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Please contact me using the attached form* in order to arrange an initial consultation 

 

Sam2016I worked as a dental nurse for many years in London before beginning my own therapeutic journey. This led me to train as a therapist. I undertook a three year integrative training course; enabling me to draw on different approaches. Primarily Person Centred and Psychodynamic Theories, encompassing CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy).

Following this, I worked for Marie Curie in a community setting, helping patients and their families cope with terminal illness and palliative care. After this, I worked in various GP practices, seeing patients referred from the doctors struggling with a huge variety of issues such as:

  • Eating disorders,
  • Addictions,
  • Childhood Abuse and Trauma,
  • PTSD (Post traumatic stress disorder),
  • Low self esteem,
  • Depression,
  • Anxiety,
  • Phobias,
  • Adult trauma and Domestic Violence,
  • Relationships
  • Bereavement.

I moved to Devon in 2003 and in 2010, I trained as a specialist couple counsellor with the Relate Institute where I have been working ever since. In 2016, I trained as a specialist Psycho-Sexual Therapist which I continue with Relate and also privately. This training enables me to work effectively with sexual dysfunctions and difficulties such as:

  • Erectile dysfunction,
  • Loss of libido,
  • Premature ejactulation,
  • Vaginismus,
  • Menopausal issues,
  • Delayed ejaculation and
  • Anorgasmia (inability to orgasm),

Sexual therapy is a very different process to general therapy. Based in the CBT theory, it works with the Sensate Focus Programme; pioneered by Masters and Johnson in the 1950s and 60s. It is a very well proven process with treatment programmes that are highly effective, with the possibility of instigating major  improvements in your sex life, regardless of gender and / or sexual orientation.

In my experience, often clients come for psychosexual therapy as survivors of abuse (sexual, physical, emotional). The psychosexual therapy programme can be too challenging to dive straight into so I help clients manage this by having devised a pre-programme strategy. This can ease clients into the process, leading to a greater chance of success with the programme overall.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Diploma in Integrative Counselling
  • Working with Mental health issues Course (Relate)
  • Domestic Violence Course
  • Advanced University Diploma in Couple Therapy
  • Bioenergetics
  • Postgraduate certificate in Psychosexual therapy
  • Divorce and how to help young people to cope
  • Working with LGBTQ.
  • Suicide Awareness training
  • Dissociative Identity disorder
  • Working with survivors of trauma
  • Post-graduate Diploma in Supervision

 

I’ve undertaken a post-graduate diploma in supervision. I felt that I was at a point in my career where I thought that it was an appropriate next step to qualify as a supervisor. This allows me to facilitate supervision in groups, individuals and in a therapeutic setting or in a management setting.

 

Find Out More About The Services I Can Provide or Contact Me Now

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side01MY APPROACH

It is my experience that we may come to a crossroads in our life and the ways in which we have been coping no longer work in the way that they did. We have different choices at this point; these choices define the quality of our relationships, work experiences and overall; life satisfaction. 

We know that a lot of our struggles can originate from our past including: childhood experiences, traumas and family dynamics. We sub-consciously replay a lot of these experiences in our current relationships leading to stress, depression, anxiety and general dissatisfaction.

It is my aim, in order to make sense of the complexity and messiness in our heads, that we untangle the ‘bundle of Christmas lights’ in our minds. This can allow us to begin to make some different choices and affect how we feel as individuals and in relationships.

Using different theories for example in couple therapy, I would use systemic theory, which looks at the couple as a system; a little bit like a central heating system; so if there is a fault / blockage in one location in the system, the whole system would be affected. Working with couples or individuals I would draw on my understanding of psychodynamic and person-centred theories. Psychodynamic theory focusing on childhood experiences and person centred therapy is based on the Carl Rodgers theory of truly becoming who you are. 

We are attracted to our partners for many reasons; some of these being more materialistic (looks, money ect.), but we are mainly attracted to them through subconscious connections and we naturally home in on people who will allow us to replay family dynamics from the past as we have a natural drive to repair the difficulties we have experienced in our histories. This is partly why relationships can get complicated and end up feeling as though they are a competition as to who has the most work to do, who brings in the most money and other such situations. I aim to help couples understand their own struggles and how they feed into the family dynamic.

When we struggle as parents in a family, a lot of couples disagree around boundaries and discipline in children and this can be a major source of angst in couple relationships. We also need to consider the impact of arguments and disharmony on children, and having a secure base for teenagers and children can impact hugely on their mental health as they grow into adults.

WHAT TO EXPECT

When you contact me, I will invite you to come to an initial consultation for one hour. This will be where we discuss what you’re struggling with and your aims and goals.

Welcome to Samantha Blackmore's Orchard House Counselling Service. 

COVID-19 Update: We are currently living in challenging times, where most of us have a level of anxiety, from going to the shops to finance, and I'm aware this is causing difficulties in relationships and in families, adding extra pressures where we are already feeling overwhelmed. I'm working on skype, facetime, zoom, telephone and Microsoft teams. Orchard House usually operates as a business, however, in these unprecedented times, if finances are a concern, feel free to contact me and we can sort something out that could make it possible. 
 
 
It can feel daunting; finding a counsellor, but finding the right person for you can be life changing in a very positive way. In my view; there are two important aspects to finding a therapist: qualifications and experience. Arguably, another important aspect to me would be the connection and level of trust you feel with the counsellor.
 
 
 
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Every individuals needs are different; therefore there can’t be a, “One size fits all”, approach, rather an approach tailored to your individual wants and needs. Some people come to me and require short-term focused work. Others require longer-term psychotherapy. If the client desires short-term focused work, then I would focus on goals and strategies to help achieve them, whereas long-term psychotherapy would be focusing more on possible historical trauma/family of origin issues or abuse. Somewhere between the two is also achievable, we could discuss your requirements on our initial session. I have a comfortable, private consulting room in my home in Exmouth. I also have a consulting room in Southernhay, Exeter; conveniently situated near the City Centre and Cathedral. I offer a professional, non-judgemental and respectful service for my clients. Drawing on my specialist training, I am able to work progressively with individuals, couples and young people.