All About Identity

"We contain multitudes," wrote Walt Whitman, referring not to the highly contested diagnosis of dissociative identity disorder but to the fact that we see ourselves radically differently in different contexts. Everyone struggles with that existential plum, "Who am I?" For people who are overly concerned with other people's impressions, or who feel a core aspect of themselves, such as gender or sexuality, is not being expressed, this struggle is acute.

Recent posts on Identity

8 Ways to Ask Questions and Improve Your Relationships

Knowing how to ask the right questions is a fundamental skill to relationship-building. Based on new research, these 8 tips will help you get the answers you need.

Pride in Mental Health: Education

An interview with GLSEN (creating safe schools for all, regardless of orientation or identity) and The Hetrick-Martin Institute (a safe space for LGBT youth and families).

For New Dads - Keys To A Great Experience

What do new fathers need? A review of survey findings and pragmatic tips about how to avoid common mistakes and make the most of your first years as a father.

Cultural Identity Theft

Is it harmful to take something from someone else's culture and use it? Psychological science suggests that harm may occur.

My 20-Year Journey Toward a Unified Framework

A retrospective on my work toward a unified framework for psychology and psychotherapy.

I Didn't Want to Betray My Wife Again

By Loren A. Olson M.D. on June 07, 2017 in Finally Out
​I had broken my vows to my wife, and I left her when I realized that if I made those vows again I would only betray her again. My attraction to men was too powerful to contain.
DidiWeidmann (Own work) [Public domain or CC BY-SA 2.5

Bi+: The Bisexual Unicorn

Bi+ individuals adopt a variety of identities, including bisexual, pansexual, bi-curious, fluid, multi-sexual, and others.

NAMI's Identity Crisis

By Dinah Miller M.D. on June 05, 2017 in Committed
Is NAMI's upcoming board of director election really about involuntary psychiatric care?

Victim

"Pain is no one’s fault." - Wayne Muller... Whether or not you agree with this statement, it’s pretty likely that there has been a time or two, or more, that it didn’t seem true.

Parent's Guide to the Gender Revolution

Three guidelines for discussing gender identity with your kid.

Confronting Complex Multiracial Realities

Social psychology professor Saera Khan discusses the complexities of multiracial identity, prejudice, and discrimination in our especially tense sociopolitical climate.

Denmark Declassifies Transgender as Mental Illness

Transgender is not considered to be a mental illness in Denmark, making it the first country to remove the link between transgender identity and mental illness.

Giving Voice to the Feelings of Black Boys

Black boys and vulnerability. Why is it so complex?

You Can Make a Difference

If your child or another child in your life came out as transgender, would you know how to respond? Here are some strategies for ensuring their health and wellbeing.

The Personal Erotic Myth and the Rise of Fetishsexuality

A new sexual concept paves the way in understanding the role of the unconscious and psyche in exploring authentic sexuality.

More Than Just a Pretty Face: Unmasking Furry Fandom

Recent research debunks common misconception of the furry community as a bunch of sexual "deviants" or misfits.

Connecticut Bans Conversion Therapy for LGBT Youth

By Jack Turban MD MHS on May 12, 2017 in Political Minds
Connecticut makes it illegal to practice conversion therapy on gay or transgender youth.

Do You Need Mother's Apology? What Should Your Mom Say?

Nobody said being a mother was easy; perhaps it's time to say that being a daughter to a certain kind of mother is very, very hard.

Blasphemy!

By Robert J King Ph.D. on May 09, 2017 in Hive Mind
Religious and Secular blasphemy accusations come from a similar source. And we need to call a halt to this nonsense.

Why You Might Have Low Self-Esteem and How to Cure That

When you believe the lie from others that you are worth less than the rest, then you sometimes believe it. Don’t.

To Meaningfully Talk About Gender

By Jesse Marczyk Ph.D. on May 08, 2017 in Pop Psych
Words need agreed-upon meanings if you want them to do anything useful.

Beyond Binary: How Bisexuality Shifts Orientation Science

Current research on bisexuality challenges our understandings of orientation as a simple, homogeneous concept.

Sex Work and Higher Education: A Mix of Disparate Identities

Recent research on student sex workers shatters societal misconceptions about sex work as connected with pathology and criminality/trafficking.

Why Do Animal Shelter Workers Burn Out?

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on May 04, 2017 in Animals and Us
Animal shelter workers who believe they have a gift for relating to animals may be the most likely to leave.

We're All Artists

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on April 29, 2017 in Minority Report
"Aren't we all artists?" was the response I received when I asked a Parisian shop owner if he was an artist or if he just sold art. This experience redefined how I saw "artists".

Save Your Mixed Tears and Other Tips for Mixed Living

“Grappling with everything that comes with being mixed can be painful and feel conflicting, but one of your strongest allies in that journey is yourself.”

Too Young to Be Old: Love, Learn, Work, and Play as You Age

By The Book Brigade on April 27, 2017 in The Author Speaks
Everyone has a “psychological portfolio,” and it’s especially important to update it as you age.

What Is "American"?

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on April 25, 2017 in Minority Report
In today's political climate, the question of, "What is American?" is being challenged by those who find immigrants and people of color not fitting into their image of "American"..

"Us" and "Them"

By Jann Gumbiner Ph.D. on April 25, 2017 in The Teenage Mind
Many of the principles studied by social psychologists after WWII apply to our current political climate.

Fragmentation of Personality

By Po Chi Wu Ph.D. on April 24, 2017 in Jacob's Staff
Given the complexity of our online lives, how do we define the totality of who we are? Is this changing how we think of being integrated human beings and our creative lives?