What services do you provide?
We offer psychological counselling and support to
I need a report for court – can you help?
No, we don’t provide:
- Psychological assessments or reports for family court, criminal court or other legal matters
- Educational assessments for school, TAFE or university
- Counselling, assessment or medico-legal reports for workers compensation, motor vehicle accident or any other claims via the Insurance Commission of Western Australia (ICWA)
Your solicitor will be able to recommend a psychologist who can do these assessments for you.
Do I need a referral to see a Psychologist?
No, you don’t need a referral from your doctor, however you will only be able to claim a rebate from Medicare if your doctor gives you a specific referral, called a mental health care plan. It is entirely up to you whether you wish to use this system.
Will the psychologist understand my issue?
This is a common concern for many people. Laura has been providing counselling for almost 20 years, so has helped clients overcome a wide range of issues. Her goal is to work collaboratively with you to help you achieve the best possible outcome, which may also include referring you to a different service if needed.
Isn’t counselling just talking?
Talking with a Psychologist is not the same as talking with a friend. The role of counselling is to give you an opportunity to think deeply about your concerns, to learn specific strategies to better manage your situation, and / or to learn to see your situation from a new, more helpful perspective. Usually you will be taught skills to practice between sessions, so that you begin to make changes in your life outside of counselling.
What is a ‘child psychologist’ or a ‘specialist child psychologist’?
These titles are no longer allowed to be used in Australia. The Psychologists Board of Australia has strict guidelines covering what titles Psychologists can use to describe the work they do and the qualifications they have, and under the most recent changes (2011 – 2014) these titles are no longer allowed to be used by any Psychologist in Australia. If you are looking for a Psychologist to work with you and your child, it is a good idea to ask them what training they have specifically in working with children, teens and families, and how many years’ experience they have specifically in working with children, teens and families.
My child won’t come to counselling, what do I do?
It is fine to encourage your child to attend, perhaps suggesting they ‘just go once to see what they think’. If, however, they still refuse to attend it is important not to force them. An alternative, which you may not have considered, is for you as parents to attend counselling yourselves. This can often be enormously helpful in giving you both support for your difficult role, as well as specific strategies you can try to improve things for your child.
My partner won’t attend counselling, what do I do?
Sometimes, your partner may not want to attend couples counselling. Perhaps they feel uncomfortable about talking about personal things, or feel you should be able to work things out by yourselves, or maybe they just don’t agree that there’s a problem. In these circumstances, you may find it helpful to seek individual counselling for yourself. Many people find they are able to make changes to their relationship when they are receiving individual support.
What therapies do you use?
We use a range of evidence –based therapies, which means they have been scientifically proven to be effective. These include:
- Art and play therapy for children
- Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT, a contemporary form of CBT)
- Mindfulness based psychology
- Gottman relationship therapy
- Solution focused therapy
- Systemic family therapy
- intuitive eating / health at every size
Why does the GP suggest I see a Psychiatrist as well as a Psychologist?
A Psychiatrist is a medical doctor who has undertaken further specialist training in diagnosis and management of mental health disorders. Psychiatrists have specialist knowledge in prescribing medication for people with long term or complex mental health issues, or for people who have complex medical conditions. Your GP may suggest that you consult a Psychiatrist if you have had difficulty finding a medication which works for you with minimal side effects, or which is safe to use with other medications you need to take.
So, a Psychologist will help you develop the extra skills and strategies you need to manage your psychological health, the Psychiatrist can assist with medication support.
What’s the difference between a Psychologist and a counsellor, therapist or psychotherapist?
The term ‘Psychologist’ is a registered profession in Australia, which means that people wishing to use that title must be registered with the Psychologists Board of Australia (PsyBA). To register with the PsyBA, a Psychologist must complete a minimum of 6 years of study and supervised training. To maintain their registration, psychologists are required to work according to strict professional and ethical guidelines, and to participate in regular supervision and training (currently 30 hours per year). Unfortunately the terms ‘counsellor’, ‘therapist’ and psychotherapist’ are not registered professions in Australia, which means that anyone can use these titles, even if they have no training.