Do I need counselling?

Many clients seek counselling when they want extra support during life transitions and challenges, or when in emotional distress. Others seek counselling as a part of their normal self-care routine, and look at it as preventative maintenance or a way to maintain health and wellness.

What are the benefits of counselling?

  • An opportunity for you to explore any situations, relationships, behaviours, thoughts, or feelings that may be causing difficulty in your life
  • A source of comfort and support during a crisis, or a challenging, difficult time
  • A space to gain deeper awareness and insight into yourself and others
  • Better ways of understanding and coping with problems or challenges
  • Better communication and functioning in relationships
  • Improved decision-making

What are the risks of counselling?

  • Temporary discomfort due to close examination of difficult topics and sharing of emotions
  • Fatigue immediately after a session. It may help to schedule some time after a session to process what was discussed.
  • Changes in relationship patterns; people close to you may need a time of adjustment before things improve

What should I look for in a counsellor?

  • Graduate level education (Masters level or higher) from an accredited university or college 
  • Registration and/or certification with professional associations that ensure adherence to a professional code of ethics 
  • Experience and training in the specific type of counselling/issues that you are interested in
  • Participation in ongoing professional development (i.e., workshops, training, supervision)
  • A "good fit", with a style and personality that you feel comfortable with
  • Membership in professional organizations that provide in-depth education and training 

What should I expect in the first session?

After you fill out an Intake & Consent Form, you will spend your first session getting to know one another. Your counsellor will want to know more about the issues/concerns that bring you to counselling, about your history, and about the goals you have for counselling. Together, you will make a plan for future counselling sessions. All sessions are offered using a secure videoconferencing app with end-to-end encryption and data stored in Canada according to BC's Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA).

How many sessions will I need?

Some clients prefer a more in-depth exploration of their issues or concerns and attend counselling for longer periods of time, but many clients gain considerable satisfaction after only 4 to 6 sessions. Your counsellor will give you an idea of how many sessions you might need by the end of your first session. Once the initial set of planned counselling sessions is complete, many clients return in the future for occasional "booster" sessions or when other concerns arise.

How often will I need counselling?

You can decide what feels right for you. Most clients prefer appointments every 1 to 2 weeks at first. Over time, sessions are tapered off. Depending on what you want to work on in counselling you may decided to attend weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or quarterly appointments. Booking appointments in advance is a good idea and can be done online. 

Do you only see women?

Well Woman Counselling was established in 2007 to work exclusively with women's issues. Since that time, clients of all sexes and gender identities have benefited from counselling with Holly Yager, including cis, trans, non-binary, and gender fluid folks. 

Do I need a referral?

No referral is needed for counselling. Just click here to book online. 

How much do I pay?

Fees are set according to guidelines recommended by the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors. See the Fees page for more information.

Is counselling covered by my health care plan?

BC's provincial medical services plan (MSP) does not cover the cost of counselling. However, many extended health care benefits plans will reimburse you for the services of a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) or Canadian Certified Counsellor (CCC). Check your plan for details on coverage as every plan is different. See the Fees page for more information on billing.

Is everything I say confidential?

Any personal information that you share in a counselling session is kept confidential by your counsellor according to BC's Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA). Every effort is made to respect client confidentiality, however counsellors are required by law to share your information when/if:

  • It is revealed that a child is or may be at risk of abuse or neglect, or in need of protection
  • If you or another person is at clear risk of imminent harm
  • If disclosure is otherwise required or authorized by law (e.g., legal order, subpoena, warrant)

What about privacy?

As of March 2020, all sessions are held using a secure and encrypted videoconferencing program. All efforts are made to ensure your digital privacy according to BC's Personal Information and Privacy Act (PIPA). When participating in video sessions, please ensure that you are located in a private room and are using a device/computer with appropriate privacy settings.  

How do I make an appointment?

To make a counselling appointment please go to the online booking system. You will be sent an email to confirm your appointment. If you would like to connect prior to booking an appointment, please email

What if I need to cancel my appointment?

Your appointment time is reserved specially for you, which means that others are required to wait to access counselling services. We appreciate 48 hours cancellation notice to avoid a no-show fee equivalent to the full session amount (except in the case of an unforeseen emergency/illness). If you have signed up for online booking, you can cancel or change your appointment online

What if I am late for my appointment?

Clients arriving more than 15 minutes late for their scheduled appointment will be considered to have missed their appointment and a no-show fee equivalent to the full session amount will be charged (except in the case of an emergency).

How do I contact my counsellor?

 The best way to reach your counsellor is by email. Please be patient waiting or a reply, as email and voicemail are not continuously monitored, and not answered on weekends or holidays. 

What if it is an emergency and it is outside of normal business hours?

If it is an after-hours emergency and you require immediate attention, please call the Vancouver 24-hour Crisis Line at 604.872.3311. You may also call 911 and/or go to your nearest hospital Emergency Room for assistance.