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About me

My name is Siana (pronounced Shauna)

I am

- a white cisgender woman

- neurodivergent (autistic / highly sensitive)

- a survivor of complex trauma

- a survivor of religious trauma

- mum to a teenager

- cat mum of two

- a lover of books and learning

My Story

My core training in 2000-01 was in person-centred counselling (MA, Durham Uni). I then spent 15 years working in 4 of the largest counselling agencies in Northern Ireland, before setting up in private practice in 2016. I have had the privilege of counselling people representing a wide variety of gender, sexual, cultural and spiritual identities.


When I made the leap into private practice I knew I wanted to work at greater depth than was possible within agency settings.  Therefore I have been very intentional in terms of my commitment to and investment in reputable and high quality training programmes.  The Internal Family Systems Institute and the Association of Sandplay Therapists are internationally acclaimed professional organisations and the CPD programmes I have taken, particularly in relation to safe trauma practice, are taught by current experts in the field. 

I hold myself to high standards of practice and adhere to the Ethical Code of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy as well as the Ethical Charter of AST.   Due to the diversity of the people I work with and the particular therapeutic approaches I offer (which are not widely practiced in NI) I consult with a range of supervisors and consultants internationally in order to access the best support I can and to honour the trust placed in me.    

I aim to co-create an anti-oppressive space with those I work with.  To this end I commit to an ongoing personal process of deconstructing and unlearning my own internalised privilege and ableism.

I'm not an "expert" on you, any "issue" or any approach.  I am first of all human and I relate to you on the basis of mutual respect and humility.   

I am not afraid of dialogue, of being vulnerable or of having the difficult "you and me" conversations. 

In order to honour my commitment to really show up for you and give you a high quality service, I take the breaks I need during the working day as well as over the course of each month and year.  I hope that by modelling self care and compassion I am embodying an affirming and sustainable way of being in therapeutic practice.    

Finally, I have engaged in psychotherapy myself over a significant length of time.  I firmly believe that the safest and most competent therapists are those who have significant personal experience of the healing and neurological (brain and nervous system) "rewiring" processes of counselling.  

repaired bowl.jpg

“Kintsugi (金継ぎ?) (Japanese: golden joinery) or Kintsukuroi (金繕い?) (Japanese: golden repair) Defined as “to repair with gold”, is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum … As a philosophy it treats breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.”

— Wikipedia



>BTh Theology (Hons) 2:1  (QUB)

>MA Counselling (Durham University)

>Level 4 Psychological Trauma

>Cert. Clinical Supervision (Gestalt Centre Belfast)

>PQ Dip Couns Children and Young People

>Certified Core Sandplay training (Association of Sandplay Therapists)

>Cert. Online & Telephone Counselling

>IFS level 1 (IFS Institute)

>IFS level 2 Trauma & Neuroscience (IFS Institute)


>Adolescent Addiction Studies (Keele University)

>Gestalt Therapy Introduction (1 year, GCB)

>Child Development Research (1 year, CAPPNI)

>Infant Observation (2 years, CAPPNI)

>Sandplay Therapy Skills Certificate (PTUK)

>Polyvagal Theory (Deb Dana)

>Safeguarding and managing risk through digital media 

>Supervising via digital media through times of crisis

>Traumatic Attachment & Co-regulation (Janina Fisher)

>Daily Parts Meditation Practice (Michelle Glass)

>Healing in the context of Relationships (Bonnie Badenoch)

>The Further Reaches of IFS (Bob Falconer)

>Variations in Sandplay Therapy (Barbara Turner)

>Transforming the Living Legacy of Trauma (Janina Fisher)

>A Year of Polyvagal (Deb Dana)

>Jungian Theory in Sandplay (Barbara Turner)

>Working with Complex Trauma (Janina Fisher & Frank Anderson)

>Working with Sex and Sexuality using an IFS framework

>The Inside of Autism (Kieran Rose)

>Defining GSRDT (Pink Therapy)

>Working with LGBTQ+ clients through the lens of IFS (Frank Anderson) 

>Working with Soul: Demystifying Spiritual Abuse

>IFS Intuitive Drawing (Ruth Culver)

>Nurturing the Heart with the Brain in Mind (Bonnie Badenoch, year long intensive)

>The Master Series Trauma Conference (Oxford 2023)

>The Practice of Being Present (Bonnie Badenoch follow up year long experiential programme)


Just for fun ... I can't resist adding a photo of my cats.  They are house cats who are extremely curious, therefore anyone who attends for in person sessions will be sure to catch a glimpse on their way in and out of the cabin!  

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