Wendy McLaughlin PGDip BSc Hons
Accredited UKCP RegEleven years post diploma experience
Talking Therapy for Young people
I began my career as a secondary school teacher of Physics, but became progressively more interested in the psychology of young people and those who work with them. After extensive travel in Europe and Asia, much by bicycle and including visits to Romanian and Tibetan Orphanages, I trained with the Tavistock Clinic in Observational Psychoanalytical work with children, Young People and Families. I worked at The Cherwell School from 2005 - 2015 as their first salaried school counsellor, setting up the Counselling service there and instigating the supervised voluntary Counselling provision that still exists there. I also ran Mindfulness groups there from 2013-2015.
In 2013 I gained my Accreditation with UKAHPP (United Kingdom Association of Humanistic Practitioners) and Registration with UKCP. My work meets the standards laid out by the PSA (Professional Standards Association).
I have attended courses in pottery, weaving, textiles, basket making, sand tray work, flute, silk painting, batik and underwent five years of personal Drama therapy. Creative approaches play an important part of my work with young people, and with adults too, where appropriate.
I still teach Physics A level at a local Sixth Form College on a part-time basis. This keeps me in touch with the experience of those of my clients who are still undergoing study. I am, in addition to this, employed by the University of Oxford as a clinical teaching assistant, working with fifth year medical students on communication skills specific to intimate examinations. I regularly attend the Lived Experience Conference which focuses on the contribution that expert patients make to the education of doctors. In this vein I am interested in the psychological aspects of illness and wellbeing. I have considerable experience working with people on acceptance of undiagnosed or functional disorders.
Counselling support for Adults
University Staff and students
Teachers and other school staff
In depth experience with young people
Play therapy and Sand Tray
Psychotherapeutic Dream work
Having had a long standing interest in Mindfulness, I developed a more regular practice, and received the Mindfulness in Schools Teaching Certificate in 2012. I have over 1,000 hours of personal mindfulness practice experience, and I practise mindfulness regularly. Mindful acceptance is central to my counselling approach.
My approach is generally speaking supportive, with non - judgemental awareness being a key part. I can help with affect regulation when emotions are overwhelming. The approach I use being a combination of cathartic and mindfulness based with some cognitive work to aid compassionate self awareness and to help to form a personal plan for a way forward.
Some of my clients gain great insight from looking at the emotional content of dreams. This is immensely rewarding work at a deeper level. It is a matter of personal choice as to whether embark on this kind of work.
When working with children, I employ a variety of creative techniques
Creative Expression Sessions with Younger Children
Some children that I see have sessions in creative writing and creative expression in which the emotional benefit is implicit in what, for the child, is simply a creative and engaging session with an interested adult. Sometimes this is offered instead of counselling, where the child might not be ready to talk, but parents want to know that an insightful and caring adult is sensitively engaging with their child, without actually engaging in formal counselling. We work with stories, paper craft, sand tray work, brief animation, puppetry, role play, dreams, a sense of wonder and magic, nature, poetry, colour and music. I can give weekly verbal feedback on the the session and am able to flag up emotional concerns to parents if they are apparent. With this arrangement I can work with your child and offer confidential support sessions to parents who have concerns.
I will endeavour to respond within 24 hours, often in fact within a few hours.
I support the following Charities with regular donations: Lumos, Oxfam and Amnesty Imternational.