“I wasn’t sure what to expect from counseling, I’d never been before and I was really nervous, but my counselor put me at ease and explained how it would work. It is the first time I have been able to talk about events from when I was a child……things which were still upsetting me. My counselor listened and eventually I was able to get some perspective on the situation, but most importantly I was able to move forward. I am now in a new relationship, I still sometimes get bad days, but not as many as before.”

“My life fell apart when I lost my job, at first I was hopeful that I’d get another one soon, after 6 months I didn’t want to go out, I was arguing more with my wife and kids, most days I didn’t get out of bed until after lunchtime…….it made the day shorter that way. My wife gave me an ultimatum she was going to leave unless I went to see my doctor. My doctor suggested I try counselling, as an alternative to going on anti-depressants, and she referred me to East Belfast Community Counselling. Jill, my counselor encouraged me to talk about things, she suggested setting myself small goals each day, it was difficult at first, but gradually became easier. I am now volunteering 1 day a week for another local charity, and have spoke to EGSA about my options for re-training. The difference is that I can now see a way out, whereas before there was nothing, only blackness.”

“Counselling helped me achieve a new way of looking at my life – to cut myself some slack and realize that a lot of the pressure in my life comes from myself. John was able to help me look at things in my life in a different way…..he helped me recognize things that had influenced my life were “influences” only, but that I still ultimately remained in charge of the final decisions. The result is that I have renewed enthusiasm about what I can accomplish in my life and in relationships.”