Image by Scott M
One of the things that the internet and the development to the world wide web has made possible is on line counselling. Let me say up front that I think this is an exciting and very worthwhile development.
For those of us who have experienced face to face counselling, the idea of counselling over the internet (effectively email counselling) may seem very weird. Counselling face to face includes subtle changes to facial expression, posture, tone of voice and much else. All of this is lost over the internet. So, it is tempting to conclude that now worthwhile counseling could occur over the internet. I, personally, am convinced this is wrong. It is quite possible for people to explain their situation and problems and for a counsellor to provide worthwhile perspectives for them to think about. In brief: on line counselling is about information and thinking.
The great advantage of on line counseling, as I see it, is that it is appealing to a whole different group of people. Counseling on line has the anonymity and the safety of dealing with emotions cerebrally that email offers. Those who find the face to face aspect of counseling scary are more likely to consider on line as a way to go. It may also be attractive to those who have shame as an issue (but I don’t have enough experience to know whether this is true).
I’d like to point you to one on line counseling site. It is called Latest Online Counseling and it is run by Ewa Schwarz. Ewa’s background is a diverse collection of counseling styles and also has some eastern influences, such as tai chi. Ewa has a number of packages that she offers and her site contains a list of resources on counseling in general and specific issues as well. She also has a competition where you can win a free counseling session. I haven’t been a client of Ewa but her site has a good feel about it. She is very open about her approach and background, which is a very good sign in a counsellor. She also provides examples of her counseling sessions. The examples on her site I find pretty impressive (and I’m not easy to impress). So, if you are thinking of getting some counseling online I think Ewa’s site would be a good place to start.