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Louise thought she was starting a new exciting chapter in her life. In her early forties she decided to move hundreds of miles from her home in Newcastle to live with her new boyfriend in Portsmouth.

They had originally met nearly twenty years ago when she was about to head off to work on a cruise ship as a holistic therapist. So when they found each other on Facebook years later and he asked her to move down to live with him she thought it was worth taking the chance.

Louise threw herself into her new life including taking a job working as a Customer Service Advisor on tax issues for HMRC. However, her boyfriend’s drinking problems soon started to impact on their relationship.

Louise said: “He seemed really happy when we got together. But he has always drunk and he was on anti-depressants. He thinks the drink will help him. I’ve never really been out with someone like that. I must be a soft touch as I was trying to be there for him. I was putting up with it.”

Hundreds of miles away from her family and lifelong friends, Louise found herself isolated. So when her boyfriend told her it was over and he didn’t want her in his house anymore she was scared for the future and started suffering from anxiety.

“He said he didn’t want me there anymore and I had nowhere to go. I think most of it was to do with the drink. I had no savings, nothing. We never used to have much money anyway, I was trying to save but there were still bills to be paid and I was paying towards them. I couldn’t afford to do this and it would cause arguments. It was awful in the end.”

Not knowing what to do next, Louise told her manager at work what was going on. He advised her to get in touch with the Charity and when she called she realised how bad things had got.

“I called first and I was in a state. I started crying down the phone, I think because I had kept everything in and I had been trying to stay strong. The person on the phone was so lovely.”

After formally applying online Louise was astonished to find that the Charity was able to help her with the deposit for a flat, the first month’s rent and to buy a bed. The Charity also checked her monthly finances and ensured that she could afford the rent each month, so she would be secure in her new home.

“I was so worried that I was wasting people’s time, so it was a real shock as to how much help I got. But I really needed it, the Charity helped me through a very stressful time in my life.”

Now happily settled in Southsea, with her cat Anna for company and making some friends, Louise is happier than she has ever been. “At 44 years old it’s the first time I have had my own place, living by myself. I just love it, really amazing. I love that I go home and my little Anna is waiting for me. She is more company than a man is.”

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