WHEN SHOULD I SEEK COUNSELLING?
Counselling can be beneficial in any stage of life. Maybe you just need a safe place and someone to talk to. Maybe you are feeling overwhelmed, that you have tried everything and nothing is resolving your problem. Maybe you are at the point where the pain of what you are going through outweighs your hesitation to ask for help. There is no ‘maybe’ about it, seeking counselling is a courageous step, and I will honour your courage to engage in the process.
WHAT IS AN INTAKE FORM?
An Intake Form is a basic form that gathers important information about you, your family, your current state of well-being, any challenges you are facing, and your hopes for what will be achievable in counselling. The Intake Form allows me to get a picture of you and your life at the start of counselling and serves as a reference point for improvement and growth as we move forward.
WHAT IS INFORMED CONSENT?
Counselling, like other health professions, requires the client to be informed of the risks and the benefits of any treatment or procedure, as well as information on confidentiality and the collection of personal information. Once you have been informed you have the right to voluntarily consent, or not, by signing the Informed Consent Form. To begin counselling a client must give informed consent. Consent is an ongoing process and can be withdrawn from at any time, effectively ending the counselling relationship.
WHAT IS INFORMED CONSENT FOR CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS?
For children aged 18 and under it is generally the rule that a parent or guardian give informed consent by signing the Informed Consent Form. However, according to the Infants Act a minor can give consent without a parent’s knowledge or approval, if they express understanding about the nature of the therapy he or she will receive.
WHAT HAPPENS IN THE FIRST SESSION?
You will need to fill out the Intake Form and Informed Consent Form and bring them to the first session. I will take a few minutes to review the paper work before asking you to come into my office. Usually the first session allows you to get to know a bit about me and ask any questions you have. I will then ask you questions and you share as much or as little as you feel comfortable with. The session lasts for 50 minutes. If you decide to enter into the counselling process, you discuss goals and hopeful outcomes of therapy. Scheduling the next appointment and handling payment is done at the end of the session.