In this issue
School counselling in Saudi Arabia
Turki Alotaibi shares his hopes for improving services in his homeland
The CSSO model
Dave Stewart introduces a flexible, client-based way of working
Homelessness and identity
Surabhi Chaturvedi discusses the role of the therapeutic space
When two become three
Rebecca Kirkbride reflects on managing the parent-counsellor-child relationship
Entering the online world
Have you launched into online work? Emma Yates considers her experience
The good-enough supervisor
Cinzia Altobelli puts forward the key ingredients for a successful recipe
Ged King describes a well-established course in Liverpool
BACP’s membership structure is changing. Are you on the Register?
Appropriate levels of intervention
Neglect and executive function are linked and require consideration, says Graham Music
Reflecting on… throughput
Thinking about… transference in supervision
New columnist Anna Jacobs
Considering… saying sorry
Becoming a BACP adjudicator
John O’Dowd explains the role
From the chair
Welcome from the editor
It’s really important we have a raison d’être – lack of one leads to all sorts of mental health problems, as shown in our work arena by the number of teenage suicides. For me, sometimes it feels as if the whole world is moving on with their agenda and I’m left clinging at the margins.
It must be a little like this, of course, to be a homeless young person (see Surabhi Chaturvedi’s article in this issue), but why does it feel like that to me too, up here in my cottage? The thing is, a physical home is only one place you can feel dislodged from. I have a counselling home too. So that’s where I expect to feel comfortable, conduct my life and try to improve my practice. Yet every so often I find myself ejected. I then become aware of, and have to manage, incipient anger – awareness is always a good move (see Ged King’s piece) – but an awkward feeling of rejection persists. In times past, it has been about the price of counselling books, or the price of training or CPD courses if you add in hotels and travel. Today, it is once more about access. I want to read an article about aggression in 10-year-old boys both in and outside the counselling room, published in a professional journal. I can buy the whole issue at £113 or the article alone at £24. Or not.
Despite exhortations to use and contribute to research, the truth is that access to all kinds of write-ups about studies and trials is still elusive for many counsellors. We have a great resource in BACP’s own research journal – Counselling and Psychotherapy Research – but, for therapists working with children and young people, there is a whole world of useful evidence out there that we can’t get near. How are we to keep up or feel part of it?
I guess it’s good, then, to be able to read the variety of articles we have here – for instance, about counselling in a different part of the world (see Turki Alotaibi on Saudi Arabia) or a counselling model that works in Northern Ireland’s primary schools (Dave Stewart), or Graham Music’s illustration of levels in both executive function and counselling intervention. The truth is, I’m really grateful to the writers I commission for letting us share their world by agreeing to write for us (and I know from feedback to me personally how many of you, too, value their input). Whether it’s about online work (Emma Yates) or managing parental expectations (Rebecca Kirkbride), writers like these, issue after issue, let us feel as if we belong in their sphere – they’ve afforded us a place to hook our fingers into the wider counselling world.
But ultimately, it’s the children and young people who keep me in practice. While even one of them needs the help I can offer, I will pay the £24 and accept my cardboard box at the margins. If you’re clinging desperately amid loss of your job, shrinking budgets, mountains of paper work or changing work requirements, or even lack of access to research, hopefully you too will remember and be inspired to continue helping the children represented in the following pages. They’re our raison d’être.