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Counselling support

Find out about our confidential, one-to-one social, emotional and psychological support sessions for people living with a visible difference.

At Changing Faces, we offer confidential, one-to-one social, emotional and psychological counselling and support sessions to people of all ages in the UK with a condition, mark or scar that affects their appearance (a visible difference).

We know that having a visible difference can have an impact on your mental health and wellbeing. We have trained wellbeing practitioners who can provide guidance and support, over a series of sessions, to help you cope with your appearance-related worries and concerns.

Please note: We are unable to offer face-to-face sessions at the moment due to COVID-19. Sessions will happen via telephone or video call – whichever you feel most comfortable with.

Read on for more information about the service. If you’re ready to submit an enquiry about accessing sessions, please click the button to visit our Support and Information Line and fill in the form:

SUBMIT AN ENQUIRY NOW

Social and emotional support for children and young people

Amazing service, honestly do not know how we would have got through the tough times without their help and support.

Parent of a 10-year-old boy with eczema

Your practitioner will aim to build a trusting and compassionate relationship with you as a young person or with a child and your family, in a safe, confidential space. We offer up to 12 sessions. We also support parents to cope themselves and to provide help to their child.

This gives the opportunity to:

Counselling and support for adults and young people

My counsellor listened to me with empathy and understanding. I felt able to talk about anything with her. I now feel so much more confident and stronger. This has been a life-changing experience and I feel so grateful to have received your support. Thank you.

Adult client with an eye condition

Counselling and support is for people living with a visible difference and focuses on mild to moderate mental health difficulties. We offer time-limited support with a focus on “here and now”.

We offer up to 12 sessions to give you an in-depth chance to reflect on the emotions, difficulties and challenges you might have around your visible difference.

To get the most from counselling and support at Changing Faces, your main issues need to focus primarily on the emotional and social effects of your visible difference on your life. Be prepared to talk about how your visible difference affects your mental health, wellbeing, social and public life.

You need to feel ready to fully engage in the sessions and able to commit to attending a regular appointment (weekly or every two weeks) between 9am and 5.30pm on a weekday.

Working with a counsellor enables you to:

  • Gain a different perspective and gain greater insight into your situation.
  • Explore your life challenges in relation to the impact of your visible difference and generate your own meanings and understandings of it.
  • Consider ways you can engage with life more fully, with greater ease and with less struggle, and meet your goals and aims to live the life you want.

Whilst counselling and support can be extremely rewarding, it is not for everybody. It requires motivation and a willingness to examine yourself and change – the process is not always straightforward.

However, if you’re at the point where you’re willing to explore your life as honestly and openly as possible, then it is likely counselling support might be for you.

How does it work?

Throughout sessions we have built such rapport with Julie, she shows such efficiency and empathy not just to [our child], but to my family too and we talk about everything as we feel so comfortable and with Julie’s previous profession as a nurse, we feel she has a lot of knowledge and understanding of [our child] and my family.

Parent of an 8-year-old girl with scarring

Firstly, there will be a call with our Support and Information Line to explore the best options of support for you at this time.

Secondly, if counselling and support feels like the right option, we will arrange an assessment session – this is a 50-minute space to explore your needs with a practitioner. We will ask about your visible difference and the impact of this on your mental health and wellbeing, as well as explore any other issues you may have. The wait for an assessment is between 10-12 weeks.

Thirdly, once agreed, 50-minute counselling and support sessions will take place at a regular time weekly or fortnightly. You may have up to 12 sessions, depending on what is right for you – this will be discussed with your practitioner as you go along.

All sessions are confidential. Wendy, one of our wellbeing practitioners, has penned a blog explaining her role and how she supports clients to find their voice and be their true selves.

I found the practical tips very useful. I am extremely grateful for this service.

Parent of 3-year-old girl with craniofacial tumour

Is there anyone we would not be able to offer counselling and support to?

Changing Faces is not a mental health or a crisis service – if you are concerned about your general mental health or feel you are at risk, please speak to your GP to get the appropriate mental health support.

We do not work with people who have:

  • Complex mental health issues, such as psychosis, bipolar illness or body dysmorphic disorder or personality disorder.
  • An active or recent risk of significant self-harm or suicide. We may see people who have such thoughts but not if they have active intent.
  • Major trauma.
  • Eating disorders.
  • Addiction problems.
  • Psycho-sexual issues.

In the above instances we would recommend a discussion with your GP who will be able to advise you about the most appropriate service for you and make a referral. Please visit our urgent support page for details of the organisations to contact if you need help now

Request one-to-one sessions

To find out more about how you might be able to have counselling and support sessions at Changing Faces, please contact our Support and Information Line:

Request one-to-one sessions

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Frequently asked questions

Some of the most common questions asked about our services – take a look before getting in touch to see if your query is already answered.

Support & Information Line

To arrange an assessment session, contact our support and information line by calling our friendly team or filling out an online form.