Addiction Counselling provides the client with a confidential opportunity to discuss their relationship with the problem substance or behaviour and its impact on their life, and the lives of others they care about.

Addiction Counselling is a specialised form of counselling that sees problematic use of a substance or behaviour as a symptom of deeper, underlying issues.  Put simply, and form of addictive behaviour is a way of ‘numbing out’ and avoiding what is really going on.

Anyone struggling with an addiction, be it drugs, alcohol, gambling, or time online in any area, can be seen either individually or with a partner, family member or members.  The goals of counselling for addiction are:

  • To work on improving self-esteem and self-worth;
  • To learn better ways to manage stress, difficult feelings and emotions.
  • To put strategies in place for coping with  substance or behavioural triggers.
  • To develop practical skills for dealing with cravings.
  • To assist the individual with rebuilding trusting relationships with others.
  • To become responsible and compliant with other treatment plans.


Yes, addiction counsellors in fact specialise in assisting partners, parents and other family members with the significant struggle of caring for a loved one who has an addiction.

Family members are often remarkable in their ability to carry on despite the worry, fear and stress brought into their lives by the addiction of another. Such family members often find themselves moving from worry and concern to anger and frustration until they eventually find themselves exhausted or even in despair because of the addiction in their family member.

Addiction does not only damage the health and wellbeing of those addicted but also has a significant impact on others. Addiction counsellors have the skill, training and compassion to assist family members in such distress and will provide important therapeutic support for everyone affected.


Possibly the biggest service provider in the non-professional arena are what is commonly referred to as Fellowships, there are too many to name but some of the most widely known would include Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Gamblers Anonymous (GA), Sex and Love Addictions Anonymous (SLAA), and Sexaholics Anonymous (SA), Al-Anon, Nar-Anon, Gam-Anon, S-Anon, and so forth.

AA, NA and GA aim to help those directly affected by addictions to Alcohol, Drugs and Gambling while ‘sister’ fellowships like Al-Anon, Gam-Anon, Nar-Anon and S-Anon support families of those affected by a loved one caught up in addiction. For further information on the Fellowships just check the internet or call their helpline which can be found on their websites.

Riadhna Holahan

BA Integrative Counselling & Psychotherapy, BA Hons Social Care, CRA & ACRA Supervisor & practitioner, SMART Recovery Facilitator.

Areas of Speciality: Problematic Substance Use/ Addiction, Adolescents, General Counselling.

I am an experienced, competent and professional Psychotherapist with a passion for working collaboratively with her clients, empowering them to enhance their quality of life.

I offer general, integrative therapeutic support for anyone experiencing issues affecting their quality of life in 1:1, family and group settings using Reality Therapy and Person Centred Counselling as my primary therapeutic models. I support clients with varying issues and needs, and also facilitate Therapeutic Workshops and Personal Development Programmes covering Emotional Management, Relationships, Communication, Life and Coping Skills.

I specialise in Problematic Substance Use/ Addiction and related issues in both adults and adolescents and their families and also work in Community Mental Health in this area.   I facilitate clients in building self-compassion, understanding and awareness to improve their situations.

to contact me directly and arrange an appointment, please email me at