Frequently Asked QuestionsConsidering marriage counselling? Here are answers to common questions.
Why should we choose you over other therapists?
Your experience working with me will be different than working with other marital therapist’s. My analytical approach takes you beyond reflecting and communication strategies. Your interaction with your partner will be examined from a “power frame” and strategies will be tailor-made to establish a new way of interacting that meets both spouses’ needs. Incrementally you will build on each success until your relationship reflects your current goals.
The following outlines my process.
Session one: informed consent, general assessment and goal setting
Session two: time with each spouse individually to screen for affairs, violence and to be clear on perspective. During that time the other spouse completes standardized testing to identify strengths of marriage and examine motivation to change etc.
Session three: Education about conflict styles and identification of your primary conflict style. Assessment of how power is used in the relationship and the resulting communication difficulties.
Session four: Engage clients in deep conversation uncovering the deeper issues motivating the disharmony, continuing to work towards goals established in session one.
Session five onwards: Increasing emotional understanding and providing strategies aimed at helping clients meet their goals.
In the beginning clients can expect to meet three times within the first two weeks. As clients show progress the sessions are scheduled further apart. When the goals established in the first session are met the process is complete. There is an additional session booked three months later to address relapse and affirm the behaviours that are working.
What are the Risks and Benefits of Marriage Counselling?
Whenever people engage in counselling they are on a journey to gain insight into their thoughts, emotions and behaviours and to meet their objectives. This experience can result in both risks and benefits. For example deciding to make changes in individual behaviour could result in a loss in one area of life while gaining in another area of life. Understanding that there can be both growth and emotional impact is an important decision when deciding to engage in counselling. People can choose to not participate in counselling and there are risks and benefits to that decision as well.
How many sessions does it take to improve our relationship?
There is no guarantee that a certain number of sessions will improve your relationship. It is the work done week to week and the scope of the work that determines the number of sessions. The answer to the question below describes a couple of packages that “ballpark” each type of service.
Does Insurance cover the fees?
The services of a Psychologist are often covered partially or wholly by your employee benefits package or independent insurance policies. Please check your individual plan to determine the coverage you have for services offered by a Registered Psychologist. There is no GST charged on Psychological services in Alberta. Alternatively, consult with your accountant as many services can be deducted on your personal taxes.
Please note that fees for packaged services are due at the onset of the services. Fees for a la carte services are due following each session. You will be given a receipt for the services at the time of payment.
What do you charge for Mediation?
Jeannine charges $250.00 per hour for mediation services and report writing.
Where are you located?
How do I make an appointment?
Appointments are made by calling our office at 403-266-2017 or by calling Jeannine directly at 403-869-5080. Appointments can also be made through the website by completing the online form.
The last time we went to a marriage counselor I felt like the problem. Is that typical?
My goal is to help the couple establish a mutual vision for their lives together and to identify the best way to get there. Blame often becomes the focus of the session when individual needs are unmet in marriage and a therapist is unable to contain the interpersonal dynamics in the room. Jeannine is an experienced divorce mediator and knows how to manage conflict in session. It is also the responsibility of the client to communicate when they are feeling blamed or like the problem. Jeannine’s approach is to help each person ask for what they need in order to maintain a respectful climate in session.
What is the wait time for an appointment with Jeannine?
Jeannine is usually able to see you for the initial appointment with in 10- 14 days. Her typical hours are 9:30 to 5:00 pm although evening and weekend appointments are available upon request.
Will therapy work if my partner is not fully committed?
As part of the first three sessions I ask each partner to complete a questionnaire about readiness to change. The results of the questionnaire are shared between the parties and a conversation about commitment to process is discussed. Each partner decides if they want to attend therapy. If your partner doesn’t want to attend couples counselling we address those barriers. Individual counselling is an alternative.
My friend told me marriage therapy doesn’t work and it's a waste of money?
Couples enter therapy for many reasons. Jeannine establishes outcomes for couple’s therapy in the first session to help people clarify their expectations. It’s at this point that a couple can determine if therapy is for them. Jeannine refers to these goals throughout the process to help keep couples focused. This is how we “keep it real” as they say.
Therapy is most successful when clients and therapists work together. At the conclusion of most sessions I ask “what did we do that was useful?” and “what did we do that was not helpful?” It is through these conversations we continue to tailor the work to your specific needs. We also engage in a positive communication process that can inform your relationship with your partner.
What do you charge for couple’s therapy?
Marriage Redesign Program: includes 8 sessions, four psychological assessment tests and access to Jeannine’s online resource library. $1900.00
Crisis Intervention Program: includes 12 sessions, six psychological assessments, and access to Jeannine’s online resource library, a self-care assessment and program for each party and a copy of a book addressing the crisis in marriage. $ 3000.00
A La Carte: Hourly fees are $200.00 per 50-60 minutes. Psychological assessment costs vary.
What do you charge for individual therapy, coaching and therapy for children?
Jeannine charges $200.00 per 50-60 minutes.
How accessible is affordable parking?
We are located at 115 1st Street SW, Calgary. The office is next to the Chinese Cultural Centre and East of Eau Claire market in downtown Calgary. Jeannine works out of the offices of Fong Ailon. Look for the large red letters to the right of the office entrance.
Can I do anything to prepare for couples therapy?
Forms: In order to save time in session, please complete the intake and Informed consent forms on-line, print them and bring them into the office for your first session. We will review the forms and sign them at that time.
How do we get started?
Once you have decided to move forward the first step is to decide on the type of service you need and make contact with Melanie or Jeannine.
Are you ready for marriage counselling?
Start with a free 20 minute phone consultation.