About The Affirmative Couch
The Affirmative Couch is a committed advocate for the mental health of LGBTQIA+, consensually non-monogamous, and kink communities, working with both groups and individual providers. The Affirmative Couch was founded in 2018 in response to the paucity of affirmative mental health care providers able to meet the needs of sexuality-, gender-, and/or relationship-expansive communities. We witnessed the resistance of LGBTQIA+, consensually non-monogamous, and kink community members in accessing services due to their (realistic) concerns that services aimed at supporting them would instead further traumatize them, erasing their identities and experiences.
To address this problem, The Affirmative Couch takes a multi-pronged approach: provide continuing education for affirmative psychotherapists, transform more group practices and clinics to become leaders in affirmative mental healthcare, empower beginner affirmative therapists with information, and create visibility of affirmative mental health professionals.
First, The Affirmative Couch provides continuing education and training to psychotherapists seeking to gain greater knowledge in their clinical work with LGBTQIA+, consensually non-monogamous, and kink people. Increasing the supply of affirmative therapists will help more sexuality-, gender-, and relationship-expansive community members gain support through ability to access competent mental health services.
Second, The Affirmative Couch provides affirmative organizational development consulting for clinics and group practices to transform their services. From intake paperwork to UAs, from assessment to utilization review, we help mental health facilities transform into leaders in affirmative services.
Third, The Affirmative Couch Magazine offers tools to psychotherapists who are open to working with and friendly towards LGBTQIA+, consensually non-monogamous, and kink communities. Our articles can help equip therapists with basic information about affirmative psychotherapy, inform them about current trends in the field, and assist them in understanding how to decolonize their practices.
Last but not least, The Affirmative Couch offers a way for people to learn about the services of affirmative mental health professionals, since our authors and instructors can highlight their clinical practices through their writing or teaching. Organizational members, annual members, and lifetime members are highlighted on social media and in our newsletter.
We envision a world where all psychotherapists are trained in affirmative therapy with LGBTQIA+, CNM and kink communities and that all members of these communities have access to affirmative psychotherapists.
Our mission is to transform the entire mental health profession through lifelong learning about clinical work with LGBTQIA+, CNM, and kink communities.