Loading. Please wait.
Accessibility help

George's story - coping with loss

George's story - coping with loss

At the age of eight, George saw his dad pass away after being diagnosed with a terminal condition. To help him cope with his loss, George attended counselling sessions and used art to express how he was feeling and acting.

When George was eight, his dad, Derek, was diagnosed with a terminal condition. Symptoms of the condition meant that Derek’s memory was affected and his behaviour started to change.

He would get lost easily, go to pick up George from school at the wrong time, feel paranoid and forget who people were. After Derek became aggressive with a family member who he no longer recognised, it became unsafe for George to be left with him.

While this was happening at home, George was getting into trouble at school for playing aggressively with other kids. A teacher noticed that this behaviour was out of character for George and recommended that he see a school counsellor. At first he would take friends with him to talk about how he was feeling, but when he felt comfortable and ready, he started to have one-to-one counselling. George loved art and enjoyed being able to get creative during these sessions.

George’s mum, Katie, also chose to have weekly parent counselling sessions to help her talk about her worries and concerns.

Six months after his diagnosis, Derek passed away. Katie and George continued to seek Place2Be support during this tough time.

Things were still difficult when George moved to secondary school. But because Place2Be was at his new school too, George knew he was able to speak to someone if he was struggling.

George and Katie like to look back over all the art he made with Place2Be and smile together.

Following her parent counselling sessions, Katie was inspired to retrain as a therapist and hopes to go full time one day.


Names in case studies may be changed to protect the identities of families and children. Photos used are for representative purposes only.