What is neurodiversity in psychotherapy

I’m Stephen a first-year advanced student and I am on the ECPT EDI committee. We are very inclusive and are always happy for new members to join. I originally joined the EDI committee because I am LGBTQ+ and I have surprised myself on my journey to become really interested In Neurodiversity. It’s fascinating and really gets me thinking.

What is Neurodiversity?

Its lots of things, Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, Epilepsy and many more. Many of these conditions are also on a sliding scale as to how much individuals are affected. I learnt at a recent workshop that 20% of people are Neurodivergent and there are likely to be more in the psychotherapy environment.

I was fascinated to learn about Stimming, it’s movements or habits which encourage or help Neurodiverse individuals to focus. Simple things like doodling or clicking a pen or tapping a foot. These are Stimming and if you try and curtail these actions in Neurodiverse individuals there is every chance you will be preventing them from behaving and thinking authentically. Sometimes Neurodiverse individuals mask (Masking) their behaviours. They practice at hiding away their natural behaviours to fit in!

How can psychotherapists help?

A significant issue we must understand is that neurodiverse individuals have a significantly increased risk of suicide in the autistic community, so it is crucial that we understand the best ways to meet clients’ diverse needs.

By learning about the best methods to use and identify how therapists can help their clients feel at ease, I would like to think we can reduce the negative effects which can be caused by incorrect therapy with Neurodiverse individuals. What about providing your client with a note pad for them to doodle while in therapy? If it helps someone focus, then that’s a good thing? Right?

If you are interested in joining our EDI committee, please feel free to contact our Chairperson Kay admin@ellesmerecentre.co.uk or feel free to contact me stephenmorgan124 {at} gmail dot com

There is so much more to Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Thanks for reading.

Stephen