PENELOPE DENNY

All of us face challenges and experience problems from time to time, this can sometimes put pressure on our relationships, affecting our psychological well-being and of the people we care about.  I work with relationships, episodes of family and work stress, life-transitions, child adolescent and adult mental health issues, sexuality, identity, parenting, trauma and the impact of SEND issues on family life.  

I work with the whole family or with different combinations of family members such as couples, individuals or siblings, with the aim to maximise on the couple or family’s strengths and to support individuals to overcome the problems they are experiencing. I support you in therapy to express and explore difficult thoughts and emotions safely, appreciate each-other’s needs, build on strengths and make useful changes in relationships and family life. My style of therapy is conversational, interactive and I ask questions to help us think through whatever is on your mind. In theoretical terms, my practice is based on a relational model of therapy as people live in many kinds of relationships. So much of how we see the world and understand ourselves is influenced by the people we are and the cultures that surround us.

I have over twenty years of therapeutic experience, I hold an MSc in Systemic Family and Couple Psychotherapy and I am accredited with the UKCP (United Kingdom of Clinical Practitioners) and a registered member of the Association of Family Therapy. Initially trained as an Arts Psychotherapist before qualifying as a Systemic Family and Couple Psychotherapist. Over time, I have worked in a variety of settings where I have worked with families and children individually in CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service), couples and families in adult mental health NHS, and providing specialist parenting coaching as being a parent is one of the most challenging jobs we will ever undertake!

I have extensive experience of working in teaching, inclusion and education leadership and so I understand the impact of additional educational needs on young peoples’ well-being.  For children or young people in your family, particularly those who often struggle in classrooms or show distress through challenging behaviour, I am able to offer individual and family sessions. ADHD, ASD, their associated conditions and impacts on education and family life are the main areas we will explore together. I work with families, couples and individuals that are seeking therapy for a variety of reasons.

Family work 

Families come into therapy for a variety of reasons. Common issues are separation, parenting, unresolved family trauma, intra-cultural issues, sibling conflict, a mental health diagnosis or educational issues. Other issues include illness, making the transition into becoming a parent, parent coaching, ADHD or adapting to parenting an adolescent, bereavement, work stress and wanting to improve family communication.

Couples 

I provide a safe therapeutic space for LGBTQ+ and heterosexual partnerships to make sense of what is going on in their relationship. Common issues that couples seek therapy for include: infidelity, parenting and different parenting styles, fertility, trust, work stress, anxiety, depression, divorce, separation, psycho-sexual issues, partner and personal illness and transitional life changes such as becoming parents.

Individuals

Some people seek out individual therapy as a space to explore struggles and worries in their own space and time. Sometimes individual sessions are offered prior to a planned piece of family work, where coming together immediately might need some more thinking about and preparation, especially where there is conflict.

It is always my aim to make therapy sessions accessible and purposeful. I take pride in the feedback that children, adolescents, parents and couples find me warm, creative and relatable. When you contact me, I will arrange an initial 30min phone call to hear a bit more about the issues you are seeking help for, so that we can think together what the therapy might look like and if I am the right kind of couple and family psychotherapist for you. 

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