Gerhard Pretorius

Gerhard is a psychotherapist with almost 20 years of experience providing services to young people, parents, and families with a range of social and mental health difficulties. The majority of his experience has been with young people and families where young people present with challenging difficulties including emotional dysregulation, suicidal or self-harming behaviours, trauma (PTSD & developmental, child sexual abuse), traits of emotionally unstable personality disorder, severe OCD, eating disorders, severe anxiety and depression, ADHD, Psychosis, and young people on the Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Gerhard has also provided individual and couples therapy to adults with a range of difficulties, including Anxiety, Depression, OCD and Trauma.

Gerhard qualified as a social worker in the year 2000 with a B.A. (Hons) (Social Sciences) degree Social Work. He started his career working with military families in the South African National Defense Force (SANDF). Seeking international experience and new challenges he moved to the United Kingdom in 2003.  There he continued to work with children and families with complex social needs in various Local Authority Child Protection Services in and around London. In 2009 he started to specialize in working with young people and families with mental health difficulties. He started working full time in the UK National Health Services Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services.   In 2010 he received his Master of Science degree (with Merit) from the Institute of Family Therapy and Birkbeck, University of London.  He received a distinction for his dissertation relating to Outcome Measurement in Systemic Psychotherapy. In 2014 he completed the Tavistock Qualification in Family Therapy & Systemic Supervision at The Tavistock Centre, The Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust. Since then he has supervised psychotherapy trainees while on placement in the NHS.

For the past 8 years, Gerhard worked with Adolescents and Families in an Inpatient Adolescent Psychiatric Unit for an NHS trust in England. He also currently an independent panel member for Family Works Fostering, a private fostering agency.

Over the years he has continued to train and develop, training with notable therapists including Matthew SelekmanPartners for Collaborative Solutions, Illinois, USA); Frank Datillio, Phd. ( CBT ) – USA; Karl Tomm, MD, FRCPC (Calgary Family Therapy Centre, Calgary, Alberta, Canada); Gary M. Diamond Phd. (Ben-Gurion University Psychotherapy Research Lab, Israel – ABFT); Sandi Richman (Richman EMDR Training); Sandra Taylor (ICEEFT Trainer – Potential development)

Gerhard has completed training in:

Systemic & Family Therapy at the Institute of Family Therapy in London.

Mentalization-Based Treatment for Families, Anna Freud National Centre for Children & Families in London.

Attachment-Based Family Therapy (for Depressed Adolescents) at Stockholms Akademi for Psykoterapiutbildning (Sweden).

Eating Disorders in Children & Adolescents at UCL Institute of Child Health & Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Emotionally Focussed Therapy (ICEEFT Accredited) with Sandra Taylor, Phd. (ICEEFT accreditated trainer and supervisor), Potential Development.

Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing (Parts 1,2 and 3) (EMDR Europe & EMDR Internation Associations Accredited Training)  with Matt Wesson (EMDR Academy) , Sandra Richman (Richman EMDR Training.)

Acceptance & Commitment Therapy with Henry Whitfield (Mindfulness Training Ltd.)

Gerhard is a member of the United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP), the Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the Institute of Family Therapy. He is also currently a member of the EMDR Association UK and Ireland, International Centre for Excellence in Emotion Focseed Therapy (ICEEFT) & The British EFT Centre.


UKCP  UK Council for Psychotherapy