"When I was in Year 8 and 9, I had group music therapy sessions at school with two other classmates. The therapists came once a week. We played different instruments. I liked to play the drums and the keyboard. You don’t have to be a good player, you just have to play anything. Sometimes we made up something about how we felt and everyone had to listen and copy me. I felt happy when everyone copies me, because they did what I said, and because I could hear what my ideas sounded like when other people played them. Sometimes I played happy things and sometimes I played sad things.
Sometimes we didn’t have to copy others but answer them. It was like a conversation. It was fun talking to other people without words, because I find it hard to speak clearly, but when we played music together we could all understand each other. Sometimes we listened to each other and tried to think how the other people were feeling. We could make music up about anything we wanted.
I really enjoyed it. I’ve always liked making up music about what is happening to me and what I am doing. The group helped me learn to listen to others and takes turns, and it helped me find ways to show how I was feeling. Now I am in Year 10 and I don’t have music therapy any more. Instead, I am having singing and euphonium lessons now, and I still like to make music about how I am feeling."
A Music Therapy client with speech difficulties from a secondary school
“GIM really made me think more than I had thought they would, reaching different areas of my thoughts through all those metaphors. It was like digging a little corner, like suddenly I found a corner to dust while cleaning. Those thoughts which appeared during the sessions had never crossed my mind before but after the each sessions I came to the realisation.”
A mid 40s male GIM client
“The more sessions I’ve had, the more I’ve enjoyed them. They gave me the time to think about myself, about what I consider to be a good time and what’s worth expressing. It made me look at recent experiences and examine why I like them. I now think about good moments when I lie in bed before falling asleep. This helps me look back and build the memory of what was good in recent days.”
A mid 40s male SMI client with Schizophrenia in remission
“My first session drawing was very colourful and the problem shown there was like ‘a pea-size’ compared to what came out later. The second session was the transition session for me. So, the first session showed there was a problem with time; the second session zoomed into the time issue, with the muddy area which I avoided entering; the 3rd session zoomed into the muddy area so I actually went in there. I find it interesting to see the connections between my drawings.”
A mid 20s female RMI client