Counselling

“It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a sick society.”

Johann Hari, Lost Connections: Uncovering the Real Causes of Depression and the Unexpected Solutions

FYI: Intake and waitlist are currently closed.

Group Sessions: Grief Circle

Are you grieving a loss? Have you lost a loved one or something treasured in your life? Please know that your grief is a natural response and that regardless of the cause or how long it’s been, your grief is valid.

Grief is complex. It may show up as intrusive thoughts, persistent yearning for things to be different, fatigue, physical pain, or waves of unexpected emotions. Or it may manifest in any number of other ways. 

While your grief is a deeply personal experience, it is in the sharing of it that you can begin to make space for it and eventually integrate it into your life. We never truly leave grief behind – it is always with us and we can find ways to be with it.

Grief Circle is part group therapy and part resource sharing, a hybrid between therapy and workshop for those of us who find learning supportive. We’ll offer our stories as well as those things we found supportive. You have the wisdom of your lived experiences. You need not be alone in your grief

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Can you relate to my influences?

Somatic Therapy

We experience the world through our senses and then we interpret these experiences with our mind. Sometimes the interpretation is incomplete or stuck in a narrow definition because of any number of reasons and this causes suffering. We can begin to expand our interpretations when we slow down and pay attention to experiences. In somatic therapy, we explore sensations rather than thoughts. For example, “I feel…” is about your senses, whereas “I think…” is about reason and analysis. One is not better than the other; they both have value. However, somatic therapy excels at those times when you’re seeking to discover what you feel and to feel stable with your feelings.

Jungian Psychology

Lions and tigers and bears – oh my! Give me mythology and archetypes and shadowy creatures all the livelong day. Have you noticed there are overarching stories that cross the bounds of time and culture? You will find that within these ancient narratives are endless clues as to who we are today. Jungian psychology is more akin to the creative arts than intellectual discourse (although that’s there too) and it’s a rich source of contemplation, recognition, and integration.

Feminisms

This is a big one, hey? I was raised by a feminist, but until recently I didn’t identify with feminism because it wasn’t for me. By that, I mean it wasn’t doing me any favours. I was the live-in nanny for feminists; I tidied their homes and rocked their babies to sleep. I was not experiencing or witnessing any sort of equality. Feminism was some lofty academic theory that divided and excluded those I felt closest to. But my understanding is no longer my momma’s feminism – it is much more expansive and intersectional (hence the plural ‘isms’). It is focused on systems of oppression, such as capitalism, colonialism, ableism, patriarchy, and white supremacy. My feminism is not personal and focused on individuals like it was before; my feminisms are political now and focused on disrupting the status quo. Please know that we will talk about these systems of oppression in our counselling sessions because they contribute to (and perhaps even cause or perpetuate) your misery.

Philosophies of Faith

I have spent my life enamoured with monastic practices and from my mid-20s to my late 40s, I was an ordained Third Order monastic. That means I took vows of poverty, celibacy, and obedience; I didn’t wear a habit or live cloistered. My faith community was in the Anglican church and I worked as a peer advocate with a support agency for women living with HIV/AIDS. I have since renounced my ordained vows, yet my fascination with monasticism continues. My philosophies draw from many sources as long as they are grounded in compassion and liberation. I am completely secular in my approach and am working on not bristling at the first mention of new age or self-help jargon.

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