North York, ON Couples Therapy: Sari Burkes, MSW, RSW

Irene is the founder of Couples In Step. Here is Irene’s account of  how Sari came to join Couples In Step:

Sari approached me (Irene) early in January 2020 about joining Couples In Step as a couple’s therapist. I had a sense that Sari could be a good fit with Couples In Step! She was personable, efficient, and had a good variety of work experiences.  I was disappointed when I learned she needed further Couples Therapy training before Couples In Step could consider her. I gave her some suggestions for further training and then forgot about Sari.

To my surprise, and delight, Sari approached me again, less than a year later, having not only followed through on my training suggestions, but exceeding them! And, I discovered, her enthusiasm to help couples repair their relationships  mirrors my own.

Sari’s thirst to become a more excellent therapist has not stopped. She is well on the way to certification in Emotionally Focused Couple’s Therapy. Sari meets regularly with an EFT consultant to review her learning and progress in mastering couple’s therapy.

I am thrilled that couples who approach Couples In Step for therapy will have the opportunity to have Sari as their therapist.

Sari has worked internationally and appreciates the nuances of culture and each partner’s lived experience and story.

Sari has experience in

  • Child and family mental health
  • Infant and maternal mental health
  • Primary attachment relationships
  • Stress and trauma
  • Parent and caregiver support
  • Psychosocial care for pregnant asylum seekers
Experience, Training: Sari Burkes

I strive to create a trusting space where I can support you and your partner to  strengthen the bonds of your significant relationships and improve your emotional connection and closeness with each other.

I am so pleased to be looking through the lens of attachment and bonding in my work with couples. I appreciate the compass Irene gave me in early 2020 as I was looking for a path into the world of couples therapy.

  • BSc Psychology (McGill, Montreal, QC)
  • Masters of Social Work (Wilfred Laurier, Kitchener, ON)

The therapists at Couples In Step all have EFT (through ICEEFT) certification as a goal. Each therapist is at different stage along that journey. The journey towards EFT certification involves sequences of training and consultation with EFT consultants and then finally an extensive submission to the umbrella ICEEFT organization of the therapist’s work. There’s a large time commitment as well as sizeable financial commitment to get to ICEEFT certification.

146 Brighton Ave., North York, ON, M3H 4E2

Currently Sari’s sessions are online via a secure video conferencing platform.

Sari’s  office is located in the north-west corner of North York, Toronto, just a few minutes north of the 401 & the Allen Expressway.

North York, ON Couples Therapy: Irene Oudyk-Suk, MSW, RSW, RP

Irene has been a practicing psychotherapist for more than 25 years. She’s practiced in various parts of Ontario, Michigan and in the Philippines. Irene has had a private practice in different parts of the  Greater Toronto Area since 2006.  In the summer of 2021 Irene’s office will be in Kingston, Ontario.

Prior to providing psychotherapy services Irene gained experience in the following:

  • Domestic violence
  • Child protection
  • Developmental disabilities
  • Intensive care
  • Palliative care
  • Community health care
  • Community mental health
  • Cross cultural adjustment and relocation
Experience, Training: Irene Oudyk-Suk

My parents were immigrants to Canada from Western Europe (Netherlands) after World War II. Even though I was born in Canada I was shaped by my parents war and immigration experiences. My first language was Dutch and I distinctly remember running home from Kindergarten because no-one understood me.

I was deeply affected by the religiously conservative christian community that many immigrants from the Netherlands joined when they immigrated to Canada. Growing up in an immigrant, religiously conservative community has been very helpful in the couple’s work I do. As I listen to couples tell me their relationship stories I frequently hear echoes of my own experience.

Like most everyone my personal life has been affected by major stresses and family issues. I am no stranger to the particular concerns that my client couples bring to me. Feel free to ask me more about this if you wish.

I’ve been married for more than 40 years. It’s been a good 40+ years, but like most people in long term relationships, we’ve had our moments. My husband and I  have 2 sons, 2 daughters-in-law, 3 GRANDCHILDREN! a long term foster daughter, and a foster grand-daughter. We love our family and are totally delighted when our kids come home for a while! (But while we loved parenting, we love our empty nest even more!)

People close to me  and who I love dearly live in cross cultural relationships and from them I have learned so much.

When it is sought after, my clients value my spiritual depth and insight. I’ve been shaped by a Judeo-Christian worldview. Clients from differing perspectives are pleased that I’m respectful and appreciative of their approach to life and spirituality.

  • BSc in Special Education (Calvin College, Grand Rapids, MI)
  • MA in Christian Studies (also from Calvin)
  • Master’s in Social Work (University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI)

Since Spring 2020 (start of covid) my practice is virtual. I do not see couples face-to-face in my home office.

14 Purdon Dr., North York, Toronto, ON M3H 4W8

In the summer of 2021 Irene will be moving to Kingston, Ontario

The North York Couples in Step office is located in the north-west corner of North York, Toronto, just a few minutes north of the 401 & the Allen Expressway. This office serves couples living in Toronto, North York, Vaughn, Etobicoke, Willowdale, Woodbridge and Downsview.