* Originally published March 20th, 2019
One of the longest relationships with a therapist I’ve had, was a short Jewish lady who was a general practitioner. I’d come in, sit on the chair next to the examination table and we’d have long sessions, instead of the normally provided quicker family doctor appointments. She was amazing and became a type of parental figure for me. She was sympathetic, real, kind and funny. She understood where I was coming from being a type-A perfectionist woman and the constant burden and stress I was putting on myself. She wasn’t necessarily a trained psychotherapist but s*** she was good! What I loved about her was that when things were outside of her scope, she acknowledged it and we would search for other services together, for instance when it came to my OCD. I believe I saw her for 3 to 4 years, maybe longer. I would even trek from downtown to the suburbs to see her. Sadly, (for me) she became pregnant, went on mat leave and would return to work at a location too far for me to commute. I cried some real tears when she told me and gave her a very special gift for her baby during our last session.
Sidenote: She would be concerned if she could still do physicals on me and made it a point to ask me if that was ok, which I thought was hilarious. I’m telling you my most intimate thoughts and feelings, I don’t think getting a pap and internal physical done is going to cross any lines at this point.
I then bounced around for varying lengths of time until I made my way to a social worker to do some CBT! He was around my age which was interesting. He could have been a bit younger or older, I never figured it out. He was lovely. He had face piercings, was pretty stylish and he got it. I definitely saw him on the street a few times but never made eye contact, not on purpose, he just never saw me! Anyway, I have mentioned that comparison, standards, where I am in life, my achievements etc. as some of the issues behind my depression and being a peer of the same generation, he understood where I was coming from. We had some fantastic CBT sessions and I truly felt a shift in my thinking and became a true believer in it. The catch though? I only had a set number of sessions with him and then it was adiós. But that is the point of doing CBT, it helps you shift your thinking and then it’s over. He was kind enough to find me a social worker he knew who would provide me with a lower price based on my income level (I really have had quite a bit of luck and plain ol’ kindness of others helping me along the way!).
I recently saw a woman who was only a couple years older than me and also trained at a school I had never heard of so I was a bit skeptic. She spoke of chakras and energy on top of the typical psychological theory. However, she was amazing and it was so good to talk to a woman my age – she was single like me, had similar interests and life experiences. It was golden. And super affordable because she was still in school. The funny thing is, even though she was my age she was still so fantastic at keeping it professional while being relatable. She was one of the most recent therapists I’ve seen in the last five years. Up to that point I had learned a lot about what worked for me and what didn’t. There is just so much you learn from seeing so many different mental health professionals and learning about the system in Canada when it comes to mental illness. It was a tough journey but I’m happy I now have the knowledge and skills that might help someone else get better just a bit faster than it took me.
Content on this website may be triggering, please call 911 or go to the nearest hospital if you feel you are in a mental health crisis.
An online directory of social workers in private practice in Canada. findasocialworker.ca is a project of the Ontario Association of Social Workers (OASW), and each social worker listed here is a member of their provincial social work association and regulatory body. This directory is provided as a free service to individuals or organizations wishing to locate and engage the services of a social worker.
Psychology Today – Therapists in Ontario
Psychology Today has gathered here a group of renowned psychologists, academics, psychiatrists and writers to contribute their thoughts and ideas. They are a live stream of what’s happening in ‘psychology today.’ Their magazine, first launched in 1967, continues to thrive. Psychology Today’s directory provides a comprehensive directory of therapists, psychiatrists and treatment facilities near you. Lists include – Therapists, online therapy, treatment centres and support groups.
The Ontario Association of Mental Health Professionals (OAMHP) is Ontario’s largest association of mental health professionals. 3,000+ members embody the spectrum of mental healthcare providers at work in family health teams, hospitals, school boards, workplaces, community centres and private clinics – just about everywhere you find mental health services in your community.