Accepting New Clients! - Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays in Nepean
Pursuing counselling for the first time or at any point can be intimidating. My priority as a counsellor is to make this experience less overwhelming by being transparent about the process, identifying the challenges, making goals, and creating a plan for change that you are comfortable with.
WHAT TO EXPECT
I understand that starting counselling can be a scary process. Prior to meeting I try to have a quick phone conversation with every client in order to understand your situation as well as to give you an opportunity to ask me any questions you have. Once we see each other for our first session we will complete some paperwork and then explore the situations that have brought you to counselling. We will discuss how you have been coping so far and start working towards taking on new perspectives by understanding the way your emotions and thoughts are impacting how you feel and behave.
As a Registered Psychotherapist I take a client-centered approach to our work together; you are the expert in your life. This means that your personal experience is our starting point and together we can build awareness about what has been happening to lead you to where you are now. I do not have all of the answers or a quick fix to your situation, but together we can begin to make meaning out of your experience and take on new perspectives or understanding in order to move forward.
AREAS OF SPECIALTY/INTEREST
While I have a broad range of experience working with people experiencing numerous varied concerns, areas that I am most interested and skilled in are listed below
- Self-Esteem/Body Image
In addition, I have experience supporting clients with concerns such as anger management, grief, family conflicts, and career growth to name a few. If you are unsure whether I can support you with your particular concern, please give me a call or send me an e-mail so we can discuss further.
I have always had an empathetic and caring heart and from a young age was interested in helping others in one capacity or another. Mid-way through my Human Rights and Women’s & Gender studies undergraduate degree at Carleton University I began working at a local women’s shelter. It was during my time at the shelter that I realized that my passion lay in talking one-on-one with people in some of their most vulnerable moments, and helping people to realize their own strengths and potential.
After a year off of school I completed my Masters degree at the University of Ottawa. During that time I worked with a youth mental health promotion organization based out of the local children’s hospital. There I did community presentations on mental health and wellness and ran various groups for young people who were struggling with their mental health and overall wellbeing.
After completing my school placements in two local family service organizations I graduated and went on to provide short-term, single session and crisis support for an Employee Assistance Program. Several years later I finally began seeing clients in a private practice setting, providing ongoing long-term support. This is where I finally feel the most engaged, energized and a great sense of purpose and passion. I feel so honoured every day to have clients share the most intimate details of their lives with me and to see the dedication and strength it takes to make difficult changes.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Where do I start?
This is a great question! Really, we can start wherever you want to start. We will go at a pace that you are comfortable with – you are in the driver’s seat of your counselling experience. We can jump right in or take our time.
How long will counselling last?
This is a difficult question to answer, as it depends on many factors. If you would prefer short-term or long-term counselling we will talk about this in our beginning sessions to come up with a plan to suit your needs.
Will you fix the problems in my life? Will you tell me what to do?
Many people come to counselling with the idea that the counsellor or therapist is the expert and can solve their problems. Although we are highly trained professionals, we (unfortunately) do not have all of the answers. I will at times provide you with direction, but my role as your counsellor is to be a guide alongside you, to uncover and discover new perspectives together and work on making meaningful change in your life. We will have to try different strategies along the way to see what will work best in your life.
Do I have to talk about my childhood?
Yes and no. If talking about your childhood is something that you do not want to do, I will do my best to respect that. However, if there was a significant event or relationship that happened at that time and it is having an impact on your present experience, it may only be possible to make meaningful change by exploring some of your past. If we do decide to do this work, it will be at your pace, you are in charge of how fast and how much we get into.
What if I run into you at the grocery store?
We will talk about this in our first session. In order to respect your privacy and confidentiality I will not acknowledge you if I do see you in public (it is not because I want to be rude or ignore you!) You may choose to approach me and say hi and I will definitely respond. I will never share your personal information or things that we talk about in session if we see each other in public.
Is everything we talk about private and confidential?
Yes, with some very clear exceptions. Everything we talk about is confidential. I cannot confirm or deny to anyone that you are my client. However, I must adhere to strict guidelines and laws around professional conduct that may require me to breach confidentiality in specific contexts. These guidelines are in place to protect and ensure the safety of individuals. We will talk in more detail about these things in our first session.