Suicidal Thoughts & Self-Harm Therapist Calgary

Takeaway: If you or a loved one is struggling with self-harm behaviours or thoughts of suicide, youā€™re not alone. Thankfully, working with a mental health professional can help you find effective ways of coping and learn how to create a life worth living. Our team of self-harm and suicidal thoughts therapists in Calgary is available; reach out today to get started.

Navigating the challenges of self-harm and suicide can be an isolating and overwhelming experience.

If you or a loved one is grappling with these issues, you're not alone in this journey. Seeking support from a mental health professional is a courageous step towards healing and creating a life filled with meaning and purpose.

It's crucial to remember that help is available.

Suicide is the act of taking oneā€™s own life. Self harm behaviour or self-injury, is when a person hurts themselves as a way of dealing with very difficult feelings, painful memories, or overwhelming situations and experiences. According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, suicide accounts for 24% of all deaths among 15- to 24-year olds, and 16% among 25- to 44-year-olds with men ages 40-65 at the hightest risk of taking thier own life. It is also the second leading cause of death among adolescents. The Centre for Suicide Prevention shares that one in every twenty people thinks about suicide at any given time.

You are not alone.

Our dedicated team of suicidal thoughts therapist Calgary understands the complexities of these struggles and is committed to providing a safe space. Together, we can work towards understanding the root cause of these thoughts and provide you with insight while building skills, effective coping mechanisms, and the development of a resilient foundation through counselling and a positive treatment plan.

Don't hesitate to reach outā€”theĀ well-being of you and your family is our priority.

self harm therapist calgary


Understanding self-harm and suicidal thoughts


Understanding self-harm and suicide is a delicate and multifaceted process that requires compassion and, often, professional guidance.

Self-harming and suicidal ideation do not discriminate; people who struggle with them come from all walks of life, all economic brackets, and any gender or sexuality. They are often used as a coping mechanism when dealing with anxiety, depression, loss, self-esteem issues, trauma, or violence.


Self-harm involves intentionally inflicting physical harm on oneself as a way to cope with emotional pain or distress. This behaviour is often a maladaptive coping mechanism rather than a direct intention to end one's life. Common methods include cutting, burning, or other forms of self-inflicted injury. Seeking therapeutic support is vital for understanding and addressing the underlying issues leading to self-harm and developing healthier coping strategies.


Suicide refers to the intentional act of taking one's own life. It is a complex and multifaceted issue often linked to mental health challenges, emotional distress, and a sense of hopelessness. Identifying warning signs and seeking timely intervention from mental health professionals is crucial for prevention and support.

Signs of Suicidal Thoughts:

  1. Verbal Expressions:

    • Direct statements expressing a desire to die or a feeling of being a burden to others.

    • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live.

  2. Behavioral Changes:

    • Withdrawal from social activities and relationships.

    • Giving away possessions or making arrangements indicates a sense of finality.

    • Engaging in risky behaviours without concern for consequences.

  3. Mood Swings:

    • Persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or irritability.

    • Drastic changes in mood, from extreme despair to sudden calmness.

  4. Isolation:

    • Social withdrawal and increased time spent alone.

    • Avoidance of friends, family, and previously enjoyed activities.

  5. Changes in Sleep and Appetite:

    • Insomnia or excessive sleeping.

    • Significant changes in appetite, leading to weight loss or gain.

Signs of Self-Harm:

If you are causing physical harm to yourself and are unable to stop, this is a problem that requires support. If you suspect that your child is self-injuring, it can be very alarming, but remember that it is a reaction to another issue such as depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues. The key is to discover why you or your loved one is self-harming. At times, there may be more challenging mental illnesses at play, such as borderline personality disorder or other personality disorders.

  1. Unexplained Injuries:

    • Frequent presence of cuts, burns, or bruises, often on wrists, thighs, or arms.

    • Attempts to conceal injuries, such as wearing long sleeves in warm weather,.

  2. Isolation and Secrecy:

    • Spending extended periods alone in isolation.

    • Keeping personal space private and avoiding discussions about emotions.

  3. Emotional Distress:

    • Expressing difficulty handling emotions or overwhelming feelings.

    • Experiencing heightened stress, anxiety, or depression.

  4. Changes in Behavior:

    • Wearing concealing clothing even in warm weather.

    • Evidence of sharp objects, like razors or knives, in personal belongings.

  5. Relationship Issues:

    • Strained relationships with family and friends.

    • Difficulty expressing emotions and maintaining connections.

It's crucial to approach any signs of suicidal thoughts or self-harm with empathy and encourage the individual to seek professional help when an individual turns emotional pain into physical pain.

For immediate help throughout Alberta dial 9-8-8:

Please call 211 or one of the following, or head to the nearest emergency room if harm is imminent.

  • Edmonton and area: 780 482 HELP (4357)

  • Calgary and area: 403 266 HELP (4357)

  • Rural Distress Line (Alberta-wide): 1-800-232-7288

  • Kids Help Phone

Suicide is preventable with therapy and support.

At Shelly Qualtieri and Associates, we recognize that individuals contemplating suicide often seek relief from the pain of living rather than a desire to die. We understand the power of talking and active listening as crucial interventions in suicide prevention. Our team is dedicated to providing a compassionate space for individuals dealing with past trauma, abuse, depression, stress, anxiety, peer pressure, mood disorders, eating disorders, or challenging emotions.

Our counselling services focus on active listening, which is a fundamental aspect of providing relief and support. Many individuals, when receiving a caring intervention, find significant relief, and the majority do not re-attempt. If you or a loved one is struggling, it's crucial to recognize warning signs. The American Association of Suicidology's tool "IS PATH WARM" outlines key points to remember. Seeking support is an essential step in prevention, and at Shelly Qualtieri and Associates, we are here to provide the support and care you need on your journey to healing. Contact us to prioritize mental health and well-being.

How therapy can help

Engaging in self-harming behaviour or experiencing suicidal ideation often reflects profound emotional distress.

Engaging in self-harming behaviour or experiencing suicidal thoughts reflects deep emotional distress. As a team of psychologists, we offer a confidential space for individuals to express their feelings without judgment through counseling. Together, we explore the root causes of self-harm and suicidal ideation, addressing underlying issues with practical tools and coping strategies. When experiencing intense emotions, trying to manage stress, or struggling with mental illness, the individual may not be able to problem-solve on their own.

Counselling provides a collaborative journey towards resilience and self-discovery, fostering hope and purpose. Seeking professional support is a brave decision that can lead to a more fulfilling life. While talking about suicide doesn't cause it, providing a non-judgmental space for individuals to express themselves can be greatly supportive during times of intense emotions or mental health struggles.

If you or a loved one is struggling with suicidal thoughts, seeking immediate treatment is crucial. At Shelly Qualtieri & Associates, our therapists can help, recommend appropriate therapies, and work with you on a comprehensive treatment plan that may include medication under the guidance of your medical professional team. Your mental health matters, and we are here to support you on your journey to well-being.

Thoughts or attempts are two things that should not be taken lightly. If you, your loved one, or someone in your family is having these thoughts, please seek treatment immediately.

A therapist from Shelly Qualtieri & Associates can help, recommend different types of therapy, and build a plan with you.

suicidal thoughts therapist calgary

Meet our team of self-harm and suicidal thoughts therapists in Calgary.

Our goal is to empower clients to move beyond the grip of self-harm and suicide while fostering resilience and a renewed sense of purpose.

If you or a loved one is seeking professional assistance, our Calgary-based therapists are ready to provide the understanding and support needed to embark on a journey of healing and personal growth together with counselling.

Connect with our Calgary-based team of experienced therapists specializing in suicide prevention, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts support. With over a decade of expertise, our therapists are committed to empowering clients, fostering resilience, and instilling a renewed sense of purpose. Grounded in evidence-based practices, our team includes a Master ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Trainer) and a certified psychologist with Livingworks Canada training. We prioritize prevention and treatment, offering hope and understanding in therapy sessions. If you or a loved one is seeking assistance, reach out today to embark on a healing journey towards a brighter future. Book an appointment with our dedicated team.

Our approach to therapy for self-harm and suicidal thoughts

Self-harm and suicide ideation are usually reactions to an inability to properly cope with or an attempt to mask emotional, mental, or psychological pain and are treatable.

Our therapeutic approach for self-harm and suicidal thoughts at Shelly Qualtieri & Associates is rooted in evidence-based theories that have shown efficacy in promoting healing and resilience.

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT):

CBT is instrumental in identifying and modifying negative thought patterns and behaviors associated with self-harm and suicidal ideation. By addressing distorted thinking and promoting healthier coping mechanisms, CBT empowers individuals to navigate challenging emotions. It is cognitive behavioural therapy that helps someone become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking and behaviour, so challenging situations and emotions can be seen more clearly and responses to them are more effective.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT):

DBT is particularly effective in enhancing emotional regulation and interpersonal effectiveness. DBT is a variation of CBT treatment designed for individuals with serious self harm affect all-harming behaviours, such as self harming,-cutting, suicidal thoughts, and attempts. It equips individuals with practical skills to manage intense emotions, thereby reducing the likelihood of engaging in self-harming behaviors and addressing suicidal thoughts.

Solution-Focused Therapy:

This approach emphasizes identifying and building on personal strengths, fostering solutions rather than dwelling on problems. Solution-focused therapy empowers individuals to envision a positive future, promoting a sense of purpose and reducing feelings of hopelessness.

Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART):

ART is a powerful intervention for trauma-related issues often associated with self-harm and suicidal thoughts. By facilitating rapid positive changes in the way distressing memories are stored, ART aims to alleviate emotional pain and contribute to overall mental well-being.

Somatic Therapy:

Somatic therapy recognizes the mind-body connection and the impact of trauma on the body. This approach incorporates techniques to release stored tension and stress, providing a holistic framework for individuals dealing with self-harm and suicidal thoughts.

By integrating these evidence-based theories, our therapists offer a comprehensive and tailored approach to address the root causes of self-harm and suicidal ideation. We are committed to providing a supportive environment for individuals to heal, grow, and rediscover a sense of purpose. If you or a loved one is seeking assistance, our team is here to guide you on the path to recovery and well-being.

Connect for a free 30-minute call.

Get the mental health support you need from our team of Calgary therapists.

Getting the right mental health support is essential, especially when navigating the complexities of self-harm and suicide.

Access the vital mental health support you need through our team of Calgary therapists.

Navigating the complexities of self-harm and suicidal ideation requires the right mental health assistance. Our devoted therapists in Calgary, Alberta, offer personalized and compassionate care, focusing on collaboration with clients to unveil the root issues contributing to these challenges. By taking the courageous step to seek help, our Calgary-based therapists are prepared to guide you through a journey of self-discovery, fostering strength and hope for improved mental well-being. Don't hesitate to connect; our dedicated team is committed to supporting you on the path to a healthier and more fulfilling life.

Discover the causes behind suicidal thoughts or self-harm with our assistance. Whether for yourself, your child, or a teen, we can collaboratively find healthier ways to cope with issues like low self-esteem, emotional pain, trauma, borderline personality disorder, or mood disorders. Offering in-person, online, or telephone counselling, reach out to us today.

We do not offer immediate crisis intervention; please head to your nearest emergency room.