Sumie Macalpine-Downie Counselling in Cobham

About Sumie Macalpine-Downie B.A. (Hons) Dip. Couns. MBACP MCOSRT

My name is Sumie Macalpine-Downie and, although born in London, I'm Japanese, Scottish and Irish by descent.

After obtaining a B.A. (Hons) from London University in Law and Japanese, I worked as a Project Finance lawyer at Allen & Overy in London and later Chase Manhattan Bank before going on to co-found and run a successful company in the film and tv industry.

As I approached middle age, I began to look for a professional life that held different challenges and rewards. It was at this time that I also went for counselling to help with a bereavement and was really struck by the extraordinary effect it had on my life. Not only did it help me with a difficult bereavement but it had wider implications: I came to understand better my values and principles, and the way in which I wanted to live my life both professionally and personally. Importantly, it also made me realise that I wanted to help others live the kind of life they wanted to live.

I began my counselling training in 2009 and went on to work as a volunteer counsellor for the Open Door Counselling Service in west London offering low cost counselling to disadvantaged locals. I began private practice in 2012 and have continued to provide counselling to Surrey based clients since then.

Sex and sexuality. It's rarely ever mentioned in polite company, or if it is then it's often with a titter or a wink. I'm always struck by how embarrassed many people are talking about it and yet it plays such a large part of what it means to be human. I'm a firm believer in the idea that everyone's entitled to an active, fulfilling and enjoyable sex life - it can be fun, fulfilling and best of all it's free - so I decided to specialise in this area and undertook further postgraduate training in psychosexual and relationship therapy.

As well as offering this therapy in private practice, I have worked as a Psychosexual Therapist at both St George's Hospital, London and The Ealing Abbey Counselling Service. I currently work as a Psychosexual Therapist for the NHS at the South West London Sexual Health clinic in Balham.


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