People all over the nation were shocked to learn about the curious case of Rachel Dolezal, former head of the NAACP chapter in Spokane who self-identifies as a Black woman, even though her biological parents are White. What is the psychology behind race switching and our reaction to it?
When people in our lives do things that don’t make sense it can leave us confused, hurt, and alone. Mental illness affects not just the patient, but loved ones as well. Sometimes there are no easy answers. A psychologist shares her own personal experience.
If you are a White person in America, it can be hard to imagine that your neighbor, coworker, or friend of color could be living a completely different experience. Why is it so hard to ask the important questions? How can a White person understand what it’s like to be a stigmatized racial minority? Can we forge an authentic connection?
I recently received an email from a distraught reader who shared his experience of racism with his therapist, only be met with ridicule and disbelief. Many ethnic and racial minorities who need therapy avoid it for fear of being misunderstood.
You love your children with all your heart and would never forgive yourself if something bad happened to them. However, you repeatedly see yourself sexually molesting them when they are in your vicinity. You try to ignore it but the worry just won't go away.
Racism can be perpetuated by therapists who are genuinely committed to the well-being of minorities and consider themselves progressive and egalitarian. Most of us go into the helping professions because we care about people, but even seemingly positive statements can communicate racism.
Even among therapists who have received multicultural training, racism often inserts itself unconsciously into the counseling process. Learn four ways therapists offend their minority clients without realizing it.
Discrimination can result in psychological and physiological stress, but can racism be traumatic? Ethnic and racial minorities may be at risk for this underrecognized mental health phenomenon. The DSM-5 opens the door to a broader perspective on race-based trauma.
ADHD might not be a problem when kids have plenty of physical activity or acres of farmland to roam free, but more kids struggle as schools eliminate recess, lunch breaks, and PE. In today's society ADHD has nowhere to hide.
When obsessive-compulsive disorder is a third person in a marriage, it can be hard to make it work. Patients and spouses alike suffer when OCD rules the home, as family members get pulled into the obsessive-compulsive cycle. Learn what you can do when your loved one suffers from OCD.
When we have been abused or neglected as children it can leave us feeling deprived and wronged by those we loved and trusted. Learn how to overcome these wounds with self-help techniques rooted in the trauma research.
Contrary to conventional wisdom, men and women can be equally competitive. Competition can be helpful when it motivates us but harmful in relationships, resulting in stress, aggression, and broken relationships.
People may be discriminated against because of membership in a particular ethnoracial group (racism), because the shade of their skin (colorism), or both. Black women are in a triple bind. Society confers unspoken rewards on lighter-skinned Black women.
German researchers develop metacognitive training as a new form of help for people with OCD. While many struggle with side-effects from medication or difficulty locating a qualified OCD therapist, a no cost manual helps people with washing compulsions.
Sexual-orientation worries are a common symptom of OCD that is often misunderstood by both clients and therapists. These obsessions cause distress, confusion, and shame. Many are afraid of getting professional help because they worry the therapist will think they are really gay.
What would you do if you thought you were becoming gay? Some people worry that their sex lives may suddenly be replaced with something unappealing and foreign. OCD can cause doubts about sexual orientation and hidden behaviors that don't make sense.
What if your brain kept replaying images that you didn't want to see? What if it kept sending you conflicting messages about your sexuality? Would you want to die? Some people do. New research describes the startling connection between OCD, sexual-orientation worries, and suicidal thoughts.
"What if I've been gay all along and don't know it?" Sexual orientation worries are an underrecognized symptom of OCD that can cause distressing obsessions and covert compulsions. This puzzling form of OCD has been known to confuse patients and professionals alike, and sufferers struggle to find answers.
Racism is alive and well in American society and may even target successful people of color. Pathological stereotypes about ethnoracial groups breed racism and maintain an imbalanced social order. Learning about the values of other cultures can help heal racism and foster multiculturalism.
Racial problems are a sore spot in the American psyche. Although the ideology of colorblindness may seem like a good approach, it's only a half-measure that fosters racism. The need for colorblindness implies there is something shameful about people of color that we shouldn’t see or talk about.
Pathological stereotypes affect everyone, even those who consider themselves progressive and open-minded. Simply knowing about a pathological stereotype can result in responding in a pathological manner, causing the stereotype to become true.
Although there are many negative stereotypes about African Americans, most people are surprised to learn that stereotypes are wrong. Social status determines the content of stereotypes, not the actual characteristics of the people in the stereotyped group.
This blog challenges cultural assumptions about race, ethnicity, sex, and mental health. Popular topics include mental health disparities, ethnic differences, stereotypes, gender, and African American mental health. Other topics include symptom dimensions in obsessive-compulsive disorder and sexual psychopathology.