Lisa was 18 when she became a Clubhouse Member. Read her journey in her own words.
I was eighteen when my psychologist referred me to The Clubhouse Network.
At the time I hadn’t left the house for months. The only thing I did was play on my PlayStation and comfort eat.
I was also living on my own after leaving care. My psychologist was worried that my past of living in care, being in different care homes and coming out of it was making things difficult for me. Depression changes everything. It’s not funny.
Realising I needed more help, my psychologist referred me to the American Clubhouse.
She came with me on my first visit. It took me over an hour and a half to go inside because I was scared and worried. I didn’t want to go into the unknown, but I also didn’t want to stay at home all the time either.
On arrival I was greeted by a support worker and they helped me fill in a members’ form.
For the first few weeks I just came and sat in the corner, and when they did, I just gave them one-word answers. But after a month or so, I was attending the quiz, playing pool and talking much more.
Now I talk to people all the time. I do crosswords and design things in the art room. I’ve helped with fundraising and I’ve also got a part-time job to earn some money. I even attend and participate in members’ meetings.
I’m not better by any means. Some days my smiles are fake. But other days my smile is real.
I still see my psychologist and I’m struggling to adjust to the change. But change is everything, and I’ll get there.