When I first started my sessions I had panic attacks, suicidal thoughts, nightmares, and felt emotional pain.

My feeling about life was too confused, I was blaming myself for being raped, and that I faced sexual assault. My mental health was so bad, I was having nightmares about my rapist, and my friends assaulting me, that nightmare was repeating several times a day, and I was so afraid of everyone.

Now I feel that I'm more confident, and stopped blaming myself, as I know it wasn't my fault for being raped or abused.

I feel that life is so much worthy to live and have fun of each part, and moment of it.. as I feel that I have to fight for my life. My therapist sessions helped me to replace suicidal thoughts with surviving thoughts. So instead of thinking about killing myself, now I know that I have to own my life and fight for it, I MUST LIVE, and STOP BLAMING MYSELF for being raped, or for being a lesbian, now I feel that I'm comfortable than ever, and I have that image in my head "that I live in a safe place and feel peaceful;", that helps me to keep going and stay positive, and never give up on my life.

The most challenging part, when my therapist told me that "You won't live like that forever" I thought she just saying motivating words, I was depressed back then, but I realized that she was right already because now I'm trying to get away out of my country, and applied for a visa, job, life out there.... etc. She was right, I won't live in that situation forever and I hope when I get a job with a good salary, so I can continue my sessions with her, because she was really good, and helped me a lot.

Shaimaa, Egypt

I was at my lowest having mental breakdowns almost every night for the last 2 years, I was constantly thinking of death and how I am useless and not worth living. I was very harsh on myself, blaming myself for other people's actions.

I was abused and sexually assaulted and I thought it was my fault and I deserved it. I had so much pain from traumas that I was not aware of. I was deeply hurt and I couldn't, with all my strength, lift myself up.

After the sessions w FHFM I am much better, I can comfort myself and navigate my feelings better, I amended a lot of the harsh words that I used to label myself with. I am much kinder now to myself, I can recognize that so many things happened or still happening that are out of my control I don't have to take its heavy weight on my shoulders.

I am working on building my self-esteem and for the first time in my life I am working on establishing a healthily daily routine.

my mental health is a work in progress and now I have the main keys/skills to keep myself in relatively good state.

I actually made goals in the future that I am looking forward to achieve!

The most rewarding moment was when I recognized that my abuse and sexual assault was not my fault, all the hatred towards myself is gone.

And the most challenging was to be kinder, be less critical to myself and put my needs first.

I would like to add that my therapist made me feel safe and they made sure to make me feel heard and understood, they were supportive and kind, I am truly thankful that I had the chance.

Updated: May 24

I heard about FHFM from a YouTuber when I was searching for LGBT comforting videos. I was feeling extremely tired and severely depressed. I even had dark thoughts and suicidal ideation (I wanted to end my life at 35). To make it brief, my mental state was significantly going downhill. Physically I was fine.

I honestly feel like I was reborn again with a new perspective of life. My depression has got much better and I view life in a more optimistic lens, even though I'm still in a place that would ruin my life or kill me for just being LGBT. Overall, my mental health has improved dramatically.

I had issues with regard to asking for help and reconciling my sexual identity. Those are no longer the case, I have fully accepted myself and I gained a new understanding of a couple of things which I had a very bad experience with them.

I really liked my experience [in therapy w FHFM] as a whole and I had no problem with it. I only wish I done it earlier in my life. I liked that I didn't feel judged and crazy for voicing my thoughts. I had someone who gave me guidance and encouraged to do better and to be easy on myself when I make any mistake.

[The most challenging part of therapy was] talking about my family and my relationship with them. It's hard to think that the people who we call family could kill without a thought or care for the simple fact that you are not straight. It's heartbreaking to realize that fact.

Thank you Free Hearts Free Minds, Yasmine, and everyone involved. I'm forever grateful ♥️.