LGBTQIA+ Counselling
I work with LGBTQIA+ individuals and couples.
As a bisexual/pansexual cis-gendered woman with clients, friends and therapy peers that are trans, queer, non-binary and gender fluid, in my world it's normal and unquestionable to speak in people's preferred pronouns and, also valued strongly in narrative therapy, to treat everyone as experts in their own life, especially in their sexual and relationship preferences.
Many of my clients have told me how common it is for them to walk into a room (even therapy rooms) and have their identity, gender or poly relationship questioned, doubted or judged. I don't believe in a 'right' and 'wrong' way to do romantic relationships, however I do believe that there are key signifiers of a 'healthy' vs. 'toxic' relationship. Monogamy and heteronormativity do not necessarily equal healthy. There are all kinds of ways to do relationships.
My practice is not prescriptive, which means that I may offer take-home exercises to improve communication and connection but always with the idea that it's up to the couple to decide whether the concept or approach fits with their values, style and hopes for the relationship.
The core values of my practice are: empathy; self-accountability; clear communication; and mutually defined commitment, agreements and consent.
I will always steer our conversation back to self-connection: how well we connect to ourselves (setting boundaries, remaining in alignment with our values, trusting ourselves, taking ownership over working to heal our wounds, being intentional) hugely influences our capacity to connect with our partner(s). We must always start with ourselves.