All the evidence shows that of most importance is choosing the right person for you. Of course you want your therapist to be competent and to have done the training but the most important aspect is the relationship you built up with them. I offer a free half hour consultation session where we can meet and discuss your reasons for seeking counselling. This is a time to ask yourself if you feel comfortable telling me intimate details of your life; do you feel safe with me; do you like the way I act towards you; do you feel respected and heard? It is then that you can decide whether you wish to proceed with further sessions.
Fees often depend on the location (e.g. London will usually be more expensive) and the experience of the counsellor/psychotherapist. On average, expect to pay between £35 – £60 per 50-minute session for an established, experienced therapist. I charge £40 per 50-minute sessions and offer a concession of £25 for students or people on low incomes.
You may be able to arrange a limited amount of free counselling through the NHS and your doctor, though you may have to wait a while and though I cannot speak for every counsellor, I would imagine that in many ways seeing a private counsellor will be very similar to seeing one through the NHS in terms of the work you do together. What may differ is that I am able to see you at a time when you most need help and offer you more open ended therapy, which is seldom readily available through the NHS and also offer you more flexibility in negotiating your length of contract or when you are available to see me.