According to Common Goal, the best way to do this is through the players. According to the organization’s research, players tend not to look to family or friends outside of football for support, but to look inward, to their teammates. “It’s a way to regain power,” Barrett-O’Keefe said. “It’s a way of saying, ‘I can help myself and I can help my teammates.’”

In the summer of 2022, Farrelly decided to return to the game. She wasn’t entirely sure if she felt ready. She was afraid of many things: that she wasn’t good enough, that she might disappoint herself, that she might let others down. “I feel comfortable being small,” she says. “There’s a part of my brain that’s there to protect me from injury.”

However, she knew that at 33, she would no longer have any chance and so she took the risk. She began training with Gotham FC. She impressed enough to get a contract. Within a year, she would play her first World Cup.

It wasn’t as simple as this timeline suggests. Farrelly never regretted her decision to return to football, she said, but there were times when she “cried every day”, when she wasn’t sure she could be who she was once upon a time, where ups and downs threatened to “cry every day.” overwhelm her.

But this time, the culture has changed. In Gotham, she could speak. Not only to his psychologist and his somatic therapist, but also to the other players. She could tell her teammates about seeking help from a psychologist. “I had to open up and be vulnerable,” she said. “Sometimes that meant having a vulnerability hangover, but I’m grateful for that.”

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