Frequently asked questions

red phone questions
Answers to these questions can also be found in About Me if you require more information.

What happens in a session?

In my experience, people are often nervous when they attend counselling for the first time. The first session is about getting to know you a little and finding out why you have requested counselling. Hopefully, you will start to feel at ease as we discuss your circumstances. I will let you know what to expect based on what you tell me. It is also an opportunity for you to decide whether counselling feels right. It is a good idea to go by your instincts and how comfortable you feel after the first session. We will formulate some goals together and decide how to proceed from there. It is helpful if you come to sessions prepared with things to talk about.

How many sessions am I likely to need?

It is difficult to answer this question as everybody has different needs. It usually becomes clearer after the first session. There are many influences on the number of sessions you may have, such as the severity or complexity of the problem, how much time you have available, affordability or whether an agency such as ACC or Victim Support is funding counselling.

What are your qualifications?

I completed a Bachelor of Education from Massey University. Papers included education, psychology and counselling. Following that, I gained a Diploma in Counselling & Family Therapy from Human Development and Training Institute of NZ.  I am an ACC Sensitive Claims Provider and a Victim Support provider. NZ Association of Counsellors expects ongoing training as part of their professional requirements.

What kind of counselling do you practise?

Over the 25+ years of my counselling career, I have developed a range of skills. My early training was influenced by Social Systems Theory, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Solution-focused Brief Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy and Client-centred Therapy.

How much does it cost?

I charge $120 per 50-60 minutes.

I am also a provider for other agencies, which means you may apply to them for funding. You may find you are eligible for a subsidy for counselling. I am registered with ACC Sensitive Claims (Sexual abuse) and Victim Support (Trauma).

You can contact me on 027 488 9236 or email me on liz@summerville.co.nz. I am based in Birkenhead, North Shore, Auckland.