I’d like to book ongoing general counselling, how often should I see you?
The most common is every 2 weeks, as well as strategic booking (i.e. during the 2 week wait, 1-2 days after receiving news, etc), and of course, urgent appointments if needed. When starting off people sometimes like to begin with weekly sessions, going to bi-weekly and then monthly as needed. We recommend 90-minutes for an initial appointment or if it has been a long time between sessions, and then 60-minute bookings ongoing.
Can I see you by myself for individual counselling and together with my partner for couple counselling?
This is possible, as long as a decision is made in advance about who is the primary client. For example, if the couple is the primary client, then individual sessions take place with the ultimate goal of supporting the couple. Alternatively, if an individual is the client and once in a while, their partner joins, the goal is to support the individual and the joint session is oriented to the individual as opposed to the couple. It must also be understood that individual confidentiality cannot be maintained when also seeing a couple, as it is too difficult to separate what is discussed in individual vs couple sessions.
I’m an Intended Parent planning to do a donation cycle, when is the best time to meet with you for my required counselling?
Best time to meet with us is once you know you are moving forward with a donor cycle, but before you have signed on with an agency/bank or picked a donor. If you are still undecided if you will work with a donor or have not yet decided between a friend/family member vs. an agency/bank, we recommend general counselling in advance of Implications Counselling, to help with this process.
I’m an Intended Parent planning to do a surrogacy cycle, when is the best time to meet with you for my required counselling?
Our recommendation is to meet with us for general counselling in the early stages of exploring surrogacy, so we can help with this process. As it can take a long time to find a carrier, we recommend waiting until you have been matched before completing your required Implications Counselling session (if this is done too early, your clinic may require you to redo it). But once you have found your surrogate, we recommend booking this with us as soon as possible, and well in advance of your legal agreement being drafted or setting a transfer date.
At what point in the process should my donor or surrogate have their psycho-social assessment?
sThis should be done as soon as possible, and well in advance of a legal agreement being drafted or setting a retrieval/transfer date. As our fees are lower than medical screening fees, some clients prefer to have psycho-social assessments done in advance of medical, and others prefer medical clearance first. Just remember that this step is an assessment, so you want to ensure there is enough time to address issues if “red flags” are identified, or if they do not pass the evaluation.
Do you work with Traditional Surrogates (TS) as well as Gestational Carriers (GC)?
Yes, we do! We are happy to support your Traditional Surrogacy journey, whether you are doing a home insemination or working with one of the few clinics that supports TS. And of course, we routinely do GC screenings as well. As typically there is no clinic involvement with a home insemination, a report is not required in these instances. In such cases, let us know if you want a report for your own records, and if not, the session would be billed at a general or group counselling rate, with no follow up report.
How long does it take after the required Implications Counselling or donor/surrogacy assessment for my clinic to receive a copy of my report?
It typically takes about 2 weeks after an appointment for a report to be sent to your clinic.
Will I get a copy of my report when it is sent to my clinic?
Intended Parents are automatically sent copies of their reports at the same time as these are sent to their clinic, whereas donors and surrogates receive copies if they request one in writing.
Will I get a copy of my donor’s assessment?
When working with a donor through an agency/clinic, Intended Parents are not sent a copy of the report in order to protect the identity/personal circumstances of the donor. However, the donor does sign a release for us to disclose relevant information to the Intended Parents (such as mental health history, habits, concerns etc). With known donation arrangements, donor reports can be shared with the Intended Parents when the donor gives consent.
Will I get a copy of my surrogate’s assessment?
Yes, surrogates all sign a release giving us permission to share a copy of their assessment report with the Intended Parents as well as the clinic (and when applicable, agency as well).
Can I keep seeing you after I’ve finished fertility treatments, if I want support with other issues?
Yes. It is very common that once a positive therapeutic relationship has been established, clients want to continue seeing us even after they have stopped fertility treatments. While most people find us through the lens of infertility, loss and family building, much of the work we do (anxiety reduction, boundary and resilience building, unpacking trauma, healing past hurts, relationship and communication, etc) is transferable to other areas of life, and we welcome a continued therapeutic relationship as long as it is beneficial to you.
Are your services covered by OHIP or do you direct bill insurance?
Our services are covered by most insurance plans are also tax deductible as a medical expense. Unfortunately, our services are not covered by OHIP. And while we do not bill insurance directly, receipts are provided after payment has been made and the appointment completed, for you to submit for reimbursement.