LGBTQ+ Affirming Therapy
People who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, pansexual, transgender, or genderqueer have many of the same issues that heterosexual, cisgender people have. Therapy is sometimes focused on LGBTQ+ issues, such as coming out, transitioning, or working through emotions related to discrimination. Other times, being LGBTQ+ is not the focus of therapy. Sometimes, it’s just important to know that your therapist understands who you are.
Sadly, there is still prejudice and discrimination which can make coming out and being open difficult. Thankfully, our society is getting more accepting.
I hope we as a world get to the place of truly embracing all people and all sexual orientations and gender identities.
Coming Out - Being Who You Truly Are
Coming out can be an amazing experience. Although it can be confusing and difficult, it can also be wonderfully freeing.
Unfortunately, if you have family or friends that are not supportive, it can make it so much more difficult to come out. It gets easier!
Therapy can help you heal from difficult experiences and embrace who you truly are.
Bisexual, Pansexual, Gay, Lesbian & Queer
Whatever your sexual orientation, you can be happy and fulfilled.
Therapy can help you heal from discrimination, intolerance, and other painful experiences. You can work through internalized shame, anger, hurt, fear, and other emotions, as well as negative thoughts. Also, connecting to the bisexual, pansexual, lesbian, gay, and queer community/communities can be a wonderful experience of support and affirmation.
If you are not sure yet, therapy can help you explore which identity feels true for you.
Some people use the terms pansexual and bisexual interchangeably, and other people think of bisexual as attracted to just men and women and pansexual as attracted to all people including people who are nonbinary.
While the word gay often refers to gay men, I know quite a few women who also identify as gay, as well as women who identify as lesbians.
I know the word queer can be offensive to some. Yet for others, it can feel very inclusive.
Homoflexible refers to people who are almost entirely attracted to people of the same sex but have some attraction to people of the opposite sex. If you are homoflexible, you might feel like they are on the edge between being gay/lesbian and bisexual.
Heteroflexible refers to people who are almost entirely attracted to people of the opposite sex but have some attraction to people of the same sex.
People can also be asexual which means not experiencing sexual attraction and having little or no interest in sexual activity. Asexual people can experience romantic attraction or have sexual arousal without the desire for sex. Asexual people can identify as LGBTQ+ or heterosexual.
Sometimes, it takes a while to figure out if you are bisexual, pansexual, gay, lesbian, queer, homoflexible, heteroflexible, heterosexual, and/or asexual. Therapy can help you explore your identity.
Genderqueer & Nonbinary Gender
Thankfully, being genderqueer is much more accepted today. In therapy, you can explore if you are genderqueer, genderfluid, agender, bigender, or a third gender.
Genderqueer and nonbinary are umbrella terms. Being genderqueer or nonbinary means that you do not solely identify as the gender that you were assigned at birth, and you see beyond the binary approach to gender. Genderqueer or nonbinary people can identify as both genders, no gender, or a gender beyond male and female.
Genderfluid refers to the experience of having a gender that changes. You might have times when you identify as male, as female, as a mix of genders, as no gender, and/or as a nonbinary gender. Gender can be very fluid.
Agender is the experience of not having a gender. Bigender is the experience of having a mix of genders. People can also identify as a third gender or a gender that is beyond male and female. Androgynous people have a mix of gender characteristics or ambiguity around gender.
Gender identity is how we identify ourselves. Gender expression is how we express our gender identity. People have so many options of how to express their true gender.
Regardless of gender identity and even if someone is cisgender, people can experience pain around traditional gender roles. Unfortunately, parents and society sometimes try to force people to conform to rigid gender roles, which can trigger shame and other painful emotions. Therapy can help people explore their options and work through difficult experiences.
If you are wondering if you are transgender, therapy can help you explore what’s true for you.
If you know you are transgender and are trying to figure out if you want to transition, therapy can help you explore your options. You can choose if and when you want to transition. How much or how little you want to transition is up to you.
Therapy can also help if you’ve already transitioned and you want to work through a traumatic memory, grief, anxiety, etc.
I have worked with people whose primary goal was to transition or figure out if they want to transition. I have also worked with people who are transgender who are healing from traumatic or difficult experiences, grief, or anxiety.
Healing from Discrimination and Intolerance
Even though our society has gotten much more accepting, there is still a lot of discrimination from strangers, family members, friends, and employers.
Therapy can help you work through traumatic experiences, difficult emotions, internalized shame, and negative thoughts.
My hope is that therapy can help people accept and embrace who they truly are.
defrankcenter.org (Billy DeFrank LGBTQ+ Community Center)
youthspace.org (ages 13-25)
acs-teens.org/what-we-do/outlet/ (teens and young adults)
genderidentityawarenessnetwork.com (younger kids and teens, parents and siblings)
translifeline.org (877) 565-8860
Santa Clara County Suicide & Crisis Hotline (855) 278-4204
Therapy with Individuals and Couples
Therapy Office in Sunnyvale
My office is in Sunnyvale, California on Wolfe Rd., near El Camino Real (also close to Santa Clara, Cupertino, and Mountain View). Parking is easy; there is a large parking lot.
1021 S. Wolfe Rd., Suite 255
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
I am a therapist/counselor in Sunnyvale, California. I work with adults, teenagers, and children. (LMFT Lic. # LMFT40414)
Please visit my therapy home page for more information about me.