Gender Identity

Gender identity issues, sometimes called gender dysphoria or gender conflict, occur when an individual feels an inconsistency between their physical gender and the gender they truly feel or identify with. This most commonly exhibits itself as a physical discomfort with the gender one was assigned at birth, including the feeling of being in the wrong body. Children with gender dysphoria may express disgust of their own genitals or a certainty that they will grow up to be the opposite sex. Some individuals with gender identity issues treat this feeling by physically modifying their bodies to better match their gender identity. Gender dysphoria comes with it an increased risk for depression, anxiety, self-esteem issues, and bullying. If you are experiencing gender identity issues, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s qualified professionals today.

Meet the specialists

I specialize in working with gender diverse clients and am a nationally recognized speaker on the topic. I identify as a cis gender queer male and my pronouns are he/him.

— John Sovec, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in PASADENA, CA

I learned of gender identity later in life, and continue to make a concerted effort to learn about the universe of gender identity and serve as an ally. We are crafted with striking diversity, and that's cause for celebration, not separation. The progress that has been made in acknowledging and accommodating diversity has led to a harsh backlash from certain quarters, and we need to form community and march together to that new day. This is definitely an area where the clients teach me while I support them. My first question when I meet you is, "What is your current gender identity, and which are your preferred pronouns?" I have worked with transgender adolescents to embrace their identity, as well as providing family support and education. I have faced family resistance, but by drawing on their love for their family member and respecting their process, progress can me made, often more than is expected. I have thoroughly studied WPATH standards, and presented on gender identity.

— Cindy Noland, Counselor in Austin, TX

I write letters to support trans people in getting medical interventions that are sorely needed. I also help clients figure out their identities, relationships, and more through depressive and anxious symptoms so that they can lead happier and healthier lives.

— Abigail Weissman, Psychologist in POWAY, CA

There is no "one size fits all" path to transition and its of utmost importance to me that you have the agency to align your gender in a way that's authentic to you. Some clients need one or two sessions with me to navigate the healthcare system and get connected with informed consent doctors and surgeons. Others want more support for their journey. Being transgender myself I can safely say, I get it!

— Misha Bogart-Monteith--Online Counseling, Counselor in Eugene, OR

It's never too late to embrace your authentic self. My approach is to help support and encourage you in your journey to finding and accepting your true identity.

— Rachael Lastoff, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Newport, KY

I have a transgender spouse so this helps me to know what you might be going through if your body and your brain don't match. I have specific post graduate training to work with transgender clients and their significant others and families. About 75% of my practice is with transgender clients.

— Lori Haas, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Wichita, KS

I have worked with transgender clients almost exclusively in my private practice. I am an affirming clinician. I believe my clients when they tell me they are transgender, non-binary or genderqueer. I attend national conferences each year such as Gender Odyssey and The Philadelphia Trans Wellness conference to increase my education and trans awareness so that I can best help my clients be their true selves. I am a member of WPATH in the process of certification in their education initiative program. I follow WPATH standards of care version 7 and I am looking forward to the new version 8. I also support informed consent for my clients at every step of the way. I have extensive experience writing hormone and surgery letters to support my clients and am a part of the advocacy and ally communities.

— Katie Leikam, Clinical Social Worker in Decatur, GA

I have been working with queer, LGBTQ and trans-identified populations in NYC since 2006.

— Katie Peterson, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Brooklyn, NY

I treat transgender and gender nonconforming clients in adherence to the standards of care set by The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH). I also use the Informed Consent for Access to Trans Health (ICATH) model where appropriate. I have written over 100 letters for gender-affirming medical procedures. I also work with transgender children and adolescents and their families.

— Lilyan Moore, Counselor in Portland, OR

I have studied gender identity at length and have created and taught Master Level Mental Health Professionals how to provide gender affirming care. I am the mother of a transgender adult who began his gender transition almost 13 years ago.

— Susan Radzilowski, Clinical Social Worker in Farmington Hills, MI

I take an approach embracing a positive and wholehearted view of all gender and sexual identities and relationships. I treat all clients and their families with dignity, respect and the affirmation they deserve. Your sexual orientation and gender identity or expression may or may not be source of distress for you. You may find that having a qualified mental health professional who has familiarity, experience and desire to work with issues you face as a member of the LGBTQ community helpful to you achieving your desired outcomes. Having access to an unbiased and supportive resource can make a big difference on your journey to authentic living. For individuals within the LGBTQ community, I provide a safe, supportive and positive space to explore feelings and issues related to all stages and seasons of life including: Identity Development Stress Management Self–Esteem Concerns Coming Out Processes Interpersonal Relationships Coping with Perfectionism Social Concerns Gender Identity

— Allison Glorioso, Mental Health Counselor in Fort Myers, FL

Although I have had transgender friends since college, I first had training on working with transgender clients in 2003 while in graduate school. Since then, I have enjoyed helping support transgender and non-binary clients to find the tools they need to live more freely and cope with the issues that arise for all humans as well as the issues unique to the trans community.

— Jo Eckler, Clinical Psychologist in Austin, TX

I am trans and committed to working in my communities. Yes, I can write letters for gender affirming health care. And I know that trans and gender affirming therapy is about so much more and different for all of us. I want to stay grounded in your experience, your story, your life, your identity, and your family, culture, and communities.

— Colette Gordon, Counselor in Portland, OR

I have navigated the journey of gender with each of my children, and helped many parents navigate this journey with their children. I can help you too!

— Lisa Wittorff, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Portland, OR

Transitioning your gender can be an overwhelming, confusing, and anxiety-provoking process. I want to make transition easier by addressing common sources of anxiety throughout their transition, asking good questions to help my clients uncover more about their identities, assess their readiness to come out and/or medically transition, and develop coping skills.

— Casey Tanner, Counselor in Chicago, IL

More than ever, our culture finds itself confronted with the simple fact that many people’s lived experience, relationships, and sense of self do not match the restrictive gender and sexuality boxes we have required people to live in. Gender non-conforming people are refusing to accept these restrictions any longer. And yet, we have so much farther to go. Discrimination, inequality, microaggressions, and hate crimes still impact so many lives. The threats of violence faced by transgender women of color in particular are staggering and unacceptable. You need a therapist who is not only open and affirming, but well informed. I offer both individual and couples therapy for adults and can provide referrals for gender non-conforming clients needing medical services or changes to documentation. I'm also experienced helping partnered people who are coming out or transitioning work through the process in relationship therapy with partners.

— Kathryn Stinson, Counselor in St. Louis, MO

Gender identity is one of my research areas. I have experience working with gender expansive clients and writing letters for hormonal and surgical interventions.

— Christina McGrath Fair, Counselor in Port St. Lucie, FL

I have honed my specialty in Gender Identity through specialized training in gender identity, clinical experience, and leading support groups with the trans* community. I keep up-to-date on my knowledge by attending the National Transgender Health Summit, sponsored by UCSF, every 2 years. I have a particular interest in working with genderqueer, gender non-binary, and gender expansive clients.

— Lindsey Brooks, Psychologist in San Francisco, CA

At any given time in the four years I have been practicing, about two-thirds of my clients are people who do not identify as cisgender. I have participated in conferences and professional symposia related to this population, including Gender Spectrum and Translife, and regularly communicate and collaborate with other professionals who work with transgender, nonbinary, and intersex people.

— Nicole Rennix, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Napa, CA