UK Counselling Services

I had had several years of difficult emotional problems, losing both parents (one of which left me with terrible feelings of guilt), relationship…

I had had several years of difficult emotional problems, losing both parents (one of which left me with terrible feelings of guilt), relationship problems and personal disappointments – basically my life just had not turned out how I had expected and I was very unhappy about this. I had always been … a moody, quite depressive person but the final decision to seek help came when I heard about someone who had committed suicide and I felt I understood why. I expected they could see no other way out and when I realised I understood this, I knew it was time to seek help. I found it very easy to open up to Johnathan and really did not feel any barriers from the start. I always felt that he was there for me and was completely involved with my life. I was amazed how he remembered everything that I told him (names, places, everything) which is so reassuring because you know how important you are to him. All I remember about the first couple of months was just of lot of me crying. I remember feeling after a couple of months that nothing was really happening and I wasn’t really feeling any better, but then I started to notice changes. My deep dark moods were still happening but were lasting for less time. The biggest change however was the way my relationships with friends and family were changing. I started to view differently people that had been around for most of my life and found it very difficult to get on with them. I was disagreeing with these people (in fact, standing up to them) and I felt that I did not want to be so involved with them. This culminated in a break with my closest friend of 30 years. At the time I was devastated by this and I remember the week I visited Johnathan after this break saying that this was the final straw and my life was collapsing around me. Johnathan reassured me that this is common when in counselling as you re-evaluate your life and relationships. When we looked at this and all my other relationships it was so clear; that I had always been in manipulative relationships and I was always putting other people’s needs before my own. I felt torn if I wanted to do something for myself and I would almost always do what the other person wanted instead. I now remember feeling a little scared of these people – at least scared of upsetting them at the expense of upsetting myself. I now feel really free not to be involved in some of these relationships. Others have also changed and are now much more mutual and work much better for me. I had spent virtually all of my adult life feeling that the world was against me. Every event, even slightly negative that happened I would take personally and feel that these things only happened to me. I would dwell on them and this would make my depression last and last. Johnathan has taught me that life is fluid, events good and bad will happen to me but they will only last for the moment. Whether this is for days or years, but there will be an end and therefore a change. This has been wonderful for me as if I do feel down I really do now believe that it will not last. It’s the same with people, they will also come into and leave my life and I have started to learn how to deal with this too. I have just re-entered a relationship with a man who I have loved for over 20 years but which was a very difficult relationship. We were constantly breaking up and going back together. I still don’t know what will happen in the future but I now feel that it is a much more equal relationship. I’m not scared of him anymore. He was never violent to me but I was always scared to voice my needs in the relationship and would not let him know my opinions etc… because I felt that these were not important or even a little “stupid”. Since I now feel more confident and believe that my opinions and needs are valid, we seem to be getting on really well – and if it does go wrong I will be able to cope. My fears of breaking up before made me very needy and desperate which badly affected the relationship. I now believe that if I can feel this happy and confident only a year after my absolute depths of despair, I can deal with anything. I am now watching someone else going through a similar experience at the moment, feeling as I was before I entered counselling. I can hear her expressing the same feelings. Always moaning about life, seeing bad in everything people say or do to her. I feel so differently about these things now – I have a more positive view on life. I feel that I don’t need people in my life – of course I want people around, but I feel that I have myself and I need just me at times. I have a contentment that I honestly have never felt before, at least not in my adult life. Of course this feeling may not last, but I think I will be able to deal with it if it changes – or, if not, I’ll see Johnathan again!! I really feel that my year of counselling has changed my life for the good – it is difficult to say exactly how, but I know it works.

Beverly, Coggeshal