It is so good to talk! SGPC's Counselling Service

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"I was just holding on to so much anger, resentment and confusing emotions.  I was exhausted from all the battles with services and I just didn't know how to drop it all and move on.  It was effecting every other area of my life.  I was so anxious and low".  

Sound familiar?  This is what one of Parent Carers told us, we will call her Nikki, which I am sure you will all understand is not her real name, although her words are very real.  Nikki made use of our counselling service and found it life changing.

"Just having the space and someone who was there just for me, who wasn't too close like family or friends, someone who I could be honest about how I felt without the fear of hurting their feelings or being judged was so freeing.  With each session I felt lighter, by the end of my sessions I was getting back to my old self, how I was before all the stuffing was knocked out of me" 

The Counselling Team are particularly motivated in supporting our parent carer community. Find out more and why from our counsellor and volunteer, Cheryl and the Counselling Team's own words below, and if you feel that you could benefit from the service, just get in touch.  We are always ready to chat.

The Counselling Service Team

Nearly three years ago, three people embarked on a counselling course. Foolishly undeterred, this swiftly chartered the way to a counselling degree.  United in developing our one chosen art – working with people and helping them make sense of their inner feelings. 

Our main focus is to allow people a chance to be open with themselves. We endeavour to offer a safe, confidential, and non-judgmental space where people are able to open up and be ‘real’ about issues and areas of emotional worries and concerns.  Our aim is to walk alongside your journey helping people discover their strength, understand how past situations may have caused a ‘stuckness’ in life which makes moving forward into the future more difficult.  Some people struggle finding their own autonomy and some wish to be able to manage their stress and anxiety levels better, in order to create a healthier wellbeing. 

Whatever the reason, as counsellors we encourage clients to voice what is going on for them. 
Being able to have a useful insight as a volunteer at a SGPC local stay and play, we could see there was a genuine need for counselling to aid support of the other services already provided by SGPC.  Last year we approached SGPC with the intention of offering a free counselling service to their members.  

After several meetings and numerous coffees with Leonie, the SGPC team agreed this would be a valuable service to provide its members.  After legalities were taken care of, a new counselling service was born.

It was a new venture and SGPC were happy and open enough to let it prove it’s worth. In fact, we have watched how the service has developed. This now to the point where spaces are limited and we occasionally (and reluctantly) must ask people to bear with us in waiting. Something we really dislike having to do. Suffice to say – the chance we all took was worth the stress expended in setting it all up.  To date we have worked with 31 families who are parents or carers.

We feel privileged every time someone trusts us enough to share, to let us connect and work with - if only for a short time.  We witness people finding an inner strength that was always there but never fully realised. They do it by their own merit.  Many of the people we meet have difficulties that cannot be denied. Situations that would test or break even the most hardened, robust and together of people. Yet here they sit in front of us, holding things together much better than they realise. Little do they know how we often sit opposite the tears, inspired by their resilience and courage. We see it, even when you don’t. 

We have also been appreciative for the positive feedback the service has been given. Many, have left with a greater sense of direction, and one which they uncovered themselves. The benefits often come from self-care and the realisation; that to assist and care for others, we sometimes need to assist and take care of ourselves. This is a re-occurring theme and an aspect which parents and carers tend to neglect as they habitually put others first.  

Counselling not an exact science. There are all kinds of theories, approaches and techniques. We use what works best for you and your individual needs.  We hope that when you visit us, you might leave with a greater understanding of why you first came. We are grateful to all those that have assisted us on our journey so far and hope that we can continue to make a difference for those who decide to cross paths with us in the future.