Carmen Ostrander, MA, RTC, MACA

Registered Therapeutic Counselor

Specialties: Collaborative therapeutic conversations, support for novice and experienced self-medicators, journeyers and performance enhancement enthusiasts, artists, queer & gender diverse communities, narrative therapy, expressive arts, letter writing

Services Offered: Individual, group, couples, psychedelic integration (individuals), psychedelic integration (groups), pre- and post-ritual counseling, trauma-focused psychotherapy, relational and family therapy, research consultation (psychedelics)

Sessions: In person (Vancouver, BC)

Website: https://carmenostrander.wixsite.com/squarepegtherapy

Biography

Therapeutic conversations informed by Narrative Therapy and Expressive Arts allow me to position the person I’m working with as the authority of what constitutes meaning and change in their lives. When venturing into the unknown, your interpretation of the phenomena are just as valid as anyone’s. I’m not a healer, guide or expert. Though I do have experience with substance and non- substance induced states of altered consciousness, and the lenses through which they can be viewed.

I’ve been educated in medical model and transpersonal approaches to health and landed somewhere in the middle in the last few years, settling into postmodern and social constructionist approaches to living through challenging times. Creativity has been a valuable and significant constant in my life throughout.

This work is an extension of the approach I’ve been developing since the legalization of cannabis in Vancouver, which has encouraged open conversations with my clients about their ingenious strategies for responsible self medicating, and shifting relationships with substances from recreational to therapeutic use and performance enhancement. I provide preparation for journeys, trips and ceremonies, centered around personal safety and agency, and support for the hard part, when it’s time to come back down to earth and engage with your life and relationships again.

 

How I work with clients

My approach is relational and collaborative, geared towards helping you prepare and make sense of your experience, in ways that make sense to you. How will you apply what you glean to your life, in ways that fit for who and where you are in the world at this time? I’m best suited working with those who sit in (or straddle) the space between science & woo (neuroscience & spirituality).

Licenses

Registered Therapeutic Counselor (Canada #2379)
Melbourne Australian Counseling Association (Australia, Level 2 member #11158)

Education

Masters in Narrative Therapy & Community Work (Melbourne University & The Dulwich Center)

Trainings

BA Psychology, Adv Dip Transpersonal Art Therapy, BA Hons Drama

Languages

English

Location

Vancouver, British Columbia

Online Sessions

No

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