What People Who Have Worked With Me Say

Healing for Survivors of Abusive Relationships

The road to recovery from an abusive relationship is difficult, but you don’t have to go it alone.

Have you been in a relationship with someone who started out as charming and charismatic but then turned into a manipulative, controlling partner?

Someone who built you up and put you on a pedestal, only to start slowly tearing you down until you lost yourself in the relationship?

Has your partner repeatedly told you negative things about yourself to the point you start to believe them?

Are you constantly debating whether it’s worth standing up for yourself, or if it’s better to let your partner be in control?

These are all traits of abusive relationships, which can happen to anyone. If you’ve found yourself in a toxic relationship with a manipulative partner, you’ve done nothing wrong. You don’t deserve to be treated this way. 

My approach to helping survivors is holistic. I’ve been in your position, and I know firsthand how difficult it is to heal from a traumatic, abusive relationship. Together, we’ll rebuild your sense of self, so you can feel whole again.

About

I know firsthand the struggle of healing because I was in your shoes at one point...

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My Approach

My approach is holistic and based on the belief that as a survivor you are recovering from trauma

Coercive control is a pattern of psychological entrapment. Psychological and emotional abuse are at the heart of coercive control. These are the dynamics of domestic violence and domestic abuse.  Many survivors have difficulty recognising they are indeed experiencing abuse, especially when there is no physical violence.

Think of it like going on a road trip. You set off with high expectations and the anticipation of fun times ahead. But then your partner takes your map away. Then your partner insists you don't read the road signs or pull over and ask for help. Then they question your navigation instincts. And sooner or later you find yourself lost. And your partner makes it seem like they're your only hope to find your way out.

In my practice, I specialise in working with those recovering from coercive control. This can be difficult because coercive control can take many forms. Helping you understand what happened to you or what is happening to you is my goal..


If your partner exerts coercive control, here are some things they may do:


  • Speak negatively about your friends and family
  • Make financial decisions without your input and don’t allow you to be financially independent
  • Refuse to help with the kids or household upkeep, leaving you with less time to yourself
  • Put you down and mask it with a comment like “I’m just joking”
  • Call you an “idiot” or “stupid” in response to something you said
  • Check your computer history, access your passwords, and look through your phone
  • Put on a social facade that goes away when you’re behind closed doors
  • Make fun of you or attack your self-esteem
  • Make you question yourself by denying something they said or did
  • Shame you in public or in front of people you care about

Does any of this sound familiar? If so, you’ve been dealing with an emotional and psychological abuser. Your partner may be a narcissist or a manipulative person.


Remember, this is not your fault, and together we can find relief.

Narcissistic abuse is one way to describe coercive control. A common misconception about narcissists is that they’re people who really like themselves or are self-centered. In fact, narcissism is the opposite of being in love with yourself.


Narcissists who emotionally and psychologically abuse their partners lack empathy. They seek out people who exhibit traits that they wish they had. A narcissist will often find someone smart, talented, funny, attractive – or any characteristic they admire. Then they take your best qualities and distort them into things to be ashamed of.


Manipulation is a common trait of a narcissist or someone who exerts coercive control over their partner. These manipulative partners make conscious choices to take away your power so that they have sole control over you and your relationship.

Abuse, whether it’s physical, emotional, or psychological, can happen to anyone. Manipulative or narcissistic partners prey on good people who they can exert power and control over. If you’ve experienced coercive control from your partner, I want you to know that you did nothing wrong.


If you’re here, that means you’re ready to make a change. Congratulations on taking that first step towards healing!


How do you heal from the deep wounds of such a traumatic relationship? Well, it says a lot about you if you’re ready to get help – it means you’re stronger than you think you are. I want to help you find your strength and take ownership of your life. Let’s find healing together.

Coercive control is a pattern of psychological entrapment. Psychological and emotional abuse are at the heart of coercive control. These are the dynamics of domestic violence and domestic abuse.  Many survivors have difficulty recognising they are indeed experiencing abuse, especially when there is no physical violence. Think of it like going on a road trip. You set off with high expectations and the anticipation of fun times ahead. But then your partner takes your map away. Then your partner insists you don’t read the road signs or pull over and ask for help. Then they question your navigation instincts. And sooner or later you find yourself lost. And your partner makes it seem like they’re your only hope to find your way out. In my practice, I specialise in working with those recovering from coercive control. This can be difficult because coercive control can take many forms. Helping you understand what happened to you or what is happening to you is my goal..

If your partner exerts coercive control, here are some things they may do:

 
Speak negatively about your friends and family Make financial decisions without your input and don’t allow you to be financially independent Refuse to help with the kids or household upkeep, leaving you with less time to yourself Put you down and mask it with a comment like “I’m just joking” Call you an “idiot” or “stupid” in response to something you said Check your computer history, access your passwords, and look through your phone Put on a social facade that goes away when you’re behind closed doors Make fun of you or attack your self-esteem Make you question yourself by denying something they said or did Shame you in public or in front of people you care about

Does any of this sound familiar? If so, you’ve been dealing with an emotional and psychological abuser. Your partner may be a narcissist or a manipulative person.

 

Remember, this is not your fault, and together we can find relief.

Narcissistic abuse is one way to describe coercive control. A common misconception about narcissists is that they’re people who really like themselves or are self-centered. In fact, narcissism is the opposite of being in love with yourself.


Narcissists who emotionally and psychologically abuse their partners lack empathy. They seek out people who exhibit traits that they wish they had. A narcissist will often find someone smart, talented, funny, attractive – or any characteristic they admire. Then they take your best qualities and distort them into things to be ashamed of.


Manipulation is a common trait of a narcissist or someone who exerts coercive control over their partner. These manipulative partners make conscious choices to take away your power so that they have sole control over you and your relationship.

Abuse, whether it’s physical, emotional, or psychological, can happen to anyone. Manipulative or narcissistic partners prey on good people who they can exert power and control over. If you’ve experienced coercive control from your partner, I want you to know that you did nothing wrong.


If you’re here, that means you’re ready to make a change. Congratulations on taking that first step towards healing!


How do you heal from the deep wounds of such a traumatic relationship? Well, it says a lot about you if you’re ready to get help – it means you’re stronger than you think you are. I want to help you find your strength and take ownership of your life. Let’s find healing together.

My Qualifications & Training

Hi, my name is Saira and I am a HCPC registered, chartered counselling psychologist based in West London in the UK. 

I have extensive experience supporting individuals with general anxiety, social anxiety, low mood and depression, irritability and anger, relationship difficulties, low self-esteem, abuse experiences, substance use and addiction, post-traumatic stress symptoms, intimacy difficulties, recent or historical trauma, cultural identity issues, family estrangement, parenting or family challenges, grief and loss, life transitions and divorce.  

My doctorate research has focused on recovery from interpersonal trauma and coercive control.  I am passionate about helping people move towards mental well-being and believe in a holistic approach to recovery.

My practice is governed by the British Psychological Society ethical guidelines and my work regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council.

What To Expect When You Work With Me

I’ve been in your shoes and am also a survivor.  My personal background, combined with my extensive experience working with survivors of abusive relationships, makes me uniquely qualified to help you in your recovery. 

Some therapists engage in victim-blaming, but not me. I will never blame you for being in a toxic, abusive relationship. If you’re worried about re-traumatization, don’t be. I practice trauma-focused therapies based on a scientific evidence base and principles of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and I am dedicated to approaching your trauma recovery with care and empathy.

I also follow a relational feminist model. This is a framework of therapy that is anti-oppressive. It’s all about creating healthy connections and finding healing.

I understand abuse and abusive dynamics. I strive to take away the blame that you and the world place on yourself for being in an abusive relationship. I will walk beside you in your journey towards healing and mental well-being.

Healing is a difficult journey and it is not linear. I’m here to help you understand what happened to you and help you cultivate compassion for yourself. The process of recovering after abuse can be daunting, and the pain never fully goes away. Together we’ll find ways to manage the pain and start the slow, painful process of healing.

If you’re ready to start the healing process from a toxic and abusive relationship, contact me to book a free consultation call. I look forward to working with you on your journey to mental health and well-being.

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