In this chapter I consider the political and historical contexts of people with learning disabilities, and the development of a counselling approach to this client group. The historical context is especially important as this group has traditionally been devalued, and the way in which it is viewed has important implications for the development of a therapeutic relationship with each individual client. Various contexts within which adults with learning disabilities live, work and spend their time are described, with particular emphasis on the way in which psychological distress may be manifest and recognised. These are all contexts within which a counselling approach can be utilised.
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