Gay Archives - The Affirmative Couch

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Therapy with Black Gay Men addicted to meth

Posted: 8-18-21 | Jerry St. Louis, LGSW

To be a Black Gay Man with an addiction to crystal meth, is to be stuck between to worlds. This article will explore ways that psychotherapists can provide affirmative therapy with Black Gay men addicted to methamphetamines. The first two articles of this series, Affirmative Therapy: Crystal Meth in the Black Gay Community and [...]

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Defining Power for Affirmative Therapists

Posted: 8-4-21 | Melissa Dellens

Clinics, treatment centers, and group practices play an important role in the communities they serve. Power flows through every relationship from the individual dyad in treatment to a community clinic’s relationship with federal policy (Hess & Schultz, 2008).  Moreover, these dynamics can be seen as both a commodity and resource (Peterson & Zimmerman, 2004) in [...]

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4 Barriers to Affirmative Clinic Change

Posted: 6-9-21 | Melissa Dellens

Gerald Caplan is seminal in developing some of the early theories of consulting work (Caplan, 1960). Caplan worked in Israel after World War II providing mental health support to 16,000 displaced and orphaned teens in overwhelmed residential and refugee facilities (Mendoza, 1993). Caplan’s resources were limited, and his team had no way of serving the [...]

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Black Gay Men and Crystal Meth: My Story

Posted: 5-25-21 | Jerry St. Louis, LGSW

I am Black, gay, and a social worker. I work in a recovery center where I help individuals attain and maintain their sobriety.  I have had experience on both sides of the “social service” table, and my personal and professional experience has given me access to the elusive community of crystal meth users.

A friend [...]

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Affirmative Therapy: Crystal Meth in the Black Gay Community

Posted: 2-10-21 | Jerry St. Louis, LGSW

Crystal Meth & the Gay Community

Crystal meth has had a devastating effect on the gay community. Over the last 20 years, meth has grown into a catastrophic force, contributing to about 15% of all drug death overdoses (NIDA, 2019). Gay and bisexual men use methamphetamines at a higher rate than heterosexual men (Lea et [...]

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Why LGBTQIA+ Affirmative Therapy is Critical During the Pandemic

Posted: 11-25-20 | The Affirmative Couch

LGBTQIA+ Affirmative Mental Health During the Pandemic

The stress and anxiety wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic may be universal–so many of us face fears of the virus itself, not to mention job loss, illness striking our loved ones, and myriad missed social, professional, and financial opportunities–but all of us experience these differently. Just as everyone’s [...]

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How to Help Clients with Queer Impostor Syndrome

Posted: 8-19-20 | Madeline Hodgman

Keywords: queer, LGBTQ, LGBTQIA, impostor syndrome, impostor, cognitive behavioral therapy, CBT, core beliefs

I thought I identified one way, but now I’m not sure. What if this really was just a phase?

I’m afraid I won’t like all of the changes medical transition will cause to my body. What if I’m not really trans?

Can [...]

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A COVID-Era Review of Five Fabulous LGBTQIA+ Adult Coloring Books

Posted: 7-11-20 | Stephanie Sullivan

Coloring Books in Therapy

Coloring books aren’t just for children anymore: adult coloring books have gained great popularity in the last few years. They have been found to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression; increase perseverance; and provide short-term stress relief (Eaton & Tieber, 2017; Flett et al., 2017; Rajendran et al., 2020; Simmons, 2016). [...]

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Maintaining Hope & Self-Compassion for LGBTQIA+ Clients During Covid-19

By now, we are all experiencing the impact of the ubiquitous trauma and stress surrounding COVID-19 in some way. What might have started with a distal awareness of the problem quickly snapped to a reality that the world will forever be changed by this virus. You might have also noticed the varying “stages of

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Telepsychotherapy Protects Queer Communities From COVID-19

Posted: 3-15-20 | The Affirmative Couch

Telehealth offers psychotherapists a way to provide quality mental health services while still practicing and promoting extreme social distancing. This practice, instituted early, can help save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic (Pueyo, 2020; Stevens, 2020). Psychotherapists who work with queer communities should be switching to telehealth in order to decrease the risk faced [...]

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Dating Violence Among LGBTQIA+ Teens

Posted: 2-29-20 | Muria Nisbett

Muria Nisbett, LCSW

As a mental health professional, you may be familiar with some of the issues faced by teens who identify as LGBTQIA+: bullying, harassment, rejection, and physical and emotional violence. One lesser known and often undiscussed issue is teen dating violence (TDV). Violence against LGBTQIA+ teens is usually categorized as a hate [...]

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Helping Queer and Trans Clients Navigate Fatphobia During the Holidays

As we approach winter and prepare for “hibernation,” diet culture often kicks into high gear.  Family meals, holiday parties, and New Year’s resolutions surround us, regardless of whether we celebrate, and become fertile ground for fat shaming. The “holiday season” is already hard enough for many LGBTQIA+ folx*. It can also be an exceptionally dangerous [...]

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Caring for LGBTQ+ Caregivers of Older Adults

Posted: 11-13-19 | Teresa Theophano

Caring for LGBTQ+ Caregivers of Older Adults

Teresa Theophano, LCSW

LGBTQ+ caregivers of older adults (generally people age 60+) are a special population in need of support and affirmative care. These family members and friends provide unpaid physical and/or emotional assistance to spouses and partners, parents, friends–some of whom were former partners–siblings, and neighbors. [...]

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Intimate Partner Violence in the LGBTQIA+ Community

Posted: 10-30-19 | Muria Nisbett

Written by: Muria Nisbett, LCSW

Edited by: Manny Kemphues, MA. AMFT

Prevalence

As we recognize October as national domestic violence awareness month, and we hold vigil for the 24 people per minute who experience rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States (NDVH, 2019), let’s not forget the [...]

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HIV Long Term Survivors: Time to Thrive

Posted: 9-17-19 | Jacob Rostovsky

By Jacob Rostovsky, MA

How do you learn how to live when you spent most of your young adult life thinking you were going to die? This question resonates for many of my gay male identified clients who are HIV long term survivors (HLTS). For someone to be considered an HLTS they must have survived [...]

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Who Helps the Helpers? 8 Tips for Therapists After Client Suicide

Posted: 9-15-19 | Rachel Jones

By Rachel Jones, M.A.

Keywords: Suicide, Grief/Loss, Self-Care

No matter the degree earned or license held, everyone who works in the mental health field shares an important common interest: preventing suicide. Suicide prevention requires a well-rounded approach, including education on risk factors, properly assessing for safety, increasing patients’ protective factors and support, and providing support [...]

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LGBT Aging: Tips for Terminology

Posted: 9-11-19 | Teresa Theophano

By Teresa Theophano, LCSW

For about six years, I have relished my experiences as a queer social worker providing services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older adults–often defined as people ages 60+. I am committed to the idea of taking care of our own community members who rarely see their lives and needs [...]

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Treating LGBT Older Adults with TLC

Posted: 8-19-19 | Teresa Theophano

By Teresa Theophano, LCSW

National Senior Citizens Day is August 21st, and what better time to talk about how to honor and support older adults? A significant, though frequently overlooked, segment of the aging population identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT): at present there are nearly 3 million LGBT adults over age 50 [...]

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