Psychological Preparation for Medical Transition - The Affirmative Couch

CE Hours: 12 hours
Recorded Webinar
Presenter: Cadyn Cathers, PsyD

Presenter: Cadyn Cathers, PsyD

CE Hours: 12 hours

Recorded Webinar

Course Description


Transition is a process by which transgender and gender non-binary (TGNB) people align their gender expression in social, legal, and bodily dimensions to gain gender congruence. Medical transition can include hormones, medical procedures, and/or surgical interventions. The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) publishes standards of care, which have put therapists in the unique role of attesting to a client’s mental health status to access aspects of medical transition. The letter writing process often elicits negative transference due to the history of gatekeeping medical transition by psychotherapists. This workshop will discuss the impact of medical transition on psychological and physical well-being to help psychotherapists assist clients with medical transition more effectively. We will cover a wide variety of interventions that may be a part of a client’s medical transition in detail from both a medical and psychological standpoint. Additionally, we will cover how medical transition can impact a client’s sexuality and relationships. Participants will learn the required pieces of information therapists need to obtain for a letter for gender confirming surgery according to the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) standards of care and the informed consent model. We will discuss transference dynamics that can occur during the transition process and how to address them effectively. We will cover how to help clients advocate for insurance coverage and which laws protect TGNB patients healthcare rights. Finally, we will use case vignettes to address complex issues that may arise during medical transition, including common psychological reactions to preparation, surgery, complications, and post-operative care.

Content warning: This workshop includes graphic material related to surgery.

Learning objectives:

  • Describe at least 4 gender confirming surgeries for transgender and non-binary people
  • Describe at least 3 psychological benefits for transgender and non-binary people who medically transition (when it is right for them)
  • Assist clients in determining and prioritizing surgery needs
  • Write a letter supporting gender confirming surgery utilizing World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) Standards of Care, 7th Edition
  • Describe at least 2 transference dynamics that can occur during the letter writing process
  • Advocate for insurance coverage for gender confirming surgery, hormones, or psychotherapy
  • Describe the 10 tasks clients must complete in order to have a successful surgery
  • Describe at least 3 ways in which psychotherapists can help clients prepare mentally for surgery
  • Describe at least 2 ways in which psychotherapists can help clients prepare physically for surgery
  • Describe how dependence needs can manifest during surgical recovery
  • Describe how building emotional resilience can minimize pain during surgical recovery


$240 for licensed

$200 for licensed in non-profit organization (use code PPMT22L)

$120 for pre-licensed (use code PPMT22N)

You can also get free access to this course and all other courses with our memberships:

Annual Membership


Lifetime Membership

Continuing Education Approvals

APA ApprovedThe Affirmative Couch, LLC is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Affirmative Couch, LLC maintains responsibility for this program and its content.