Frequently Asked Questions

1. Where is your office located?

At HopeStart, we operate as a digital clinic and hold all of our services provision virtually through a secure Telehealth platform. If you have more detailed questions regarding online counseling, please don’t hesitate to send us a message!

2. Do you offer online counseling?

Yes! Our practice is held entirely online allowing us to support our clients all over Ontario and Alberta!

3. What are your hours?

We pride ourselves on client-centered and accessible services by offering appointments from 9AM to 10PM EST, Monday to Friday.

4. How long are sessions?

Our sessions are a full 60 minutes

5. How much do you charge?

Individual sessions: $150
Family Consult sessions: $150
Family/Couples sessions: $250
Crisis Calls: $50/30 minutes

6. Do you take insurance?

Not directly. We send detailed invoices which you can use to submit a claim to your insurance provider for reimbursement.

7. How do I set up an initial appointment?

Feel free to scroll down and send us a message through our contact form to request a free consultation to discuss your goals and see if we’re a good fit.

8. What is your cancellation policy?

We have a standard 24 hour cancellation policy and require 24 hours notice for cancellations

9. How much paperwork do I have to fill out?

Depends! All of our clients fill out an initial Intake Form. Following that paperwork, there are handouts for homework that are to be completed as assigned - not all homework assigned has a handout associated though.

10. What can I expect in a first session?

In a first session we generally go through our detailed, initial Intake Form, discuss therapy structure, expectations and responsibilities of your therapist and yourself, confidentiality and consent, as well as answer any questions you might still have about the therapy process.

11. With whom do you work?

Our clients typically identify with challenges around regulating extreme emotions, ongoing interpersonal conflict and fears of being abandoned. We also support clients with their histories of trauma and how this impacts their present day functioning. Generally, this can mean that our folx might struggle with chronic suicidality, self-harm, substance dependency, a lack of helpful coping skills, and managing impulsive behaviours and urges.

We work with individuals with diverse identities and backgrounds and are a harm reduction-focused, sex-positive, queer affirming and culturally sensitive practice and strive to continuously improve to be a welcoming and safe space for all individuals. If you have suggestions or ideas of how we can improve to be more accessible and welcoming, please do not hesitate to let us know.

12. What is your approach?

At HopeStart, we strongly believe in the Dialectical Behavioural Therapy approach and practice from the understanding that individuals are complex and can hold many conflicting feelings and thoughts. In the midst of this complexity, we also understand that people want practical coping skills to address the challenges in their life and ultimately improve their quality of life and achieve a life worth living.

13. How long will it take?

This is a difficult question! We generally identify that treatment which lasts 1 full year with consistent, weekly appointments is a good estimate for meeting a myriad of goals that our clients seek out support for. That said, life is complicated and therapy is, overall, an ongoing process and can be sought out at different points in one’s life.

Depending on your goals, availability, financial capacity to take on therapy, and, of course, willingness to fully commit to the therapy process all contribute to how long it may take for an individual to identify progress, improvement, and, ultimately, goal completion.

14. Will I have homework?

Absolutely. While this might seem daunting and unappealing, homework will always be tailored with you and your boundaries in mind. Homework is crucial to ensure that you are actually applying the skills you learn in therapy in your day-to-day life. Because we can’t have 24/7 sessions, homework assignment and, more importantly, homework completion will allow you to practice new coping skills and troubleshoot issues you ran into in the next therapy session.

If a homework assignment seems too complicated or is too much with a busy schedule, always let your therapist know so that modifications can be made to accommodate you!

15. How often will we need to have a session?

We recommend weekly sessions to ensure continuity, knowledge retention, discussing events without forgetting too many important details, and necessary troubleshooting with coping skills you learn in therapy.

16. Tell me something fun about yourself!

At HopeStart we LOVE cats, our Director has 3 of them - please feel free to request pictures and we’d be happy to share our tiny coworkers with you! Also, we are HUGE nerds. Please don’t hesitate to ask us about what video games we’re currently playing and solid documentary recommendations!