I offer psychoanalysis in central Exeter for people who are looking for a space to speak. I have been in practice for nine years, and am an accredited and registered member of the BACP, and a chartered psychologist with the BPS. My original training was a Professional Doctorate in Counselling Psychology, which enabled me to work as a psychotherapist and psychologist in the NHS, in mental health and more specialist services. I am enrolled with The Site for Contemporary Psychoanalysis. I also offer clinical supervision to clinicians of various professional backgrounds.
Entering into psychoanalysis entails a crossing of a threshold, and beginning a process of taking up a new kind of relation to oneself and one’s problems. A person might find themselves entering analysis for various reasons, some more obvious and others that might reveal themselves over time. Often this might involve the onset or re-emergence of a particular symptom, such as a period of depression, a phobia, a series of obsessions and compulsions, a difficulty with eating, panic attacks, suicidal thoughts - the list goes on. Alternatively, we may experience inhibitions, which hold us back creatively, socially or sexually. These symptoms or inhibitions may start to become problematic for us in different ways, shutting down possibilities and eventually leading a person to seek help.
Another route that might cause a person to enter analysis is the arising of a question of identity. At certain points in our lives, the images that we hold of ourselves (or that we hold of others) break down and we are left to confront the unravelling of our sense of self. These questions often relate to the position we occupied within our families of origin, and to factors such as gender identity, sexuality, race and class. It might be that a change in life such as a bereavement, pregnancy or new role at work precipitates such questions.
Others might come to analysis because of the sense that something in their lives keeps repeating, despite their best efforts to do things differently. This could be a repetition of the same kind of romantic relationship, or trouble with work colleagues, addictions and compulsive behaviours, or memories of historical traumas: in effect those moments that we return to despite - or perhaps because of - their capacity to interrupt or undermine our lives.