Our Practice Director Jenny Halson was featured in the Guardian’s Weekend magazine this weekend.
Jenny was included as one of 10 therapists around the UK interviewed for an article called’ Britain On The Couch’. Follow the link for the full article, but in the mean time here is a copy of her interview:
Jenny Halson: psychotherapist, practising for two and a half years, Leicester. Fee: £50 for 50 minutes
I advertise that I am interested in worries about appearance, and I do get a lot of people with body dysmorphic condition. It’s mostly women, but not exclusively, and it’s not just about dieting and size. For example, someone may be very concerned about what they see as really dark bags under their eyes, but the therapist is not seeing that. This is not just younger women. There’s a huge pressure on everyone to look a certain way, and it’s coming from everywhere. Someone might be worried about thinning hair one day and go online for information. Later, they won’t feel anxious, but when they go back on the internet, there will be ads popping up about it, reminding them of their worries.
Internet culture is coming up a lot. One concern is an undertone of watchfulness. I hesitate to call it stalking, but it is close. What I mean is the distress people can feel when they become addicted to watching their ex during a relationship breakdown. A lot of clients say they don’t want to check – by looking on Twitter, Facebook, etc – but feel they have to. They are seeking the relief of not finding something. If you then come upon a tweet about an ex on a night out, proving they don’t miss you, it’s painful. It used to be that the effort of leaving your house and driving past your ex’s would stop you, but now it’s too easy and people can’t stop themselves. I want to say, “Just don’t do it!” But I don’t work directively like that, and it wouldn’t stop them anyway.
As a partner in a city-centre practice, about a third of my clients are Asian. When racism comes into the news – an EDL march, say – it comes into the consulting room, too. Among a lot of my clients, whether they are Sikh, Hindu or Muslim, there will be anxieties, such as, “Am I safe?”; “Will people think I am Muslim because I have brown skin?”; “What do people really think when they’re talking to me?”