Updated: Mar 29
As an LGBTQ counsellor and trans ally, I've dedicated this blog to share some info/resources with fellow counsellors who would like to work more with trans clients.
Today I list, 4 things you need to know when counselling trans clients.
1 - Trans history, laws and societal attitudes
Remember, the UK began to have laws protecting trans people only in recent years.
A few examples are below, there is still a long way to go.
Transgender people were not protected in UK equality law until 2010
‘Equal’ Marriage in 2015 excludes non-binary people
Transgender health issues were classified by WHO as mental illness until 2019
Learn more about trans history.
Read the book Trans Britain: Our Journey from the Shadows edited by Trans activist Christine Burns.
Learn why non-binary people can't get married in Fox and Owl's free documentary:
In the last year alone there were countless transphobic news stories. This can affect society's attitudes, which in turn, piles onto our trans clients' mental health, making accessing support such as counselling even harder.
The organisation All About Trans was set up to positively change how the media understands and portrays transgender people.
2 - Client fear
LGBTQ clients, particularly those who are transgender are quite rightly very wary of professionals.
It is quite likely your clients will be on edge and worried about how you might treat them in the counselling room.