Therapists practise in all walks of life and all parts of society, from NHS clinics to workplaces and education. They are trained to deal with a range of situations, helping people to cope with such issues as anxiety and bereavement, relationship difficulties, sexual and racial issues, child abuse and trauma, or personal problem solving.
We use the word 'therapy' to cover talking therapies, such as counselling, psychotherapy and coaching. Therapy offers a safe, confidential place to talk to a trained professional about your feelings and concerns. You might talk about difficult events in your life or your relationships and emotions. Or you might have negative thoughts and behaviours that you want to change.
Therapists will not give you advice or solve your problems for you. They will listen to your story, helping you to understand yourself better and make positive changes in your life.
People often choose to have therapy because they are experiencing difficulties and distress in their lives. But you don't have to be in crisis to have therapy. Here's an A-Z of some of the issues therapy can help with.
What is relationship counselling? How can therapy improve your relationships? BACP member Cate Campbell explains how counselling can help.
What is stress? How do you deal with stress? BACP member Hansa Pankhania explains how counselling can help.
What are eating disorders? How do you know if you, or a loved one, have an eating disorder. BACP member Susie Pinchin explains how counselling can help if you have problems with food or abnormal eating habits.
We explain the different ways you may be able to access counselling or psychotherapy, depending upon your individual circumstances and the services available in your area.
Using the BACP Register and our online therapist directory can help you make sure that the therapist you see is qualified and works to professional standards.
Our online therapist directory is a paid for directory where BACP members can advertise to potential clients. Only registered or accredited members or accredited services can advertise on the directory. Most of those listed are private therapists who charge for their services.
While therapy sessions can take many different forms, we outline what you can expect, particularly from your important first session.
There are many different types of therapy, such as CBT, family therapy or person centred therapy. We explain some of the different approaches.
If you are worried about a relative or friend who is going through a difficult time, we suggest ways you can support them and find professional help.
Going for therapy is a big step to take and it can be very distressing if it doesn’t seem right. ‘Ask Kathleen’ is a confidential service which can answer your questions or help you with any concerns you have about your therapy or your therapist.
For further information and advice, see our list of helplines, websites and contacts from other organisations, or download our leaflets.
If you have any comments or would like to share your story, please email us at email@example.com
Protecting the public
How we safeguard clients and raise public confidence in the counselling professions
BACP Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapists
The BACP Register is a public record of therapists who meet our standards for registration.
How we uphold high standards of proficiency and ethical practice within the counselling professions.