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Accountant, Aged 38.

In March 2008 – and completely out of the blue – I was diagnosed with testicular cancer. I was only 38 years old, had a young family and had always thought that ill-health was something that happened when you got a lot older and probably to other people.

I was used to feeling in control of my own destiny and liked it that way.

This news knocked my entire belief system. What if I died? What if I don’t see my daughter grow up? How can I provide for my family if I get ill?

I no longer felt in control and didn’t like the feelings that this generated.

This manifested itself through feelings of anxiety about everyday things that I hadn’t ever worried about before. I had difficulty sleeping and my wife felt that I retreated into myself and stopped communicating with her.

She arranged a number of weekly sessions for me with Alan to see if there was anything that could be done to help me. Have to say I wasn’t sold on the idea – real men don’t have feelings let alone talk about them – but I gave it a try.

And I’m extremely glad that I did. In our sessions Alan and I discussed the feelings that I was experiencing. He helped me – through a number of simple techniques – to put any feelings of anxiety into context and to remember to celebrate the good things that were also happening in my life.

My life now is much better. I’m lucky in that the cancer has not returned. I start the day thinking about the things I am looking forward to. At the end of each day I think about the things I have enjoyed. I still have feelings of anxiety but that’s life and it doesn’t get on top of me.

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