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Calling kHL

Hey guys Smiley Happy


So I have a query, and I really don’t know where else to go. So here goes.


In a recent web chat with KHL, my counsellor wants me to transfer over to the phones. Which I mean is reasonable enough I guess. Though I’m having extreme trouble with this, and I’m just not finding myself able to get there, or to fully articulate the real issues behind it to her. I’ve always kind of brushed over it, but something tells me I can’t do that anymore…


When I try to call I find myself trying to find any excuse to give it a go. The idea of having to actually talk is nagging at me. I’m scared and don’t fully know or understand why. I’d rather not physically talk, and find expressing myself in text much easier.


I’m wondering what has helped others when feeling anxious about calling.

What can I try? I’ve tried deep breathing, coaxing myself to do it, trying not to think about it, playing music while attempting.

What was like when you first called KHL (or a similar service)?


Thanks in advance Smiley Happy

Remember you're amazing just as you are Heart

Re: Calling kHL

Hey Bee,


I've called up KHL a few times and I do find it a lot more awkward than online chat. It can be quite difficult for me because I don't use the service regularly and usually when I call I'm having some kind of crisis (e.g. a panic attack) so I have to take who I can get and usually get a different person each time. Because I'm usually very anxious when I call I don't usually worry about the call itself too much because I'm too focused on wanting to get some help. While I also prefer online, it's usually a lot easier to get in on the phones than online, especially if you call during the day (which I usually do) and I usually find I have much better conversations because you can explain things more clearly and quickly over the phone. I don't specifically remember the very first time that I called them, but I hope that sharing some of my experiences helps you anyway.


Things I usually do to help me when I call is


  • Explain that I'm nervous and feeling a bit awkward. They are always very friendy and don't push you to talk about what's going on for you straightaway if you're not ready (although I usually launch into it straightaway because it helps me to feel less awkward).
  • Know what I want to talk about before I call. I think it's important to have something specific in mind that you want to talk about when you call because it might help you to focus on why you're calling and feel less awkward (this is what I find anyway). I sometimes veer off into other topics, but it's good to have a starting point. Since you said you find it easier to express yourseld in text you might find it helpful to write down what you want to say.
  • When I'm anxious I do sometimes do breathing or grounding techniques to help me feel calmer and more focused. Sometimes the counsellor guides me, sometimes I just do it myself.
  • Sit somewhere quiet where there is good phone reception and where I can be alone. I think making sure you are somewhere were you can have some privacy and won't be interrupted is important too because it'll probabaly help you to be less stressed someone stumbling across you and overhearing.
  • Sometimes I find pacing/walking while I talk helps if I'm really anxious too.

Will you be talking to the same counsellor on the phones as you have been talking to online? If you are I think that will probably make it easier for you because you won't feel like you're talking to total stanger and you won't have to re-explain to them what is going on for you (which I have to do pretty much every time I call).


Best of luck! I'll come back and do another post if I think of anything else.

Re: Calling kHL

delicatedreamer wrote:


Things I usually do to help me when I call is


  • Know what I want to talk about before I call. I think it's important to have something specific in mind that you want to talk about when you call because it might help you to focus on why you're calling and feel less awkward (this is what I find anyway). I sometimes veer off into other topics, but it's good to have a starting point. Since you said you find it easier to express yourseld in text you might find it helpful to write down what you want to say.

Whilst I agree 110% with everything DD said, I just wanted to highlight this point because I've found it really useful when I've called KHL. I tend to feel really anxious about not knowing what to say. When I first transferred from online to the phones it was with the same counsellor, so it was easier because they knew my situation. But since they've left I've called a couple of times and spoken to different counsellors every time, and it helps if you can say "I've been stressed out about XYZ for ages and now it's happening again" or something.


The other thing I end up doing more often (because my mind sometimes goes blank the second they pick up) is to say something like "I'm not feeling so great and I don't know why but I decided to pick up the phone and call you guys." Even with a vague statement like that, they can talk you through it. The biggest thing I try to remember is that they're used to people feeling nervous and awkard. (I put that in italics mostly to re-remind myself of that fact, because it always makes me feel less anxious)


I hope that rambling made a little sense. DD pretty much covered everything I would say Smiley Happy

No human being, however great or powerful, was ever so free as a fish

Re: Calling kHL

Hey Bee!

Great topic.

Many, many years ago this exact same thing happened to me. I was talking to a regular counsellor on KHL online, and he wanted to transfer our sessions to the phone. It is something they do frequently as they can help you a bit more easily over the phones. I was really reluctant for a long time, straight out refused quite a number of times. I was nervous and did not know what to expect but it was heaps easier than I thought! Especially as I "knew" the counsellor already. I actually found it pretty cool to find out what his voice sounded like!

When you ring up, you'll have to be on hold for a while probably but when you get through a counsellor will pick up and they'll simply say "kids help line". I will admit that I rung up a number of times and hung up before speaking. Smiley Tongue But when they answer all you have to say is, "I was wanting to speak to <name of counsellor>." They'll probably ask for your name and will send them a message. Admittedly the next few minutes might be a bit awkward, the counsellor might ask you what the weather is like or something but some won't say anything while they are waiting for a response from the other counsellor. Then they'll tell you that the other counsellor has got the message and they'll either be available straight away (and they'll transfer you straight through) or they will recommend you ring you back in a set period of time. If they say ring back in an hour, I'd recommend trying again after 45 minutes, because sometimes you can be on hold for 15+ minutes! Unfortunately it does work out sometimes that you can't get through to them because they might be on another call for a long time, but don't give up hope - there would always be another time and you can always talk to a different counsellor if you want!

As for when you finally get to talk to the counsellor, they'll make it really easy for you, they'll probably ask you what you want to talk about today and what your day was like. They'll keep it pretty casual first off so you get used to talking to them on the phone! It's really just like chatting to a friend!

You said in your post: "I’d rather not physically talk, and find expressing myself in text much easier." - this was my EXACT thoughts too but over time I learnt to express myself through verbal words to my KHL counsellor! And I REALLY think this helped with talking to people in real life too. They'll understand you are nervous, they'll understand that you might be a bit shy at first but it really did help me a lot more moving from the web to the phones!

Just give it a try - if you find it's REALLY way too nerve-wrecking, you can always go back to the web!

I think it would be a great step for you to take! I really hope you can manage to do it! It won't be anywhere near as bad as you are imagining (these things never are!).

Let me know if you want to know anything else. Smiley Happy

Re: Calling kHL

Hi Bee,

My counsellor wanted me to do the same thing. I called KHL only yesterday, and I found it really good. We could get through so much more stuff over the phone. I was really scared about ringing up but once I connected with my regular counsellor I was fine. Everyone at KHL is so nice and they understand it's hard for you to ring sometimes. They can go as slow or as fast as you want with you, so you basically have control over what you talk about.

It can be quite daunting at first but it's really worth it. I was so scared of ringing up and now I've found I prefer or ring up. It just depends I guess. Best of luck.

Re: Calling kHL

Thank you DelicateDreamer, Lokifish, MischiefManaged and Pillow

Your replies mean a lot.


Opening thoughts, yes I will be talking to the same counsellor. I’ve been talking to her for 2 years now, and she says it’s time


I don’t even know what I’m scared of. Cause I’m all like yes I will call, I will come say ‘hello’ but then when it comes to actually calling – I freak out and just shy away. All I have to do is log into Skype and press the green call button then talk, but that just seems way. Too. Hard. I can envision myself calling and talking, but I can’t seem to get there… I never manage to get to that place I envision…


I just find the whole process really daunting. But then I find phones hard to handle on a good day, especially personal calls, like friends family. I rarely use the phone. I’m better face to face than I am over the phone! Also I’ve never really spoken to anyone about these issues I do with KHL, so it’s like going from typing to verbally communicating, and I dunno it just seems soo hard. At least with text I can delete something I don’t want to say, whereas verbally I can’t take it back. So much variables!



DD, very good tips there, thanks. I think I'll go through them like a checklist, see if they help. Uhm my regular counsellor knows I’m nervous/anxious about calling, she said “You can hang up anytime, judgement free, as I will know that it's difficult and you will try again.” 


Loki, yes that is a good point. Yepp, so my regular counsellor reminds me.


MM, wow what an extensive overview! Thank you!!

This isn’t the first time she’s tried to get me to transfer to the phones.  I have refused a couple times before this. Though there has been a bigger push/encouragement this time. We spent a web session just discussing the whole scenario... I was set to call her last month and I barely kept on hold for 5 mins before hanging up, I just kept getting more anxious! And haven’t tried since.

I did manage to – once, yonks ago, get through to a counsellor, but hung up after they said hello


Thanks Pillow,  I know they’re really nice, I’ve spoken to a few other counsellors bar my regular one online and have always been really helpful…

Remember you're amazing just as you are Heart

Re: Calling kHL

So I thought I'd come and give an update.

Since I last posted, I've attempted to call a few times.

One in which the call dropped out due to my crappy connection...


And twice tonight. I managed to stay on the line until someone answered, a whole 5 minutes something. Though dispite this I I still lost my voice. A tingling sensation ran through my body. My heart racing, pounding, in my chest. My breathing became erratic, like I was being strangled. Silenced by my own fear. Silenced in the far corner of my room. Shaking.

The second attempt was just as bad. I got through quicker, and managed to attempt to ask for my regular counsellor. But the lady who answered couldn't hear me, and after repeating myself 3 times, I gave up, ending the call. 


I still don't know how to move past this. I had a shower before I tried to ring and thought I was calm. But I was far from calm after attempting tonight. I sat in the far corner of my room, on a cushion, trying to distract myself. Nothing. I then got bubble wrap and used a card game as a distraction. I just couldn't speak loud enough... >.<

Remember you're amazing just as you are Heart

Re: Calling kHL

Hi Bee,

Thanks for letting us know how you went. I'm sorry you felt the way you did when you tried to ring but at least you gave it a shot! It took me quite a few calls before I could finally get up enough courage to talk for a full session but when I did it was one of the best things I've ever done. Also, feel pressured to ring, the counsellors will understand that it can be very hard for some people and you can always go back on web.

I think maybe you should talk to your counsellor on web about your fears of ringing and maybe you could work on that. One day I hope you will be able to ring and talk with your counsellor over the phone as it's really helpful but it's completely understandable if you don't want to. Just know everyone here at RO is here to support you though this.

Pillow Smiley Happy

Re: Calling kHL

Whoops, sorry Bee. I meant to say don't feel pressured, not feel pressured to ring. Really sorry x

Re: Calling kHL

Hi Bee,

Sounds like a textbook panic attack to me (even though I'm not a professional and haven't read any textbooks on the matter Smiley Tongue ). Don't beat yourself up about it - it's a natural reaction to tough situations for a lot of people. I think it's amazing that you've tried so hard and made so many attempts to make that damn call, despite the anxiety it causes you. I have to say, I can relate, I hate making ANY phone call, but especially the important ones, they're always so much harder - I always put calls off as long as I can and my heart pounds in my chest when I have to talk on the phone!

Keep trying, I think you'll get there eventually, you have such determination! Smiley Happy And in the mean time, maybe try web chat again and offer the same explanations you've given us here Smiley Very Happy