Parent stories and feedback

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Rebecca's story

Rebecca was referred to Platform for Life by her children’s junior school, highlighting stress and family challenges. Rebecca lives with her partner and five children, two have health conditions.

Rebecca was attending regular counselling sessions face to face, but went to telephone sessions due to the lockdown restrictions.

The sessions helped Rebecca explore the challenges and difficulties she was facing and the impact that they were having on her and her family. Rebecca gained a deeper understanding about the body’s response to stress and was able to recognize these signs and symptoms and develop a series of coping strategies.

Through Counselling Rebecca developed her abilities to reduce stress levels and manage her anxiety, she stated that she was so pleased that she had started the sessions before COVID-19 as it gave her the foundations to cope better with it.  Rebecca’s ability to manage stress and work through problems, reduced stress levels had a knock-on effect on the whole family, with Rebecca feeling less on edge and it helped to improve her relationships.

Jane's Story

Jane was anxious and struggling to cope after being in abusive relationships.

At the beginning of counselling, Jane wanted to feel more confident and be able to make her own decisions, take control of her own life and make a good life for her and her daughter. During regular counselling sessions, Jane was given the safe space to explore past relationships and the impact they had on her. Jane learnt new strategies to build self-esteem and confidence with practical problem-solving techniques. Jane’s daughter was also able to engage in counselling with PfL at school.

Jane said that the counselling had given her courage, confidence and self-belief to take charge of her life. By the end of counselling, Jane had created a home, got a part-time job and made friends in the area. She was able to manage her anxiety and believed she could cope living on her own. The relationship with her daughter had improved and they were enjoying good quality time together.

Pam's story

Pam accessed Platform for Life because she felt at rock bottom. Her eldest child had recently been diagnosed with significant learning difficulties and the family had been struggling with school since reception, trying to get the funding and support they required for their child. Her youngest child was born with stomach problems and was incredibly oppositional. All of these issues were putting intense pressure on the family and her husband was struggling with terrible anxiety and panic attacks. Pam herself felt completely exhausted by the stress and worry.


Working with a trained counsellor from Platform for Life, Pam felt at last able to open the cupboard in her mind and clear out all the ‘mangled mess’ she was so scared of facing. She wanted to get to a better frame of mind and a more positive and proactive mindset. Over a number of sessions, she realised she didn’t have to fix everything and everyone and learned the need to build foundations for her children so they could begin to build their own strong foundations. She also felt able grieve for and let go of the life that her children may not now have and accept them for the amazing individuals they were. By the end of counselling Pam felt strong enough to be a great mum again. She recognised many of the things her family were likely to face ahead would shake them, but she felt much more confident that as a family they’d be able to figure things out.



Adam's story

Adam was struggling with depression, anxiety and had issues relating to his self-worth. He had a distorted image of himself, saw himself as “a monster”. He felt flat, devoid of any positive emotion, unable to feel, taste, no joy in life. Through counselling he transformed. He resumed work, regained his passion for life and said he felt able “taste” and was “alive again”.

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Mandy's story

Mandy was referred to Platform for Life through her social services team with multiple complex issues dating back to her childhood and was facing tremendous adversity; living in poverty and dealing with abuse, surrounded by drug and alcohol use.


She began meeting regularly with a counsellor and it took many months to build a trusting relationship and for Mandy to feel able and ready to open up about the traumas that had affected her life. She worked really hard to achieve many things which resulted in her children being ‘stepped down’ from the child protection register. Mandy says she feels different since having counselling, more in control and in some ways, she is starting to believe in herself.  She found the counselling so helpful that she would now like her children to access it and improve their mental health.