Bernard says seeing psychologist after anxiety attack helped him

Saturday, 4 July, 2020 19comments  |  Jump to last

Bernard has opened up about an anxiety attack he suffered last year and has extolled the benefits of seeking professional help to improve his mental health as a result.

The Brazilian has had a chequered introduction to life in the Premier League after joining Everton on a free transfer from Shakhtar Donetsk two years ago. It took him a full season to properly get to grips with the pace and physicality of the Premier League and he has had to battle for first-team chances this season during a period of further upheaval that saw yet another managerial change.

Having been signed under Marco Silva, Bernard is now working on impressing Carlo Ancelotti who arrived six months ago, something he hopes he can now do from a stronger psychological foundation.

“I've been having therapy for the past year,” he told evertontv. “I see a psychologist. It's not something I previously stigmatised, but I never thought I would require this type of treatment.

“I had an anxiety attack a year ago. The psychologist really helped with this; the other professionals involved helped me a lot as well.

“The person I've opened up to about everything has been my psychologist and, a lot of the time, I feel embarrassed to talk about certain things.

“There were different symptoms, I had blurred vision. I'm a bit uncomfortable talking about it as it was a difficult situation, but I'm happy I've got through it.

“I think it's only people who have been through such an attack who really understand the intensity, the way it manifests itself and how difficult it is. Also, how scary it is, as it's so unexpected, you know?

“I sought help as I genuinely needed it. I'm stronger in all areas and have become a better person, more positive and more confident.”

“Today I feel grateful and happier for having gone through this. I'm even grateful for the difficulties and problems we face in life, as they make us better people.

“Now I see how much I've evolved as a person, as a human being, how much this has helped me in my work.”


Reader Comments (19)

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Colin Glassar
1 Posted 04/07/2020 at 15:23:45
I hope that explains his poor form since he came to us. I wonder if 1-2 more players might need to see one?

You never know what's going on behind the scenes.

Paul Hewitt
2 Posted 04/07/2020 at 15:30:01
I don't think Bernard's form has been that bad, since he joined.
Mike Gaynes
3 Posted 04/07/2020 at 16:22:34
Bernard doesn't need any more shrinking.
Jay Wood

4 Posted 04/07/2020 at 17:48:39
'Bernard doesn't need any more shrinking.'

You've been spending too much time in Brent Stephens' company, Mike!

That's a Brent-esque groaner!

Brent Stephens
5 Posted 04/07/2020 at 17:52:21
I thank you, Jay! I thank you!
Mike Gaynes
6 Posted 04/07/2020 at 18:14:42
Brent is my guru.
Jim Bennings
7 Posted 05/07/2020 at 08:07:23
I don't think he's been as much as poor since he joined us, but maybe he hasn't quite lived up to the expectations we had of him.

When I first saw him in October 2018 I thought we had a playmaker that would dazzle with his skills and play more through the centre.

I thought Bernard would be our modern version of Juninho, for anyone who remembers Middlesbrough's little Brazilian genius from the 90s.

His situation is actually bit similar to André Gomes, another who hasn't really kicked on quite like I thought he would; too many inconsistent displays (even before the horrendous injury) and you look at both Bernard and Gomes and wonder if the Premier League is getting too fast for them now.

As for psychologists, well, our entire team needs one for when we play away to the top six!!

Mick Conalty
8 Posted 05/07/2020 at 10:06:50
Did he play in the World Cup final for Brazil, when they were mauled 7-1 by Germany?

Now that's what you call a Panic Attack!!!!

Derek Knox
9 Posted 05/07/2020 at 11:11:11
It's a pity his 'attack' hadn't been in front of goal! I like the lad but he is too easily muscled off the ball when in possession, on his day he can be brilliant, but those days are not often enough for me.
Jim Bennings
10 Posted 05/07/2020 at 11:30:15


Again sadly like Gomes, on his day brilliant, but too often games pass him by.

Michael O'Malley
11 Posted 05/07/2020 at 17:06:38
I reckon we'd see more of his skills if we dominated the ball a bit more. I can't remember the last time we absolutely dominated anybody so, every time he has possession, he needs to do something with it. He tries his heart out but a lot of games do pass him by but he is a cracking little player.
Peter Mills
12 Posted 05/07/2020 at 18:31:47
Bernard frustrates, because he is a little guy playing amongst big ones. But there is no doubt he has skill, he doesn't hide, and is no chicken.

Good on him for not being embarrassed about speaking about his anxieties. I hope his therapy helps him, and his speaking out about it encourages others to seek help if they need it. Good man.

Jim Bennings
13 Posted 05/07/2020 at 19:36:59
Bernard would look better if we had a midfield with some legs in it, some energy and exuberance.

Gomes, Davies, Sigurdsson, Delph, four guys there who wouldn't win any foot races let's be truthful.

We have two wide midfielders who basically just aren't really any good as wide players. Iwobi is neither here or there, not direct enough to be winger, not tidy enough to be a regular in the centre.

Bernard likewise on the left.

I was recently watching some games from Martinez last season, while we were god awful defensively we were a really cohesive flexible unit going forward, we had energy in Lennon, Deulofeu and Barkley in that midfield, McCarthy (when he played).

I look at our midfield now and from left to right across it there just no real athleticism or dynamism.

John Raftery
14 Posted 05/07/2020 at 23:06:52
Bernard has performed well this season in several home games but has been very poor in most of the away games, being hauled off at half-time more than once. His inconsistency mirrors that of the team as a whole.

I think one reason he has struggled is that Digne has not been on top form for much of the season. The partnership between the two of them was one of the features of our success in the closing months of last season.

Another reason is that, alongside a pedestrian central midfield incapable of controlling the play, especially in away matches, Bernard is not the player who can change the dynamic of a game by grabbing possession and driving the team forward.

He is a player who can add value in the final third by unlocking defences with a clever piece of footwork, a neat pass or a tidy finish. To be at his most effective, he needs to be in a team playing on the front foot, dominant in possession and pushing the opposition back towards their own goal. At present, we are not that team.

Jay Wood

15 Posted 06/07/2020 at 14:52:04
A very interesting interview with Bernard talking about a mental health issue he has been dealing with in the past 12 months.
Jay Wood

16 Posted 06/07/2020 at 15:18:12
Ah! So this is where the thread is on Bernard's anxiety attack. Which I'd already posted on and forgot!

Here is the video interview on the club site.

Bernard opens up on anxiety attack

Michael O'Malley
17 Posted 06/07/2020 at 19:03:54
John @14, absolutely spot on.
Justin Doone
18 Posted 07/07/2020 at 19:05:09
Another area that Everton have fallen behind in. Mental strength and awareness of issues can greatly effect people.

The club need to do much more in this area to help individuals but also collectively as a team to improve game management and instil a winning mentalality.

As for Bernard he's a trier but always looks fatigued, maybe he lacks stamina or just spends to much time chasing and lacks positional sense.

Like Iwobi, Siggy and Gomes to a degree, they are attacking midfielders played out of position. They lack the pace and skill to be wingers and poor tackling / pressing in a deeper midfield role.

He's got skill, balance and can be direct but his final ball and lack of options only add to him giving the ball away cheaply.

I could not describe any current Everton player as brilliant. Several have had very good games but not consistently enough.

Susong Hermawan
19 Posted 16/07/2020 at 11:46:42
Not good enough.. next..

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