gay friendly therapy

Another Victory for LGBT Mental Health

In a milestone that has come to pass more than a few times now, Illinois recently voted to outlaw the dangerous and abusive practice known as gay conversion therapy. Advocates of LGBT rights and responsible mental healthcare are pleased to see this important watershed reach one of the most populous states in the nation:

Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Legal Director Sarah Warbelow said: “By passing this important legislation, Illinois lawmakers on both sides of the aisle stood up for equality and against a dangerous practice that uses fear and shame to tell young people the only way to find love or acceptance is to change the very nature of who they are. Psychological abuse has no place in therapy, no matter the intention. We urge Governor Rauner to sign this bipartisan legislation into law and protect the state’s youth from this harmful and discredited practice.”

What’s next for our culture’s understanding of LGBT psychology? How about gay-affirmative psychotherapy which understands LGBT patients on their own terms, and treats their issues with the same care and compassion as anyone else’s?

At PPSC, we have never pathologized the specific challenges and opportunities of LGBT life. Our gay-friendly therapists are among the most experienced in New York, and we are constantly looking for new ways to serve this broad community as effectively as we can.

To find an LGBT-friendly therapist today, please contact the psychoanalytic professionals of PPSC.

Anna Freud Celebrated by Google

Anna Freud

It is a small but significant moment when a distinguished psychoanalyst such as Anna Freud takes over the Internet’s home page for a day. Such was the case this month when Google devoted one of its trademark “doodles” to Ms. Freud’s work and legacy.

As this article describes, Anna Freud deepened and expanded her father’s work, taking a particular interest in the psychology and pathology of children. Her teachings led her to assume a number of prestigious posts, where she continued to preach her singular devotion to the emotional issues of young people:

Freud became a member of the Vienna Psychoanalytical Society after presenting her paper “Beating Fantasies and Daydreams” in 1922 and became a director in 1935 of the Vienna Psychoanalytical Training Institute. . . .

When the second world war broke out, Freud opened the Hampstead War Nursery for children who had been left homeless, and often orphaned, as a result of the conflict. Her research into the impact of stress and separation on children was published along with Dorothy Burlingham.

Although our therapists owe a great deal to the Freuds, we are also proud to offer the vanguard in professional thought about issues such as relationship therapy, depression therapy, and gay-friendly therapy. At PPSC, we also offer low-cost therapy and plenty of flexible choices to patients, young and old, who want to understand themselves and their struggles more clearly.

To learn more about how you can benefit from analytic psychotherapy, start here.

How to Stop Gay Conversion Therapy

A number of news outlets have recently picked up on a national movement to outlaw so-called gay conversion therapy, a (usually) religiously-oriented process in which people attempt to “reprogram” homosexual urges. The practice is as abusive as it is ineffectual, of course, but some fault lines have developed over the question of whether a legal ban is the best way to combat this practice. An interesting discussion arose in the New York Times following this editorial, the thrust of which centered around First Amendment rights and a possible workaround:

The bans tread on a volatile question: the degree to which the First Amendment protects speech uttered by professionals, like doctors and lawyers, in the course of their work. . . .

There is a more promising way to put pressure on, or even shut down, conversion programs: existing state laws that forbid businesses and professionals to engage in deceptive practices.

Yet one letter writer addressed the singular way that the full force of law could help guide discussions and stigmatize bigotry where other methods might fail:

While there may be other possible avenues to bar so-called “conversion therapy” from practice, passing a law casts a wide net across all corners of the state and sends a strong message to all that this damaging practice, widely discredited by reputable medical and mental health institutions, has no place in our state.

It is an interesting argument that touches on issues of law, morality and freedom. What is not controversial is that gay conversion therapy is a regressive and traumatic practice which deserves no quarter anywhere in professional circles.

Here at PPSC, we take pride in an approach to LGBT friendly therapy that incorporates and values gay identity while exploring the specific issues that may trouble patients. Do you want to find a gay-friendly therapist in NYC? Start here.

The New Challenges of LGBT Therapy

At PPSC, we’re proud of our reputation as one of the most progressive analytic communities in New York for gay-friendly therapy. With multiple analysts on staff who identify as LGBT and a robust curriculum addressed toward understanding the particular issues of the queer experience, we believe there’s always more to learn about how we can provide insightful and effective LGBT therapy. Which is why this recent article in the magazine of the American Psychological Association caught our eye. It talks about how the issues facing LGBT patients have shifted over time: Although discrimination and its echoes remain paramount, other questions have crept into the mix which require their own breed of psychotherapy:

At the same time, Haldeman says, psychologists are seeing "a whole host of other issues related to the creation of LGBT families, LGBT people in the workplace, generational differences and the reality of multiple-minority identities--issues that demand our best research and clinical skills."

The whole article is worth a read. Generational questions, identity questions and a rising tide of body image issues are all giving gay-friendly therapists new topics to engage. If you are struggling with these or other issues as an LGBT person, we can help you find a therapist who will meet you halfway and help unpack what may be behind the difficulties you face.