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Birth phobia and birth trauma

One of the areas I am extremely passionate about working in is birth phobia (also know as Tokophobia) and birth trauma and I have undertaken additional, specialist training in this area.  Both are very real issues that require a special level of understanding and sensitivity.

Perhaps you find yourself here because you are preventing yourself from starting a family because the fear of pregnancy or birth is too much?

Or maybe you’ve experience baby loss and you’re frightened to try again.

Or it might be that a previous birth left you feeling traumatised and you need some help moving forward before you can think about having another baby?

I’ve put as much as I can into questions and answers below to help you. Please do contact me to discuss further how hypnotherapy and psychotherapy may help you.

  • What is hypnotherapy?
    Hypnotherapy first emerged in the 1700’s. It is a form of therapy that attempts to address the client’s subconscious mind, in order to make positive change. “Hypnosis is: • a natural state of heightened awareness • opens the mind to beneficial suggestions • makes use of the imagination to help make positive changes” (source: The Hypnotherapy Association) CLICK HERE The state of hypnosis is actually a state that you’ve been in many times without realising – perhaps when you’ve driven your car on a familiar journey on auto pilot, or when you find yourself day dreaming in a relaxed state. There is nothing scary about it – in fact it’s usually a lovely and incredibly relaxing feeling.
  • Can you make me do silly or dangerous things under hypnosis?
    No, and I have no desire to! You will only do in hypnotherapy, what you’d do in everyday life. Your moral code doesn’t change. The person in control during hypnotherapy is YOU.
  • What is Psychotherapy?
    Psychotherapy describes a collection of therapies used to listen to and support a client. Psychotherapy is often much deeper work, allowing the client to look beneath the surface and back to the past to work out behavioural patterns and experiences that may be affecting the present. During work with a Psychotherapist a client may engage in a big journey of self exploration , beliefs and identity. Psychotherapeutic work tends to be longer term, although it can be short term as well depending on the needs of the client. Please note I am undertaking further and ongoing training in Integrative Psychotherapy and am a trainee member of UKCP.
  • What is life coaching?
    Life coaching is a process that involves working with someone trained in coaching to help you identify and achieve goals, develop belief in yourself and ultimately help you follow the paths that make you happy and fulfilled, using your full potential. The coach acts as a facilitator and the client leads the process.
  • What qualifications do you have?
    - I have a Diploma in Hypnotherapy and a Diploma in Life Coaching with NLP, both from the Kent College of Hypnotherapy and accredited by the Hypnotherapy Association. Find my accredited listing here - International Hypnotherapy Association Listing - I am an accredited mindfulness teacher with the UK College of Mindfulness Meditation - I achieved Level 2 practitioner training in EFT through the EFT Centre, London - I have also undertaken a number of advanced courses and carry out regular CPD. (Continued Professional Development) ​ - I am currently a trainee Psychotherapist with NCHP - The National College of Hypnosis and Psychotherapy, and a trainee member of the UKCP - The UK Council for Psychotherapy. I am training to be a Hypno-Psychotherapist/Integrative Psychotherapist. Find my trainee listing by searching 'O'Brien' here My trainee listing . - I am also registered with the CNHC and an associate member of The National Society of Talking Therapies ​ - Outside of the therapy world – I have a first class degree in Communications (BSc Communications, Leicester University) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast Journalism (City University London).
  • How and where do sessions take place?
    Most of my work is done ‘virtually’ using an online communication system called Zoom which I send you a link to. ​ I do also offer a very limited number of face to face sessions at my home therapy studio - Covid-19 dependant (please ask for more details)
  • How many sessions will I need
    It’s a bit like asking “how long is a piece of string?” It also depends what issue we're working with. For example something fairly straight forward like a fear of flying may be dealt with in hypnotherapy in 3-6 sessions. Deeper Psychotherapeutic work could be anything from 6 months to over a year.
  • The idea therapy seems a bit daunting and I’m not sure how I should act in a session?
    Just be you. I completely agree – anything new can be daunting. And often taking that first step towards a better life can be an uncomfortable one. This is completely normal but after the first session you'll feel much more relaxed.
  • How much is a session
    £70 - £80 per hour long session, depending on location - Prices of packages will vary
  • Can you change my life?
    I can’t change your life. The only person who can do that is YOU. But I can absolutely work with you and guide you to make those incredible changes. Therapy and coaching can lead to wonderful things.
  • I’ve been told I need to lose weight – can you do that for me?
    Hypnotherapy is incredibly powerful and successful for changing habits like overeating or emotional eating. BUT you need to want to make that change. I don’t have a magic wand. But I do have the tools to work with your willing subconscious to help you make those wonderful changes.
  • I'm looking for a hypnotherapist in Bromley, Chislehurst, Petts Wood or Kent, can you help?"
    It's likely that YES - I can! I am a hypnotherapist based in Bromley with a private therapy room. Get in touch for a chat. Please note as of January 2023 my client sessions will be held on Mondays and Tuesdays.
  • What about data protection?
    I am registered with the Information Commissioner's Office - please request my registration listing if you'd like to see it. Upon booking my services you will be sent my Privacy Policy along with Terms and Conditions.
  • Do you have a cancellation policy?
    24 hours notice is required for cancellation of an appointment, and we can jointly endeavour to reschedule at a convenient time for both parties. If less than 24 hours notice is given the client will be asked to pay for 50% of the cost of the missed session. The session will then be rescheduled. If Charlie O’Brien Therapy cancels the session with less than 24 hours notice - the fee will be carried over to the rescheduled session and I will also reimburse the client 50% of the cost of that session, as a gesture of goodwill for the inconvenience caused.
  • Why don't you have testimonials on your website?
    I do not publish testimonials in accordance with the ethical code of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) (of whom I am a trainee member) as they consider the use of client testimonials to be unethical. In order to comply with advertising standards in the UK testimonials would need to be verified which would mean client confidentiality would be breached. Testimonials also tend to be used to prove a therapist’s worth, meaning the process becomes about the therapist rather than the client. I work in a person-centred way meaning the client and the client’s confidentiality is the most important thing in my work. It is also worth saying that therapy is individual to you and one size does not fit all.



Psychological trauma can occur with or without physical trauma and can present as: postnatal depression and/or anxiety (PNDA), postpartum post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD); for example, having obsessive thoughts that can affect behaviour such as checking on the baby constantly or recurring thoughts that impact your enjoyment of daily life. 


Factors either side of the birth can contribute to trauma including the journey through pregnancy, feeding challenges, infertility challenges, premature birth and pregnancy loss. 


According to the Australasian Birth Trauma Association about 9,000 women each year develop PTSD after giving birth, but many go undiagnosed. 

Countless others experience some form of birth trauma, which can relate to physical injury but also the lingering emotional and psychological impacts of a less-than satisfactory birthing experience.


So it would be my honour to support you on your journey - click here to get in touch for an informal chat.




How can I help you?

There are many ways I can help.

  • I provide a safe space for you to speak about your fears and experiences.

  • During sessions we can explore where your worries are coming from, and work on those fears in a number of different ways

  • Work through grief 

  • I help you to set achievable goals for you to work towards

  • I empower you to make your own choices

  • I travel alongside you on your journey

  • Through specialised hypnosis we can work on subconscious blocks and make positive changes

  • Teach you mind/body techniques for stress relief and relaxation 

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