Frequently Asked Questions
If you have problems, issues or dilemmas that are controlling your enjoyment of life you may want to consider counselling, as an effective form of addressing, clarifying and dealing with these concerns. Counselling is available in many forms and can help people make progress in a variety of ways. Understanding and acknowledging that there is no longer any stigma attached to seeking emotional support will enable you to access the type of therapeutic support that you will most benefit from.
Do You Need Counselling?
Do you have difficulty expressing emotional concerns, identifying issues and moving forward with your life? Do you have limiting beliefs, anxiety problems or other dilemmas that stop you from making positive progress?
Perhaps you are experiencing major life changes, dealing with separation or divorce, or loss or grief, and have no-one you can readily confide in? If you have a history of abuse and/or addictions or find it difficult to relate to other people counselling may also provide you with a positive outlet and secure and supportive environment in which to explore your difficulties.
Counselling provides a useful, supportive role in the lives of people from all walks of life, and is no longer looked about suspiciously. Understanding, and accepting, that we all need help from time to time will enable you to assess whether or not you would benefit from counselling support.
How does grief differ from depression?
Depression is more than a feeling of grief after losing someone or something you love. Clinical depression is a whole body disorder. It can take over the way you think and feel.
Symptoms of depression include:
- A sad, anxious, or “empty” mood that won’t go away.
- Loss of interest in what you used to enjoy.
- Low energy, fatigue, feeling “slowed down”.
- Changes in sleep patterns.
- Loss of appetite, weight loss, or weight gain.
- Trouble concentrating, remembering, or making decisions.
- Feeling hopeless or gloomy.
- Feeling guilty, worthless, or helpless.
- Thoughts of death or suicide or a suicide attempt.
- Recurring aches and pains that don’t respond to treatment.
What is counselling?
Counselling gives you an opportunity to talk to someone about your experiences and how they affect you. You will not be judged, criticized or told what to do, but supported in being yourself and making your own choices.
It can sometimes be hard to put your thoughts and feelings into words so you may wish to try other ways of expressing yourself, such as drawing or art. It’s up to you.
How long does it take?
During an Initial Assessment with a counsellor, you will have an opportunity to discuss whether or not to begin counselling. If you both agree that it may be helpful, you will probably be offered 5 – 6 sessions to start with. This may be enough support for you or you may want to continue. Counselling is a very individual process so it’s impossible to say how long it will take. Some people attend a few sessions, others many more. You may stop coming to counselling at any time.
What are the limits to confidentiality in counselling?
THERE ARE SIX EXCEPTIONS TO CONFIDENTIALITY IN COUNSELLING:
At your specific request.
Sometimes a client asks to have some information passed on to someone else, and a counsellor may help with this. This is done with written permission from the client. An example of this is when a Doctor has referred the client to a counsellor and would like to follow their progress.
When someone is at risk of actual harm to self or others.
A counsellor will normally seek to obtain permission from you to contact someone if you give the counsellor information which suggests that you, or another person, is at risk of actual harm. If circumstances permit we would try to contact you to discuss things, ideally obtain your agreement, and make you aware of what is happening before breaking confidentiality. On very rare occasions there may be an emergency situation where it is not possible or appropriate to seek your permission before such disclosure in order to safeguard another.
When legally required to disclose as in files being subpoenaed by a court of law.
Where possible and appropriate we would try to contact you to discuss things and make you aware of what is happening before breaking confidentiality.
As a requirement of their profession, all counsellors have supervision. They discuss their work with their supervisor. Supervisors are required to maintain confidentiality, and, since the supervision is focused on the work of the counsellor, she or he does not have to identify you to their supervisor.
If the counsellor is aware or suspects child abuse, a report must be made to the Authorities within 24 hours.
If the counsellor is aware or suspects elder abuse, a report must be made to the Authorities.
Can my counsellor deal with every kind of problem?
No, there are some matters that are best handled by experts in that particular area. For example, problems with money are sometimes better dealt with by going to see a Financial Advisor. References are available upon request and your counsellor will give options to you.
How much will I have to pay?
You will be charged $150 per one-hour session. Couple sessions are $160. per session. The number of sessions needed depends on each individual. Check with your insurance company to see how many counselling sessions are covered. Payment is expected at the end of each session. A receipt will be issued and it will be up to you to submit the receipt to your insurance company.
What happens if I miss a session?
24 hours notice is required to cancel a session so that a make – up session can be scheduled.
What if I need to talk to someone at night?
Crisis line 250-763-9191