Look at the well known advisors there have been to date. Claire Rayner, Deidre Sanders, Marjorie Proops, Virginia Ironside, Anna Raeburn not to mention the males Jerry Springer and Jeremy Kyle who have now taken it upon themselves to join in... all were very well respected as people who sold help to those who had less insight and knowledge than them. But they worked for newspapers and magazines and the only way you could approach them was to write to the publication they worked for asking them to write back. You could not consult them individually and they each had a team of junior staff that helped them write to clients and put together their column. One of their juniors would read your letter and respond to it. They would only show it to their boss if it was juicy and worth publishing in the newspaper or magazine column. They would receive so many hoping for individual aid at no cost that there was no way they could cope without a very large team. The downsides to it being dealt this way though are many. The person who reads and replies to your letter for free is replying to many that day. As it is free she is inundated and will not have much time to read yours or to reply to it and she will have moved on to the next one minutes later. If you decide you wish to write to their column again the odds are that one of the others in the team read the follow up letter so you get no continuity. Their replies are quick and also very basic. Very often they would send you a phone number, email address or web site to look up, which is all very well but you might have waited a whole month for that and you could have looked that up yourself! Of course, the biggest negative to writing off and waiting a month for a reply is that you are worrying yourself sick while you wait and things can get far worse and get out of control in the meantime. You can hardly turn around to your lover and say to him that you do not know what to do about your relationship with him and his thoughts of leaving you and would he please stay while you ask an advice columnist to read your letter and write back!
How is this different to counselling? It is very, very different. A typical counsellor will ask you what is bothering you and then ask you things such as "what can you do about it?" They ask you questions and try to get you to see how you can take control or what your options are. They would never tell you what they think. So if you are thinking of finishing your relationship with your lover they will ask you things such as whether or not you might regret it one day. But many of us have people around us who can chat to us like this without paying a penny. And if you are very wrapped up in a puzzling or mind boggling decision you are probably not going to be happy with the usual idea of going to see or speak to a counsellor for just one hour a week until it is sorted, this could take forever and cost you a fortune but the main snag with this is that they expect you to solve it all for yourself, they do not do it for you, you just use them as a sounding board. The expert advisor tells you what they do straight away.