Your Questions

answered by Matthew Elton, DPhil, PG Dip (TA Counselling), BACP Registered

How much does it cost? My usual charge is £55 per session for individuals, and £65 for couples. The fee for an initial consultation is £25 for individuals and £30 for couples. If you feel that these fees prevent you from committing to ongoing work, please do discuss it with me as I try to offer some flexibility.

What happens at an initial consultation? I will begin by explaining how I work and my policy on confidentiality. Then I will ask you to tell me why you have come for a consultation. We may do a small amount of counselling work within the session if you are agreeable and if it is appropriate. Finally, we will discuss together whether counselling / psychotherapy might be useful for you and whether we would like to do some further work together.

How many sessions do I need? How many sessions you choose to attend will depend on who you are, the difficulties you are encountering, and what benefits counselling or psychotherapy can bring for you. For some people just one session will be appropriate. For others, a series of six or ten sessions can be highly effective. A smaller number of people choose to invest in on-going psychotherapy, which may last much longer.

Can people really change? I am committed to the view that when you feel stuck in your life or overwhelmed by problems, there are always possibilities for change. Through reflection and action, you can come to understand yourself better and make changes to improve your life. Counselling and psychotherapy support this process. (Video clip)

What approach do you take? In my work I draw extensively on the ideas and methods of Transactional Analysis. You can find out more about this approach by reading the accessible book TA Today by Ian Stewart and Vann Joines or by looking up ‘Transactional Analysis’ at I also take an active interest in a range of other psychological approaches, including Narrative Therapy and Buddhist techniques for developing mental well-being. (Video clip)

What is your background? I have been studying and working with Transactional Analysis since 2002. I hold a Certificate in Transactional Analysis Counselling Theory and Skills and a Diploma in Transactional Analysis Counselling, both awarded by the Counselling and Psychotherapy Training Institute in Edinburgh. I have completed Level 1(2008) and Level 2 (2021) Narrative Therapy training. I live and work in Edinburgh. I worked for a number of years as a university lecturer before moving into the voluntary sector and also training as a psychotherapist.

Are you a member of a professional body? I am a registered member of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy and am also a member of The Society of Authors.

Where do you work? I normally work in central Edinburgh, about ten minutes from Waverley Station. I also work through Zoom / FaceTime.

When do you work? Tuesdays to Fridays. My earliest slot is usually 8.30am and my latest slot is usually 5.30pm. These hours may vary from time to time.

What’s the first step? You can contact me by phone for a brief, informal, and confidential chat.  Or you can send an inquiry using the online form or by text message. All of these ways of getting in touch are fine, so go with the method that suits you best. I am to get back to you as soon as possible and, in any case, within 24 hours. (However, weekend inquiries are not usually attended to until Monday morning.) If I have no availability or we don’t think that I’d be a good fit for you as a therapist, then I can suggest other professionals for you to contact.


To inquire about availability or ask any other questions please use my online form.