I am a fully qualified and experienced counsellor and psychotherapist working in the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole area.

I am a registered member of the professional body British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). This means BACP have verified that I am fully qualified and competent to work to professional standards. I work to their ethical framework and attend regular supervision to promote and provide good practice in a safe environment, with clients' best interests at the centre of the work.

In addition to working in private practice I work with adults, children and young people at two local counselling charities.

Laura Whitnell MBACP, Dip.Couns 

My way of working

I work with a person-centred approach. This means I am committed to working in partnership with you, with your best interests at heart. Working to empathise and understand in an honest and non-judgemental way. I also use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) and Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) theory and skills. This is based on the theory that our thoughts, feelings, what we do, and how our bodies feel, are all connected. The main focus is on what is happening in the present and the processes currently maintaining that, reframing unhelpful thought patterns and unhelpful beliefs . CBT, DBT and CFT can help to develop awareness, compassion, mindfulness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance and relationship skills that can influence acceptance and change.  I bring in psychodynamic influences by exploring the past to understand the present and bringing the unconscious into consciousness. We can work together to explore a tailored way of working that is right for you. I work with adults, children and young people and people with autism spectrum condition.



  • Certificate of proficiency - British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).

  • Enhanced DBS check.

  • Safeguarding certificate.

  • Registered with the information Commissioner's Office.


professional development

  • Certificate in Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT)

  • Certificate in Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT)

  • Certificate in Online and Telephone Counselling

  • Certificate in Attachment Theory

  • Certificate in Grief and Bereavement Therapy 

  • Certificate in Mindfulness Therapy

  • Certificate in PTSD and Trauma Informed Therapy