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Client Stories: What does our help look like?

Our clients have granted permission for their story to be shown here or we have combined stories from different clients to protect confidentiality.  
Different names and pictures have been used to protect identities.


12-years old, Student

Fear of the dark & worry about school

One of our Clinical Psychologists met Oliver and his Mother together and individually, to find out about the difficulties and to understand their goals for therapy. Oliver said he felt scared, when he woke up at night, was at home or walking home in the dark: he wanted the horrible feeling to stop.  

Oliver cried, which was OK with us.  He said he felt embarrassed and it was hard when he didn’t do well on a test or didn’t come first in something he thought he was good at.  Oliver explained he worried he would slip behind at school, there was too much homework and teachers didn’t like or notice him, even when he had his hand up.

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17-years old, Student

Low self-esteem & low mood

When Penny called Composure, she was very upset and wanted help with feeling low and crying all the time.  Penny didn’t think she was a strong person but we already knew she was brave because she had picked up the phone and asked for help.

Our psychologist met with Penny, discussed her difficulties in more detail and helped her identify specific goals for the therapeutic work. Penny preferred that everything remain confidential from her family, despite their support.  That was fine with us and we recommended and agreed with Penny that a brief letter be sent to Penny’s GP.  

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mid 50-years old, Unemployed Father

Anxiety & Depression

Matthew sought help and explained to one of our psychologists that he was feeling very low, anxious and thought about suicide daily.  He explained he had recently lost his job, his brother had died and he was worried about his relationship and not being able to care for his family.

The psychologist asked Matthew to share at his own pace how the anxiety and low mood was impacting his day to day life and if he had experienced these feelings before prior to recent challenging events.  Over two sessions, they built a picture of what was happening right now and identified factors from the present and past that might be contributing to keeping the low mood and anxiety going. This was a helpful tool for deciding where to start with therapy and to refer to when long held beliefs or assumptions appeared to be getting in the way of his completing therapeutic activities.

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mid 30-years old, Administrator

Pain, Chronic Illness and Trauma

Yasmin had been living with long-term back pain and pain during sex.  She explained she was reluctant to get into a new relationship and felt depressed about her health and lack of relationship.  Yasmin said she was a bit sceptical about whether she could be helped or not.  It was agreed that an assessment would be completed and a course of action would be determined from there including whether it was the right time for her to engage with therapy. 

Over two to three sessions a picture was drawn up of how the pain had come about, her being involved in a traffic accident, how the events had and were continuing to impact on Yasmin’s life and the meaning she gave to the events about herself, the world and others.  Towards the end of the third session Yasmin felt safe to disclose she had experienced an unwanted sexual encounter and felt unsupported by ... 

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Joe (11 years old) and Mother (Linda) 

Anxiety, Bullying & School transition

Linda contacted Composure Psychology explaining she was concerned about her son, Joe and his high anxiety and fear about moving from primary to secondary school.  One of our Clinical Psychologists met Joe and Linda together and individually to discover their concerns, perspectives and motivations for change. Joe disclosed that he was also worried about the bullying he had experienced and how it might continue at his new school.

Joe attended 12 weekly sessions in which he was helped to become aware of his thinking patterns and how some of them had become automatic and negative. Using Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Mindfulness exercises and two easy to read books, the psychologist developed Joe’s ability to manage worries, challenge unhelpful thinking and learn about preventing and overcoming bullying.  New strategies and home practice were generated for Joe to try out between sessions.

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Person in picture is not the client.


Military Veteran, PTSD and Relationship Difficulties

Dave is a military veteran who served his country for 12 years. Since leaving the army over 10 years ago, he had been struggling with unwanted flashbacks and nightmares of difficult things he had experienced when out in Afghanistan. These memories were really distressing for him and no matter how hard he tried to carry on, they found a way back into his mind. The memories he had made him feel distressing feelings such as fear and shame. He was struggling to manage at work and be present for his wife and children. He noticed he was also drinking more alcohol in attempt to cope.

Dave felt as though he was “weak” for feeling like this and it was difficult for him to ask for support from a psychologist at first. Dave met with Dr Claire Price, who is a specialises in psychological work with veterans. They met once a week for 12 weeks. Dave learned that developing symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)...

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Adult in Early 20s living with learning disabilities


Susie was 20 years old with mild learning disabilities. Susie and her mum had always described her as a ‘worrier’, but they had noticed that Susie’s anxiety had got worse recently. She had started to get anxious about meeting new people, and didn’t want to attend her usual social events without the support of her mum; this was starting to get in the way of Susie’s independence.

The psychologist sometimes met with Susie and her mum together and then other times with Susie on her own. Together they started to build a picture of Susie’s anxiety to understand why it was happening and the impact it was having on her. After two or three sessions, Susie began to realise that it was her own thoughts holding her back. She worried what people might think of her and she put pressure on herself to hide some of the difficulties she has in her day to day life due to her learning disability.

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13 year old girl

Anxiety, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Bereavement

Sophie was 13 years old when she began to feel very anxious at night. She would frequently check all of the windows and doors were locked, she needed her mum and dad to sleep with their bedroom door open so that she could check they were still there throughout the night. She also developed rituals and would say certain mantras to both her parents before she went to sleep. The anxiety also meant it was difficult for her to go to sleep, meaning she was more tired during the day. Her parent’s relationship was also struggling as they were unable to spend time together without Sophie present.

The psychologist met with Sophie and her mum for two sessions to understand more about the difficulties and their...

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Our Clients Say


I really enjoyed your presentation and kept thinking about how I felt after/during your reading from the perspective of a depressed person. It made me realise, that if they are able to just turn up in my office, then that is a great achievement. The thing that stuck also was you saying " this is the clients' depression talking, not his personality".

Manager, Health Industry

Dr Shamsun’s amazing. She has literally changed my life. I have been a bad sleeper for so many years and since having my sessions with her, I’m actually sleeping. Dr Shamsun has also helped me with so many aspects of life…I cannot stress enough how helpful and life changing it has been.

Female, 20s, Training Coordinator

Most of the advice fixed major problems I had.

Male, 12

My husband and I didn’t always prioritise this work but you always stayed patient and took us to the maximum place we could have achieved. I had pain free, relaxed sex last time for the first time.

Female, Early-20s, Project Manager

Laura was very patient, made me feel comfortable despite it being virtual. She was really good.

Female, Late 30s, Operations Management


I wanted to say how much I appreciate everything you have done so far. The things I have learnt I will take with me forever as tools for living and thinking about life/situations.

Female, Late-20s, Project Manager

I don't think anything else I have ever done has changed me and my attitude in such a positive way. It really has had a huge impact on my life and I can't thank you enough for that.

Female, Late-20s, Project Manager

The technique has improved my sexual life and I'm very satisfied with the outcome. Thank you for all your help.

Male, Mid-20s, Administrator

With Gail, I felt like I was talking to a non judgemental friend. I felt understood and listened to. I think Gail was really effective in allowing me to go on my own guided journey backwards into my past which has helped bring me forward. I've never had therapy before but would highly recommend it to anyone that needs a non judgemental ear and support to make sense of things. Before my sessions I felt really vulnerable, Gail coached me to a place where I feel more confident and self assured in myself.

Female, 30s, Sales Manager

Overall both my own and my experience regarding my son's treatment have been very positive and have certainly helped us both to find a balanced way of looking at things and dealing with challenges.

Female, Early 40s, Parent

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