And drawing back from my own (reasonably low-key) problems for a moment. Betterhelp Group…could e-counselling be the answer to the psychological health problems intensifying among under-30s? With cuts to mental health services really beginning to bite, digitised therapy could be just the ticket for young people who already filter almost every aspect of their lives– friends, work, sex, home entertainment– through a screen.
Not everyone is entirely persuaded that shifting psychological health care online is the way forward. “You get to understand not only what it’s like to talk to the individual, but how it feels to be in a space with them.
” I have actually carried out some research into Skype counselling,” says London-based psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick, “and it’s not the ‘practical equivalent’ of traditional counselling; it’s just not quite the very same thing. It’s actually important that people who participate in it understand that it’s a different experience from being in the space with someone, speaking face-to-face.”
” In terms of ease of access, it’s a great start and certainly better than absolutely nothing. It’ll ideally lead them to ultimately showing up in the space.
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some patients towards online programmes instead of in person counselling, a phenomenon that worries Dr Balick.