Trans Mental Health Concerns: An Interview with The BiCast
This week I was honored to be interviewed by the awesome folks at The BiCast: Podcasting for the Bisexual Community. During this episode I addressed Trans Mental Health Concerns, and much much more.
- I begin by sharing how it is I got my start as a gender therapist. I go wayyyy back, all the way to when I was 8! I share a tidbit at 1:44 about who it was I had my first girl crush on.
- Then we discuss the need for more mental health counselors to step up and educate themselves on how to work with the transgender community. I shared information about the Transgender Consultation Network that I started in Colorado Springs and how we hope it will make a difference in our mental health community.
- Next we get into what I see as the needs of the trans community, specifically when it comes to mental health.
- We then discuss the verbal and physical violence, bigotry, and isolation that many trans folks either have experienced or fear they will experience. I share my impressions of how this has affected my clients, how the resources in my area are and aren’t addressing this, and in what ways I see more attention being brought to this highly troubling issue.
- Next came a discussion around what it’s like for youth to come out nowadays as trans, how parents are responding, and the difference between what it’s like for kids to come out versus teens.
- We look at how youth can be misdiagnosed as having “behavior issues” if there isn’t an awareness or understanding by parents and counselors of it being moreso an issue involving gender.
- Then we spoke out how to avoid therapists who are “anti-trans,” i.e. reparative therapists. I refer to my YouTube video, How To Find a Gender Therapist. I learned something surprising at 28:22 about how some therapists are misleading clients into believing they are trans-friendly.
- We then get into group therapy and how it can be a great benefit to many who are transgender and going through transition. I make a confession at 30:43 about why I don’t run a group myself, followed by what groups we do have in Colorado to help the transgender population.
- Next we talk about my YouTube video series, Ask a Gender Therapist. At 32:42 I share what other career I would have if I could “split into two like a gremlin.” I think I meant to say a Mogwai, the Gremlins are so scary!
- Then it was time to talk about the WPATH (World Professional Association for Transgender Health) Standards of Care. I referred to a blog post I wrote called A Variety of Perspectives on the Standards of Care for Transgender People. I shared some information about Version 7 which ended up pleasantly surprising one of the podcasts hosts.
- As a part of this discussion we address whether or not there is such a thing as a “gender certification process” for mental health professionals to go through.
- We then bring bisexuality into the discussion, and how bi community share quite a few commonalities and challenges with the transgender community.
- At 45:06 an unexpected guest makes an appearance on the podcast. And then we talk about pitbulls and the judgment they face in society as well.
- Then we touch upon those who identify as gender queer, and how a lot of folks are resistant to understanding and embracing those who identify using the pronoun “they.”
- Lastly at 50:46 I admit to where I got the idea for categorizing therapists as being either Transgender Friendly, Transgender Aware, or Transgender Knowledgeable.
I love doing podcasts and am so grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this episode of The BiCast! I look forward to working more with them in the future. Enjoy and share!