And drawing back from my own (fairly low-key) concerns for a moment. Betterhelp Ttfa…could e-counselling be the answer to the psychological health problems intensifying amongst under-30s? With cuts to psychological health services really starting to bite, digitised therapy could be simply the ticket for young people who currently filter almost every aspect of their lives– pals, work, sex, home entertainment– through a screen.
Not everyone is completely persuaded that shifting psychological healthcare online is the way forward. “For me, what works in treatment is when you satisfy someone in person, in the same space,” states London-based psychotherapist Sandra Tapie. “You are familiar with not only what it resembles to speak to the person, but how it feels to be in a room with them. Utilizing Skype is the next best thing: it’s ‘good enough’, but it doesn’t develop the closeness, the intimacy, that really gets people to open up and check out things.”
” I have actually performed some research into Skype counselling,” says London-based psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick, “and it’s not the ‘functional equivalent’ of traditional counselling; it’s simply not quite the very same thing. It’s actually crucial that people who engage in it know that it’s a various experience from being in the room with somebody, speaking face-to-face.”
” In regards to ease of access, it’s a great start and certainly better than nothing. It’ll ideally lead them to eventually showing up in the space. If you’re having a hard time with relationship concerns, attachment problems, or much deeper issues, it’s better to be in the space with somebody. Skype and the internet uses a range from your counsellor that may not be valuable.”
In cases of mild depression, the NHS is now directing some clients towards online programmes instead of face-to-face counselling, a phenomenon that concerns Dr Balick.