COUNSELLINGUpdate Monday 29th July 2021: Unfortunately, we will not be taking any referrals for our general counselling service until September 2021, due to limited capacity. Please check back for updates in September. We are still taking referrals for our Domestic Abuse Counselling service, please get email email@example.com if you are interested in this. There are also a number of other charities that offer LGBT+ support at the moment, including ELOP who also offer LGBT+ counselling. There is Islington Mind (Outcome), a day centre for LGBT+ people with mental health problems, who also offer therapy. There is also Pink Therapy which is a listing of private LGBT+ counsellors. Our partners SASH also offer free counselling for Westminster, Kensington & Chelsea, or Hammersmith & Fulham residents for issues related to sexual health and wellbeing.They have some LGBTQ+ counsellors available and have a relatively short waiting list at the moment. *********Please note that due to the corona virus pandemic we are currently unable to offer any in-person face to face counselling. We are only able to take new referrals for video counselling by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org For more information on the other mental health support we can offer during lockdown please see our Corona Virus Update Page here.********* If you are interested in Online Support please also make sure to read about the set-up of the sessions and technical requirements here. Please note that we are not an emergency service. If you feel suicidal or like self-harming, please go directly to your nearest A&E or talk to your GP. You can also call the Samaritans on 116 123 (24/7) or the LGBT Switchboard helpline 0300 330 0630 (10am-10pm) for more immediate support. Both helplines above also provide support in non-emergency situations, in case you just wanted to have a chat with someone. If something is troubling you, it can be worth spending some time thinking and talking about why this may be happening. The LGBT community might have many issues it has to deal with including:
- Lack of confidence: worried about failing, never feeling good enough, feeling judged
- Depression: feeling isolated, lonely, empty, tearful, unloved, suicidal
- Destructive behaviour: harming yourself, abusive relationships, alcohol, drugs
- Bereavement: loss, anger, loneliness, sadness & depression
- Relationship difficulties: partners, sexual and emotional intimacy issues, family and friends, colleagues, commitment, jealousy, abuse
- Family issues: partners, children, parenting, separation and divorce, homesickness
- Sexuality: coming out to yourself and others, exploring your beliefs and attitudes to gay sex and the "scene", exploring your sexual identity and how it affects your lifestyle choices
- Gender: living as trans or non-binary, questioning your gender, transitioning, transphobia
What we offer
- One-to-one counselling sessions to LGBT people and for those who may be questioning their sexual orientation or gender identity
- 12 weeks of counselling with a volunteer counsellor who is either fully qualified or working towards qualification/accreditation. All our counsellors, supervisors and assessors work within the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) code of ethics, or an equivalent professional body. Counsellors who volunteer their time for London Friend all identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex or Queer.
- Financial contribution: As we incur costs, such as building overheads and the provision of professional clinical supervision for counsellors, we invite people accessing the counselling service to make a regular financial contribution in accordance with their income. This will be discussed at your assessment.
LGBT Domestic Abuse Counselling
- As part of the London LGBT Domestic Abuse Partnership we can offer free counselling to LGBT people who have experienced domestic abuse.
- If you would like to make a referral into the LGBT Domestic Abuse Partnership, call the National LGBT Domestic Violence Helpline on: 0300 999 5428 or 0800 9995428 or contact email@example.com for more information.
- Contact us via telephone on 020 7833 1674 and, if counselling is appropriate, we will meet you for an initial assessment interview from which together we can agree an appropriate way forward.
- Please note that our counselling service is very popular and experiences a heavy demand; as such we operate a waiting list, and it may be several weeks or months before we are able to offer you an initial assessment. You may wish to access our coming out or social groups whilst you are waiting. If you would like to speak to somebody for support whilst you are waiting you can contact our partners Switchboard seven days a week. You can also try ELOP or the Metro Centre or Spectra who provide LGBT counselling services in London.