Ask Sam letter


To Sam


This will sound stupid, but ive tried a number of times to phone childline to talk to a councillor but every time I hear someone talk I get scared and hang up...
Please help, i have no idea how to overcome this
thanks x
Ask Sam


Hi there,

Thank you for your letter.

What you have said doesn't sound stupid at all. Lots of young people can feel really scared when trying to contact ChildLine for the first time.
It can be scary to imagine what it might be like to talk with a counsellor at first and it’s completely okay if it takes a few tries before you actually feel ready to talk to someone.

We have a page on that gives some information on what you can expect when you contact us. You can also watch a short video about what it's like to contact ChildLine.

Lots of children and young people have also hung up when they hear a counsellor talk. You might be worrying about what to say or where to start. These are all normal feelings, so it can be good to know that the ChildLine counsellors do understand just how difficult it can be to contact and how hard it can be  to talk about things.

A ChildLine counsellor is someone who will listen to you and knows it takes courage to contact. Counsellors are used to speaking to lots of children and young people about the things that might be worrying them, so counsellors are not easily shocked. They will never judge you for anything you share and it is fine to take your time. 

Sometimes it can be helpful to write down all the things you would like to say. That can help if your mind goes blank when you first get through to a counsellor. You can even let the counsellor know it is your first time talking and that you are finding it hard to know where to start.

Also, some children and young people find it easier to contact us by online 1-2-1 chat (which is like instant messaging) or by sending an email to a counsellor. It can feel less scary not having to hear a voice and this can be a good way of building up your confidence.

We are here to listen and we want to be here to give you support. So no matter how many times it takes, I think you should keep trying.

You don’t have to cope with your feelings on your own – you do deserve support.

Take care,

Need help straight away?

You can talk privately to a counsellor online or call 0800 1111 for free.

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