Frequently Asked Questions

 1. What do I do if I am in crisis?

Crisis situations can arise. If you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency, please call 911 and follow their instructions.

We provide mental health crisis response service for children, youth and their families Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. If you are concerned that someone in your family is at risk of suicide, serious self-harm or causing harm to others, call us at 1.800.809.2494.

If you are experiencing a crisis after 4:30 p.m. or on weekends you can go to the nearest emergency room or call 911.

2. When should I seek help for my child?

The way a child or youth behaves may be a sign of needing help. Is your child’s behaviour out of the ordinary? Is it age appropriate or is their behaviour having a negative impact on the family or school?

Also look for:  

  • Change in performance at school
  • Avoidance of family and friends
  • Frequent outbursts of anger or rage
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Rebelling against authority
  • Alcohol or drug use
  • Disinterest in doing things they used to enjoy
  • A tendency to damage other’s property
  • Constant worrying or anxiousness
  • No longer taking care of their appearance
  • Obsession about body image or weight
  • Loss of energy or motivation
  • Habitually hitting or bullying children
  • Self-injury

3. What are the benefits and risks of accessing Children’s Mental Health services?

There are many benefits to mental health treatment. You will likely feel heard, supported and more connected to others. You will develop new skills and perspectives that will help you deal with current and future challenges. There are possible risks too. You or your family members may initially feel more vulnerable, and be fearful of dealing with challenging issues. Sometimes, things don’t get better for a while. Your counsellor will always review with you the benefits and risks that relate to your treatment so you know what to expect.

4. What am I going to have to do if I seek help?

Dealing with difficult issues takes time and commitment. In order for us to be helpful, we need you to help us identify your concerns, attend appointments, work hard on your treatment goals, and let us know how it is going from your viewpoint. It is also important for you to let us know if you need other services. Therapy is not an easy process, it takes a lot of work.

5. What if I am divorced or separated? Do I need to tell the other parent we are coming to Children’s Mental Health of Leeds and Grenville?

In almost every case, you should be informing your ex-spouse that you have made a referral to CMHLG. Especially if you share custody, it is our hope that we will be able to work with each of you to ensure the children develop well as they deal with the impact of the separation. We do not make custody recommendations or provide letters of support for one party or the other.

6. Are services confidential?

The short answer is YES!

HOWEVER,

There are times when staff will not be able to maintain confidentiality:

  • If you tell anyone about a child (under the age of 16) being abused in any way, we must, by law, report that information to Lanark, Leeds and Grenville Family and Children’s Services.
  • Also, if you tell us you intend to harm yourself or someone else, we will tell someone in order to help you be safe.
  • And sometimes, our workers are subpoenaed to court, although this rarely happens.
  • You disclose information about any sexual involvement, past or present, with a person in a position of authority or a regulated professional.

Children 12 and over have a right to confidential counselling.   We usually advise them to involve their parents but legally, they can get counselling without parental permission.