Debby Monkhouse Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist Counselling and Supervision in Swanage, Purbeck, near Poole


I'm a qualified, experienced Counsellor, registered and accredited by the British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy Visit BACP.
I follow the BACP's Code of Ethics for my Counselling work, which lays down respectful boundaries for therapeutic work to support your empowerment and autonomy. I've worked as a Counsellor with people experiencing a wide variety of life challenges since 2006.

What is Counselling?
As a Counsellor my primary responsibilities are to offer a warm, empathic, non-judgmental environment and to listen. This creates a therapeutic space where you can share issues that are causing difficulty in your life, and difficult emotions such as sadness, anger, guilt, shame and doubt. This sounds a serious business, and it is, however there is often humour in sessions as it is a testament to your resilience and strength to take time to tackle difficulties, and to take more control. The therapeutic space gives you an opportunity to explore and process your thoughts and feelings, and to reflect on what is happening. As you begin to find your way forward, your confidence builds and you start to experience more frequent positive feelings, such as relief, hope and happiness.

What is my therapeutic approach?
I work integratively, which just means that I combine aspects of different therapeutic approaches that I have been trained in. The way I combine these approaches will vary, depending on your needs and preferences. For example, you may primarily want a space to talk and be listened to, or you may want to use a technique to address a relationship issue, to process trauma, to plan achievable steps to cope with changes, or a new career.

My integration primarily includes aspects of Person Centred Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Gestalt Therapy and Inner Child work.

I strive to embody the Person Centred core conditions of empathy, acceptance and genuineness.

I find that CBT helps to bring structure and focus to my therapeutic work. It supports the identification of goals, and can be used to measure progress. It has helpful tools for identifying and conceptualizing patterns of thinking and doing, and for understanding why these were developed. This in turn helps us to identify how to change the unhelpful patterns that are getting in your way.

Gestalt work supports looking at experience from different perspectives. I have found this particularly helpful when working with confusion, 'part of me thinks X, but another part thinks Y'. Gestalt can also be helpful with relationship issues. Relationships are often very important to us.

Inner child work represents reaching out to a part of the self that has been split off and ignored in an effort to cope with overwhelming experience. Where this split is breaking down, or has become very limiting, I work with clients to safely contain and/or process parts of that experience.

What issues have I worked with?
I am experienced in working with people who have faced difficulties with:
  • Relationships
  • Work
  • Anxiety, including Panic, Post Traumatic Stress and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Depression, low mood or low self esteem
  • Health, including managing the changes brought about by a long term health condition
  • Childhood abuse
  • Bereavement
  • Finding meaning and purpose in life

    Training and Qualifications relevant to Counselling
    I completed introduction to Counselling Skills and the first year of a two year Diploma in Person Centred Therapy, 2002-3.
    I achieved an Advanced Diploma in Humanistic Integrative Counselling, with Merit, at CPPD Counselling College, 2003-6.
    I was accredited by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy in 2007.
    I achieved a Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, with Merit, at Canterbury Christ Church University in 2009-10.
    I was accredited by the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy in 2011.
    I completed a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy Supervisor training at Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre 2012-13.

    Location, duration and fees
    My Psychotherapy, Counselling and Supervision Practice is based in Swanage, Isle of Purbeck, Dorset. Since the pandemic I work online, which means distance is no object.
    We can work on a time limited or open-ended basis, depending on your needs and preferences.
    The initial consultation is free. This is an opportunity to get a sense of how we would work together.
    My fees for subsequent sessions are £50 per hour. Some concessions are available for people on low incomes, please ask.

    Getting in contact
    If you would like more information, or to book a free consultation, please call or text me on
    07960 391357
    or email me using the short form available by clicking the email button on the right.
    If I miss your call, please text me with a good time to call you back. Thank you.

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