After over thirty years of practice, the time has come for me to move on from working as a psychotherapist. When I began working with people in 1983, I always knew that this decision would mature in me at some point. After much reflection I have realised that, to remain true to myself, I have to complete this phase of my life, so that I end while still having the energy to engage in new challenges.
Stopping has been a profound and not easy experience – it has meant letting go of my “professional body” of over 33 years. As well as my training and supervision allegiance to Spectrum in London, to Terry Cooper, Jenner Roth and colleagues, and to Stanley Keleman and Formative Psychology. Of course these relationships stay with me and they have shaped who I am today. It has meant letting go of my relationships to my clients, many of whom I have been working with for years. As well as ending being an active part in their personal growth and development, I have often been deeply touched by their willingness and courage to open to themselves; I will miss my connection and contact with them.
Not least I will miss my relationship with the Alma Vale Centre which I co-founded in 2001. This has been the place I have worked in the longest, and I leave behind a bit of my heart. I know that I am leaving a growing community of practitioners, and that is both a sadness and the source of much satisfaction. I realised some time ago that for me to move on meant ending my professional involvement there.
We began as a foursome – Jill Glover, Marion Russell, Andy Fagg and myself, and ran it together very harmoniously for years. Now of the original owners, only Jill is left. Over the last eighteen months, as I have been gradually withdrawing, she has very effectively and skilfully taken on running, organising and developing the centre, with the absolutely invaluable participation of Sarah, our Centre Manager. I wish them every possible success; despite not being professionally involved, I hope and intend to keep the personal relationship I have developed with them over the years.