Racial Identity

Racial identity is a multifaceted construct, the development of which is a lifelong process that involves how a person interprets messages about racial groups. Racial identity has been described as the significance and meaning of race in one’s life. Our racial identity is an important part of how we see ourselves and how others see us. Racial identity development is relevant to all racial groups – but typically plays a larger role in the experiences of minorities. Many things can influence an individual’s racial identity, including pop culture and current events. If you are working through issues related to racial identity, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s experts today.

Meet the specialists

Helping you work through racial identity and the trauma created by systemic racism and intolerance.

— Kwabena Siaka, Psychotherapist in PORTLAND, OR
 

Working and volunteering in San Francisco's Chinatown for over 14 years, I have had the honor to work alongside many community members and leaders who supported causes and issues in the Asian-American community. As a second-generation Asian-American, I have went to trainings and programs that helped expand my knowledge in communication with my immigrant parents, along helping other first-generation families communicate with theirs. Racial identity is an ongoing learning opportunity in my life.

— Casey Chow, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist Intern in ,

There are many individuals who are facing multiple forms of violence through relationships with toxic systems. In my work, I stress that real love does not require one to give up their freedom for the sake of belonging. It’s in the power of our ability to use our voice and to think and feel for ourselves that we find the power to stand alone and stand with others. The ability to do both is what real freedom and real love requires. You deserve to be free and to feel love.

— Julius Peterson, Clinical Social Worker in Decatur, GA
 

As a black man in America i first hand understand and have the lived experience of what it is like being black in this country. As a first generation African American, i also have the lived experience of being raised in two different cultures and navigating the different cultural dynamics.

— Eric Katende, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA

My work is informed by my lived experience, including my journey as a woman of color with vitiligo universalis and my lifelong quest to confront internalized misogyny, racism, and ableism. My doctoral dissertation and my subsequent peer-reviewed publications disrupt dominant cultural narratives of racism, colorism, ableism, and heteronormativity.

— Dr. E. Rose Sierra, Psychotherapist in Houston, TX
 

Much of my graduate level research and training has been in understanding the complex racial identity development of people of color and White individuals. My dissertation research included examining how Black clients responded to White therapists who overtly broach cross-racial differences in the therapy session.

— Catherine Bitney, Clinical Psychologist in Austin, TX

Multicultural and racial identity was an area of focus and training while completing my graduate degree. I continue to implement these ideals in my practice with clients.

— Kyle Woodson, Licensed Professional Counselor in Denver, CO
 

Multicultural and racial identity was an area of focus and training while completing my graduate degree at the University of Colorado Denver. I continue to implement these ideals in my practice with clients.

— Kyle Woodson, Licensed Professional Counselor in Denver, CO

As a multiracial/mixed person, I have several years of experience learning about mixed race identities and racial identity development. In addition to my own lived experience, I draw on academic research, films, novels, personal accounts and more in my approach to this topic.

— Matt Bouse, Therapist in Ann Arbor, MI
 

Race informs every area of our lives--relationships, social, familial, financial, educational, medical, gender, class, safety and more. I believe deep and profound healing can happen through the exploration of racial identity. I use a decolonizing framework to assist clients in defining the impact of race in their lives and work to develop and recognize the client's strengths and inner resources to navigate race-related stress and trauma.

— Camara Meri Rajabari, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Berkeley, CA