Jane has worked hard to manage and overcome her extreme fear of being sick and has been brave enough to share her story in this case study. It just shows that with a bit of hard work and effort you can change your life. Thank you for your lovely words!
Age : 40
What were your symptoms and how did they affect you and your life?
I had Emetophobia (fear of being sick) and generalised anxiety from a young age. These held me back in lots of ways as I wanted to avoid situations where I might be unwell or that would cause me anxiety (for example, busy or crowded places or doing things that were different and outside of my comfort zone.) Taking risks was also something I procrastinated about.
I came across Lorna because I decided that they had affected me for too long and I wanted to get some help to address these things. I searched on line and decided to contact her because of her personal experience of Emetophobia but also because of her knowledge of helping others with this fear.
What were her sessions like and when did you start to implement /feel change?
From the first session, Lorna was warm, friendly and enthusiastic. She is somebody that I was able to trust and was very patient. Her knowledge and confidence in her role was evident during all sessions. We worked through a programme called the Thrive programme which was designed specifically to tackle Emetophobia but that could also be applied across everyday life. I worked through the programme during the weekly sessions and also got ‘homework’ to complete between sessions with the aim of changing my mindset and approach to situations that I found scary. It wasn’t difficult but took / takes some perseverance. People probably began commenting about changes in me before I noticed it myself and they began to happen quite quickly. I had some ‘wobbles’ at times but Lorna continued to support me both in and out of the sessions for several months. She was never fazed and always knew the right thing to say to get me back on track.
How long did it take?
I worked with Lorna for several months, initially meeting her once a week and then spacing the sessions out over a longer period so that I had time to put the principles in to practice on my own. Although the exercises were not difficult, I found it challenging to change my thinking and was hard on myself if I felt I wasn’t progressing quickly enough; this led to a few wobbles along the way. Lorna was always so kind and patient and always knew the right thing to say to get me back on track. She was never fazed by any of the things I found challenging and this helped to reassure me that I was still moving forward and making progress.
How is your life different now?
I find it so much easier to look at the positives in any situation, rather than focusing on what might go wrong. I also find it easier to ‘follow my own path’ and not compare myself with other people. I procrastinate less and have made life changes that have improved my health and outlook. I’m not complacent and still work to use the techniques that Lorna taught me, but don’t get despondent by setbacks in my life and am finding it easier to use them to keep making progress rather than just giving up as I might have done previously. I’m also so much more positive than I used to be. Lorna has taught me that it doesn’t matter how long it takes me to get to where I want to be, just so long as I am moving forwards in the right direction and this has made me more relaxed about challenges that arise in my life.
Why would you recommend Lorna?
Lorna is such a lovely and amazing person. She is very easy to talk to, has a relaxed style and is never judgemental. She is also honest about having had Emetophobia herself in the past which means that she was able to offer a personal perspective that other therapists couldn’t.
I’d really recommend that anybody makes an appointment with Lorna, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.