Category Archives: Counselling & Psychotherapy

The trouble with “provocation” & domestic violence

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It’s been pretty harrowing listening to today’s coverage of the case of domestic violence that culminated in the murder of a young mother. The man, who strangled his wife and allegedly threatened to kill her on more than one occasion is pleading guilty to manslaughter, not to murder. That’s one issue I have with this case.

The real issue I have, closely related, is that nature of his reasoning – he says he was ‘provoked’.

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Road rage – what’s the story?

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It was a glorious September morning. I had just had a great run, finished my physio homework pain-free and was pretty much on a high as I left the gym to drive to work in Youghal. As I prepared to turn right at the gate, a silver Audi approaching from my left, turned right into the gateway cutting across me. I slammed on the brakes narrowly preventing a nasty collision.

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Are your thoughts driving you crazy?

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I’ve taken up running again (grateful nod to the best physio in the world), and to keep me company I’ve downloaded hours of nerdy sciencey podcasts – and it’s brilliant!

My current addiction is “You Are Not So Smart” – it’s super informative and one doesn’t have to be a scientist or academic to ‘get’ it. And it has this way of helping you to understand that a lot of what you thought you knew is wrong – or at least has been improved upon. If only I could force all the world leaders to subscribe … AND it’s free! ( As I’m here I also recommend 99% Invisible and The infinite Monkey Cage which is very funny as well as fascinating).

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On staying together for the sake of the kids

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“What caught him off guard though was that at some level he felt ‘programmed’ to bring conflict and drama into the relationship. Even where there was no evidence of cheating he suspected it. Even though he loved her free spirit he felt he should curtail it in case she ran off. Even though he admired her intelligence he found himself calling her stupid. When things were good he was waiting for something to go wrong – enjoying peace and fun felt alien and weird.
So if it didn’t ‘go’ wrong, he’d make it go wrong.”

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Trouble Saying No?

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It’s a teeny weeny little word and yet it can be so hard to say! (unless you’re a toddler..)

I used to have a lot of trouble with this one – sometimes I still have trouble, truth be told. Why is it so hard?

For most of us saying “no” means riddling ourselves with guilt and being terrified of judgement. People who habitually say “yes” are approvingly described as “selfless” – like that’s a good thing. But is it really a good thing? (more…)

A Leaving Cert Survival Guide

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It’s mid May already and we all know what that means…

It’s an incredibly stressful time for students. The reality is hitting – no doubt bashed in by the orals and practicals – and the panic will be well and truly setting in for many of you this week. Oh how I don’t envy you..

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2016 – we’re SO done with you!

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It’s been quite an emotional year hasn’t it? No doubt this year brought with it its challenges on a personal level, and as for the macro level – it seems like many of our most talented people have died and left us reeling. My most shocking was Prince, you? And I’m all for the idea of cryogenically protecting David Attenborough until 2017 by the way..

Love him

Love him…

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“Not puréeing your loved ones – that’s the tricky part!” – Basil Fawlty

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OK, so a lot of us will be joining family for ‘The Dinner’. And for a lot of us that’s super cool and lovely and something we look forward to and truly relish.

For some of us though, that dinner is the most ‘Hell’ part of Christmas. Sitting with, eating with and spending time with people that drive us nuts, push our buttons, trigger us….at worst, we are sitting with people that are harmful.

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Why I won’t sell vouchers for therapy

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First the super good news: people are asking for Christmas gift therapy vouchers for the first time ever and I think that’s amazing. It’s a sure sign that mental wellbeing is being taken more seriously than ever before and that therapy is being normalised. When I first started out in private practice this was one of my dreams and honestly, I didn’t think we’d get here.

But here we are!

That said, I won’t sell vouchers. And here’s why:

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