One of the most diverse surveys to date has revealed that up to 45% of LGBTQ youth have suicidal thoughts. Individuals with high levels of support from their families have a rate of less than half of those who don’t feel supported. Even more concerning, up to 60% of participants who needed mental health care were not able to access it.
Online therapy breaks down the barriers to mental health care and helps individuals get the support they need. This article discusses how LGBTQ+ online therapy can help, why it is important, and how it improves areas of life such as communication, conflict resolution, building healthy relationships, and having a fulfilling, happy life.
What Is LGBTQ+ Online Therapy?
Accessing mental health care can be difficult for anyone, but the members of the LGBTQ+ community may have an even more difficult time finding a therapist with the right expertise and skills to help them with their specific needs. An LGBTQ+ therapist must have the relevant education and specialization in order to provide relevant support to queer individuals.
LGBTQ+ therapy fulfills this need by offering convenient, affordable, and confidential healthcare to the queer community. Here’s what identity-affirming therapists do: They have experience in working with people that fall outside the stereotypical gender expectations, roles, and identities. They are trained to understand the nuances of queerphobia and guide you on how to improve communication, resolve conflicts, and build a strong foundation for fulfilling relationships – with a partner, friends, and family.
LGBTQ online therapy addresses a wide range of issues. When choosing your service provider, you can select the specialization you need. Examples include relationship issues, gender dysphoria, depression, anxiety, coming out, dealing with discrimination, parental difficulties, and many more. During therapy sessions, individuals are not only gently directed toward understanding themselves better, but also taught how to pursue well-being and self-growth, create healthy habits, understand and validate their own needs, and establish realistic goals
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Is LGBTQ+ Online Therapy Efficient?
Although more research is still needed, many studies have confirmed that online therapy can be as efficient as in-person therapy. Let’s discuss the benefits. In some situations, online therapy is the only option. For example, if you are in a long-distance relationship, LGBTQ+ online couple’s therapy may be the only solution for you and your partner.
When choosing an online service provider, you have a much more diverse choice of therapists to choose from compared to your local options. This means that you have a higher chance of finding the right therapist for you and your needs. Most providers also allow you to change therapists for free if you are not happy with the quality of the services.
LGBTQ+ online therapy also benefits individuals seeking a confidential, convenient environment. You can join the sessions alone or with your partner from the comfort of your home, without having to commute to a clinic. Online therapy is usually more affordable than in-person sessions. Depending on your chosen provider, you can choose from different subscription plans. Also, you can opt for text therapy, phone therapy, or video therapy, depending on your needs and preferences.
How Can Online Therapy Benefit LGBTQ+ Relationships?
LGBTQ+ mental health therapists are specialized in affirmative therapy. This therapy consists of providing affirmative care, so therapists are educated on matters such as gender identities, types of sexualities, orientations, and expressions. ‘Minority stress,’ trauma, and other mental health concerns are also addressed during online therapy, including the political and socio-economic issues that arise out of homophobia and transphobia. Overall, online therapy can benefit LGBTQ+ relationships in the following ways:
1. You develop emotional intimacy with your partner
LGBTQ+ online therapy can help you and your partner develop emotional intimacy. Learning how to communicate with each other is not always as straightforward. Learning how to strengthen your emotional intimacy with your partner is key to building a long-term, healthy relationship.
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2. You can deal with your individual traumas
If you or your partner have been exposed to discrimination, bullying, or any traumatic experiences in the past, these could harm your relationship. Seeking professional help by yourself or with your partner could help you break the cycle of projection and learn how to improve your self-esteem, communication, and understanding in your relationship.
3. Online therapy helps you establish boundaries
Discussing and establishing healthy boundaries in a relationship can be very difficult for anyone. LGBTQ+ mental health therapists can help couples overcome these challenges and help them develop healthy communication and listening skills.
4. It creates healthy behaviors
While spending time with each other is important, spending too much time could be detrimental to the survival of your relationship. Couple’s counselors help partners understand the need to create healthy behaviors and how to implement them in a way that benefits the relationship. For example, a healthy relationship requires partners to take the time for individual self-care from time to time without leading to arguments, feelings of abandonment, or other negative consequences.
5. You learn how to be a team
LGBTQ+ online therapy can help you and your partner learn how to become a team. To build a long-term relationship, you should be able to develop a team outlook – such as not “me versus you” but “we versus the problem.” Working with a mental health therapist may help you overcome life challenges or transitions, which will make you feel closer to each other in the long term.
- LGBTQ+ online therapy can help you and your partner in a variety of ways. It does not only simplify access to much-needed queer-affirmative healthcare and support, but it might be more convenient for you both too
- Queer-affirmative therapists have experience in working with people that fall outside the stereotypical gender expectations, roles, and identities. They understand homophobia and transphobia
- Online therapy can create better communication between partners, help establish boundaries, unpack trauma, and heal from the impact of discrimination
LGBTQ+ online therapy helps queer therapy seekers navigate a healthcare system that was not created for them. It provides access to the support needed to lead a healthy and happy life, build strong relationships, and have a fulfilling partnership. Whether it is couple’s therapy or individual online therapy, LGBTQ+ online counseling uses an affirmative approach to help individuals with their mental well-being, but also a wide range of mental health issues like dealing with trauma, addiction, anxiety, and depression, among others.