I was completely against it at first…

Colin’s relationship had reached a breaking point. The woman he cared about and loved so deeply was drifting away from him and it was due to his anger issues. When he became overwhelmed or frustrated he would yell, break things, or punch holes in walls.

It couldn’t continue this way. It was not healthy and there had to be a way out.

Fueled by the realization that his anger was putting his relationship at risk, Colin knew he needed to do something different. But counselling was not something he wanted to try. His girlfriend suggested Calgary Counselling Centre and Colin agreed to call. “She was so important to me I would do whatever it took,” he recalls.

That call lead to Colin setting up an appointment with a counsellor. Initially, they met one-on-one.

They worked on techniques to deal with anger as well as education on the different types of abuse. The Feedback Informed Treatment model The Centre uses in order to measure outcomes gave Colin a clear indication of the progress he was making, and the symptoms to watch for that indicated when his emotions were getting off-track.

Colin knew he had to stick with it in order to save his relationship; gradually he began to feel the burden of his anger lifting from his shoulders.

As Colin progressed through one on one counselling, his counsellor recommended he enter the group “Responsible Choices for Men” where he would meet and recover with others in similar situations.

At Calgary Counselling Centre, our research has proven that group counselling enhances a client’s progress after initial one-on-one sessions. Realizing they are ‘not alone’ and that what they are experiencing is common to others helps individuals grow in their recovery. Group counseling also provides an opportunity for clients to practice the skills and techniques learned in counselling while providing an opportunity to learn through the shared experience of the group.

“At first I thought the room would be full of really angry men, and that it wouldn’t help,” he remembers. “But a lot of people in the group were just like me, working to overcome their anger in a healthy way.”
Under the guidance of a counsellor the group worked together to educate themselves, and to reduce the hold their anger held on them, and their lives.

“I had some preconceptions about abuse, that it was mostly physical and verbal,” he says. “The group really opened up my eyes regarding all the different types of abuse there are.”

Six months after counselling Colin looks back with gratitude at his time spent at Calgary Counselling Centre. His anger no longer has a debilitating impact on those he loves, and his relationship is going strong. After eight years together Colin and his partner are expecting a new baby boy.

– Colin, age 25

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