In this issue

Here and now:

Spotlight: Breaking down taboos around sex
Charlene Douglas: ‘My sex education came from reading teen magazines and playground gossip’

Listen to Sally Brown's interview with Charlene Douglas on our special edition Therapy Today podcast

Reactions

The big issues:

In focus: Coping with COVID (free article)
How are counsellors adapting to the Covid-19 pandemic?

In practice: Working online
Sally Brown explores how we can work better online

The big interview: Rachel Freeth
Catherine Jackson interviews Rachel Freeth, person-centred psychiatrist

High-tech heartbreak
Is social media impacting on relationship break-ups, asks Wendy Bristow

Why does he want to hold my hand?
Elaine Rose helps an adoptive parent overcome her attachment issues

Where intuition hides
Blake Griffin Edwards discusses what it means to work intuitively

Regulars:

Turning point
‘My autism diagnosis changed everything’. Richard Turner draws wisdom from experience

It changed my life: Chris Tuck (free article)
‘I believe that I will be working on myself for the rest of my life, but this is not a bad thing. I have grown tremendously as a person’

Talking point: Anxiety management
How do you manage your emotional responses in times of uncertainty?

The bookshelf

Dilemmas: Online working
Our ethics team considers this month's dilemma

Analyse me
Doug Pazienza speaks for himself

Cover of Therapy Today, May 2020

Members and subscribers can download a pdf of this issue from the Therapy Today archive or listen to the podcast.

Welcome

When I interviewed members about the impact of the pandemic for this month’s In Focus feature, I was struck by the theme of hope and optimism that ran through many of the conversations. Several practitioners reported surprise at the positive impact the lockdown has had on clients’ mental wellbeing. Clients with long-term depression have seen an uplift in resilience. Those dealing with health anxiety have reported feeling less alone, now that much of the general population is sharing their anxiety. Many commented on a sense of collaboration, that they and their clients were ‘in this together’, facing an uncertain future, financial insecurity and a threat to their own and their loved ones’ health.

Most of us have had to transition to remote working with clients far faster than we would have liked, and BACP’s Ethics Hub has been inundated with members’ enquiries as a result. Ethics Consultant Stephen Hitchcock has answered some of the most common questions in the Dilemmas pages this month. You can also find a detailed exploration of the practicalities of online working in the In Practice feature, including how to make it sustainable for both you and your clients.

Do get in touch if you would like to share your experiences or contribute to Therapy Today. I recently joined the BACP Members’ Community Facebook group and will be checking in regularly. It seems like a lively and supportive community, so I urge you to join us. Has making connections ever been so important?

Sally Brown
Editor

In response to this health and economic crisis, we have demonstrated strength and growth in learning by adapting to different ways of working with clients, which only a few months ago would have been unimaginable.

While the priority has been to attend to our own physical health and emotional wellbeing and to tackle the strain of financial uncertainty, the compassion and constructive engagement I have seen among members have been outstanding.

The teams at BACP have been working to ensure there is structure and consistency across the Association for members and the public so we can continue to support you during this period and well into the future.

We have been tested beyond new limits, have adapted to change under enormous pressure, and are prepared for an increased demand on our services. Necessity is the mother of invention, they say, and our collective response rightly deserves applause.

Natalie Bailey
BACP Chair