Real life account from an ex-social phobic & depression sufferer. Part One.

An Insight into client therapy


This is a real life honest account of a client that has undergone therapy for help with social anxiety and depression.

Part One (Part Two to follow).

The Last 7 Years..

Hypnotherapy. When you say that word what do you honestly think of? I personally did NOT think it would be my saving grace.


When the suggestion was put to me to write this blog I agreed because I get great satisfaction from helping people – thanks for bringing that to my attention Steve! I thought I was just a pushover.

The last 7 years has been one tremendous journey of depression and therapy and even medication. Whether it is considered a good one or a bad one it has been MY journey and it’s made me who I am today.


If you have ever experienced depression you’ll know what I mean when I say you never really think about what the cause is in that much detail, just the feeling. That black hole, the no one can help me, I’m terrible/awful/disgusting/my life is horrific feeling.


It’s very easy to blame whatever is happening to you or in your life because let’s face it, that is the most plausible, if not the only option for it to all make sense.

Winston Churchill referred to his dark days as the Black Dog and I don’t think anyone has created an analogy quite so effective since.


Let me begin:


When I looked for my own reason for my depression I looked straight at being badly bullied at school that was all it could be because my life was nowhere near terrible. That is when my therapy journey really begun.

I tried a very basic type of therapy where I would go and talk about how I was feeling and what was happening to me but with very little interaction from the other side.

Needless to say that didn’t work for me and my first experience of ‘counselling’ wasn’t a good one. How could I sort out my problems with no advice or guidance?


The bullying made me grow up quickly and it was then that I started hiding behind a facade and not letting people know what I was really thinking or feeling because on a daily basis I HAD to pretend I didn’t care so I could survive and get through. I guess that’s what I’d call a 16 survival instinct!


Fast forward a bit to 19 years old, it was July 2005 that I started on a new therapy track and was referred by a doctor to see a private therapist that would hopefully help me. There was more interaction and less of just me talking at her. She asked me questions but never really challenged me. It lasted on and off for about 3 years but I found over time I didn’t really get as much from it as I had hoped and whilst it had initially worked it wasn’t going to cure me of my black dog days.

I think I learned at that point there isn’t one solution that fits all symptoms.


I was 22 when I went through a really bad time and after an intervention from my parents I went onto antidepressants prescribed by our family doctor. They weren’t particularly strong and were meant to boost my serotonin levels . They did exactly that and miracle of miracles they worked! They cured me and I was over the moon and I felt normal and I could handle life. I stayed on them for 15 months and then took myself off of them. I figured that was long enough for them to sort my brain and hormone levels out.

So this brings me to early 2010 and I am now 24. I spent a few months enjoying the fuzzy after affects of the medicines…..and then I absolutely crashed. With a capital C


I had no idea what was going on if I was coming or going and I was scared. I’d tried counselling, Psychotherapy and anti–depressants. Nothing had worked and I started to think maybe this was it for me. I had no idea what to do for myself and I’ll be honest and tell you suicide did cross my mind on more than one occasion but I had no idea how to really do it properly and I was petrified of the after math if it didn’t work.


November 2010 was when I came across Steve McKeown Hypnotherapist and, as he already knows, I really felt like this was my last try at fixing myself. I’d spent almost every evening crying at my own reflection finding myself hideous and disgusting, my life was a sham and most importantly I truly believed I was an awful person that no one loved or cared about. I didn’t even love me.

When I sat in front of him at our initial consultation he knew more about me than I did without me really saying anything! That both shocked and amazed me and gave me the confidence that Steve would, in effect, save me. I realise just how dramatic that sounds but unless you’ve gone through depression and tried everything you can you don’t know what it feels like and I make no apologies.


Being that low made me realise I could only go up and I had to try at least for myself and my family and who had supported me and put up with absolutely everything. I was a shadow of my former bubbly, outgoing self and they hadn’t turned their back, they could see I was in crisis.


The first time Steve hypnotised me it felt like 10 minutes, 15 at the most and when he said it had been nearly 35 minutes I was absolutely shocked! I was absolutely knackered after that first session.


It has been almost a year since I started going to see Steve though I did have break of almost 4 months from April – July. Up until April my sessions addressed some of what I’d call were the top level issues that I had – the easy to reach stuff. These last few months have dealt with a whole lot more that I did not know existed and I have been broken down and built back up.


Every week has been different with Steve but always exactly what I need and unbelievably effective. No idea how he does it but he can judge how the session needs to go in the first 5 minutes!

After the first couple of sessions I made some changes to my life as it was at that time. He put this confidence back in me that I hadn’t felt in a really long time and I really felt like me again for a few weeks.


The thing I had yet to realise with any therapy, especially Hypnotherapy is that it isn’t instantaneous and you do have to do some of the work yourself. When I cracked that I noticed a lot changing in me.

One of the most important tools Steve has given is The Technique as we call it. It’s all about stopping your negative thinking in its tracks and re-programming your brain to think positively. I have to say my negative thinking was like second nature and I didn’t stick to using the technique at first because I thought if it didn’t work first time it just wouldn’t work at all. Perseverance and being told off by Steve more than once has made me use it a lot more and as he promised, it really does work!


Initially, during my actual Hypnosis, Steve had me looking back at past events and experiences and I seemed to gravitate towards the bullying each time or feeling alone or sad or left out and secluded. I think there was something in me at first that couldn’t connect with anything else because that was my source of blame. As far as I was concerned that was all it was! I had never given it much more thought to figure out where my insecurities came from which is odd because I was absolutely riddled with them!

It is not easy to fool Steve I have to say and during one of my sessions Steve dragged something up that I ignored for 10 years, something that a female should never have to go through at the hands of a friend especially at 15 years old. God knows how he had picked up on any of it but he did and for the first time in my life I dealt with it. When I got home I looked in the mirror and realised I wasn’t disgusting or hideous. I had never connected the two things and I’d suffered from a dysmorphic disorder for a really really long time.


I’d buried everything under the umbrella of bullying and didn’t see there was anything else but gradually Steve made me realise there are lots of parts to a personality and lots of experiences that make us who we are.


Part Two to Follow.


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