How To Ask Kim For Advice

Asking For Help or Advice.

Visitors are able to ask me for help by using the “Contact” form, directly on the Advice page, or by email to kim(at) but be aware the help I can give is VERY limited. Getting help from a psychologist is not the same as asking a friend for advice. A friend will give whatever advice comes to mind based on what you say about the problem. A psychologist wants to know as much detail as possible because a lot of things make a difference to the sort of direction a person may need to take to solve their problems.

Step One

To ask for help via the website you will need to create an account. No account is required to ask for help via email to kim(at) but you will need to tell me if you do NOT want your request for help published on the website. Any request for help published on the website will always be published WITHOUT any identifying information.

The reason you need to create an account to ask for help via the website is to deter people who don’t REALLY want help. People who just want to leave spam are less likely to do so if they have to create an account. Information you give when creating an account will not be sold, passed on, or used to contact you for any reason not connected to your request for help. You have my promise on that.

Step Two

Read the FAQ Relationships page. A lot of people want help to make other people change but you can’t change other people. You can only change yourself and the best hope of making others change is by communicating with them. For help in communicating well with others you can read this simple Communication Formula. There is no point going to all the trouble of consulting me if you want me to help you change someone else. The best help I can offer you for that is the information contained in the answers to the FAQ.

Step Three

Read the legal and privacy policies documents. These documents are to help you understand you cannot sue me. They are my only protection from being scammed by someone asking for help then claiming my help ruined their life. I am offering you free help because I care about you. I will not tell you to do anything that will ruin your life but I need to protect myself from anyone whose aim is to ruin mine!

Step Four

Use the form on the “Contact” page of this website, click on the link at the top of the “Advice” page and ask your question, or send an email directly to Kim(at) with your question. When you ask for help please include as much of the following information about yourself as you can. The more detailed the information you give me the better the help I can provide you with.

The short list below can be copied and filled out then sent to me via either of the contact forms mentioned above or in an email. Nothing will appear on the website until after I have read it, deleted all identifying details, and composed an answer to go with it. Once I have answered it, if you have not asked me not to, I will add it to the advice page of the site.

The advice page allows people to ask for help without giving a real name or a real email address. All they have to do is remember the name they gave me so they can tell which answer to a request for help is theirs.

I will read your contact form or email, respond to your request for help using the information you provide, then delete any identifying information, or your email. The personal details you provide will not be used in any other way at all nor will they be passed on anywhere else.

The reasons why I am asking these questions can be found after the list.

  1. Initials or Pen Name – required
  2. What is the problem you want my help with – required
  3. Location – required (but only what country you are in)
  4. E-mail address – required (but only if you want a reply emailed)
  5. Age – approximate is fine
  6. Sex – optional
  7. Marital status – optional
  8. Have you ever been in any kind of counselling, coaching, or psychiatric treatment? If so, what, when, and how did it work out?
  9. Do you have any medical problems?
  10. Are you on, or have you ever been on, any medications for your mental health?
  11. What role alcohol and other drugs have in your life?
  12. Who do you usually turn to for advise and what, if anything, have they said about your current problem?

Initials or Pen Name – Required.
This is required otherwise I will have to refer to you as anonymous and you won’t be able to tell which answer is yours. You are free to give a false name, initials, or a pen name as long as you will remember the name you gave.

This information will be published along with your problem and the answer I give.

E-Mail Address – Optional.
You will have given an email address to register on the site but many people have special email addresses they give to sites such as this. You are free to give such an address to register – wordsbykim doesn’t use email addresses for any reason so we will never know it’s not a real address. The purpose of this question is to get a contact email address I can use if I need to ask you for more information to be able to give you a useful answer to your request for help. If you are not prepared to have your request for help published on the site you will also need to give an email address so I can email you an answer. If you are not willing to give any further information I may not be able to provide very good advice.

This information will not be made public.

Age – Optional.
I need to know at least your approximate age because there are stages of development in the human lifespan. I need to know which of these stages you are likely to be in to determine the direction that would be best for you at this point. You are free to put in an approximate age provided it is within 5 years of your real age.

This information will not be made public.

Sex – Optional.
Contrary to popular opinion there ARE sex differences! Depression in a male can have very different causes to depression in a female or a gender neutral person and I need this information so I can take those differences into account when giving you an answer to your question.

This information may, if it is relevant to the answer I give you, be made public but you can ask to have it kept private and I will not publish it.

Marital Status – Optional.
You may think this has no bearing on your problem but it can. If you are widowed or divorced, for example, depression may actually be masking long term or unresolved grief.

This information may, if it is relevant to the answer I give you, be made public but you can ask to have it kept private and I will not publish it.

Location – Optional.
I am not asking for an address here. I just need to know what country you are in. The advice I might give someone from Australia could be totally inappropriate to give to someone from another culture. Where possible I will take into account the culture you come from and avoid suggesting you do anything that could cause problems in that culture.

This information may, if it is relevant to the answer I give you, be made public but you can ask to have it kept private and I will not publish it.

Have you ever been in any form of counselling, coaching or psychiatric treatment? If so what? When? And how did it work out? – Optional.
This question is designed to tell me what, if anything, you have already tried for dealing with the problem you are asking me about. I don’t want to waste time by suggesting you try something if you have already tried it.

This is also a good place to tell me why you have not tried counselling or anything else you have thought of and not tried. It will save time if I know, for example, that you live two hours away from the nearest counsellor and there is a six month waiting list to see them.

This information will not be made public.

Any medical problems? – Optional.
Many psychological problems can actually be side effects of medications and physical problems. I am trained in differential diagnoses so I will be able to recognise if this is what might be happening to you and I will tell you to see your doctor if your problem could be due to a physical condition or a medicine you are taking.

This information will not be made public.

Any current or past psychiatric medications (e.g antidepressants, sleep aids)? – Optional.
Current, or past, diagnoses and medications may still be affecting you. If you are on medication for depression, for example, you have already done one of the things I might suggest you do. If I know this I can avoid annoying you by suggesting you do what you have already done.

This information will not be made public.

What role do alcohol and other drugs have in your life? – Optional.
Alcohol and other drugs can actually cause some very serious psychiatric conditions so it is important that I know what you use, how much you use and how often. Many people use drugs and alcohol to medicate their psychological pain. If you are doing this the substances may be masking important symptoms and this can make it harder to tell what the real problem is.

This information will not be made public.

Who do you usually turn to for advice? What, if anything, have they said about your current problem? – Optional.
Many people are not entirely honest with themselves and it is also hard to see our own lives objectively.

The things other people tell you can give me clues about your life and your current situation. You may ask me for help with an alcohol addiction, for example, but your friends and family may be telling you they think you need to get counselling to help you deal with the loss of your loved one ten years ago. You might think it has been ten years and there is no need to revisit that pain but I will suspect unresolved grief could be leading you to self-medicate with alcohol. Giving up the alcohol won’t help unresolved grief. It will simply cause you to seek another way to keep the grief from overflowing.

This information will not be made public.

What is the problem you would like my help with? – Required.
This is where you can tell me what your problem is and ask for my help.

What you say in this section will be made public when I put the question, and my answer, up on the Advice page. You may ask me not to publish your request for help in whole or in part and such requests will always be granted.

I intend to try and answer all requests for help but priority will be given to answering questions that can be used on the Advice page where they may be able to help others with the same problem. Identifying information will always be removed from any question before publishing it.

It will depend how many requests for help I receive as to whether I will be able to answer you. If there are more requests than I have time to answer you may not get a reply or you may get a very short reply.