This article covers counselling assessments for LGBT Individuals.
For LGBT Couple Counselling see Assessments for LGBT Couple Counselling.
STOP PRESS: Dedicated Website for Counselling for LGBT/QIA+ Couples.
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What is an Assessment for LGBT Individual Counselling?
Every ethical and professional counsellor should perform an assessment with their client before individual therapy commences (read about LGBT Individual’s Counselling). The assessment is a mutual process: whilst the therapist is assessing whether counselling is indicated, the client is also assessing the therapist to judge if they would like to work with him.
Considered during an assessment:
- As the client, do you think that this counsellor is suitable for you?
- As the therapist, is the client able to make good use of my therapy methods & is there the potential for a good-enough working relationship?
- Is sufficient information gained to make the decision if therapy is appropriate.
- If therapy seems contra-indicated, the therapist and client may discuss alternatives including a referral to a colleague or other agency.
The Counselling Assessment Process.
As an accredited counsellor in private practice, I do my own assessments (as opposed to a client meeting with a third-party assessor, as in some counselling agencies).
You and I will meet either in my Portsmouth & Southsea office or we will meet via Skype depending on where you want to begin counselling.
As to the assessment process itself, mostly I am interested in hearing what you have to say about why you think you would like to work with me as a counsellor. I will also check to see if my methods of counselling work for you (eg my style of questions or my therapeutic model).
- The session provides time to discuss if counselling can help – 50 minutes.
- I will discuss with you what I can offer, costs and commitments.
- The aim is to inform you as fully as possible about what you’re getting into… before you actually do.
By the end of an assessment, we should have an idea about what should be the focus of the counselling work.
Counselling Assessment Questions.
Some questions often arise in the assessment:
- Your occupation, relationship status, children, medical health.
- What is(are) your current problem(s)?
- Have you had counselling before?
- Why have you chosen counselling now?
- What do you hope to gain from counselling … and what your goals/achievements might be for when the counselling is completed.
- Some historical information (eg your first memory)
- A conversation about your family.
- A conversation about your work & education.
- A conversation about your support networks.
- A discussion about if we both think if counselling might be helpful for you, or maybe to refer you to another therapy.
Keeping you Informed.
I will discuss with you about my counselling models, qualifications and ethics, about confidentiality and how it effects you, about where the law requires I disclose information (such as serious criminal activity, intended harm to yourself and/or others, or the Children’s Act) and that I will discuss with you before I make such disclosures, also about my supervision arrangements.
By the end of the assessment.
At the end of the assessment we should both have a better understanding of if we think we can work together, if counselling might be a helpful process (for you) to go through (together), and what will be the focus of our counselling work.
We will discuss fees, appointment times and vacation/absences, and what we can expect from each other (we call this “contracting”).
The location of the counselling will be in the same “place” as the assessment (ie either in Southsea, Hampshire – or via Skype video).
What to do next.
If you believe that you would like to meet with Dean to discuss your needs for LGBT Individual’s Counselling, make contact to arrange an initial appointment.