frequently asked questions

How do I arrange a counselling session?

You can email us at Alternatively, you can call us on 0300 688 0068. Your call will be answered by  a member of the Petals team who will take your details and arrange for you to speak to one of our counsellors. On some occasions you may go through to our voicemail service, if you can then leave a message giving your contact number or email address, a Petals team member will call you back within 24 hours. Any email we receive will also be responded to within 24 hours.

What will you need to know when I call you?

All calls to Petals are dealt with by members of the Petals team who are committed to confidentiality. You will be asked to give your name and contact details, followed by the reason you have decided to call Petals. Our team are very mindful that this can be difficult for you to explain and will therefore listen carefully and patiently, and help you through this. We will then arrange for you to speak to one of our counsellors to discuss the best support for you and arrange an appointment.

What happens if I can’t explain myself clearly?

This is a common concern for our callers but one you don’t need to worry about. Our team are trained to help you and will provide the support you need during the call.

How long will I have to wait to see a counsellor?

Petals are aware that most people contacting our service need support quickly. Therefore your initial contact will be responded to promptly, and we will aim to arrange your first counselling session within 4 weeks. However, please note that short delays may occur at times of high demand. Subsequent sessions will then be arranged either weekly or fortnightly after this dependent on assessment.

I have to work, will I be able to have counselling during evenings?

While all Petals approved Counsellors will endeavour to be flexible with session times, the majority of sessions are only available during normal working hours (week days).

What happens if I don't like the counsellor or can’t get on with them?

Whilst this situation is uncommon, it is inevitable at times. If as the client you have any concerns regarding your relationship with your counsellor, please do not hesitate to inform the Petals team and alternative arrangements will be made for you.

I would like to try counselling but my partner doesn’t to want go?

Petals fund up to 6 counselling sessions for either individuals or couples.  This is a flexible arrangement and you may commence counselling sessions  on your own and your partner may decide to join you at a later session. This can be discussed with your Petals Approved Counsellor at the initial session.

I know I need help but I am afraid talking about it all will just make me feel worse.

This is a common concern and one that prevents people exploring counselling when they really could benefit from it. Whilst re-visiting traumatic events or expressing painful emotions can feel scary, the reality is that people feel great relief once they have. Your Petals Approved Counsellor will be highly experienced in helping you to do this and will support and encourage you rather than judge you.

I have supportive friends and family, how else can counselling help me?

The support that a series of counselling sessions provides you with is different; it is independent of any emotional attachment to you. Your Petals Approved Counsellor will be supporting your psychological health and guiding you through your individual process of healing, helping you to understand your own methods of coping and suggesting possible new coping strategies.

I am worried that coming for counselling means I am weak or mentally ill?

This is a common misconception of counselling and a reason why many people who may benefit from counselling never seek it. Far from being a sign of weakness, engaging in counselling is a sign of strength as you are taking control of your situation and actively seeking help. Emotional distress is a normal response to painful/difficult experiences in life, it does not mean you are mentally ill.

What happens after my 6th session?

Petals provide up to 6 funded counselling sessions for you. Your Petals Approved Counsellor will work with you to prepare for the ending of those sessions and discuss with you options available if further support is required.

Can I come back to Petals later on if I need more support after my counselling has ended?

Petals will be very pleased to hear from you at any time before, during or after your counselling. Our team will discuss with you your support needs at that time and always endeavour to help you.

For friends and relatives of bereaved parents:

We know it can be difficult to know what to say or do when someone close to you loses a baby. Please visit our Additional Support page for some information and tips.