ll keep you informed when we can resume face to face sessions at the center.