Rhiannon Webb, ACS SSE
I bring a rich and diverse academic, experiential, and personal history to my practice where I hold space for integration, growth, and healing work.
My love affair with academia is balanced out by my appreciation of the ever-increasing availability of non-traditional education, as well as my growing understanding of how classical academia is embedded in systems that oppress. I do value the knowledge and structures that are offered by the traditional academic system, ensuring that I have the appropriate training and certification to offer this work, and I'm continually seeking out the wider learning that helps me to broaden my scope and deepen my context of lived experiences and ways of knowing that are different from my own.
My heart and mind are lit up by the study of psychology and psycholinguistics; relationships; neuroscience; pregnancy, birth, and anatomy; family and parenting dynamics; and the neurophysiology of trauma. These are focal subjects in my continuing education.
I began my career in social work in 1998 where I worked with youth in supported community programming with the London Middlesex Housing Authority. I trained as a birth doula through DONA (Doulas of North America) in 2003 and continued in the social sector as well as doing birth work after spending several years raising and homeschooling my children.
My appreciation for the deeply influential nature on all areas of life of how people relate to their sexuality, and my readiness to leave the front lines of the social sector, led me to embark on a new era of my own growth, education, and training.
I completed a coaching certification with additional training in relationships, and then embarked on training in the SSLD system by Ka Tat Tsang - a needs-based approach to growth work that looks at the intricacies of a person's intersectional identities.
I earned my diploma in counselling psychology, and completed the Somatic Sex Educator professional training. I am a member of the American College of Sexologists, the Canadian Professional Counsellors Association, as well as the Somatic Sex Educators Association.
My ongoing continuing education with The Institute for Relational Intimacy, The Couples Institute, The Gottman Institute, and in Emotion Focused Therapy, provide me with a solid framework for the unique needs of people in relationships, and my continuing education with the NICABM (National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine) deepens my scope around somatic practices and trauma.
A unique contribution to my work comes from my post-secondary study of linguistic translation theory. Diving in to the complexities of how human beings relate to meaning, phrasing, and emotions in the context of speech has given me exciting insight into the landscape of communication that takes place between people in any kind of relationship (the closer the relationship, the more complex the landscape).
A favourite quote of mine which I often share with my clients is:
"I decided to see how my life would improve if I stopped assuming I needed to be fixed."
I believe that people are wired to seek safety and ensure their needs are met. Often times when we encounter challenges in life or are having experiences that aren't working for us, understanding how and why our needs aren't being met creates a functional bridge to experiencing life in closer alignment with what we want.
I believe that a strong and encouraging relationship between me and my clients is the ground on which they can find the empowerment, bravery, and wisdom they naturally possess. My approach to healing work integrates the intellectual power of the mind with the profound wisdom of the body, which I believe creates an opportunity for meaningful healing and integration that is holistic and sustainable.
The core influences I believe hold importance for how people see the world are early life experiences, personal emotional landscapes, and personal identity intersections (gender, sexuality, race, orientation, culture, age, etc).
I firmly believe that having sociopolitical beliefs is part of, rather than a contradiction to, being a good therapist.
The subjects of oppression and marginalisation, racial supremacy and identity politics, cannot be extricated from healing work with others. These are the muckiest bits of our collective human experience and I believe they create harm for many if not all people.
I am a dual English-Canadian citizen with German and Scandinavian ancestry living uninvited on the unceded Coast Salish territory of the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ nations, also known as Victoria BC.
I have lived here since 2003, after moving from Anishinaabeg, Haudenosaunee, Attawandaron, and Wendat territory in Southern Ontario.
My life-long passions for dance, science, and languages continue to influence me, and my love of the arts has led me to show paintings in local art exhibits, perform singing publicly, and create a cross-country flash mob for Pride in 2011 (here).
I am currently on the board of directors of the Victoria Pride Society.
I spend my down time enjoying the ocean and wilderness of the West Coast, occasionally hitting the stage in drag, and building memories with my wife and our three kids.