Jenny Riddell hosted our workshop on Betrayal and the Couple in March 2015. She has specialist interests in how a couple grieves, infertility, affairs and working with couples in later life. Prior to her workshop, Jenny kindly agreed to be interviewed for our blog. Thanks Jenny!
1. How did you start out in counselling & psychotherapy?
I began training at Relate and then moved into training psychoanalytically with couples and individuals at the Tavistock Centre for Couple Relationships and The Bowlby Centre.
2. You are trained as both an individual psychotherapist and as a couple’s therapist. What prompted your interest in couples work?
Initially, my interest grew from working with adult returners to education, and with people who had missed out nurturing or opportunities in childhood. The benefit of therapeutic understanding to learning support was important. So, I went to learn too.
3. In your experience of working with couples what is the issue that most often brings couples to therapy, and what’s the most important thing that makes a relationship work?
I believe we are, in the right environment, driven to grow and develop until our lives end. What brings both individuals and couples to therapy is understanding what causes disruption to this process. The couple has a relationship which they share, but are also individuals. Managing this is the centre of couple work.
4. What got you interested in delivering training?
I began as a teacher, so moving into training in psychotherapy was an obvious road to take.
5. If you weren’t a therapist, what would you be and why?
Ah, the road less travelled. The fantasy changes depending on my mood…
6. What book are you reading at the moment? Is it any good?!
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngost Adichi. And it is good!
7. Where can people hear more from you? (e.g. your own Blog, Website, Twitter, Email?)
I am really bad with technology… speak to me is the best way to get in contact!