Esther* is a 72-year-old woman, who was married for 47 years. Unfortunately, the relationship became increasingly controlling and abusive, to the point where Esther was granted a permanent protection order for her safety.
Managing to escape the marriage, she left her home behind and moved to a different city with the support of family. Whilst her current housing situation is now secure, she has significant mobility issues, thought to be partly due to the domestic violence.
Following her move, Esther attended a ‘Living free from Violence’ course through Aviva, and from there was referred to Presbyterian Support.
When Counsellor, Helen* first started working with Esther, she could see she was facing numerous issues in addition to her mobility, including low moods, low self-esteem, and a lack of self-confidence. Helen began by identifying Esther’s personal strengths and values and then together they created strategies for improving her mental health and general wellbeing.
Helen also focussed on regaining Esther’s trust in herself and provided support in managing healthy family relationships. With the help of a social worker, Esther was able to access various forms of disability support, which will further help to rebuild her life.
Esther is now making wonderful progress. She says, “Being able to access free counselling has made a huge difference to my wellbeing and enjoyment of life.”
Esther has been able to regain some of her self esteem and confidence, and she says she can finally, “Get on and enjoy life.”