LGBTQ+ Therapists

“The road to equality is not a sprint, it’s a marathon, and taking care of ourselves physically and mentally is of utmost importance.”
– John Carroll (MFT, Institute for Human Identity)

Due to stigma, discrimination, and denial of civil/human rights, LGBTQ+-identifying people are often associated with higher rates of behavioral health disorders and suicide.

Finding equitable and safe healthcare can be an obstacle for those in the LGBTQ+ community. Accessible healthcare includes both physical and behavioral health, but there may be trouble finding supports that are affirming or even LGBTQ+-literate.

Finding a safe place to talk about things with other queer people is vital, especially for those dealing with mental health issue.

Talking to another LGBTQ+-identified person in a therapeutic setting can be a great way to establish a sense of safety and reduce anxiety or apprehension about the process of therapy. Having this relationship from the beginning may lead to individuals spending less time educating their therapist about their identity.

While it helps to find an LGBTQ+-identified person as a therapist, it is not necessary. At the very least, individuals should seek therapists who are gender affirming. This helps avoid having to justify your identity and creates a safe space without judgement. Things to remember:

  • Many clients know quickly whether their therapist will be a good fit or if they need to keep looking.
  • Even with a therapist who is affirming, or LGBTQ+-identified, it still may take some time to discuss personal topics like sexuality.
  • Therapy will help tackle complex issues but requires time and patience.
  • Look for qualities of a safe provider: inclusive language on intake forms, asks clients about pronouns, or asks about relationships structures
  • The first therapist may not work out; it is okay to try another (and another) until you find the right therapist

Humans connect in complex ways and it is important for individuals to identify what is driving the need for therapy. Sexual and gender identities are important facets of an individual, but others may place more priority to other aspects of their lives. When choosing a therapist, things like race, religion, therapeutic outlook, and modalities may be important for some to consider.

Therapy is a journey, but requires an individual to work hand-in-hand with their therapist. It is vital to give therapy a fair chance and try to be as open as you can. If your relationship does not feel safe or productive, you can seek another therapist. Finding the right therapist may not be easy, but if found, it could change your life.

Local Resources

Remember: Local resources have supports, but if they are not the right one, the may know of other resources in the area.

The Mazzoni Center

To provide quality comprehensive health and wellness services in an LGBTQ-focused environment, while preserving the dignity and improving the quality of life of the individuals we serve. Therapeutic resources are available to individuals, couples, and families. Recovery services, support groups, and internship programs are also available.

Emerge Wellness

LGBTQ owned and operated, Emerge Wellness is a private therapy practice located in Center City, Philadelphia. Founded in 2013, they provide LGBTQ+ adolescents, adults, couples, and families with quality therapy in a safe and empathetic environment. Their therapists identify as community members or strong allies and are competent in areas of concern to this community.

William Way LGBT Community Center

Incorporated in 1974, the William Way LGTQ Community Center has a long history of providing support, resource, and connection to the LGBTQIA+ community. Resources include peer counseling, a Trans Resource Center, a Cyber Center, and wellness programs among others.

Arrive Therapy

Their goal is to be a safe place for you to find the help you are looking for and to experience real life changes, from understanding your gender identity, beginning your gender transition, coming out to family/friends/work, understanding your sexuality, navigating your work during transition, getting letter for gender affirming surgery, helping to access doctors for hormones/and or surgery, or participating in family therapy for members who are struggling with your gender identity/transition.

Equilibria

Equilibria’s psychologists in Philadelphia are trained to work with all members of the LGBTQ community as allies. They utilize an integrative, strength-based treatment model to address each individual’s set of unique issues associated with the issues they face.

Threshold Wellness

Threshold Wellness is a collection of professionals dedicated to providing health-based services and education to Fishtown residents and beyond. Offerings include: therapy, massage therapy, holistic health approaches, osteopathic medicine, occupational therapy and workshops.  We see therapeutic touch as a necessity, the connection between mind, body, spirit, and creativity integral, and are dedicated to being fully present with you.

National Resources

National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network

The National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network (NQTTCN) is a healing justice organization that actively works to transform mental health for queer and trans people of color in North America. NQTTCN offers a database full of therapists who offer specialized support to people of color within the LGBTQIA+ community.

GLMA (Formerly known as Gay and Lesbian Medical Association)

GLMA is a major force in the effort to ensure the health and well-being of LGBTQ individuals and families. This resource offers a national listing of providers who support the LGBTQIA+ community. GLMA also offers education, opportunities for connection, and advocacy.

Association of LGBTQ+ Psychiatrists (AGLP)

We are a community of psychiatrists that educates and advocates on LGBTQ+ mental health issues. Our goals are to foster a fuller understanding of LGBT mental health issues, research and advocate for the best mental health care for the LGBT community, develop resources to promote LGBT mental health, create a welcoming, safe, nurturing, and accepting environment for members, and provide valuable and accessible services to our members.

*The links provided are for informational purposes only and recommended as helpful resources. Healthy Minds Philly does not endorse any individual or organization listed.

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