Sarah, 53

As long as I can remember, I have had a phobia of electricity pylons. Even talking about them would make me stressed, sweaty palms, elevated heart rate – I’d quickly have to change the subject. Driving near or under the wires is highly stressful. There’s no way I could walk near or under them. After years of having to plan my life around this (eg looking at holiday resorts on Google Earth to make sure there were no power lines near where I wanted to be; forcing friends year after year to walk or ski a different area or avoid a resort altogether because there were pylons) I finally consulted Caroline last year. I found her very pleasant and calming, and the session was cathartic in revisiting an event from my childhood which I’d pretty much forgotten but was clearly subconsciously causing me some distress. However I have to say I was immensely sceptical as to whether this had done anything for my pylon phobia, since the event itself was completely unrelated.
Well, I’ve just returned from a week skiing with friends where I skied under a pylon FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE and even managed to admire the pattern on ice crystals on the wires as I rode past them on a chair lift. This may not sound much but believe me there is absolutely no way on earth I’d have done either of these things a year ago.
I am still very aware of pylons and power lines. I see where they are when others don’t even notice them. I’m not sure I’ll ever get rid of that – but now I don’t care. If I need to go under one, then that’s what I’ll do. This may sound like a very trivial issue, but as with all phobias, it was affecting my behaviour and my relationships (I felt very guilty about having to refuse to go certain places all my friends wanted to go because there was a pylon in the way). I’m still amazed that I did this. I am so proud of myself.
Caroline, I want to thank you so much for what you’ve done for me. I was a real sceptic – I had no faith this would actually work. I’m a very practical person, I make decisions based on facts. But the fact is, you managed to break through a barrier in the space of an hour and a half that I’d not been able to break in 45 years