About me


My name is Irma Jochems.  I was born (1952) and brought up in the Netherlands but spent much of my adult, married life moving and living in different countries. I have two grown-up daughters.

Twenty years of living abroad (Jamaica, Germany, Lebanon, Belgium and Estonia) has, to a great extent, shaped both my private and professional life. Since Autumn 2012 I have been back in The Hague and have restarted my private practice as a psychotherapist and coach. I hope to continue this for many more years.

During my various stays abroad, through being exposed to the difficulties of living and working in another country with a different culture, I have gained both personal and professional experience in the (possible) problems of being an ex-pat.
I am acutely aware of how difficult it can be to rebuild your life in a new country, how lonely and frustrating the first months can be and that saying farewell is always painful. This is the case for adults and children alike. I have experienced the disadvantages, but I have also learned how to benefit from the many positive aspects of ex-pat life. I can thus easily empathize with expats feeling negative about their new life and can assist and encourage them to face their new situation in a flexible and positive way.

Apart from my work, which is very important to me, spending time with family and friends, sports, arts, culture and music are high on my agenda.

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Career and professional training

My first studies in clinical Psychology were at the University of Utrecht from 1970-1978. Before obtaining my degree, I worked at the Psychiatric department of a hospital in Utrecht and held student-assistant jobs at the Institute of Clinical Psychology at the  University of Utrecht.

In 1981, while in Germany, I started focusing on Systems Therapy. Back in The Netherlands, I did a three-year, post-graduate training in Psychotherapy in The Hague, majoring in Systems Therapy (1985-1988).
Additional studies/certifications include Psychodynamic Psychotherapy with Prof. Dr. Robert Abraham in Leiden, a certification as mediator and a certification to work with the “Developmental Profile”(1997-2000).

Since graduating I have held a variety of positions both in The Netherlands and abroad, including in a psychiatric hospital (Jamaica), a psychiatric day care center(Germany), an out- patient clinic for psychotherapy (The Netherlands), a group practice for psychotherapy (The Netherlands), and in private practices in Brussels and The Hague.  I have also worked as a lecturer and student supervisor in Psychiatry (Estonia) and been active on various regional boards and commissions .

Dealing with losses  and grief – Brussels , November 2007
I wrote an article about the Development Profile, which was published in 2008 in the Belgian Journal, “Tijdschrift voor Klinische Psychologie in June 2008.

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Registrations and memberships


  • Supervisor in systems therapy in Belgium and The Netherlands - 2010
  • Registered by the Belgian Commission for Psychologists - 2007
  • NMI (Netherlands Mediation Institute) registered Mediator - 2002
  • BIG registered Healthcare Psychologist (nr. 99025792325) - 1999
  • BIG Registration as Psychotherapist (nr. 09025792316) - 1999


  • NVRG (Netherlands Assoc. of Systems therapy)
  • NIP (Netherlands Institute of Psychologists)
  • NVP (Netherlands Assoc. for Psychotherapy)
  • EFT (Dutch Ass. Emotionally Focussed Therapy).

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Irma Jochems- de Ridder, (Ma)
Practice for Psychotherapy and Coaching
Laan van Clingendael 153
2597 CC The Hague
T : 070 406 02 06
E :
W :
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Irma Jochems

In my role as therapist and coach I know how to motivate people to investigate the underlying factors of their problems, to let go of their old habits, to examine their own responsibilities and to find solutions. Careful listening, choosing the right therapy and making clear agreements with clients are, I believe, the basic conditions for successful treatment.