Ask Sam letter


To Sam

Manchester bombing

i was at the manchester bombing and since then, no doctor or anyone has come to see how i am. im constantly having flashbacks, panic attacks and sometimes i just cry about it non stop. im hoping that ill see someone but ive heard that there are big waiting lists to be properly seen. i just dont know what to do :(

Ask Sam


Hi there,

The bomb affected lots of people - those who were in Manchester that night and people who weren't. When something sudden and shocking happens it can be very traumatic. Trauma can affect people in different ways but flashbacks and panic attacks are two common things people experience. There’s help and support available and it's important to start that process as early as possible.

Trauma can take a long time to recover from and things like flashbacks can make it harder to move on. Every time a flashback happens it might bring back feelings from the day of the bombing or make it feel like you are reliving the attack. Those feelings are really difficult to cope with so it's important that you find ways to look after yourself.

The media might have pictures and images from the night of the attack so it can be best to avoid it. Staying away from the news and social media for a little while is a good way to protect yourself from unexpected triggers you might come across. Finding a quiet place can help with panic attacks and anxiety - this might be in your room or some other place where you can go to and feel safe.

Try to limit the pressures on you from other parts of your life. Tell school or college about how you’re feeling so that they know you might need some extra support with deadlines for homework or help during an exam if you have a panic attack or flashback. The more people around you know, the more they can help you. If you bottle up or ignore feelings then they can get worse and take longer to overcome in the end.

It’s important to remember that there’s support available. Manchester City Council set up the Manchester Attack Support website to bring all of the available help in one place, where you  can get support over the phone and online. More information can also be found at the Manchester Resilience Hub.

I hope this has helped, but remember that our counsellors are also available to talk to anytime you feel the need - either online or on the phone.

Thank you for your letter, take care.


Need help straight away?

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

Ask me a question

You can ask me about anything you want, there's nothing too big or small. I read every single letter but I can only answer a few each week. My replies are published here on my page.

Write me a letter