Written by former psychotherapist, Matthew Campling, the world premiere production of The Secondary Victim explores the growing world of blame culture within psychotherapy in private practice. Inspired by real life experiences and with insider insights into an increasing problem for the profession, this new production directed by Matthew Gould explores the vulnerability of counsellors in the age of accusation. The official press night will be on Wednesday 15th November at 7pm.
The production will star Susannah Doyle (About A Boy, Drop The Dead Donkey, Apple Tree Yard), Gary Webster (Minder, Family Affairs, EastEnders), Natasha Bain, Michael Hanratty, Matt Holt and Christopher Laishley.
Ali is a respected psychotherapist and loyal wife. When she receives a complaint of sexual impropriety by a young male former client, her professional and personal world is thrown into a maelstrom of suspicion and distrust. Against a background of contemporary blame culture, Ali finds herself fighting for her reputation, her marriage and eventually her life.
Writer Matthew Campling has a BA Honours in Counselling and a Master’s Degree in Psychotherapy. In addition to his twenty years of private practice, Matthew was a regular guest expert on ITV’s Trisha, and was a popular media spokesperson on the subject of male mental health. He has had three non-fiction books in the area of therapy published. The Secondary Victim is his 10th produced play.
Matthew Campling notes: “In 2014, a former client made allegations of serious unethical behaviour against me. Despite my being exonerated by the BACP (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy), this hugely distressing experience made me acutely aware of how a therapist can be compromised outside the counseling room. We must always protect victims and investigate accusations, but the current, ever-mounting rise of ethical enquiries means this issue is an increasing area of counselor vulnerability.”
The BACP’s number of complaints by clients taken to an ethical panel review has rocketed from 17 in 2010 to 74 in 2016. The Secondary Victim shows both sides of this concerning statistic, inspired by Matthew Campling’s personal experience.
THE SECONDARY VICTIM plays at the Park Theatre 4 November – 9 December 2017