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

 

I work with people who are struggling with racial, ethnic, and cultural identity. This includes multi-racial,multi-ethnic and multi-cultural individuals, and couples in mixed racial or ethnic/cultural partnerships. As well as first generation immigrants and the children of immigrants. I also work with folks who are struggling with their identity at the intersection of their sexuality, gender, spirituality, and dis/ability status.

— Jennie Powe Runde, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Oakland, CA

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

I am Hispanic, and in this country that makes me a minority. But I was not raised as one. In Puerto Rico most of us are Brown. I only had to contend with race & ethnicity after I left the island. I guess you could say I was lucky. I can tell you, it was a rude awakening. I choose to put the awareness & sensitivity that I've gained to work, by helping people of all ages who are grappling with the reality of what it means to be a person of color in this country, visibly different, visibly "other."

— Dr. Michelle Alvarez, Clinical Psychologist in Asheville, NC
 

I entered the field of therapy because I noticed there is a lack of support and structure for those who are racial minorities. Our world is filled with rhetoric of what it means to be a racial minority now and my goal is to ensure that you belong.

— Cayla Minaiy, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in SEATTLE, WA
 

One's racial identity is a complex component of who their are. People of color must navigate a world that increasingly is pushing them to reject their own culture, while internally containing their sense of self. If you work with me I promise to help you navigate the minefield of self-identity, mass culture identity, and your culture's views on your racial identity. Together I know we will be able to find the You that you want to be; not the you society claims you should be.

— Austin Knight, Counselor in Grand Rapids, MI

I love working with multiethnic/multicultural clients. Examples of that are Third Culture Kids, mixed ethnicity, POC, and second generation immigrants. Blending of different worlds passport to different world views. I appreciate my clients' personal stories as valuable to the work, and I connect from my own lived experience.

— Deva Segal, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Francisco, CA