Work on the self is the best work you can ever do


  • How often do I have to attend counselling sessions?
How often do I have to attend counselling sessions?

Frequency of sessions is wholly dependent upon the individual client’s needs in terms of presenting issue and sometimes finances. Typically, we will meet more regularly, often weekly, for the first part of the therapeutic process and then space sessions out as things move forward on the therapeutic journey.

  • Are your services covered by my health insurance provider?
Are your services covered by my health insurance provider?

Most health insurance providers will cover services provided by a Clinical Psychologist. While I am a Registered Psychotherapist (RP), I am supervised by Dr. Mary Acreman, a clinical psychologist and thus my services are covered by most health insurance plans. Please check your plan coverage as each individual benefits plan is different in terms of what is covered.

  • What can I expect in my first session?
What can I expect in my first session?

Typically, the first 1-3 sessions of counselling involves getting to know more not only about your struggles, but also about who you are in a more holistic sense. Who you are now, where you came from and who you home to become are all important factors when it comes to working through our struggles in counselling.

  • Are services confidential?
Are services confidential?

All discussions within the therapy sessions are 100% confidential. There are a few very rare circumstances under which confidentiality, by law, must be broken:

  • If you reveal that you plan to harm yourself or someone else
  • If you reveal that someone under the age of 16 is in danger
  • If you reveal that a regulated health professional is engaging in misconduct
  • If notes are subpoenaed by a court

All of these circumstances are very rare and a discussion of having to break confidentiality will always occur prior to taking any action.

  • What is a Registered Psychotherapist? How is that different from a Clinical Psychologist? Or Psychiatrist?
What is a Registered Psychotherapist? How is that different from a Clinical Psychologist? Or Psychiatrist?

Registered Psychotherapist is a new designation by the College of Registered Psychotherapist of Ontario (CRPO – crpo.ca) and is indicated by the RP designation. A registered psychotherapist is someone who has completed extensive schooling and training in the area of psychotherapy and is thus able to provide ongoing psychotherapeutic services to their clients. The act of Psychotherapy is described by the CRPO as the following:

To treat, by means of psychotherapy technique, delivered through a therapeutic relationship, an individual’s serious disorder of thought, cognition, mood, emotional regulation, perception, or memory that may seriously impair the individual’s judgment, insight, behaviour, communication, or social functioning.

A Clinical Psychologist goes by the designation of CPsych and is regulated by the College of Psychologists of Ontario. Clinical psychologists typically have a PhD in Clinical Psychology and more extensive training in diagnosis and assessment. A psychotherapist typically does not provide diagnoses of any kind, but is aware of various diagnoses and can work with these within the psychotherapeutic process.

A psychiatrist is a medical doctor with a specialization in psychiatry and thus regulated but the College of Physicians of Ontario. Psychiatrists typically require a doctor’s referral and rarely provide counselling services. Currently, the majority of psychiatrists provide formal assessments, diagnoses and medication management.

  • What does it mean that you’re supervised by a Clinical Psychologist and how does this affect confidentiality?
What does it mean that you’re supervised by a Clinical Psychologist and how does this affect confidentiality?

Many psychotherapists are supervised by Clinical Psychologists for a couple of reasons. First, is to ensure that we are providing the best support we can to our clients. Given their different training, clinical psychologists can often provide a perspective that is different that our own which ultimately helps us to best serve our clients. The second reason for supervision is for insurance coverage as Registered Psychotherapists are not yet covered by most insurance companies.

In the practical realm, I meet with my supervisor Dr. Mary Acreman on a regular basis and briefly discuss each of my clients. Due the volume of clients and time allotted, these discussions are brief. Dr. Mary Acreman is bound by the same limits to confidentiality that I and other regulated health professionals are bound by. At any time you are welcome to contact Dr. Mary Acreman with any questions or concerns you may have about me, our therapeutic work or the supervisory relationship. The definition and requirements around clinical supervision are set out by the College of Psychologists of Ontario (CPO).

Contact Us

© 2017 Sturgeon Counselling