Type: Therapist, Therapy, Psychologist (Currently on leave):

Prarthana Sham (They/Them)

Prarthana (They/Them) is a mental health therapist from Bengaluru who practices online.

Prarthana is 29 years old, with at least 7 years of experience.

Therapy Services:   Individual Therapy (For Everyone) Couples Counselling Family Counselling Also Works With Queer Folks 🏳️‍🌈

Not taking sessions.Accepts Enquiries via Email.

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  • Practicing Since: 7 years
  • Appointments Via: Email
  • Medium:
    • 🌐 Online
  • City: Bengaluru
  • Qualifications:
    • MA in Applied Psychology
  • Languages Known: English, Hindi, and Tamil (English might be their primary language for therapy)
  • Hourly Fee (₹): 1,800
  • Payments Via: Bank Transfer, UPI/Google Pay
  • Available On: Saturday, Monday, Wednesday, Friday
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  • Why did you choose to become a counsellor?
    Earlier on it was because I was curious to understand why people think or act the way they do. I was interested in how we as people tend to react to the same thing in different ways. As a teenager, I also enjoyed giving agony-aunt type advice to my friends and was quite surprised when it actually did help them in some way. I realized with time that it wasn’t actually my advice that helped as much as the act of talking and listening that gave them perspective on the situation. I then learnt how we all have a rich and varied inner life which I sensed was very often neglected.
  • What excites you about your work as a counsellor?
    One of the main qualities that drew me to this profession and continues to fascinate me is to witness people open up and grow firsthand, in ways that are always surprising. Sometimes that means changing, other times it can mean coming to terms with the way things are. I believe that the effects of having a space to explore yourself emotionally can be incredibly varied and fulfilling, which I felt when I went to a therapist for the first time myself as well. Personally, being in a profession where I get to talk to people closely is very rewarding to me.
  • What do you hope for your clients to experience after their first session with you?
    In the first session I am primarily focused on two things - (1) is to understand the concerns and needs of the clients and (2) is to make sure that the client has some idea of what my work looks like. After the first session I am hoping for the client to have a clearer sense of what we’re getting into and my approach towards it. If the client is coming into therapy for the first time in general, then I also make sure to spend some time in understanding their expectations from the process and my capacity to fulfill them.
  • What would you wish to tell a client who is thinking about seeking counselling?
    I like to use analogies a lot in my practice! If someone is thinking about seeking counseling or therapy then the analogy I like to use is one of a blown up balloon. If you’re feeling there’s a ball of air slowly building up or that is exploding often, talking about it can help in slowly releasing that air. A common expectation from counseling can be that it’s about getting a solution or making a feeling go away. When that comes up, I tell my clients that it’s more about understanding that feeling or building problem solving as a skill rather than providing a solution to them.
  • Describe the relationship that you would wish to build with your client in counselling.
    Being collaborative with the client is a really important aspect of my work. In the beginning couple of sessions I make sure to check in with the client regularly about how they’re feeling about being in therapy, their expectations and hopes. I schedule reviews so that we’re able to take stock of the areas being explored in therapy and agree on directions for the future. I also make sure that my clients are informed about their rights in therapy, through an informed consent form.
  • In your counselling work so far, what has been your greatest learning from your clients?
    I have been continuously inspired by my clients! They’ve taught me how to hope, resist and to continue learning. Working with them has taught me that change is continuous and can be embraced, that there is always a way out when we’re stuck.
  • What are some of your strengths as a counsellor that you value and appreciate?
    I see myself as an emotion-focused counselor, which means that I find it important to stay in tune with the emotional position of the client. I also tend to curate my approach and work according to the needs of the client. Over time I have become better at staying with discomfort and silence, which takes patience. I also love bringing in creativity in therapeutic spaces and finding new ways of working with the concerns that come up!
  • What are some of the things you like to do in your free time?
    I love listening to music, making art, reading, playing with cats and taking naps. I love food in many forms - cooking, baking, eating and drinking tea.
  • What are the areas of concern you address in counselling? Do you work with specific populations?
    I primarily address psycho-social and emotional concerns of adults in my work. I have experience in working with trauma, sexual violence, substances, marginalization, interpersonal relationships, attachment and common mental health concerns. I work with individuals and couples as well. I also offer conjoint therapy for two people outside of romantic relationships as well (e.g., parent-child, queer-platonic, sibling relationships)
  • What is the therapeutic approach you use? How would you describe it to someone who wants to consult you for therapy?
    My primary approach to therapy is called “person-centered” which means that my techniques, direction and interaction in therapy is focused on building a space for the client to explore any aspect of themselves. Essentially this means that the client is in the driver’s seat, and I see my role as the person who is there to help them navigate their journey in therapy. My practice involves using queer affirmative, feminist, existential and narrative approaches in therapy. This means that my work focuses on building spaces that help people in understanding themselves while also looking at the influence of broader social systems around them.
  • How do you make your therapeutic practice a safe and affirmative space for queer and trans* folx?
    As a queer person myself, I’ve spent time in deconstructing several assumptions and narratives we tend to have about love, our bodies and our politics. Fortunately, I’ve had the opportunity and experience in facilitating workshops and support groups for the community. I open up the therapeutic space to be one where clients can explore different aspects of their identity and sexuality. Doing so with my clients has been enriching and is an important area of work for me. However, the field of psychology has had a history of oppression against the queer community. Therefore, making therapy a safer and more affirmative space for queer and trans folx requires continuous action and reevaluation.
  • The Quote Prarthana Resonates With

    “Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” ― Brené Brown,

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