What I Do?

When I was a little girl, I had a tough day. Then I had another. And another. At first, I thought they were nothing. Then, suddenly, they were everything. It wasn’t until I reached out to my guidance counsellor that I realized how much I wanted, and needed, help. Sometime later, when the tough days were becoming increasingly rare, I was able to recognize that the counsellor to whom I had been referred had saved my life. More than that, I knew that if I wanted to feel accomplished in this life, I would use my own experiences with depression and anxiety in order to help those who came after me.

I have spent years studying counselling and working within the mental health and addictions fields and while my experiences have helped teach me and change me, the one thing they have not changed is my desire to work with and support individuals. Working with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Brescia University College and a Masters in Counselling Psychology from Yorkville University, my counselling focus often reflects the beginning of my own journey as I seek to support children and adolescents who may be experiencing their own string of tough days. In this way, I strive to make individuals feel safe as they share their stories, so that we can work together to identify and build on the skills and qualities they already have to overcome their struggles.

If you are experiencing your own struggles, I would love to meet you and work with you so that you can overcome the struggles that are so uniquely yours. Hope to hear from you soon!

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I Believe

I knew that if I wanted to feel accomplished in this life, I would have to use my own experiences with depression and anxiety, in order to help those who came after me.


Emma DeRaaf

Registered Psychotherapist | MA in Counselling

Education & Accomplishments

  • MA Counselling Psychology Yorkville University, 2016
  • BA Honours Psychology Brescia University College, 2014
  • Psychometric Assessments “B” Level Certification Yorkville University, 2019


  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • Psychodynamic Therapy
  • Dialectical Therapy
  • Exposure Therapy
  • Christian Therapy

Professional Memberships

  • Registered Psychotherapist: College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario


  • Over 10 years

Emma's Favorite Quote

“It takes strength to hold yourself together when everything is falling apart and it can take even more strength to let yourself fall apart”

Life, with its rules, its obligations, and its freedoms, is like a sonnet: You’re given the form, but you have to write the sonnet yourself – Madeleine L’Engle

Frequently Asked Questions With Emma

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions that we receive. If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.

I knew I wanted to be a therapist as a teenager when I realized how much better my own life had become after I asked for my own help.

I love being able to come beside people on their journey and help guide them in the direction they were always meant to travel.

It is certainly normal to be scared of, or resistant to, counseling. I hope that if and when you feel ready to open a door and let someone in, that you will find someone who makes you feel safe and heard. Your story deserves to be heard. You deserve to be heard.

My children are some of the biggest blessings and accomplishments in my life.

I am most grateful to have a partner and family who work with me so that I can equally prioritize my children and my career. When I was younger, all I ever wanted was to be a mom and to be a counsellor and my family helps me work towards a balance between those two goals daily.

I often think that the greatest misunderstandings about trauma are around the definition of a “trauma”. I hear individuals dismiss their own traumas, thinking that these moments and experiences either don’t or shouldn’t matter. Your experiences do not have to make sense to other individuals in order for them to be real or valid.

Emma DeRaaf

Bayridge Counselling


  • Monday, Tuesday,Friday
  • Thursday
    Afternoon and Evening


What activity instantly calms you?

Reading a book while listening to music

Would you rather cook or order in?

I love to host, so I would rather cook for a large group in that setting but if I am alone with my immediate family, I would rather order in so I can spend that extra time with them instead.

What was your favourite age growing up?

6 years old

Who has had the greatest influence in your life?

My parents and my siblings. The books I read, the music I listen to, the jokes I laugh at and the values I hold dear are all a result of the four humans who surrounded me day in and day out.

Need Help Choosing a Therapist?

If you are still trying to decide whether therapy is right for you, book a free 20-minute virtual consultation with our Clinical manager and therapist, Nicole Callander, RSSW. Nicole would be happy to answer any questions about therapy or who would be a match for your unique situation.

Free 20-Minute Virtual Consultation
Need help booking your free 20-minute consult? (905) 319-1488
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