Riley Desmarais

Riley Desmarais M.A. (University of Ottawa), Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying)

M.A. (University of Ottawa)

Riley offers psychotherapy services under the supervision of Dr. Kimberly Sogge, C.Psych. CPO#4531 Registered Psychologist

About Riley:

Sometimes the ways in which we have learned to manage challenges in life end up pulling us away from the authentic life that we want to live. We all share the desire to belong; part of that is being understood by the people that matter most to us, and the other part is developing our own sense of identity of how we want to be in the world. Feelings like anxiety and shame can show up and leave us feeling helpless and disconnected from ourselves and others. We often end up shaming ourselves for feeling a certain way rather than taking the time to understand our feelings and needs. If you are struggling and feeling stuck in patterns that are no longer serving you, I am here to help you find the courage within yourself to meet your suffering with understanding and compassion. 

Living a full, satisfying, and meaningful life, true to your identity is possible. My work with clients involves helping them to discover their strengths and reconnect with who they want to be so that they can re-engage with their life. I understand how challenging it can be to feel disconnected from the person we want to be. Together, we will work through uncomfortable thoughts and emotions, and overcome unhelpful behaviours by learning new ways to relate to our suffering and care for ourselves. My work with clients involves helping them build awareness of their needs as well as how to meet them in order to develop a stronger sense of self. I work with clients aged 13 to 65 years with anxiety, depression, disordered eating, interpersonal difficulties and LGBTQ2S+ issues. 

Psychotherapy Approach:

I emphasize a non-judgmental and accepting environment for you to safely share your hardships and concerns about your life, as well as the happy moments, at your own pace. I practice a client-centred approach to therapy that allows you to feel heard and understood when working through your difficulties. During the therapy session, I will always strive to meet you where you are at and help you set goals according to the life you want to live. Currently, I integrate modalities such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Compassion-Focused Therapy (CFT), Mindfulness-Based Interventions and other third-wave approaches.

Education and Experience: 

I completed a Master of Arts in Counselling Psychology at the University of Ottawa, which allowed me to explore and expand both on my theoretical knowledge and practical skills within counselling and psychotherapy. I also hold an Honours Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a minor in Biology. I am a Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying) working under the supervision of Dr. Kimberly Sogge C. Psych. CPO#4531.

Riley’s Supervisor: Dr. Kimberly Sogge, C.Psych., Founder, Registered Clinical Health Psychologist

Dr. Kimberly Sogge C.Psych., is the Founder of Ottawa River Psychology Group and is fully registered with the College of Psychologists of Ontario as a doctoral level psychologist in autonomous practice (Certificate #4531) with dual registration to serve children/adolescents and adults in three specialties: clinical, counselling and health psychology.  She has extensive training in CBT, ACT, CFT, Maudsley FBT (Family Based Treatment) for eating disorders in adolescents, ED recovery, mindful eating, and body image.  Supervisor contact information: