Ask a Gender Therapist: Confusion Around Gender & Sexuality!

As a gender therapist I get a lot of questions about how figuring out one’s sexual orientation can be very confusing when you are also trying to figure out your gender identity. In this video I address this from a few different angles that will hopefully give you more clarity around this complicated topic.

Here are some of the highlights from the video:

  • How gender identity and sexual orientation are different, and how they can also affect one another.
  • You get to decide how you want to identify, when it comes to your sexual orientation!
  • Approaching the question for someone who identifies as a trans man and wants to know, if they are attracted to females, “Am I gay, straight, or bi?”
  • Approaching the question for someone who identifies as a trans woman and is attracted to men, and since this includes those who identify as gay, bi, straight, and trans, she wants to know, “What is my sexual orientation?”
  • Approaching the question for someone who thinks they might be a trans guy, but also wondering if maybe they are “just a lesbian?”
  • Approaching the question for someone who’s teenage daughter came out as being a trans guy and wondering how can they help their teen be sure that that’s true, as opposed to actually being gay.

Do you have experience with this, as well as advice of your own to share?
Please do so in the comments below!

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  • Frank Vozak LCSW

    January 1, 2016 at 11:29 PM Reply

    As a fellow therapist I have found your postings very interesting and as you may have guessed I have an interest in being able to be useful to transger and “searching patients.” I have been involved in treating HIV positive patients for over 35 years at the VA hospital where i have worked for over 38 yrs and incidental to that work as well as work in emergency medicine and general inptient psychiatry I have worked with transgender patients though not as well as I would have because until recently I knew little of resources to learn as much as I now know I need to know.

    You may wonder what does a 63 year old cisgender very conventional straight male social worker find draws him to an interest in transgender patients. It seems that somewhere (probably from my father ) got a very accepting attitude about people and who they are, I take people as they come up to me and I don’t judge people for what their life is , what it has brought them or the choices that they have made. And my career has taught me that I am a much better social worker when I help patients figure where they feel best at being or going toward as opposed to trying to tell them what to do. This attitude has seemed to srve me well with veteran all the way back to WWII up to the current conflict and it has worked well working with my Gay male HIV patients, my heroin addict patients when I worked in methadone maintenance, and with Iraq War PTSD combat vets.

    I am looking to make some connections to start learning what I don’t know so tat I can be not just of help but be of good to transgendered patients and since you sound like you have things that you can teach me I am reaching out to you

    Thanks for any help,



    • Dara Hoffman-Fox

      January 2, 2016 at 7:28 PM Reply

      Thanks for your comment Frank! The best way to stay in touch is to subscribe to my “Conversations with a Gender Therapist” Facebook page and to sign up for my newsletter. I’ll be putting together resources this year to help therapists who wish to work with this population. Take care!

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