Frequently Asked Questions

Using the site FAQs

I need help now, what can I do?

If you’re here and feeling you’re in crisis there are people you can talk to, even if it’s the middle of the night. You can find information about them at onlinesupport.42ndstreet.org.uk/i-need-help-now

What happens if I don’t have internet?

If you think getting online might be a problem then mention that to your worker when you first speak. You’ll always have at least a week in between replies so there’s no rush to get online straight away. It might be an idea to write your messages offline and copy them over if you’ve got limited access online.

The site’s not working, what do I do?

There’s a button on the homepage that says “I need help on the site”. If you let us know what’s happening, we’ll get back in touch as soon as possible.

Our site isn’t staffed 24/7 but we’ll aim to get back to you within 72 hours.

I haven’t heard anything from my worker, what’s going on?

After registering we’ll get in touch within 72 hours. The message will come through on the site and you’ll get an e-mail notification too, which does sometimes end up in Junk Mail, so do check that.

If you’ve already started support you should have an agreed time that your worker will send you a message by. The site stores all your messages, so check through them to see when that time is. It’s very likely they’ll be in touch by that time.
If you haven’t heard anything in this time frame they’re might be a technical issue we’re not aware of. The best thing to do is click on the “I need help with the site” button and explain what’s happened so we can investigate and get back to you asap.

If it’s been a long time since you last logged in it might be that your support agreement’s been de-activated. If that’s happened, don’t worry, you can register again and tell us what’s happened and we’ll get back to you.

Can I meet my worker in person?

Unfortunately this isn't something we're able to arrange. 

However, if you start online support and feel that actually you’d prefer to work with someone face to face, 42nd Street offers that too. We can’t guarantee it will be the same worker and there will be a little wait before someone can see you face to face though.

If this is something you're interested in, do chat to your counsellor or therapist about it.

Online Support FAQs

What is online support?

Online support works very much the same as 42nd Street’s face to face support (only there might be a little bit more reading…!)

There are two options for support:

Weekly messages, which involves you sending messages to a worker throughout the week, and receiving a message back each week at a time you both agree on. You can check your messages whenever works for you, and reply whenever is best for you.

Live text chat; which are regular sessions booked in with your worker where you are both online, talking via text chat for around an hour, similar to how a face to face appointment would work.

We also run a weekly drop-in where you speak to a worker without arranging an appointment to ask about anything about support you may have.

You can read a little more about the support at https://42ndstreet.aeguana.com/what-is-counselling and you can read about how support tends to work best at https://42ndstreet.aeguana.com/counselling_agreement

If there’s ways of working that you think might help you, we really encourage you to let us know about them too. Sometimes people use YouTube clips, songs, photos, art and more to explain how they’re thinking and feeling – you can use all of these during your support if it helps.

How can support help me?

There might be a number of ways people benefit from one to one support

  • time to talk about something difficult or that you’ve never shared before
  • an opportunity to explore aspects about yourself, your relationships and your life that you want to make sense of
  • time to offload stress and look at practical ways of coping better
  • time just to recognise that someone can be there for you
  • a safe place to work things out

This isn't about giving you all the answers or lots of advice but it’s a place where you can be supported to find your own solutions to the issues in your life. This can help to build your confidence and self-esteem

Is it free?

Yes. At the moment our online service is free to access for any young people 13-25 in various parts of Greater Manchester.

How do I start?

There’s a “register” link at the top left of every page. After clicking that we’ll ask you to provide a little information about how we can support you and ask you to read a couple of our policies. After that you’re all set up and we’ll get in touch within 72 hours.

Is this service right for me?

There are loads of reasons why you might prefer working online; online support can be really great but also it might not be for everyone.

If you feel you’re in crisis right now, particularly if you’re worried you might hurt yourself, it might not be the best way to support you.

If this sounds like you, we’d encourage you to have a look at onlinesupport.42ndstreet.org.uk/i-need-help-now as you might benefit from some of the services listed there.

We also offer face to face counselling, and that might be something you end up talking about with your worker.

Why can’t I talk to someone right now?

We’re not able to respond to enquiries 24 hours a day, so we can’t offer someone to chat to straight away. However our counsellors and practitioners will talk with you over a number of sessions to support you and we’ll respond to you within 72 hours when you get in touch.

If you feel you’re in crisis and need someone to help you right now, you can find some different services HERE

What happens if I don't get on with my worker?

This might happen. If you feel it very strongly the first time you chat it may be important for you to air this right away and ask whether you can have another counsellor or therapist from the service.

We'd really encourage you to bring stuff like this up with your worker at any time you get concerned about it.

Meanings can get lost in written messages sometimes. It's always worth checking something was taken in the way it was intended. This can work both ways and if you feel your counsellor or therapist isn't reading your messages in the way you meant them, you can bring that up too!

How will I know if this support is working?

It’s difficult to say the exact things to look out for as really you’re the best judge of this! Young people notice all sorts of changes through one to one support, for example:

  • I feel less alone, anxious; depressed; stressed; sad; overwhelmed; frightened; angry, suicidal etc.
  • I can deal better with my problems
  • I know my strengths
  • I feel like I understand/ like myself better
  • I notice how hard I was on myself and where that came from
  • I now know my feelings were normal grief emotions and I am not alone
  • I know that there is light at the end of the tunnel
  • I know I can seek counselling & therapy in my life again should I ever need it
There may be physical and practical changes too, for example:
  • I can sleep better
  • I now have some ways to calm down
  • I am not so argumentative with others
  • I have cried with the counsellor/therapist which is a first
  • I am getting out more with friends
  • I no longer self-harm
  • I eat better
  • I now write a diary
  • I do exercise that helps
  • I left/strengthened a relationship
  • I’ve got a job

What happens if I tell you private stuff?

We’ve created a page just for this question! We really encourage you to read it all the way through – it explains what we do with your info and anything that you tell us. https://42ndstreet.aeguana.com/confidentiality-policy

If you’re concerned about privacy you might want to consider a few of these points:

  • Try to find a quiet space and time where you’re less likely to get interrupted
  • Avoid computers at school, college or uni as they might monitor your activity and it might not be confidential
  • Use the exit button on the right if you need to shut the site down
  • Use the “private browsing” function on any browser you use (it’s usually in the menu up on the top right on a PC, or the option comes up when you open more tabs on a phone browser)
  • Remember you’ll probably get email notifications from the site, so maybe check if those appear on your lock screen on your phone, or think about anyone else who might have access to your account

What else is available?

You can head over to http://42ndstreet.org.uk/projects-activities/ to find about the work that 42nd Street does.

There’s a range of groups and projects you can get involved in, as well as our face to face support services. We also have an LGBTQ+ website with information and media about a range of areas too; www.q42.org.uk

What if I'm not coping in between messages?

There are many different reasons that may make you feel as if you’re not coping between sessions

  • the gaps between weekly counselling or therapy sessions can feel like enormous waits
  • events may occur in the week that catapult you into feeling right back at the beginning

You might notice things arising in your mind/ dreams/ emotions that you want to share throughout the week. You can send messages to your counsellor or therapist at any time, and even though they might not read them until the time you agreed on, it can help to get those thoughts down sometimes.

If you’re finding it hard in between sessions, tell your counsellor or therapist! Remember they’re trained to be there for you through all these stages. Here are a few ideas for looking after yourself (you can find others by talking to your counsellor or therapist):

  • go for a walk after sessions
  • go somewhere quiet to reflect straight after
  • meet someone who you trust to talk things through during the week
  • write a diary
  • pursue a hobby that feels like it boosts your mood and self-esteem
  • draw in a sketchpad or listen to music
  • pursue a learning that keeps you involved
  • do some exercise

If you’re really struggling to cope between sessions then we'd encourage you to seek support from your GP or check out some of the other services on our "need help now" page at onlinesupport.42ndstreet.org.uk/i-need-help-now