Welcome! DAVID ROCKMAN, MSW, RSW BLOG SITE – PRIVATE PRACTICE, Individual, Couple, Family Counselling Therapy and Mediation, and Mindfulness Training


Contacts and links:

647-975-3505 text/cell





Office at 717 Bloor Street West at Christie Station on the south side of Bloor in The Toronto Healing Arts Centre, upstairs on the main floor Front Office number #1

Professional Background and Bio Sharing:

David Rockman has 22 years clinical experience in working with individuals and families providing counselling, therapy and mediation.

David is registered with The OCSWSSW and is therefore covered by many Insurance providers.

He has worked in 8 Toronto area hospitals over the years in many departments including surgery, medicine, oncology, ICU, critical care, Orthopaedics and mostly Mental Health and Emergency departments and also Mobile Crisis Intervention. David has also ample experience working with motor vehicle accident and workplace injury rehabilitation and also child welfare and couple mediation. David has treated and successfully assisted thousands of client patients over the years. He has successfully treated individuals, couples and families experiencing a very wide range of problems and emotional type disturbances. He has treated people from all walks of life, ethnic backgrounds, different religious faiths and secular backgrounds. David has assisted many people of all ages. David takes an egalitarian approach to couple therapy. David is completely non-judgemental, highly empathic and totally present to all his patients’ needs. He promotes self determination and their empowerment. David cares immensely for all his patients and understands that their perceptions of reality and their emotional well being is paramount. David has an advanced knowledge of mental status examination and psychoparmochology although does not prescribe medication and is an expert at working collaterally with other similar mental health practitioners in a collaborative manner when required. He also, when required practices DBT informed Therapeutic Treatment, though is trained in, and uses many other type modalities of intervention as per needed for each individual patient.  

Additionally David has spent approximately 5.5 years living in Residential Mindfulness Training Schools in the USA and also the South of France. He also has ample experience running and facilitating groups in this regard.


David has treated and assisted many people experiencing for example some of the following stressful matters:

Academic Support and Advocacy (All grade levels, High School,  University – graduate and post graduate, Phd. Consulting and all accommodations advocacy)

Adjustment Disturbances

Addiction Issues of all kinds and Alcoholism

Ambivalent Spouse Syndrome

Anger management problems

Anxiety/Social Anxiety/Agoraphobia 

Aspergers Autism Spectrum


Adult Children with Schizophrenia or First Onset or Schizo-affective Disturbances

Abandonment Issues

Adoption Issues


Body Imagery Distortion

Borderline Personality Disturbances

Bullying and Belittlement

Bodily Congenital Deformation Issues

Bi-polar related Management Problems

Boundary Problems

Career Transitions

Carcinoma Related Support

Childhood Trauma/Abuse/Sexual and Otherwise

Child Welfare Issues

Chronic Health care problems: like managing Transplants, etc.


Commitment Problems

Creative Consulting


Chronic Fear of Death

Collateral Mental Health System Support

Communication Issues/Problems/Skills

Crisis Intervention

Cultural Assimilation Problems and Immigration Problems

Cult Type Abuse and Ritual Abuse

Culturally Sanctioned Abuse and Trauma

Children of Alcoholics

Children and Adult Children of Self Involved Parents

Dating Issues

Depression and mood disturbance

Distress Tolerance Issues 



Divorce and Separation Issues


Eating Disturbances of All kinds

Emotion Dysregulation

Employment Equity Issues


Emotional Exhaustion

Educational Direction Problems and Support

Enabling Problems and Relationships

Erectile dysfunction

Family Disputes and Impasse

Families of Divorce

Familial Alienation Issues

Family Therapy Matters

Family Re-unification Issues

Family Horizontal Identity Problems (Family Alienation)

Feminist Type Conflicts

Families having trouble with members with Mental Illness


Fragmented Sense of Self

Financial Duress

Grief and Loss

Geriatric Issues

Harm Reduction

High Conflict Conjugal Relationships

Hopelessness and Learned Hopelessness


Hospital Discharge Problems

Inter-faith marital problems

Immigration Problems and Advocacy

Immigration Assessments

Inheritance Disputes


Jealousy Issues 

Life Coaching

Life Vision/Goals

Low Impulse Control

Low Frustration Tolerance

Labour Disputes



Learning Disability Based Emotional Problems

LGBTQ Issues

Life Style Issues Coaching


Mental Health Care Problems

Mid-life Crisis



Mindfulness Training

Mental and Emotional Abuse

Marital Separation Agreements

Marital/Couple Therapy Counselling 

Monogamy Issues


Medication Compliance Issues

Narcissism Problems

Native Assimilation Problems or Alienation

OCD Issues

Open Relationships

Porn Addiction

Platonic Relationship Problems

Personality Disturbances

Post Partem Depression

Professional Consulting and Coaching

Power of Attorney Issues and Living Will Issues

Post Traumatic Stress 

Pet Loss

Palliative Care Issues

Prenuptial Agreements

Purpose of Life Matters

Panic Attacks

Poly Amory

Plastic Surgery/Facial Disfigurement Adjustment and Trauma and Crisis

Personality Type Orientation

Psychiatric Advocacy Issues

Parent Child/Teen Conflict


Room-mate Problems

Reactivity Impulse Control



Relocation Issues

Rapport Skills

Relationship Breakdown and Discord

Relationship Equity Issues

Reverse Chauvinism 

Refugee Problems

Role Overload

Rape and Sexual Abuse

Rage Issues

Reintegration Issues


Relapse Prevention

Relationship Age Disparity Type Problems

Shame and Guilt

Self Esteem

Sexual Harassment Workplace or Otherwise

Self Acceptance Problems

Self Harm

Self Care

Self Forgiveness

Social Alienation and Social Connection Problems

Sleep Disturbance


Seperation & Divorce Mediation & pre-mediation/therapy

School Problems and Advocacy 

Spiritual Crisis and Emergence

Social Impact Assessments and Statement Analysis

Sexual Orientation and Identity Problems

Sexual problems and issues related

Social Alienation

Sterility Issues

Suicidality – Passive Type Recurring

Sibling Rivalry


Time Management

Trauma of all types

Trans Issues

Troubled Youth

Trauma Bonding

Trust Issues

Transplant and Chronic Health Management Problems

Workplace Accommodations Advocacy

Workplace Stressors











Trauma & Experiential Assessment Analysis

Psychotherapeutic Assessment involves a myriad of differing schemata, modalities regarding approach and treatment paradigm. From one perspective we may generally view all human experience as falling into 6 basic categories. These are Cognitive – (mental), Affective – (emotive), Physical – (visceral body based), Behavioural – (physically Interactive), Situational – (engaged circumstance), Environmental – (literal place in time). We can say that the first may be in our direct experience and the last 2 are in some way outside of our direct self.

We may posit that all various modalities of therapy are comprised of a defined approach to treatment by focussing on either one go these aforementioned aspects of human experience or in some formal combination of these; for example, Cognitive Behavioural.

A coherent assessment of any problem or trauma necessitates requesting the client-patient traces their present – past experience through any combination of the 6 aforementioned arenas of experience as a kind of experiential algorithm. to be continued ….



Social Isolation




Social isolation is becoming an epidemic in our society with all the access to social media and interactive technology and the golden age – rise of on demand television allow people to forgo real relationships and hide in an artificial world of voyeurism.  With the advent of social media, interactive technology and people being conditioned to socialize more with screens than with human beings, this reinforces isolation.  People are being conditioned to live on their own in glass condos and become wholly reliant upon themselves could also be a major factor in reinforcing social alienation, anxiety and depression.  It is well known that human beings are social beings and are community driven.  People need each other to be happy and to find a purpose in life.  Social isolation is not the purpose in life.  There is a big difference between codependency and interdependency.  It seems apparent that people need to learn healthy ways of becoming interdependent again.  These matters can be proactively resolved by relearning the skills required to actively engage with society again. Learning how to overcome obstacles which one may have incurred to finding one’s way back to a healthy interactive life can be addressed through behavioral activation interventions.

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call  David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca

Personality Disturbance”

Wednesday October 31/2018


Borderline Personality


Historically many who suffered from such a disturbance were it seemed stigmatized by the mental health arena, as clinicins were often afraid of such patients. However, since the advent new therapies like DBT – Dialectical Behavioral Therapy from Marsha Linehan who herself admitted she had historically suffered similar problems, this kind of disturbance has elicited more compassion and a greater understanding of the causes and how to treat BPD. BPD is often caused by recurring invalidation of the child or teens perspective by the family, put downs and emotional and even physical abandonment. This person the grows up and as their repeated trauma becomes part of who they are so to speak, they then often project their, to no fault of their own feeling of abandonment and high levels of reactivity onto a significant other. They become very impulsive and very reactive,  rash and suffer a deep sense of loss and emptiness when others can’t make it, and act out if things do not go their way. Often such people experience  a life with cycling of emotion dysregulation and are not able to control their mood and have a tendency to lash out at others. They may suffer deep self -loathing and then hurt themselves in various ways which can be very alarming to others. They may also suffer an overlay of other problems like an addiction, or depression, anxiety, family problems. They may unnecessarily burn bridges. At first the patient may be required to learn how to understand the true nature of their own feelings because very often such people are disassociated from their feelings….

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca



Narcissism is often seen to be a very difficult problem to resolve especially in relationship.  Many times a person who may suffer from such symptoms may have suffered from some serious issues with regards to neglect and abandonment in childhood and may have difficulties empathizing as a result of feeling invalidated in childhood.  One of the difficulties with this emotional disturbance is that many people with such symptoms can end up having to be alone and abandoned and neglected again because they may suffer from being so self-involved and self-centered that they may drive people away from them.  In some respects our society supports such a personality development in respect to an “every person for themselves” social survival type structure of living.


Investigating the roots of relationship patterns with such a person and their seeming inability to empathize with others is strongly recommended to raise their self-awareness with respect to the impact that their self-destructive behavior is having on others and themselves.  Very often people with this condition are disassociated from feelings and can relearn how to empathize with others and themselves in practical ways that can change their lives forever. Such people may have hidden anger and hidden grief issues.  By seeing a therapist one can learn to engage in new interventions to change ones relationship with one’s self and one’s life.  Such people are often raised by self involved parents. Abandoning such people is not the answer just because they are themselves self involved for this is what happened to them to reinforce them being this way in the first place. At first the person may be required to learn how to understand the true nature of their own feelings because very often such people are disassociated from their feelings. 

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca

Natural Compatibility and Conscious Compatibility

Natural Compatibility:

The less reactive conflict in a relationship, the more likely a couple will get a long without conflict.

Couples with higher natural compatibility have in natural common. Though the less they have to work on themselves as a result in the relationship. The higher the index of the NC  (Natural Compatibility) the longer the relations may last, unless the people become static in the relationship. That is if people have too high an NC they may possibly get bored, and depending on their disposition look out of the relationship or fall out of the relationship.

Unless they work on themselves or work on themselves while i the relationship or for the other person they are intimate with.

The lower the NC the more challenging a relation will likely be. People who have a high index of NC naturally have similar values, like similar activities, are highly attracted to each other – usually in the sphere of physical, emotional, intellectual functioning. They naturally then feel as one with one another. So as a result Love is in large part based on habitual attractions and temperaments and disposition. Peoples lives are often easier for a time when they have a high NC relationship. That is not to say that events can enter in to change their interpersonal dynamics. Many times these can be unforeseen by those involved.  However, having a high NC relationship will many times extend what may be called the honeymoon period of any relationship.  It is true that the higher the NC the more likely a couple will be able to be together during their lifetime. On the other hand if they enter what I call a ‘Cloistered Relationship’ – that is they do not develop a relationship with other satisfying relations they may possibly become bored with one another after a time.


Many people seem to think that they simply pick and choose the relationships they enter into. Though compatibility is often simply a matter of chance for many and proximity. This is not to say that are not certain people who have more control than others with respect to choosing a perspective partner.

Conscious Compatibility:

Conscious Compatibility refers to couples that are willing to work on the relationship. To what end couples are willing to work on a relationship depends on several factors. Also, at times the parties that make up a couple will invariably need to work on individually as well. Very often it is reactivity that will ultimately destroy relationship. We may assume that the lower the Natural Compatibility the more that a couple may need to work on the relationship to make things work. We assume that by raising this factor over time, with adequate professional assistance  that a couple may also raise their Natural Compatibility as well.


The following are some examples of what couples may need to learn to raise their level of conscious compatibility:

  • Reactivity Re-entrainment.
  • Self – Ego Transcendence.
  • Mirroring of One another in Communication.
  • Information Gathering Communication.
  • Mutuality – Validation of One Another.
  • Mutual and Equitable Solution Finding Skills.
  • Secured Commitment to Keep Working on Bettering their Relationship.
  • Sacrifice of Resentments and Grudge Bearing.
  • Commitment to do what one has Communicated one will do.
  • Garner a Higher level of Flexibility and forgiveness in the relationship.
  • Refusal to Act Out ever, but rather engage in open and honest and non-reactive communications.
  • Fostering Natural Affection for one another on a recurring basis.


For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call  David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca


To be continued….

Best Practice in Relationship/Couple/Marital Therapy Process

How do we find a good Couple Therapist?

Its best to see someone who is seasoned in working with couples and preferably one who has been trained in individual, couple and family therapy and mediation, perhaps such as the writer. The Couple Therapist must ensure confidentiality of course at all times. And while ever seeing the couple must request they inform the Therapist of any such issues upon intake or at any time during the healing process. However, the less there is to keep confidential from one another, the easier will be the work of the Therapist. And similarly with regard to any matters should they ever unfortunately come up regarding The Ontario Mental Health Act concerning harm to self and others and children.

Do I need to be seeing a separate therapist whilst engaged in the Couple Therapy process?

This is entirely up to any client-patient’s discretion and all Therapists ought to support client self determination in this regard, However, when seeing a Couple Therapist it is noteworthy that a good Therapist upon Intake prefers to see each party separately first in order to procure the best possible objective assessment achievable. Following that, normally the Therapist ought to then see the couple together and this is after ensuring that the best rapport has been secured and the Therapist and clients feel that they like they have joined together well for the process to be underlined by warmth, feelings of security, trust, openness, and regard for the Therapist’s expertise in the area. The Therapist must be absolutely non-judgemental of all client – patients and particularly so of any couple. The Therapist must respect all clients and their perceptions no matter what those are, regarding their relationship.  As well, should the client patient determine they need the further support of a separate therapist at anytime the Couple Therapist must support this fully. Though seeing a separate therapist is not always necessary since The seasoned couple therapist often will opt to see clients at times individually when needed. Though again, at times couples do have entirely separate issues from their relationship and may decide seeing an individual therapist also is required. However, a good Couple Therapist can also take on this role as long there is no real of perceived conflict of interest. Thought t times if such a conflict should arise pre-mediation therapy or even at times some mediation may need to take place intermittenty during the therapeutic process provided the Couple Therapist has such skills as the writer does. The useful and pertinent issue regarding choosing to see the same Therapist is that is that the client patient will not get confused by differing therapeutic practice modalities of therapists nor will suffer the burden of what I call disclosure type burn out whereby the client patient must have to repeatedly story tell in order to debrief therapists about the details of their life events and disturbing or disruptive patterns of relationship with their significant other or perhaps even their particular type of relationship they have with themselves.

What is a good Intake Process for Couple Counselling – Therapy?

From the writer’s perspective it is best to see each party separately at first for a number of reasons. And one may choose to see the person who is the main referral first, that is should the referral come from the couple themselves. Though this is certainly not imperative. Upon Intake its best to go over the usual matters of confidentiality as with all patients regarding the Ontario Mental Health Act with regard to harm to children, self and others, policy about payment and no shows, etc.

Although this depends upon the Therapist’s approach a formal assessment may not be necessary right at the beginning consult when It is of utmost importance that the client patient secure trust and the best rapport possible with the Therapist. Therefore one may consider the this is best done by allowing the patient to disclose as to whatever they are comfortable with regard to themselves and their partner; their major concerns about the relationship  and what they perceive that they continue to experience as obstacles to being to be able to the best relationship with their partner. Issues of compatibility; communication styles; temperament; personality; social and sexual engagement are just some of the examples of what may come up for the client patient at any time. And all client patients need and require validation and mirroring and a real feeling that their concerns are very real for them, that you as therapist are very empathic and deeply care and know that you have the required skills to resolve your client’s difficulties bearing in mind their motivation and ability to engage in being solution focussed, unless of course they are with or without knowing that they are only there to complain about their partner.

Second Part Of Intake:

The second part of the way that I prefer to conduct my Couple intake process is to see the couple together. This is after seeing them separately for either an hour or 45 minutes after one another, which I leave up to them.

Then I see them together, whereby I request they engage in what is called a Role Reversal exercise, that is of curse that they consent to engage in this, which they usually always do since I inform them that it is not an audition or a performance , nor they being judged in anyway by the therapist. As well I inform that they will be coached through the process at anytime should I assess that they are stuck in any way.

Part A: entails the other party pretending to be their partner on a fully individual basis, including such things as their history, their relationships, their lives in general, likes ad dislikes, goals, etc. Often one begins the process with petty things as for example how they get up in the morning and mundane things just to get them comfortable and started.

Part B: Is then to get the significant other who is listening to give some kind of impression as to how correct they felt the description went and what may have been missing. One may even apply scaling to this fro 1 to 10. The Therapist continues to couch the patients through this to ensure that no entanglement occurs.

Part C: Is now to get the significant other to percent to be the other in relationship and what that is like in all the detail that one can summon from them as you may or may not have to coach them along. For example Peter must percent to be Mary as Mary must percent to be Peter.

Then one repeats Part B again.

Then one begins again with the whole exercise applying it now to the other partner who was just doing the listening – now they must take their turn and do the acting as if they were and are their significant other.

The couple is informed prior that the reason for the exercise is that it tends to give a more informed impression for the therapist as to how well they know one another and also the Therapist couches them to also getting what their conflicts are as well as a balanced approach as to what their strengths are as well. One explains that by doing the exercise the assessment is more objective and also accelerated and saves much time.

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call  David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca



Life Coaching

Life Coaching differs from therapy. Therapy deals with freeing a patient from trauma, and also particularly childhood trauma and how it impacts on one’s daily life. Life coaching is particularly different in that it helps people to become more successful in life. The focus of Life Coaching is to help a patient or client to achieve their goals in life. It helps them to use particular strategies in order to achieve those goals. For some this may entail creating what may be called a life vision. With the helming of a Life Coach the client learns to incrementalism their concerns by organizing their life into arenas. For example, one may think of one’s life as a kind of pie chart. One can divide one’s life in sections and those sections will then reveal a number of very helpful identifiers. Generally most people’s lives are filled with activities that make up most of their preoccupations and time with respect to the kind of activities they must engage:

family; friends; health; financial concerns; residential arrangements; Career or job related concerns; community involvement; recreational activities; vacation time; love relationships; emotional and mental health concerns; volunteer activities; spiritual and religious involvements for some; disputes for some that need reconciliation; hobbies; appearance and concerns with regard to their personal style and presentation in life; Fitness; meditation if they engage in such things; pet care if they own one; adventure; sleep hygiene; hygiene in general; nutrition and diet; extracurricular educational concerns if applicable; educational goals, etc.

Some of these aforementioned may or may not be applicable to each individual concerned.

By dividing these incremental areas up into a pie chart the person ca then be asked to apply a kind of percentage of how much such activities are important to them as a kind of prioritization. This way the person can get a visual understanding of what they need best focus on first. Most people cannot work on more than about 3 goals at one time. So from a solution focussed perspective one can even then draw more focus by applying further incrementalization to this particular formulated that the Life Coach helps the person to practically engage. Life Coach is often necessary very practical in nature and there are many exercises that the Coach can assist the client to properly engage in to make important decisions in their life and how to best engage in being able to engage in these pursuits or to help them practically overcome any obstacles tat may be identified as a barrier to achieving what their desired goals may be.

As well Life Coaching can also be used to help a person to better be able to approach difficult decision making matters. A life Coach may make them self available to their client if the client is experiencing a crisis or life events that are presently interfering with moving forward. A Life Coach such as myself is often available by text, email, web calling, telephone, etc., therefore it need not only occur as an in-office consult. If necessary the Life Coach may even be willing to travel to the client provided the client is willing to pay for that.

There are many exercises that a Life Coach is well informed as to when these can be offered to best help the client.

A Life Coach can hep clients overcome al kinds of difficulties, such as performance anxiety, learning better rapport skills, How to better engage in activities of daily life, and also especially if that particular client has special needs, where they have suffered some kind of impairment by virtue of a motor vehicle or workplace accident, or have had to undergo transplant surgery and need to learn such skills as pacing and shaping of their adl’s, (activities of daily living). The Life Coach is able to best help individuals with many difficulties and how to overcome these, especially with regard to the clients need to habitually alter their general sense of self, Presentation of their personality and their self concept – that is how they habitual perceive themselves and their life possibilities for the better. To be Continued… By David Rockman, MSW, RSW

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call  David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca

Social Anxiety

What are some of the causes of Social Anxiety?

Social anxiety can be the cause of several factors. Notably Social Anxiety can find its sources in having lived in and having been reared in families that had been very isolated themselves. Or when a person is seemingly born into a family whereby they felt that they did not somehow belong. This we can call horizontal identity. Which really means that a person could have been born with congenital abnormalities of all kinds, (see the book by Andrew Solomon, Far From The Tree. So that the person grew up feeling like an outcast, as a kind of “black sheep.” These may also not take the form of congenital “abnormalities,” but rather more psychological in nature, such as with many who may identify themself on an autism Aspergers syndrome, where they for whatever reason have not learned or are unable to easily understand normative social cues in their environment. This will invariably many times cause them to feel as though marginalized by others as somehow deviant and to be disregarded in social interaction. For example I once met a Russian woman who had an incredibly thick accent such that most people could hardly understand anything she was saying in English. People were observe around her to simply pretend to comprehend what she was saying instead of being hones and offering in a kind way that they could not understand much that she was saying and that perhaps she should consider seeing a speech pathologist to help her, for it was quite evident that she herself was completely unaware that she had any such problem. As a result she was observed to look as though she felt very out of place much of the time.

Social anxiety can also be caused by trauma in early childhood of all kinds, such as bullying, and unfortunately having very abusive parents who were overly authoritarian and did not take the child’s pleas for help as regards recurring bullying seriously. As such those who have had to grow up in very invalidating environments may feel they have very poor self esteem and therefore avoid people in order to feel safe.


As well many people have body image concerns and eating disorders or dysmorphia and feel that as a result they cannot face being around others. They feel shy and very out of place. Or they may feel overly afraid of rejection and not have the skills to engage in what is called small talk.

Depression can certainly cause social anxiety, especially when such a psychological problem becomes so serious that it impacts negatively upon one’s biochemical faculties whereby such a person suffers from disturbances of serotonin levels in their brain that are being disrupted where in turn the person is now being negatively affected physiologically and they have disrupted vitality and feel listless, hopeless or even doomed.


Again social anxiety can also be caused by feelings of nihilism – having a lack of purpose in life. Often people may simply lack common rapport skills that they can easily learn through such methods as is called NLP, for which the writer is highly trained.


Unresolved grief can also cause social anxiety many times whereby a person is no longer able to maintain normal relations with others. Major career transition and job loss is another cause for some. Relationship break ups can also cause social anxiety, especially when the other person, or both parties were responsible for having what the writer calls a cloistered relationship with one another – where the relationship failed to include outside friends and relatives and was somewhat enmeshed as a result.

Certainly drug addiction and alcoholism can cause social anxiety and not having sufficiently garnered a proper education for oneself, such that one may feel as if one has large gaps in one’s own general knowledge base and therefore feels unequipped to interact with a wide range of others.

Some of may spend too much time on the internet and absorbed in social media and also internet dating sites, whereby we may become alienated from understanding what is truly involved in real social interactions. text and email and e-communication can have the effect of undermining and reinforcing the deterioration of social etiquette at large where people no longer understand the need for common social graces in both language and social connection. By David Rockman, MSW, RSW


For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call  David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca


To be continued….



Addiction Issues Today

When we try and discuss the subject of substance use, misuse and addiction it can be useful to explore a means of an identifying categorical  framework as identifiers to this extremely pertinent issue that concerns many people around the world today.


Let’s use the following categories:

  1. Notably substances that are deemed illicit addictive or otherwise and by law illegally sold privately “on the street.”
  2. Substances that are psychopharmacological in nature and used largely by what is called as allopathic medical treatment intervention, addictive or otherwise.
  3. Substances unknown and neither socially or medically sanctioned in western society and used by certain sectors for both recreational and medicinal purposes, such as those for example many of which may come from places like South America and the likes, addictive or otherwise.
  4. Socially sanctioned substances by the community such as liquor, cigarettes, coffee, marijuana in some jurisdictions used socially or as addictive substances.
  5. Gambling and similar addictive behaviours such as porn addiction, television, workaholism, and shopping addictions, hoarding, OCD, etc., of which for the most part are often non-substance use related.

Types of Use:

1. Psychopharmacological Treatment for “mental illnesses” and emotion distress acute or chronic, such as SSRI’s, Tranquilizers, and anti-psychotics, addictive and non-addictive types, etc.

2. Illicit Psychopharmacological usage, either for pain, “Mental illnesses” and emotion distress — acute or chronic, for example, “on the street sale” of such substances as oxycontin, cocaine and many others.

3. Recreational usage for people to get “high” particularly for fun and amusement to “party” with no other reason and without being subject to experiencing addiction or having as such an “addictive personality disorder”.

4. Experimental substance use strictly to discover new states of mind, experience, states one has not had before.

5. Socially sanctioned as lifestyle reinforcement in order to cope “better,” For example tea, coffee, tisanes, and all naturopathic remedies that are deemed non-illicit, addictive or otherwise.

6. Spiritual Usage strictly for the purposes of investigating and discovering enhancing accelerated self development and possible spiritual evolution, such as Ayahuasca, LSD, MDA, etc

7. Sexually enhancing herbal or otherwise pharmaceuticals used as either aphrodisiacs, (illicit or otherwise sold in health food stores or prescribed).

8. Performance Enhancing drugs used for mostly pushing physical or mental capacities, and these can either be legally controlled or illegally used as by sports professional or participants or for academic performance, such as steroids and drugs like Methylphenidate, etc.

9. Criminal usage of date rape drugs used specifically for the cohesion of non-consensual sexual activity or otherwise violent cohesion, including possible historical government subversive programs by various nations to explore its usage for enhancing interrogation techniques for the likes of illegal activities such as espionage, or for reasons of national security most times to do with terrorism, etc.

10. Addictive Drugs generally sold “on the street” such as Cocaine, MDMA, all opiate type derivatives, etc.

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca

Possible Sources of Addiction:

As we can see, that is at least those of us who live in the western hemisphere that we in some real way are subject to what I call the “Cult of the New,” whereby consumerism is often a means to fill a person with an empty void inside to meet emotional disparities of self that may not be the custom of many other cultures around the world.

However, what is addiction and why does it plague our society? In a manner of speaking it is possible that human emotions themselves are being psycho-pathologized by our society at large. Such that for many of us in order to cope with past trauma and the difficulties we experience in life, in relationship with significant others, with family, employers, with feelings of meaningless, fear and regrets and shame, rage, grief, which we are not allowed to have time to express in healthy ways, past childhood or developmental trauma, entails that we feel we have no choice to turn to somehow medicating our emotions in order to cope.

As well, it appears that the world over is becoming anglicized. And together with that many languages are being wiped out at alarming rates  and together with that many ancient sources of wisdom and teachings that are inherently wise and good for people who grow up in such environments free from western influences where there is evidently more ” mental Illness than any where else in the world.”

Perhaps the absence of meaningful relationships, endorsed by social media, whereby we see so many people out in cafes all alone by themselves sitting with their laptops and their cell phones who may be simply lonely and need company of the simplest human contact do so in such an environment to feel purposeful also reinforces addiction of all kinds — especially in what we may call a touch deprived and alienated society.

Perhaps the utilitarian — totalitarian landscape of grid cities, whereby the feeling of the absence of walking on a journey through an ancient city landscape with fountains, walking bridges, cobble stone streets and paths, arches and fine architecture and barren box type and unattractive housing that’s beginning to look like little office buildings and unimaginative grid cities also reinforce addiction.

As well, the overlay of unresolved trauma which when it is not treated properly for an extended period of time, becomes personality disturbances causes great misunderstanding of self that can be very painful and then people yearn for trying to anaesthetize their emotional pain and take hearkens the deep desire to take a vacation from them self reinforces addiction.

Perhaps people yearn to feel more real and also get bored of experiencing a lack of purpose and wish for new experiences in order to bring more meaning to their lives.

As well, people are often over stressed with life and experience it as an overwhelming never-ending up hill battle. Where they experience they might be ever-restricted to having to live the same banal life over and over again.

People often grow up in what I call the Society of NO. Children are often told repeatedly “no they cannot do this and not do that” and parents are so stressed they can forget to teach their children inner discernment and discrimination for themselves. Educators and parents can often forget or never know that it is imperative to teach children to have a deep inner trust of themselves within their inner sense of self. And hence in growing up with such conditioning children may fail to really end up knowing who they really are. Then they may, as they grow up internalize what we call an inner critic that is on a repeated basis putting oneself down with an inner voice that never is able to stop engaging in associative mechanism of inner talk that lacks direction in their minds and destroys a persons self esteem. And often children are raised in an anxiety ridden society that can be exceptionally competitive — a meritocracy based on winning and being the best at all costs based on a premise of progress for progress sake. So of course children may not end up feeling very good about them self.

Trauma of all kinds and especially childhood sexual abuse is often responsible for later problems with addiction in life. Post traumatic stress and families who suffer from war torn harrowing experiences in countries where there is civil war or terrorism or large scale wars where people’s families are killed and tortured.

As well some children and teens are subject to adults and parents who are their caretakers and suffer from addiction and then also teach their children to engage in the same behaviour with or without realizing it.

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca

Dependency and Addiction and Medicating are different from one another.

Dependency may be the result of legitimate usage as a means of dealing with symptoms that are too debilitating for a person.

Addiction may be the result of bio-physiological and psychological problems in dealing with volatile emotions and trauma and serious self esteem problems a person may suffer from.

Medicating may often be the result of attempting to deal with difficult problems and physical symptoms that intolerable though may or may not be socially and or legally sanctioned.

In my view it is best to be entirely non – judgemental, with, regards to any person experiencing any such difficulties of the aforementioned issues demarcating difficulties with substance use. My perspective is that a person who perceives that they have a problem concerning addiction and they call themselves an “addict” then that must be wholly respected. I don’t call people addicts unless they themself see themselves as such and that it is seriously interfering in their life functioning. While I agree with many of the interventions related to most AA type groups and perceive them as very helpful, especially for those that cannot function without real abstinence, however it may not be the same for those experiencing the ability to drink in moderation or use other substances that may be “nondestructive,” that as perceived  by the individual themselves.  As well, some people do not relate to what may be called theological approaches to substance misuse. Some are looking for moderation rather than life – long abstinence.

Nevertheless, there is much to be said for programs that reinforce complete abstinence.

Many times substance misuse is what is called an overlay of many other problems:

For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca


OVERLAY is a term that means that a person has a variety of different levels of emotional distress type problems at one time. Many times Mental Health clinician have the perspective that the first problems to attend to before addressing other overlayed type problems are those directly pertaining to addiction. Though this may not be the case with all therapists as trauma and deep based shame and unresolved issues such as grief, etc are often reinforcing to the addiction problems themself. Overlay describes that a person may have a variety of emotional troubles that reinforced by one another, for example, invalidation in childhood; a chaotic and disengaged family upbringing; social isolation; anxiety and depression resulting in marked mode disturbance; an ongoing subconscious harsh self inner critic as in daily self mental put downs resulting in feelings of hopelessness and helplessness and then leading to pronounced addiction misuse. Such  an experience of overplayed emotional difficulties can make one’s life exceptionally difficult and working with a seasoned counsellor and therapist such as myself can quickly assist you in overcoming such overwhelming problems in the most effective way. As with the aforementioned there are many types of overplayed type problem sets. to be continued…. By David Rockman, MSW, RSW


For Help with such difficulties please feel free to call 647-975-3505 David Rockman, MSW, RSW 647-975-3505 or book an email: david@drockmancounselling.ca or make an appointment online at http://www.drockmancounselling.ca











To be continued…..May 6th 2017