This is a time of great challenge and great opportunity for gay and lesbian people. Now is the time to keep pushing forward. In these uncertain times, it's more important than ever to be a healthy, strong individual and a healthy, strong couple.
Are you gay, lesbian, bisexual, or questioning, and looking for a therapist who gets you, who can really relate to you? I provide counseling and psychotherapy for the issues that are specific to the gay and lesbian community. I have 15 years of experience working closely with gay and lesbian clients and couples in the Long Beach and Orange County areas.
Gay and lesbian issues are an area of therapy where finding a therapist you relate to,"click" with, and trust is an even more important and fundamental part of therapy, since it is the foundation for all the work and growth that follows. Lesbian and gay clients can rest assured that they have found a safe, supportive, affirming therapist with me.
"Love myself I do. Not everything, but I love the good as well as the bad. I love my crazy lifestyle, and I love my hard discipline. I love my freedom of speech and the way my eyes get dark when I'm tired. I love that I have learned to trust people with my heart, even if it will get broken. I am proud of everything that I am and will become." Johnny Weir
I am here to help you explore, discover, understand, and work through your sexuality, where ever you may fall on the spectrum of sexuality. If you're working on coming out, if you feel lonely, struggle with self-doubt or low self-esteem, have questions about your sexuality, or wonder how to live your best and most fulfilling life, I would be happy to talk with you and provide the help and support that you need.
I also frequently work with clients who are coming out later in life, often who are married to opposite-sex partners and who have kids. Coming out in your 30's, in midlife, or beyond is a unique and challenging experience, and I would be honored to help you in this process. Often it means dealing with already being in a heterosexual marriage, and raising kids. You'll need supportive guidance, as well as objective feedback to determine how best to go forward.
Another common issue I work with is that of gay and lesbian clients who are trying to work through their Christian upbringing and their current spiritual thoughts and feelings. Seeking to integrate these two differing but essential aspects of our identity can be challenging, but it's definitely possible and you'll be more whole by working through the process.
The Epidemic of Gay Loneliness
I would encourage you to read this troubling but powerful article about the epidemic of gay loneliness that recently appeared on HuffPost. It talks about how even after having made such great strides in society, gay people still suffer disproportionately with depression, anxiety, addiction, and even suicide.
It talks about how the chronic stress of growing up gay leaves a deep and lasting imprint, and how the ways gay people learn to cope, such as learning how to lie and hide things, and lash out at other gay people, are carried into our adult, gay lives. The patterns learned in the formative years of identity development carry forward. Turning to Grindr, drugs, and alcohol to fill the inner emptiness only makes the problems worse.
Author Michael Hobbes writes: "Growing up gay, it seems, is bad for you in many of the same ways as growing up in extreme poverty. A 2015 study found that gay people produce less cortisol, the hormone that regulates stress. Their systems were so activated, so constantly, in adolescence that they ended up sluggish as grownups, says Katie McLaughlin, one of the study’s co-authors.
In 2014, researchers compared straight and gay teenagers on cardiovascular risk. They found that the gay kids didn't’t have a greater number of “stressful life events” (i.e. straight people have problems, too), but the ones they did experience inflicted more harm on their nervous systems."
In the midst of all this frustration and loneliness, what can be done? Where can you turn? There are ways to find something truly better and healthier that produce true and lasting happiness and peace of mind. I would be happy to help with the guidance and support you need. Please feel free to call or email me with any questions you might have about the therapy process.
I'd also like to recommend a new book:
"Frankly My Dear, I'm Gay: The Late Bloomer's Guide to Coming Out," by Rick Clemons.
For more information on my work with gay and lesbian counseling issues, please visit my second website, newcenturycounseling.com.
Are you dealing with any of the following issues? I would be happy to help.
- Coming to terms with your sexuality
- Coming out: how, when, and to whom
- Finding a good relationship
- Working through relationship conflicts & difficulties
- Setting the "rules" and dealing with cheating
- Coming out later in life, possibly already married to an opposite-sex spouse & possibly with kids
- Whether or not you should get married to a same-sex partner
- Are you really right for each other? Should you get legally married?
- Depression and anxiety issues
- Self-acceptance and self-confidence
- Feelings of shame, guilt, or low self-esteem
- Feelings of rejection or isolation
- Drugs, alcohol, and codependency
- Finding a partner who wants a long-term relationship
- Mending broken hearts and learning to trust again
- Anger and arguments
- Gay parenting challenges
- Having a healthy, mature, balanced sexuality & sexual expression
- Sorting out issues of faith and spirituality
- Rejection by your church
- Managing difficult relationships with extended family
John McNeill, author: "Since many lesbians and gay men do not have children of their own, they tend to redirect a vast reservoir of unselfish love into the human community. So great is the reservoir that the world could not bear its loss.
Despite their personal suffering, the loving presence of lesbian women and gay men is the oil that keeps the whole human machine running. If, somehow, gay people were to disappear from the scene, the whole human community would be in danger of being seriously dehumanized."
Link to my ad & contact information at the Gay & Lesbian Yellow Pages: