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Gail Evans

  • B.Sc. (Hons) M.Sc.
  • CQSW.
  • Relate Cert CC.
  • Dip. PST.
  • Relate Cert. Supervision.
  • EMDR.
  • COSRT Accredited (College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists)
  • UKCP Registered (United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy)
  • NCS Accredited (National Counselling Society)

I have many years experience in relationship and sexual therapy (couples and individuals) and of work with individuals. I can offer EMDR, a specialised approach to symptoms after traumatic experiences. I also work with sexual abuse. My background is in work with families and children.

I understand how it can be really hard to take the step of coming for counselling and to talk about some of the things you need to. I know that for it to work we need to develop a good counselling relationship. I aim to be supportive, encouraging and honest. I hope you can be honest with me too and I like to check out with you whether what we are doing is helping. An individual, with your own way of looking at life, you are the expert on yourself. I can’t tell you what to do or what will work for you but I will try to adapt to you. I will discuss any insights or techniques I think might help and check if they are acceptable to you. If I am not the right person I will help you find someone who suits you better.

It can be surprisingly helpful to tell your story. It is rare to talk with someone who tries to listen carefully, understand, accept you without judging and help you to make sense of things. Many have experienced damaging prejudice, criticism or lack of support. Many feel they aren’t deserving of help and support. Through this listening relationship it is quite usual and reassuring for people to discover they are not abnormal or going mad because of thoughts, feelings and reactions to events in their lives.

Some people need help to express their emotions or thoughts. You may find other ways easier than speaking e.g. drawing, writing, using objects to represent experiences, relationships or parts of yourself – or maybe speaking indirectly through dreams, imagery and metaphors. Having made sense of their experiences people can usually think more clearly, make decisions, take action.

Particular techniques can be useful: sex therapy for sexual problems; EMDR and healthy coping mechanisms for flashbacks, bad dreams and troubling symptoms after trauma (incl. repeated minor traumas and burn-out); cognitive behavioural work can help change unwanted patterns of thinking and behaviour. Different things suit different people for all sorts of reasons and I would never push you to do anything.

Examples of common general relationship issues:

  • Affairs.
  • Communication and intimacy.
  • Control struggles.
  • Loss of trust and respect.
  • Life transitions e.g. becoming a family retirement.
  • Wider family issues and disagreements e.g. in-laws step-family.
  • Arguments e.g. over money, parenting, time for the relationship, who does what, petty things.
  • Patterns of behaviour and communication from previous relationships or family of origin, including effects of abuse.
  • Effects on the relationship of illness, disability, depression etc. (either partner or family).
  • Effects on the relationship of the wider world work discrimination, financial problems.

Examples of common sexual issues:

  • Confusion over sexual identity.
  • Lack of sexual information and knowledge.
  • Loss of interest and desire in men and women, including effects of relationship problems.
  • Body image.
  • Painful intercourse (men and women).
  • Life changes e.g. pregnancy, menopause, aging.
  • Loss of confidence including erection problems and starting new relationships e.g. after being divorced or widowed.
  • Orgasm problems in men and women (incl. premature and retarded ejaculation).
  • Effects on the sexual relationship of physical problems e.g. illness, disability.
  • Effects of previous sexual experiences, including rape and sexual abuse.
  • The role of pornography or sexual addictions.