3 Counties Counselling Service

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Welcome. I am Peter Eldridge, who was a Counsellor, Psychotherapist, Supervisor and EMDR Practitioner.


If you had hoped for my help and wonder where else to turn...

I'm afraid I know of no one else who works ‘exactly like me’ so I can only refer you to the ‘Find a Therapist’ section of the website of the EMDR Association UK.

Everyone there is an EMDR Europe Accredited EMDR Practitioner or (higher level) Clinical Consultant (=Supervisor).

Choose one that is professionally a Psychotherapist or Counsellor and not a Psychologist or Psychiatrist (the former two usually charging considerably smaller fees than the latter two). Then ask if they use Philip Manfield’s FLASH technique within EMDR Phase 4 (the desensitisation of past traumatic events) as it is far less re-traumatising, and considerably quicker to process than the ‘Standard Protocol’ EMDR Phase 4.

Good luck – I hope you find the help for which you seek.

I worked with adult individuals and couples. My clients brought problems
(often caused by underlying trauma and PTSD or Complex PTSD),
like those shown below:

Where I Used To Help

- Abuse- Panic attacks
- Addictions- Anger outbursts
- Anxiety- Relationship problems
- Bereavement & Grief - Sexual problems
- Bullying- Shame or Guilt
- Depression- Stress
- Pain- Traumatic experiences
- Eating disorders- Workplace problems
- Phobias- Obsessions/Compulsions

…and many other issues which also prevent people from leading happy, fulfilled, confident, meaningful lives, loving and being loved in return.

Where I used to work

Prior to the Coronavirus pandemic, I worked in person from a dedicated room in my home in Fleet, Hampshire (handy for much of Hampshire, Surrey, and Berkshire – hence the name “3 Counties Counselling Service” - though many clients came from further afield).

You can read my Privacy Policy in this link.

Later I worked online, or sometimes by telephone, with clients from anywhere in the UK and Southern Ireland. My experience since 22nd March 2020 showed that online face-to-face work, preferably using Zoom, was at least as effective as in-person face-to-face work. I even worked by telephone, including providing EMDR therapy by telephone, especially when online technology occasionally failed, or where privacy was unobtainable during Covid lockdown.

When working face-to-face, but online, I used Zoom predominantly, or VSee if required, on my PC. For clients without a PC, laptop or tablet, or with privacy difficulties, I could use WhatsApp Video on our smartphones, if necessary. All three encrypted our conversations end to end, for confidentiality, though I recommended Zoom for greatest privacy protection and communication bandwidth.

I was a friendly, non-judgemental, empathic, compassionate, authentic, qualified, experienced and professionally insured counsellor & psychotherapist. I was a professionally Registered and Senior Accredited Member of BACP, the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and was also an EMDR Europe Accredited EMDR Practitioner.

I had been in therapeutic practice since 2005, both under the name
3 Counties Counselling Service (as here) and also as Objective Reach Counselling Services (which is how I used to appear on the BACP website in their ‘Find A Therapist’ directory).

I offered (for Adults) :-

Counselling and Psychotherapy
Couples/Relationship Counselling.
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) Therapy.
Therapeutic Supervision of counsellors, psychotherapists and those in helping professions

I spent a lot of my time keeping up to date with professional developments, new ways of working and current research into the psycho-somatic way that the brain and the body work together, so I could work effectively, efficiently, powerfully and with least upset to my clients.

See how the counselling process works in About Counselling, and what many 3CCS clients said in Client Feedback.

What I Had Learned

My clients brought me many different life problems (see ‘Where I Used To Help’ above), yet we invariably overcame them together by focusing on the past traumas that underlied them and the PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) that could result. Not just Traumas with a big ‘T’, like warfare, explosion, earthquake, tsunami, avalanche, major road traffic accident, rape, serious illness, etc., but also traumas with a small ‘t, that very often originate in childhood. These are now called ACE, Adverse Childhood Experiences, which may be caused by any of the five forms of abuse (mental abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, physical neglect or emotional neglect) from any source or by ‘other attachment wounds’, i.e. children feeling unsafe &/or unloved because either parent (or other primary carer) becomes absent, drunk, high on drugs, psychotic, depressed, or imprisoned, or the parents fight in front of them or within earshot. The impact of such small 't' traumas is increasingly being referred to as c-PTSD, or Complex PTSD.

Anyone interested in finding their own ACE Score (max 10) can do so by typing “ACE Questionnaire” into Google (or other search engine) and completing the 10-question version. The higher the score above zero, the more likely you are to have ACE-caused traumas that stay with you in later life. Research showed that a high ACE score increases your likelihood of unsatisfactory relationships, professional failures, addictions, poor mental and physical health, unwanted pregnancies, imprisonment, and PTSD.

I helped people with past traumas, that still upset them to think about, and turned them into ‘just memories’ that no longer upset or disturb them, including changing negative self-thoughts into positive ones and eradicating accompanying long-held, uncomfortable body sensations.

Such traumas subject us to frequent losses of rationality (so we can’t think straight) and we become angry, anxious, panicked, fearful, despairing or depressed. Then we are prey to abuse, addictions, OCD, eating disorders, self-harm, suicidality and loss of self-esteem, self-worth and self-confidence.

Couples with one or both partners thus affected will have great difficulty communicating honestly and will easily succumb to frequent rows, tiffs, disagreements or fights. When I worked with couples (or individuals concerned by poor relationship with their spouse or partner) I encouraged more honest communication (of feelings as well as thoughts) and helped them see each other as normal human beings who are just struggling with their own ACE (and the traumas causing, and the PTSD resulting) leading to quite normal negative outcomes that we could do something about together.

I was fortunate to have learned (in September 2018) a new variant of EMDR (originally named by Francine Shapiro as Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) called FLASH. The key difference from standard protocol EMDR is that FLASH is less re-traumatising, acts much faster and causes no emotional ‘meltdown’ or dissociation. For the most part my clients could think of a lovely happy memory, instead of the past trauma, yet their brain still reduced the upsetting past trauma to ‘just a non-disturbing memory of past experience’.

I usually offered 60-minute sessions, but could do longer ones for clients who prefered fewer, longer sessions, especially as I approached my retirement date (15th October 2021). Online work involves no travel (time or cost) so lent itself perfectly well to the shorter, cheaper 60 minute sessions, but sessions could be 90 minutes or 120 minutes if desired by my clients.

I drew upon the following major ways of working with clients:
Person-Centred Counselling, Integrative Counselling, Existential Counselling, Transactional Analysis (TA), Gestalt Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy and aspects of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy and I integrated many relevant complementary aspects of Psychodynamic and Cognitive Behavioural Therapies where helpful..

By the way, unlike many other EMDR practitioners, I chose to increase client accessibility to EMDR by charging no more for it than for any other therapeutic work I might also perform.

Many other frequently asked questions are answered in Common Questions.

Why See a Therapist in Private Practice?

NHS Mental Health Services are free, but are not able (or even designed or funded) to meet anything close to the needs of the country's population, and often have long waiting lists. Parity with physical health care has long been promised by various governments, but remains far from delivery. Many people in the UK are finding their lives to be tough, worrying, insecure, unfulfilled, lonely and sometimes without meaning or purpose, let alone having current fears regarding Brexit and Coronavirus. Coronavirus, in particular is causing significant increases across the nation in anxiety and depression, and the NHS focus on it to protect our physical health reduces the availability of their already inadequate mental health services.

Few of us have ‘simple, happy, comfortable lives’. Stress and anxiety is rising, as are fear and panic. Depression overwhelms ever more people. Addictions and self-harm increase. Social networking overwhelms the young, often leading to online bullying (‘trolling’ causing young suicides to increase). Many people currently feel despair, hopelessness and helplessness.

Psychiatrists, psychologists and medical clinicians diagnose an ever-growing range of mental illnesses and disorders. Pharmaceutical drugs are prescribed in growing quantities, despite many often doing next to no good, or even more harm than good. Concentrating on cure (or even ‘slight improvement’), they rarely understand the origins of the conditions they diagnose, and that they derived from Nurture, not Nature. Adverse Childhood Experiences, and prior traumatic adult experiences, are not generally explored. One in five children aged 5 to 16 have a diagnosable mental health condition. Half of all mental health problems are established by the age of 14, and three-quarters by age 24.

Yet talking therapies can help undo the previous harm. The ever more understood workings of the brain, and its relationship with the body, inform us therapists to a much greater degree nowadays.

Counsellors and psychotherapists, if aware, can use newer therapies (primarily, most enduringly and most efficiently, EMDR) to undo the harms of past traumas (for ever) and help their clients to stay calm and in control of their lives, and to learn to work to keep their relationships harmonious and mutually supportive. These are significantly less available under the NHS, which prefers to use treatments based predominantly on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), hoping you can ‘think your way out of an upset’ (when the upset may make straight thinking the last thing you can do!) so that explains why so many people are investing in private practice therapy, if they can afford it.

It involves cost, but what could be more important to fund than your health and well-being?

3CCS was created to serve the local community in the area where Hampshire, Surrey and Berkshire come together, including Aldershot, Ascot, Ash, Binfield, Blackwater, Camberley, Cove, Chobham, Crondall, Crowthorne, Egham, Elstead, Eton, Farnborough, Farnham, Fleet, Frimley, Guildford, Hartley Wintney, Lightwater, Odiham, Reading, Sandhurst, Southwood, Staines, Sunningdale, Sunninghill, Twyford, Winkfield, Woking, Wokingham, Woodley and Yateley, but now serves, via online or telephone counselling, the rest of the UK and Southern Ireland in those less safe, Covid-impacted times.

I was a counsellor and psychotherapist offering counselling & psychotherapy on-line, not only to Hampshire, Surrey and Berkshire, but also to the UK as a whole and to Southern Ireland
I worked with anxiety, anger, bereavement, depression, despair, stress, workplace problems, family issues, panic attacks, relationships, gender and sexual problems, rape, bullying, stress, trauma, abuse, drugs, alcohol, anger management, living with dementia, parenting problems, diversity, and many other issues, by offering person-centred, integrative, humanistic, psychodynamic, gestalt, TA, existential, cognitive-behavioural and sensorimotor approaches, and EMDR therapy. Other words to help you find me online included: berkshire, hampshire, surrey, psychotherapy, psychotherapist, psychotherapists, therapy, therapist, therapists, counselling, counsellor, counsellors, couple, couples, partners, marriage, marital, relationship, relationships, anxiety, panic, fear, anger, despair, hopelessness, helplessness and depression, emdr and common misspellings such as counselor, counselors, counselling, edmr, edrm and erdm

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