10 ways to spoil an apology

By May 1, 2019 Blog

1. Hang the blame in mid-air. I’m sorry if there was a miscommunication.   2. Pin the blame on the other person’s feelings I’m sorry you feel this way…   3. Pin the blame on their actions I’m sorry. But there really wasn’t any other option after you did X…   4. Use a great big BUT. I’m sorry but… c’mon! What do you expect?!   5. Express so much grief, there’s no room for the feelings of the other …Read More

Myths about Autism

By April 8, 2019 Blog

It’s Autism Awareness month, so here’s a few misconceptions… It’s an illness. ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is not an illness or disease but a group of symptoms and behaviours that affect how people experience and react to the world around them.  If you’ve got it, you can’t ‘cure’ it (you’re born with it, though it might be diagnosed in later life) – but you can learn ways of managing some of the issues it raises. It’s a new condition – …Read More

What to say when a friend opens up

By March 19, 2019 Blog

I’m listening for as long as you want to talk. How does/did it feel telling me? I’m so glad you shared this.  That can’t have been easy and it means a lot that you trust me. Can you explain a little more about X?  I want to make sure I understand what you’re saying. This doesn’t change how much I care about you and our friendship. This doesn’t change how much God loves you and is committed to you. I …Read More

Coming out about mental illness

By February 19, 2019 Blog

Maybe it’s something you’ve known about for many years, but been too scared to share. Or you’ve received a recent diagnosis; a name for all the stuff that is dominating your life. Sometimes it’s easy, like someone has joined the dots on a picture of you.  Sometimes, putting its’ name and your name together feels foreign, even wrong. You’ll need time to make sense of it; and to work out who, and if (see here), you want to tell. Whatever …Read More

Getting Past “Fine”: Guest Post

By December 18, 2018 Blog

Another really wise post from the lovely Sharon Hastings.  Thanks, Sharon! …. We all know the scenario. It’s coffee time after church and people are milling around and chatting. Someone asks, “How are you?” and – regardless of what is going on in your life – you smile brightly and say, “Fine, thanks.” Perhaps there is someone in your church and you know that they are struggling with mental health issues. Maybe they haven’t been at church for a while. …Read More

Your church and special needs: guest post

By October 16, 2018 Blog

Today’s brilliant guest post is from Beth, who is a talented blogger and mum to two children, (a son adopted, and a 14-year-old daughter with Down Syndrome). Thank you, Beth for sharing your wisdom. … “Can I sit with my friends?” It sounds like a typical question from a teen. It was from my 14 year old daughter with Down Syndrome. I looked at the row of girls that my daughter was pointing to. I wondered, “would they welcome her joining their …Read More

Grace sufficient

By May 7, 2018 Blog

“I hate myself.” “I have no hope.  I have no future.” “I’m so ashamed.” “I don’t belong in church.” “Why did He make me like this?”   “I have/have had problems with my mental health.” “I feel my weakness.” “I don’t quite fit.” “I believe the gospel but I don’t feel it.” “I’m afraid.” If you feel these things, then know that Jesus is for you.  You are not beyond the pale, or outside of the camp.  In your weakness …Read More

Robo-Doc

By March 19, 2018 Blog

Joint post from me and G:   Ever struggled with an issue and thought, I need some expert advice?   Someone non-judgemental, a counsellor who’s available 24/7…? Good news – with a Woebot, you can. It’s a robot therapist that uses CBT to give (scripted) answers to users.  And remarkably, it seems to work. In the first study of its kind, regular users report feeling much less anxious and depressed. Research also suggests that folks who know they’re ‘talking’ with a robot open …Read More

All the lonely people

By February 19, 2018 Blog

Loneliness It’s the first thing that God says is ‘Not good….’ and this is before the Fall. Picture it. Adam is in paradise and God has made him king of the world. He has meaningful work to do, the entire animal kingdom to oversee, a world to explore and the Lord to walk with. From the world’s eyes, Adam has it all – yet God looks and says “Not good.” Why? Because the Three-in-One God made us to depend on others. Even …Read More

Free to be

By November 7, 2017 Blog

If you and your children were placed in terrible danger and your partner ran away, how would you cope? I’ve been thinking about this after watching a film called Force Majeure.  In it, a family go on holiday and experience a near miss with an avalanche. The husband flees with no thought for his wife and two children. They survive… and he tries to pretend that nothing has happened. But everything has changed. At first he tries to shrug it off. Then he …Read More