Before I came to Let’s Get Talking I had dropped out of college and was unsure of what direction to go in life. I then became a victim of extreme stalking.
I was extremely anxious, ungrounded and lacked confidence and I was finding it very hard to sleep at night, so I decided to go to my doctor for guidance. She referred me to Let’s Get Talking’s Galway branch.
My main goal from therapy was to get my confidence back and to feel safe.
Making that first call was daunting, but once I did, I was completely looked after. I had an initial consultation, where I had a chat about how I had been feeling and what was going on in my life.
Afterwards I was assigned a wonderful counsellor, Julia. She was kind, compassionate and an empathetic counsellor who was always supportive, and we were still always able to have a laugh, no matter what was going on. She gave me the space and opportunity to talk openly in a safe environment about absolutely anything that was on my mind.
Let’s Get Talking made counselling accessible and affordable for me. My counsellor supported me through the most difficult time in my life and helped me to overcome the challenges that came with it. I gained the confidence to do national interviews about my experience with stalking and to raise awareness on the issue. I would not have been able to unlock that strength without counselling.
It has been great to have a person that I can trust to tell anything to and know that they will never react with bias. Now and again we all have situations or thoughts we might not feel comfortable sharing with family or friends and that is okay, but it is important we can still express these in a safe environment.
There is a common misconception that the time to start therapy is when someone is at their very lowest, while it is particularly important during these times, beginning therapy sooner can help to prevent these lows and assist people to understand and manage difficult situations and emotions that come with them. I do believe we should be more open to therapy at earlier stages. If we can go to the doctor when something is hurting us physically, why not check in with a therapist if something is bothering us mentally? Therapy gave me the tools to overcome my depression and manage my PTSD better, but it also gave me that secure space to have a chat about daily worries and helped me to become more focused on my direction in life.
Life can change at any second, in the blink of an eye anything could happen. Counselling improves your outlook on life and how you cope with what life throws at you. There’s always going to be good days and there’s always going to be bad days, but through counselling you learn to appreciate the good and how to manage the bad.
What does the future look like for me now? I am now working in the area of victim advocacy, particularly in the area of stalking. My ambition now is to establish the first official national stalking support service.
If you need to talk, you can book an appointment with Let’s Get Talking on 0818 714 001 or visit www.letsgettalking.ie .
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