Many people find it helpful to talk about their voices in some way. For people with distressing voices, talking therapies can sometimes make the experience easier to manage and less upsetting. Others would rather not discuss their voices at first, and that is ok. There are a range of therapies on offer and it is important to remember that there is no “one size fits all”.
To make it easier we have divided them up, but in practice they can share a lot of aims and ideas.
Cognitive approaches – Talking therapies that focus on changing a person’s thoughts or beliefs about their voice-hearing experiences.
Talking with voices – Approaches that involve engaging in a dialogue or conversation with voices. They typically focus on changing your relationship to the voice and ways of understanding or making sense of what the voices are saying.
Acceptance and Compassion – Forms of talking therapy aimed at encouraging people to be kinder, more compassionate and more accepting of themselves, their voices and other people.
Dealing with Trauma – Therapies that are specifically designed to help people ‘work through’ or ‘process’ traumatic life experiences.
Emerging Therapies – New approaches to the treatment of distressing voices that are currently being developed in the UK. Examples include Relating Therapy, Avatar Therapy, Neurostimulation and Open Dialogue.
You can find out more about each of these approaches by exploring the pages below. Other therapies that people sometimes find helpful include family therapy, art therapy, drama and dance therapy and psychoanalytic approaches – follow the links in the text to learn more about these.
Living with Voices