Frequently Asked Questions
Our Psychologists, Psychological Associates, and consulting Psychiatrist, are all Regulated Health Profession Service Providers. We are independent practitioners, who have come together out of deep respect for each other’s work, and the contributions that each can make to the benefit of our clients. We share office space and expenses, but are each solely responsible for all aspects – business and clinical -of our own practices. We are not an Association, and as such, we do not share liability. We are supported in our work, by a team of Allied Professionals who provide services under supervision by our Regulated members.
Psychologists and Psychological Associates study how we think, feel, and behave. They employ scientifically validated procedures to help people change their feelings, attitudes, and behaviour, in order to cope more effectively with life issues and mental health problems, or transcend barriers that keep them from reaching their goals. In short, Psychologists and Psychological Associates help people improve their lives. Psychologists and Psychological Associates are also trained to administer and interpret tests to diagnose conditions and evaluate cognitive strengths and weaknesses, intellectual capabilities, and personality characteristics.
Psychologists and Psychological Associates are licensed professionals whose title is protected by law. Most Psychologists in Ontario hold a doctoral degree (Ph.D., Psy.D, or Ed.D.), and are designated by the title “Dr.” Some Psychologists are not permitted to use the term “Dr.” These practitioners, hold a Master’s degree, and were registered as Psychologists elsewhere in Canada. They now practice in Ontario, and in compliance with Federal legislation, are entitled to maintain the designation they received from the jurisdiction in which they were originally licensed. Psychological Associates hold the same master’s degree, but have been initially registered in Ontario. Their formal education is the same as for Master’s level Psychologists who have moved to Ontario from other provinces, but is not as extensive as that for doctoral level psychologists. Education for all involves 6 to 10 years of university study in human behaviour. As well, both doctoral level Psychologists, and Psychological Associates registered in Ontario, must undergo an additional year of supervised practice, and successfully complete a series of exams before being licensed by The College of Psychologists of Ontario (the regulatory body for Psychologists and Psychological Associates) to practice autonomously.
Psychiatrists are medical doctors who receive specialized training in mental health, and generally see people with more severe mental health issues. Unlike Psychologists or Psychological Associates, Psychiatrists are permitted to prescribe medication. Some do psychotherapy, although wait lists are generally quite long for this service. Psychiatrists’ fees are covered by OHIP. For more information about Psychiatrists, please visit the Canadian Psychiatric Association website: www.cpa-apc.org.
Psychotherapy (therapy) is often referred to as talk therapy. It is based on a collaborative relationship between you and your therapist, within which you can talk openly about your concerns, learn more about yourself, and develop healthy ways of coping. Most Psychologists and Psychological Associates agree that one of the most important factors in the success of therapy is the quality of the relationship between therapist and client. Here at Chrysalis, we provide a supportive, confidential and non-judgemental environment to facilitate that. Our Psychologists and Psychological Associates have many years of experience, and base their treatment on the best available research findings. They tailor therapy to address your unique goals, characteristics, values, and preferences.
People choose psychotherapy for many different reasons. For some, it is the desire for personal growth or enhanced self-esteem. For others, it may be feeling overwhelmed by emotions and problems that may seem beyond their control. Therapy is something to consider if:
- You have been feeling overwhelmed, sad, or hopeless, for a time, and things don’t seem to be any better despite your best efforts to make improvements.
- It is becoming more difficult to carry out your daily activities – for example, your job performance is suffering because you are unable to concentrate, or you may feel too depleted to engage in some of the normal things you did before.
- Your stress is having impact on important relationships in your life (kids, partner, friends).
- You are feeling irritable, on edge, and anticipating the worst. You are having trouble turning the worry off.
- Your actions are harmful to yourself or to others – for instance, you are drinking too much, or becoming overly argumentative.
In the first session, your Psychologist/Psychological Associate will generally want to get an understanding of what is bringing you into therapy. If you are seeking therapy because of a problem, your therapist may ask you to describe the problem, your understanding of it, when it started, what makes it better or worse, and the effect it is having on your life. He/she may also want to know more about you – your experiences growing up, educational and work history, marital status, the nature of your current relationships, and your use of medication, drugs, and alcohol. This information-gathering phase may take several sessions, and may be supplemented by the use psychological tests to help your Psychologist/Psychological Associate generate a hypothesis about, or arrive at a diagnosis of your problem.
Once your therapist has an understanding of what is bringing you into therapy, he/she will discuss this with you, and propose ways to help. You have every right to be an informed consumer, and to ask your therapist about their experience and success in treating people with issues similar to yours, the nature of the therapeutic approach they use, how it works, or any other questions that will help you understand what to expect in your therapy. Remember that it is important for your therapy to be a collaborative venture, and for you to feel comfortable with your therapist. The first few sessions are also an opportunity for you to decide if this is someone with whom you want to work.
The therapeutic approaches we use Chrysalis are empirically-supported. Common modalities include cognitive-behavioural (CBT), systems, client-centred, and emotionally focused (EFT). Treatment may be offered in individual, couple, family or group format, depending on the problem and whom it affects.
You and you therapist will establish goals to work on, based on your needs, and the clinical information that was obtained in the first few sessions. These goals can be growth-oriented, such as strengthening some talents, improving self-esteem, or getting to know yourself better, or they may be about helping you to deal with issues in your life, such as depression, anxiety, the loss of a loved one, or healing from an extra-marital affair. You and your Psychologist or Psychological Associate may review your progress periodically, either verbally, or through the use of questionnaires, so that you can see change happening, or to re-direct the therapy.
Therapy can be hard work. You will get the most out of it, if you are honest with your therapist, commit to regular attendance, follow through on recommendations, and participate actively in the process. You cannot change the past or other people, but you can focus on trying to find ways to improve your own life.
Chrysalis is a group private practice, and as such, the services we provide are not funded by OHIP. If you have extended health care benefits, your fees may be reimbursable through your insurance plan. Please contact your insurance provider for more information on your particular plan, as plans may vary widely in the coverage they provide. Fees for psychotherapy at Chrysalis, range from $170 to $200 per session (50 to 60 minutes), and are substantially below guidelines set out by the Ontario Psychological Association. They are payable at the end of each session, either through cash, cheque, debit, or credit card. You will be given a receipt to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. Please note that fees and methods of payment vary by practitioner. We invite you to inquire further about these, with the practitioner from whom you are interested in receiving service.
If you do not have extended health care benefits through your workplace, you may purchase them privately, from a number of insurance companies. Alternatively, a portion of fees may be deductible from income taxes in some circumstances. If you are a victim of crime, the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board may fund part of your psychotherapy.
Making an appointment is as easy as calling us (905-752-6789). If you have a preference for a particular therapist, please leave a message for them in their private voicemail (please see the practitioner grid to determine their phone extension). If you are not sure who to see, please leave a message in our general voice mail box. One of our practitioners will call you back, and in consultation with you, will help you select a therapist based on your concerns, and based on the expertise and availability of the therapist that may best address these concerns.
Services at Chrysalis are provided on an outpatient basis, by appointment only. Therefore, we are not able to respond to crises in a timely manner. If you are experiencing persistent thoughts or images about ending your life, please go immediately to the emergency department of your nearest hospital, and see the crisis team there. You may also call your family doctor, or 9-1-1. York Region has a mobile-response team which is available 24 hours a day. Please call (905) 210-COPE (2673) to access this service.
Kids Helpline: 1- (800)-668-6868
Southlake Adult Crisis: (905) 895-4521 ext.2666
Toronto Distress Centres: (416) 408-4357 or 408-HELP
Telecare (Mandarin & Cantonese): (416) 920-0497
Distress Centre Peel: (905) 278-7208
Distress Centre Durham: (905) 430-2522 or 1-(800)-452-0688
Oakville Distress Centre: (905) 849-4541
Mobile Crisis Teams
York Region: (905) 310-2673
Peel Region: (905) 278-9036
Durham Region: (905) 665-6932 or 1-800-742-1890
Chrysalis Psychological and Counselling Services is not appropriate for clients who pose a significant risk of harm to self or to others, or who are experiencing a significant eating disorder, substance use, or severe psychiatric illness. Family and couples counselling may not be appropriate where violence is present, because fear, and risk of harm, stifle the open dialogue necessary for effective therapy to take place. Individual counselling may be suitable to the non-violent participants, however. Violent partners can contact the Partner Assault Response Program (PAR) for assistance, at 1-(888) 579-2888, or (416) 314-2447 in the Greater Toronto Area. Where there is suspicion that children are at risk, child protective services may need to be involved.
The information presented on this website is general in nature. Chrysalis Psychological and Counselling Services has provided resources, and links to other websites, for your interest, to raise awareness, and to promote an open dialogue between an individual and a trained health care provider. It is not to be used for self-assessment or diagnosis. Assessment and treatment of mental health difficulties should always be carried out by trained health professionals. While we have endeavoured to ensure that the information on these links is accurate, our provision of them does not imply that Chrysalis Psychological and Counselling Services endorses the views or recommendations contained therein. Chrysalis Psychological and Counselling Services does not accept liability for any adverse impacts associated with the use of information contained within this website.