Hi, I’m Dean. Thanks for taking an interest in my Blog.
First of all, please note that all of my written posts and all of my own photographs and images are actively protected by Copyright Law.
So, what can I tell you about me? Well, I’m in my mid forties. I’m a Counsellor, Psychotherapist and Clinical Supervisor. I live and work in the beautiful English county of Suffolk; on the east coast of England. I am increasingly developing my skills as a Writer, Artist and Photographer. After twenty years of health problems, I was finally diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease in June 2017. This Blog is about life from my perspective; a perspective made up of the component parts that are my profession, my personal life and my developing skills as a Writer and Artist. I hope you enjoy reading my Blog and I welcome your ideas, suggestions, feedback and comments. After all, what is a Blog without the interaction of the readers? I look forward to hearing from you.
I moved to Suffolk from London in 2007, with my Partner and our dog; our much loved Fred who sadly since passed away. Funnily enough, it was only after moving to Suffolk, from London, that I started researching my family tree and found a long family line originating from here. It somehow feels like I have ‘come home’.
I was born and raised in west London but I am lucky to have had some experience of life abroad; living with my parents in Italy and South Africa for a time in my early childhood and, subsequently, travelling to many far flung parts of the world, something that I feel has enriched my life and my view of things. In my spare time, I’m quite creative and enjoy writing, photography, painting, sketching, crafting as well as walking with our dogs (two young terriers).
My childhood was a mixed bag of wonderful fun times that were shaken by the deaths of a number of close family members due to Leukaemia, Brain Hemorrhage and a number of Cancers. My Father was a Stunt-Man and Stunt-Coordinator in the film and television industry and when I was aged 30, I lost my Father to Cancer. Only recently, in 2015 we sadly lost a much loved Uncle, too. Mine has also been a family in which some loved family members have lived with alcoholism and this sadly led to loss. All of these losses have influenced my career and my desire to support people through personal difficulty.
My Professional Life:
Career wise, I have a strong early background in the Private Sector and have been Supervisor and Team Manager within some of the UK’s top companies; roles that taught me a strong work ethic and self-discipline. I joined the Charity sector in 2002 and initially worked with those targeted by Domestic Violence and Hate Crimes. I became the Service Manager of a drug and alcohol counselling and treatment service between 2004 – 2007, as my counselling and psychotherapy training progressed and I established myself with a track record of working with people living with trauma, abuse, Veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and many social, health and mental health issues as well as those within the Criminal Justice System.
In 2007, having moved to Suffolk, I worked in the Chief Executive’s office at Suffolk County Council as a Commissioning Manager within Suffolk Drug and Alcohol Action Team (Suffolk DAAT). My role was to assess the needs of communities, design, commission and performance manage counselling and medical treatment services that were contracted to meet those needs. I also helped develop the county’s new Hate Crime support services.
Between 2009 – 2011, I became the Specialist Services Team Leader for NHS Suffolk’s Specialist Services team. This role involved running two Nursing teams; the Shared Care Team and the Blood Borne Viruses Team, concurrently; delivering care, immunisation, detoxification, reduction programmes, counselling, blood testing (I trained in Phlebotomy), crisis intervention, trauma counselling and other services to clients with substance addictions; many of whom had co-morbidity and dual diagnosis. The teams were routinely assessed for an aspect of their work, by OFSTED and we successfully achieved and passed these audits. Patients were in both community and Prison settings. Many patients suffered with severe mental health problems and the debilitating effects of long term trauma.
I have become well known in Suffolk for my roles as Commissioner and as Specialist Services Team Leader. Since starting my private Counselling and Psychotherapy practice in 2008, alongside those roles, I have worked with a leading Suffolk based charity called Focus12; a residential rehabilitation centre for those with substance addictions and compulsive disorders; where I was commissioned as Clinical Supervisor between 2008 – 2013; one of my many commissions as Clinical Supervisor to Counsellors, Psychotherapists and others in helping professions. In this role, I consistently supported Focus12 to successfully achieve and pass routine audits by the Care Quality Commission. In 2012, I was awarded for my work as Clinical Supervisor for my supervision of Student Interns for the military US Air Force base at Lakenheath in Suffolk.
Today, my private practice has grown and I feel privileged to serve the community of Suffolk as well as the many clients I serve around the UK and around the world, via Skype; which is also very effective as a means of reaching those with disabilities.
Living with Illness:
The subject of Disability is something that is important to me for I have recently, in June 2017, been diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease, following an earlier mis-diagnosis of Fibromyalgia Syndrome. I am now officially recognised as Disabled.
If you meet me in-person, my Parkinson’s Disease and he disability it causes me, are not particularly evident upon meeting me. Some of my Blog posts will help to raise awareness of what it is like to live with Parkinson’s and disability.
Thank You for Reading:
Do please participate by ‘liking’, ‘sharing’ or by leaving comments on any subject of interest that I write about and I am happy to receive ideas and suggestions for anything you might like me to write about. Please note, all of my Blog posts and pictures are actively enforced under Copyright Law, so do simply quote/refer to me as Author if you wish to reproduce anything I have presented in this Blog – thank you.
If you would like to find out more, please see my web site: