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Carrie Munday - OCST 1 Online Counselling Skills Diploma
I think my clients are a lot like you. Whether witness to or victim of, they too were left traumatised by serious events such as domestic abuse, rape, violent attacks, childhood abuse and major accidents etc – being either recent or historic; reported or not.
Like you they were plagued with feelings such as anxiety, depression, shame, guilt and powerlessness. Life was hard; they didn’t want to get out of bed and face the day. What had previously been normal day to day stuff now felt overwhelming. They hoped as time passed things would improve and for some, where criminal proceedings were involved, they thought once the perpetrator was behind bars then everything would go ‘back to normal’ only to find this was not the case.
Like you, they wanted to lead a ‘normal’ life. They wanted to be active, to have fun, go to work, to socialise, have close relationships, travel etc. They wanted to feel confident and content however, their trauma had changed all that and by the time they came to me they believed life would now be just surviving and existing rather than actively living. Crippling panic attacks, recurring nightmares & flashbacks, hyper vigilance which left them constantly looking over their shoulder or sitting with their backs to the wall scanning the nearest exit were commonplace. They had tried everything to make things better. Strategies included staying at home with the windows and doors locked, self medicating with drink and drugs, self harming, avoiding people and places and going to the GP for medication. For many, suicide felt like an option. They knew what they were doing only offered short term relief and ultimately wasn’t helping but they didn’t know what else to do. They had gone from their ‘normal’ life to being a prisoner of their trauma.
My personal experience of trauma came with the very sudden death of my beloved father. Life was good until the fateful day when he was found dead in bed having suffered a massive heart attack during the night. When I received the phone call with the news, in that instant the world I knew stopped. Everything and everyone around me was still the same yet everything had changed – it felt surreal.
After the funeral initially things seemed okay. I’d returned to work, I was socialising, I was functioning day to day however as time passed the more it became apparent that I’d been fooling not only others but myself; I was not okay. I began to experience flashbacks. My appetite vanished leaving me drastically underweight which in turn led to a lack of energy and focus not to mention catching every bug that was going around. Relationships with family and friends became strained, sleep was sporadic and depression took hold. How could I cope without my Dad, my ‘go to’ person for support and advice? I was taking ante depressants and out partying all the time by way of distraction. I knew it wasn’t healthy but I didn’t know what else to do. I was on an emotional roller coaster; one minute feeling like ‘I’ve got this’ and the next feeling overwhelmed and helpless.
I was lost and didn’t know which way to turn. I had good people around me offering words of support but I realised they were not the right people to help at this particular time so I started researching local Counsellors. One spoke of trauma being’ just a part of our story, not a roadmap of the future’ and that a ‘new normal’ was possible. That was it! I realised I’d assumed everything would be the same again but how could it be? My Dad was gone. The penny dropped, I needed to work through my trauma and go forwards, rather than trying to go back.
Over the following weeks I learned that what I was experiencing was not uncommon. The flashbacks didn’t mean I was going mad and could be stopped with a few simple steps – and they did stop. I learned better coping strategies and slowly but surely I began to feel better. Over the next few years life was really good; I’d never have believed it possible but it was. I knew I wanted to be able to help others the way I had been helped so I embarked on a journey of 4 years studying and practicing before qualifying as a Counsellor. As a result of my personal experience I was drawn towards working with trauma and undertook further training with an organisation specialising in supporting victims of crime and this; has been my passion ever since.
I am proud to say I have successfully worked with many clients helping them through their trauma; educating, supporting and empowering them as they travel the road to recovery and a brighter future.
Face to Face Counselling
Clearview Counselling, Gravesend, Kent is located in a quiet and comfortable residential venue, situated just off the Gravesend Central junction of the A2 and only a short drive from Dartford. It is easily accessed by public transport being only a 15 minute walk from Gravesend train station (2 stops from Dartford) and with local bus routes stopping outside. Car parking is free and readily available immediately outside. Click here for a map. Please note that unfortunately I am unable to provide wheelchair access.
I offer online counselling via video call, instant messenger live chat, email exchanges or via a blended approach - whatever is most appropriate for you. Click here to find out more.
Why Choose Clearview Counselling?
√ With my specific training and experience in working with trauma you will be working with a Counsellor who has an in depth understanding of the issues and complexities that trauma giving you the reassurance you are working with a counsellor with particular expertise in your situation.
√ I am accustomed to hearing and working with extremely distressing situations so you can feel reassured I can listen to whatever you are telling me without having to worry that it’s too awful to say or that you have to be protective of me as you may feel with your family/friends.
√ I practice from a private residence in an informal atmosphere and with no marketing materials on display so you will can come along confident that nobody knows why you are entering the property and feel comfortable and relaxed working through your difficulties.
√ Being based locally and easily accessible to those in the Gravesend and Dartford area, I am easy to reach making it easier for you to attend sessions without worrying about time or the added expense of travelling further afield which means that you can continue with your daily life with the minimum of disruption to family and working life.
√ Working with a counsellor in private practice means you are not limited regards the number of sessions available. You can choose when to stop, or maybe take a break and then resume giving you the knowledge you are in control. You also get to choose your counsellor rather than having one allocated to you which means you won’t have the anxiety of working with someone you may not feel comfortable with.
√ Private practice means you won’t have to wait months for an NHS or a charitable counsellor to become available so you can start to feel better quicker.
√ My not working in a multi practice gives you the assurance that any time you make contact it is with your counsellor only allowing you to feel safe in the knowledge your case is confidential and will allay any anxiety about speaking with strangers.
√ Testimonials from previous clients gives you the chance to read others experiences of working with me so you can relax in the knowledge that clients in a similar position to yours have been completely satisfied and are feeling much better meaning you can too.
√ Part of working with trauma will involve psycho education; learning what happens to the brain when traumatised, how symptoms can manifest physically and how to manage them. Working with me you will understand why you are experiencing symptoms, that what you are experiencing is normal and acquire new strategies to help you deal with them. This will ease the anxiety, shame, guilt etc which often comes with trauma meaning you will be able to re-engage with life (work, social, day to day chores).
√ Being a registered member of the BACP and ACTO confirms my training, qualifications and adherence to their Ethical Frameworks. This along with being registered with the Information Commissioners Office, being DBS checked and holding the appropriate professional insurance means you can be confident that I am meeting professional and ethical standards at all times.
"When I sought help from Carrie at Clearview I had concerns about anxiety/confidence but I decided to work with Carrie because she was friendly and caring and seemed a better fit than others I'd spoken to. I'm so pleased I did because now I feel better about myself and can start my life. My life is now back on track and are manageable when I break things down." - Jan 2020
"Carrie really helped me work through an extremely difficult period in my life through understanding my problems and also finding the root of the problems. The tools and exercises she gave me have been so helpful and I will use them for the rest of my life. She is so caring and a great listener and has completely changed my mindset to a positive one. I am so thankful and would recommend anyone to seek help through Carrie." - Dec 2019
"Carrie made me feel very welcome and comfortable. I was able to openly share my thoughts and feelings without judgement." - Aug 2019
"I am grateful for having such a service by my counsellor, I feel like I have a clearer perspective of life. She has allowed me to understand myself and encouraged me to be the best I can be. Thank you so much!" - May 2019
"Carrie has been very helpful in listening to my concerns and encouraging me to seek little ways to improve the balance of my life, which has had a very positive effect on my overall well being" - May 2019
Click here to read more client reviews