Depression, Anxiety, Grief, Marriage and Relationship Therapy
Depression & Anxiety Therapy
They often work together to create a vicious cycle. Learn to break the cycle and get your life on track.
Grief Therapy
It is a natural process. Work with it to promote renewal and transformation.
Trauma Therapy
I use gentle, evidence-based techniques to heal body, mind and spirit.
Marriage and Relationship Therapy
Emotion Focused Therapy works with our natural attachment needs to promote happy, healthy relationships.
Carolyn Dallman Downes, M.Ed.

Registered Psychotherapist

I am an Emotion-focused Therapist, practising under the auspices of the Ontario College of Psychotherapists. I hold a Master’s Degree in Adult Education from the University of Toronto, OISE. In addition to my degrees I have completed three years training in Gestalt Therapy.

I am an “A” level practitioner of Emotion-focused Couple’s Therapy (EFT) having completed the Couples Therapy Training Program with Les Greenberg at York University and the Ottawa Couples and Family Institute with Sue Johnson and Gail Palmer. I have also completed basic training in Traumatic Incident Reduction (TIR), under the instruction and supervision of Margaret Nelson. I am a clinical member of the Ontario Society of Registered Psychotherapists (OSRP).

my services

Therapies I Can Provide

  • Grief Therapy
  • Depression & Anxiety
  • Sexual Orientation
  • Trauma
  • Gifted Individual
  • Relationship & Marital

Grief Therapy

Most people don’t know that Grief is a natural physiological process, involving our whole body/mind. After a major loss many people try to soldier on, keeping a “stiff upper lip”, and trying to submerge our feelings. But if we do this, grief simply changes form; instead of sadness, it might become anger, depression, anxiety, fatigue, physical aches and pains or even numbness...

Depression & Anxiety

Most people come to therapy is because they are suffering from depression and/or anxiety. When they are depressed, they feel hopeless and when they are anxious, they cannot relax or sleep or face the tasks of daily living. . .

Sexual Orientation

Growing up as a sexual minority is often painful and traumatic. Those who grow up in families, communities or religions that frown on their sexual orientation or gender identity often experience guilt and self-loathing. I have helped dozens of people learn to embrace and celebrate their sexual orientation . . .


Like grief, Trauma is a natural and healthy response to an overwhelming and unimaginable disaster. It is as much in the body as it is in the mind. One cannot simply will it to go away. If we do not process trauma, we will probably develop dysfunctional ways to manage, plagued by intrusive memories, feelings and thoughts.

Gifted Individual

Most people believe those who are intellectually or creatively gifted have a unique advantage over others, but studies show that by the time they reach adulthood, they are more likely to have been thoroughly mystified and often traumatized, by teachers, parents and learning institutions that fail to recognize or support their unique learning and psychological needs.

Relationship & Marital

Our relationships are the foundation of our lives and when they are not going well it is painful and debilitating. I trained as an Emotion-Focused Therapist because this approach is well-researched and highly successful, used by therapists around the world . . .
The Process

How Does It Work?

Step 1

Schedule Your Free 30 Minute Consultation

On average, a session lasts a full sixty minutes. During our first session I will outline the counselling process and explain any of the legal and administrative things you need to know so you can give your informed consent for treatment. Once you have given your consent, we will begin the assessment process. I will ask why you are here and what you want to accomplish. I will probably also ask you questions about your present situation at your home, work and social life, as well as asking about your family history. Out of this, we will develop a set of goals and an action plan for you, and identify tangible indicators which will tell us when your goals have been achieved.

Step 2

Regular Meetings and Treament

After that, we will meet on a regular basis, usually once a week or every other week. The length of treatment varies with each individual, according to the severity of the issues which are brought to the process. In general, I tell people that they will know when they can cut back or quit therapy, since they will be feeling better and the issues which brought them to therapy will be, if not resolved, then much more manageable.


Frequently Asked Questions

Trying to find a therapist can be a nerve-wracking process.

If you have any questions, just give me a call, or send me an email and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

  • What type of therapy is offered?
    I am an Experiential Therapist, which is an umbrella term meaning that my orientation is client-centred, humanist and collaborative. We do not subscribe to the medical model (which emphasizes disease and dysfunction). Instead, we focus on growth and healing. There are many schools and techniques that fall under the umbrella of “experiential psychotherapy”: Gestalt Therapy, Process Experiential Therapy, Internal Family Systems, Somatic Experiencing, Sensory-Motor psychotherapy, to name a few. I have had training in most of these approaches and use their techniques interchangeably to help you come to understand, express and heal from the traumas that prevent you from achieving your goals in life, work and relationships.
  • How long does therapy take?
    Every person is unique, and the length of therapy depends upon what issues you bring to the situation. Issues that involve a particular, discreet problem will probably only require a few sessions. However, if you have come from a situation of complex childhood trauma, it will of course take much longer to undo the damage. Whatever your particular situation, you are the one in charge of your treatment. You can decide how often and how long you want to attend. In my experience, it is usually obvious when you are finished as you simply run out of things to talk about and therapy becomes much less necessary.
  • What is personal growth work?
    Some people come to therapy because they want to enhance their lives and their growth. Experiential psychotherapy provides a safe place to navigate the everyday challenges of life, to get ongoing support and validation, to examine one’s belief systems and to foster healthy relationships. Personal growth work can be as often as the individual wishes and will continue as long as they find it useful.
  • How do you treat Trauma?
    In Experiential Psychotherapy, we believe that the roots of trauma can be seen in our present-day behaviour. For example, you might continually find yourself in unhealthy relationships, but no matter how hard you try, you cannot seem to change this. Together, you and I will look at the behaviour, thoughts and feelings that underlie the decisions that you make around relationships and then trace these back to the traumatic incidents (often in your childhood), that inform your present actions and behaviours. Once we have uncovered the root causes, we will use experiential techniques to heal the trauma so you can bring new learning and new perspectives to your life.