Frequently Asked Questions
How Many Times Will I Need to Attend Counselling?
Each person is different and their problems are unique to them. A general idea of how many sessions you may need will be discussed with you at your first session. However, the number of sessions recommended is subject to change based on progress in therapy as well as many other variables such as motivation of the client, how much work they do between sessions, and the severity of the issue.
How Do I Know If I Need Counselling?
Here are some symptoms to look for to determine if you or someone you know might benefit from counselling:
- Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness
- Problems with sleep, eating habits, concentration, school, work, and/or relationships
- Persistent worry
- Prolonged sadness
- Feeling depressed, lethargic, or apathetic
- Thoughts of suicide or wanting to harm yourself
- Increased irritability, inappropriate mood swings, angry outbursts
- Engaging in bizarre, threatening, disruptive or dangerous behaviour
- Indecisiveness or difficulty making decisions
- Loss of control of your life
- Experiencing uncertainty about your choice of relationship, schooling or career
- Feeling concerned about the behaviour or psychological status of someone else (i.e., partner, family member, peer) and wondering about how or if you should intervene
- Physical reactions such as fatigue, insomnia, sleeping too much, lack of motivation, headaches, nightmares, hyperactivity, startle reactions, exhaustion, diarrhea
- Cognitive reactions such as difficulty concentrating, solving problems or making decisions, memory problems, flashbacks
- Emotional reactions such as fear, guilt, emotional numbing, over sensitivity, anger, irritability, anxiety, depression, feelings of helplessness
*If you or someone you know is experiencing any of the above symptoms, we encourage you to consider seeing a counsellor.
What Type of Counselling Does Michelle Use?
Counselling includes a relationship between a client and a trained professional (i.e., Social Worker, Counsellor, Therapist) that focuses on the clients concerns and/or problems.
Counselling is a collaborative effort; it involves the counsellor and the client working together to identify and meet goals.
The main type of counselling Michelle uses is called Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). It is a way of learning about how your thoughts affect your feelings and behaviours. CBT can help you to change how you think (cognitive) and what you do (behaviour) to help you feel better. CBT focuses on current problems and difficulties in order to improve your current state of mind. Michelle also uses other types of therapy (i.e., solution-focused, narrative) in conjunction with CBT to maximize positive effects in therapy.
Michelle also uses various other types of counselling, depending on the client and situation. These types of counselling include, but are not limited to mindfulness, EMDR, Internal Family Systems (parts work).
What Is An Ideal Client?
People who follow the “Ideal Client Profile” below are more likely to be successful in meeting their goals in counselling.
An ideal client has these qualities: Self-motivated to learn and make positive changes; willing to take risks and try new things; accepts feedback; understands the 90/10 law – that 10% of what you learn happens in sessions and 90% of what will help you occurs outside of sessions when you use techniques and coping skills and give me feedback on them.
An ideal client appreciates: that there may be times they will need to take risks and try new things to make positive changes in their life.
An ideal client values: practical strategies, sincerity, and humour (as Michelle brings these to her practice).
An ideal client understands: the importance of taking responsibility for their own part in therapy by showing up on time, communicating cancellations quickly, completing tasks in between sessions.
An ideal client agrees to: be open to new things in and out of sessions that will help them work toward their goals; attend sessions on time and fully participate in sessions; let Michelle be the coach but also to let Michelle know what will help them to meet their goals.
Reference: Lynn Grodzki, “Twelve Months to Your Ideal Private Practice”
Where Can I Get Counselling If I Can’t Afford the Fee?
*Most, if not all of these agencies offer counselling in Windsor and in various locations across Essex County
Family Services Windsor Essex
Hiatus House (group counselling for survivors of gendered violence)
Hospice of Windsor (people living with cancer and their families)
Windsor Essex Community Health Centre (12 sessions)
Sexual Assault Crisis Centre
St-Clair College Student Counselling Centre (students of St-Clair)
Teen Health Centre (youth under age 25)
University of Windsor, Student Counselling Centre (students of the U of W)
Windsor Family Health Team and many county Family Health Teams
What Can I Expect at the First Counselling Session?
At the first session, Michelle will get to know you by asking some questions (i.e., who do you live with, are you in school or do you work and if so, at what type of job, what are some of the symptoms/feelings you have been experiencing, etc.). We will develop some goals for counselling and a plan to work on these difficulties in future sessions.
When is Michelle Available?
My hours vary from week to week. I will do my best to accommodate your schedule as I have daytime hours on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. I have limited evening hours available at this time.
How is Counselling Done During COVID-19? What Should I Know About Video and Phone Counselling?
*During the time of COVID-19, clients may be offered phone and/or video counselling sessions. Please read over the following consent to understand more about the use of technology and counselling.
Informed Consent Checklist for Video and Phone Counselling and Psychotherapy Services
with Michelle Weglarz, MSW, RSW
Prior to starting video and/or phone conferencing services, we discussed and agreed to the following:
• I understand that my social worker will use PHIPA and PIPEDA compliant electronic information and communication technologies.
• Confidentiality still applies for these services per our service agreement.
• No one will record the session or take photos/screen shots without the permission from the others person(s).
• If we agree to use the video-conferencing platform selected for our virtual sessions, the social worker will explain how to use it.
• For video sessions, you need to use a webcam or smartphone during the sessions.
• It is important to be in a quiet, private space that is free of distractions (including cell phone or other devices) during the session.
• There are potential benefits and risks of video/phone conferencing that differ from in-person sessions. It is important to use a secure internet connection rather than public/free Wi-Fi.
• It is important to be on time. If you need to cancel or change your tele-appointment, you must notify the social worker in advance by phone or email.
• We need a back-up plan (e.g., phone number where you can be reached) to restart the session or to reschedule it, in the event of technical problems.
• If you are not an adult, we need the permission of your parent or legal guardian (and their contact information) for you to participate in these sessions.
• You should confirm with your insurance company that the video sessions will be reimbursed; if they are not reimbursed, you are responsible for full payment.
• As your social worker, I may determine that due to certain circumstances, video or phone sessions are no longer appropriate and that we should resume our sessions in-person.
• Therapeutic treatment for mental health, both in person and through video and phone services, has been found to be effective in treating a wide range of clients. Individual results and responses to therapy may vary. I understand that results of any therapy, whether in person or through phone or video services, cannot be guaranteed.
• If I have any concerns or questions regarding the use of technology in therapy, I will address them with my social worker.
How Much Does Counselling Cost?
Michelle’s fee is $140 per session and each session is 60 minutes long.
*Please note that if you have a limited income, there may be other eligible services available to you; please ask Michelle for more information.
Michelle is a registered Provider with Green Shield and several other benefit plans. Please contact your benefit plan directly (i.e, Manulife, Great West Life) and ask if they cover counselling/therapy for a Master of Social Work (MSW) or Registered Social Worker (RSW) educated counsellor. You may also want to ask: How much am I covered for each session? How much am I covered for each year?
As of September 2012, Registered Social Worker services can be claimed in Ontario as a medical expense for income tax purposes.
Some subsidies you can access to see me for counselling:
Criminal Injuries Compensation Board which provides financial compensation (including counselling fees) for those who qualify under the Criminal Injuries Compensation Act, who are victims, and family members of deceased victims of violent crimes committed in the Province of Ontario. http://www.cicb.gov.on.ca/en/index.htm
First Nations Inuit Health Branch provides funding for 15-20 crisis counselling sessions for eligible First Nations people and Inuit.
OSAP: Students at the University of Windsor (contact office for students with disabilities) or St-Clair College (contact student counselling). If you are receiving OSAP and have a mental health diagnosis from a doctor or psychiatrist may be eligible for a bursary through OSAP for counselling with a registered private therapist of their choosing.
Victim Quick Response Program for Victims of Crimes that have occurred in Ontario http://www.attorneygeneral.jus.gov.on.ca/english/ovss/vqrp_program_info_booklet.pdf
What Is the Cancellation and Missed Appointment Policy?
Cancellation and Missed Appointment Policy
Your appointment is for your exclusive use and when it is cancelled with short notice, or missed altogether, it is often too late or impossible to offer this time to someone else. Continuity, consistency, and mutual respect are important in counselling. I cannot run a successful practice if appointment times and this cancellation policy are not honoured.
I require 24 hours notice to cancel an appointment. If 24 hours notice is not given, there is a cancellation fee of $120.
The cancellation must be made by telephone unless you are cancelling with more than 48 hours notice – then you may cancel via email or text.
Clients who fail to show up for a scheduled appointment (“no show”) are billed $120.
If you are sick with a cold or flu or any other contagious illness please stay home and call to cancel your appointment as soon as possible.
Cancellation fees will only be waived in the event of a medical emergency, requiring urgent professional treatment, a sudden death in the family or a natural disaster.
What Are Some Good Books to Help Me and/or My Child?
Helpful Books for Adults
The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook, 6th Edition by Edmund J Bourne
Mind Over Mood by Dennis Greenberger and Christine Padesky
Any books by Brene Brown, especially Daring Greatly, Braving the Wilderness, The Gifts of Imperfection
Tear Soup by Pat Schwiebert
Helpful Books for Children/Teens
What To Do If You Worry Too Much by Dawn Huebner
Beyond the Blues by Lisa Schab
Anxiety Workbook for Teens by Lisa Schab
Perfectionism Workbook for Teens by Anne Marie Dobosz
Tear Soup by Pat Schwiebert