A PSYCHOTHERAPIST has spoken of how the birth of her daughter, a year of ME and a self-help book lead her to write her own.

Ex-teacher and schools psychotherapist Usha Chudasama, of Stanley Road, South Woodford is publishing a book called No Child is Broken later this year after 15 years of working with troubled children.

The 53-year-old decided to become a counsellor after bringing up her daughter made her realise how difficulties in her own childhood had caused her to "emotionally shut down".

She said: “I found being a parent was like reliving my own childhood, because I didn’t really have much of one myself.

"When I was seven my family came to London from Kenya as refugees, and it was a really tough time.

"At first we didn’t have anywhere to live, my mum took two jobs and we were just left to fend for ourselves.

"When I got to school I didn’t speak the language and London wasn’t the multicultural place it is now, so the kids could be really cruel.”

She went on: "After that I just lived my life on automatic pilot, doing things without thinking about them, and without realising I had just completely shut off my emotions.

"But when I gave birth to Lena everything changed, I took responsibility for my own feelings.”

Mrs Chudasama started volunteering at parent and toddler groups at South Woodford Library and trained as a teacher, before falling ill with ME in 2000.

She said: "It was absolutely horrendous, but I read a book that completely changed my life – it told me I had the ability to change my life through my thoughts, so I thought myself better.”

After she recovered, Mrs Chudasama was so inspired by the book that she trained as psychotherapist and set up her own clinic, Healing Feeling, to bring troubled children like her former self out of their shells.

She said: "Once I had a nine-year-old boy come to me who was being bullied at school and his mum was absolutely distraught – he just shut everyone out and was even talking about suicide.

"But after six months of making him realise his strengths and getting him to talk about his emotions, not only did he not want to kill himself, but he actually started helping his friends who were being bullied in the same way.

"Years went by and I randomly met him again at a clinic in Barkingside and he was this six-foot 17-year-old and he told me everything we’d talked about still helped him all those years later.

"His kind of story is why I do what I do, this is what I was put on this earth to do, and which is why I've written the book."

Mrs Chudasama started writing No Child is Broken in 2015 after overwhelmingly positive feedback from the parents of children she helped.

She added: "Parents always used to thank me for 'fixing' their kids, but this book will tell people no child needs 'fixing', everything they can acheive is already in there, it's just about bringing it out.

No Child is Broken is due to be released in September and can be pre-ordered online.