Therapy gives footballer Jermaine Pennant given second chance

Footballer Jermaine Pennant has spoken out in the Telegraph about how a course of therapy helped him rebuild his life and career after reaching the “lowest point in my life”. Earlier this year Pennant received an eight week suspended sentence and a third drink driving ban, and his contract with Stoke City, under the former management, was not renewed. But after a period of respite and a course of therapy Pennant has been given a new contract with his old team, and saw the season in with a bang when he led his team to victory over West Ham in September.


After the catalytic suspended sentence Pennant entered therapy to talk through his earlier life experiences, and to come to grips with how events from his past were still affecting him in the here-and-now.


“I said to [my therapist]: ‘I’ve made a lot of mistakes, why do I take so many risks?’” Pennant told the Telegraph. “Not just with football but in everything – with my partner, with life, with this and that. You know, just making bad decisions.


“We went over my childhood, growing up – from an infant to now basically. It opened my eyes to certain things and made me realise why I had made certain mistakes and why I had gone down certain paths…people sometimes make choices in their lives through their childhood and do it without realising.”


Through spending time with his therapist Pennant came to see that his upbringing and his past experiences had had a profound effect in his day-to-day actions throughout his adult life. Without realising or noticing it, Pennant had made life choices from an outdated place of being. Like many of us, Pennant hadn’t taken on board that his external world had changed over the years, so he didn’t need to respond to the outside world in ways that he once had to as a youngster.


Our counsellors and therapists at The Grove understand how much the past can influence our present-day thoughts, feelings and actions. We learn many behaviours and ways of being while we are growing and developing, and these can become entrenched in our personalities without us even realising. Our therapists will work with you to notice these outdated responses and patterns of behaviour, and to help you learn more about how your past is influencing your future. Together we can work to notice and change archaic thoughts and behaviours, so that we can help you to live more fully in the present and reduce tendencies to make decisions based on outdated circumstances.


During your initial session your counsellor will provide time and space to talk things through with you and discuss what is on your mind. We understand that everything may feel a bit muddled at the moment and it can be hard to pinpoint what the problem is, but we will work with you to help understand where you are at now, and to work towards where it is you want to be. Contact us today to book your first session so we can talk first, before deciding where to go next.