Toronto therapist recommendations
February 3, 2014 2:53 PM   Subscribe

I need a therapist in Toronto who is covered by the ACTRA Fraternal Benefit Society. I know I can call them for a list, but I'm hoping for specific recommendations from personal experience.

I'm stalled in my career, creatively jammed, unemployed, and barely managing significant anxiety dysmorphia, and depression with as much exercise as I can fit in. When I can't work out (when I and my kids are sick, for example) I spiral, fast. I need some backup coping mechanisms, as my kids deserve a mom who isn't all over the place. Also, as a performer, "who cares I've never been any good anyway" isn't a constructive loop to be stuck in.

I need to feel better, and I need help. Who's really good in TO?

Anonymous bc I don't want to advertise my mental health status.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Not an exact answer, but you may find some resources at the Artists Health Alliance (Link).

If finances are an issue, you may be able to get help from the Actors Fund of Canada (link).
posted by stray at 3:30 PM on February 3, 2014

In case you haven't found them, here are some previous questions that may be helpful: 1, 2 (via mefiwiki).
posted by beryllium at 3:59 PM on February 3, 2014

Anon, just in case you didn't know and you end up in a spiral, CAMH has an emergency room (the only psych emergency room in Canada I think), located at College and Spadina. Open 24/7; between 9-5 you can enter from College (it's just east of Spadina, past the 7-11 on the corner and the Timmy's beside it). After hours just follow the signs around to the back. They are very helpful, and will help you find whatever immediate coping mechanism you need in your crisis (just someone to talk to for a bit, an overnight stay, an extended admission, referral to programs/centres).

You may also want to look into a program they have at the Queen St campus, called AIM--Alternative Inpatient Milieu. Your GP can refer you to the program, there is a several month waiting list, but it is aimed directly at people with mood and anxiety disorders and was immensely helpful in my own crisis this past summer. However if you are referred from within CAMH you go to the top of the list. I was discharged from College St on a Thursday and in AIM on Monday morning.

The Mood Disorders Association of Ontario (MDAO) can also be very helpful in finding a therapist.

Are you familiar with the Gerstein Centre? They offer counselling and crisis intervention, free/covered by OHIP.

Have you asked your GP for a psych referral? The waiting lists are long, but again, as long as referred by your GP to a psychiatrist it's OHIP covered. There are changes coming, I don't know the timeline, that will also have certain other psychotherapists covered by OHIP--I think they'll have to have a Masters but I'm not 100% sure.

The... can't remember the name, Psychotherapy Association of Toronto? Something like that, has listings of a zillion therapists on their website. You can also find psychiatrists (there were 900-odd in Toronto last time I looked) through the College of Physicians and Surgeons website, but there is unfortunately no central directory of who is taking on new patients and who isn't.

I'm sorry I can't give you a specific recommendation; no private insurance so I'm on a waitlist at CAMH for a therapist. But I figured in the interim some other resources may help you get through until you can find someone. If you want to talk privately, memail me, or email with whatever throwaway email address you care to use. I probably have other resources somewhere around my desk but can't lay my hands on them at the moment.

Best of luck. This dragon may be hard to slay, but you can beat it back into its cave.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:51 PM on February 3, 2014

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