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What is different about a Social Worker compared to other types of therapists?
Why do you charge so much?
This is always an awkward question. It is often uncomfortable to put a dollar value on our own mental health. It is easy to find reasons not to do it. This is one of the big ones that I hear… “I can’t afford it.” You get to be the judge of whether or not it is worth your hard earned money. I like to think of it this way: We spend a great deal of money on exercising, yoga, physiotherapy, chiropractics, massage and other self-help things. This is another way to take care of yourself and unfortunately that sometimes means you need to sacrifice something to make it happen.
How long will I be in therapy?
I am not a believer in Freud’s view of therapy. I don’t think you need to go through years of therapy to see a real difference in your life. Some issues can be dealt with in one session, others may take months. So much depends on how much time and effort you want to devote to what is going on. In the first session we will set out goals for our work together and develop a method of evaluating those goals. Together we will come up with a plan and a timeline that we can work with.
What does confidentiality mean?
In a therapeutic environment my ethical obligations are clear. I am not able to disclose any of your personal information without your express knowledge and consent. There are only a few exceptions to this rule. If you tell me about abuse that is happening to a child, I am under a legal obligation to inform Children’s Services. If you are an immediate risk of harming yourself or someone else I may also need to break confidentiality in order to keep you safe. Regardless you shouldn’t be surprised if we need to get others involved to help. I will try to include you as part of the process.
Will talking to you put me at risk of losing my children?
People often confuse child welfare workers and social workers. It is true some child welfare workers are trained social workers but most of them are not. Social Workers do many different things in the community from outreach work, to policy analysis, to therapy and a range of other jobs. I am not a child welfare worker and have no ability to take children away from their homes. Like all Albertans I am under a legal obligation to inform Children’s Services about abuse towards a child but that is my only connection to Children’s Services.