"My therapist was calming and easy to talk to"

About: Bromley Healthcare / Working for wellbeing (IAPT)

(as the patient),

I started suffering from anxiety when I was a teenager. This became severe during my first year of university when I exhibited irrational behaviour. Over the following years I appeared to grow out of it, assuming it was largely due to being a shy person. However, in the last year or so, I became aware that some of that irrational behaviour was still present, particularly at work and with interpersonal relationships.

Then in May 2014 I suddenly fell ill. I suffered from constant nausea, loss of appetite, dizziness, weakness and a sharp pain in my side. All tests came back negative and there appeared to be no diagnosable cause. The only consideration was early on-set CFS. Then two separate medical consultants mentioned that the symptoms were similar to that of anxiety. Although there was no obvious direct cause, I decided that having suffered in the past, I should confront the issue to see if it could help. After leaving my full-time job to turn freelance, I found myself on a two week project which resulted in a complete re-energised state of health.

At the end of the summer 2014 I applied for CBT treatment via my GP. Two months later I was offered an appointment midday on a Thursday. The time was not very convenient but the only one available so didn't want to have to go back on the waiting list. My therapist Yohan was very calming and easy to talk to. I didn't know what to expect from the course or how the therapy would work but after a couple of sessions I got into the swing of it and made a really important breakthrough in the third week which made my world make sense. Yohan was really good at persevering when at first I couldn't see something from the most helpful perspective. He made me feel at ease and explained everything very clearly. I felt very supported, with a genuine sense of care, particularly as the course drew to a close.

The sessions didn't always feel very in-depth only having 45 minutes each time. Also being in the middle of a weekday I was often stressed or time-conscious due to work. However, the techniques were ultimately simple and therefore the time was as effective as it needed to be.

It would be really useful to explore other areas of my life and thought process which are connected with anxiety by means of psychotherapy alongside CBT in order to give a really deep understanding of how my particular mind works so that I can manage it and myself better.

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Response from Amanda Mayo, Head of Nursing, Quality Team, Bromley Healthcare

picture of Amanda Mayo

Thank you for your honest and insightful posting on Patient Opinion.

I am really pleased that Yohan was able to support you during CBT and that you have made positive steps forward.

Having re read your posting I am going to remind all of the IAPT staff about the importance of discussing aims and objectives of CBT sessions and discussing expectations when possible.

I hope that you feel you have made enough progres not to need our service again however please do remember that you can self refer if you feel you do.

Kind regards


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