Alex's Story 2

Alex

8-year-old Alex was disconnected from others in his new school and struggled to keep up in class. After speaking separately with Place2Be counsellors, he and his mum were able to bring some more stability into their lives.

8-year-old Alex was withdrawn and unresponsive in his new school and had trouble remembering what his teacher asked him to do. He had needed to repeat a year in a previous school and now had no friends and struggled to keep up in class. Staff worried that his understanding of language wasn’t developing at the same rate as his classmates.

Alex’s mum was concerned about him too and had already shared her own challenges with the Head Teacher. There had been physical abuse towards his mum in the past by his dad as well as substance misuse issues. His mum, now separated from his dad, suffered from depression and the family had moved around a lot before settling here. Now she was balancing being a single mum with her studies, her mental health, the possibility of moving again and a potential new relationship. The Head Teacher suggested that Place2Be might be able to help them both. Alex was referred to the Child Counsellor and his mum agreed to see the Parent Counsellor.

Alex kept drawing a picture of a dog that would run away from the garden, never to be seen again. When his counsellor asked him about it, he spoke about missing his dad and not knowing where he was. Alex didn’t get to spend much proper time with his mum either and would be picked up by different aunties every day. In her own counselling sessions, Alex’s mum separately decided to pick him up more regularly and set aside time where they could talk.

Alex and his mum both benefitted from their Place2Be counselling. Alex's confidence grew and not only did his teacher notice that he was talking and playing with others in the playground but he now had a “best friend”. He appeared more connected with class and more able to talk to his mum, who remarked on how happy he was. As a result of her counselling, Alex’s mum decided they would stay put and give Alex and the family more stability.   

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A Volunteer Counsellor's story

Nisha's youngest child had started school and she was interested in a new career with children