I am aware that at this time many people are afraid to come for counselling even though they badly need it. I can understand that fear. The Irish Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (IACP – accrediting body for counsellors) are in daily contact with its members, advising us on how to proceed. The EMDR Association are also in contact and advise EMDR therapists, like myself, how to proceed. I greatly appreciate that support. This morning the letter from the IACP mentioned that our clients need us now more than ever. That is a heartening statement. I think clients are worried about distance from the therapist. That is very understandable. I have rearranged my counselling room so that my clients are over 3 metres from me and I have purchased a piece of equipment for EMDR that facilitates this therapy. It is an eye scanner on a tripod, and is very useful and effective.
My worry is that this pandemic will be traumatic for many people. Being isolated is very difficult and as it may continue for at least 3 months may become traumatic. We are social beings and need to mix, and when this evolutionry trait is interfered with, there will be mental health consequences. I am worried that when it is over counsellors will be ovewhelmed by the number of those seeking help.
IT IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL TO GET SOME EXERCISE DURING THIS TIME. I LIVE IN A RURAL AREA AND GO FOR A CYCLE EVERY DAY, AND SOME DAYS TAKE MY WIFE FOR A DRIVE. I am also fortunate that I am a writer, and can be absorbed in my writing when I am not working. If you are out of work, take advantage of the time you have to develop your unique talents. Whatever your circumstances it is not wise to spend the day sitting. EXERCISE, EXERCISE, EXERCISE.
My wish for you and for those who come to me for counselling, is that you are safe. Best wishes. Jim