Transgender Therapists in Sacramento, CA

Photo of Aubrey Grande, MA, Marriage & Family Therapist Associate
Aubrey Grande
Marriage & Family Therapist Associate, MA
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 95811  (Online Only)
I also specialize in working with queer, transgender, and non-binary individuals and all members of the LGBTQ+ community, especially those who may be exploring their gender and could use some support on their journey of self discovery.
My approach is centered around curiosity, possibility, and the celebration of each individual’s unique story. I offer a collaborative therapeutic environment that counters normativity and recognizes the impact of oppressive systems within our society. I utilize narrative therapy in my work, this approach will recognize your personal values and highlight your skills. I aim to assist you in exploring and strengthening the version of you that might be struggling to come to the surface.
I also specialize in working with queer, transgender, and non-binary individuals and all members of the LGBTQ+ community, especially those who may be exploring their gender and could use some support on their journey of self discovery.
My approach is centered around curiosity, possibility, and the celebration of each individual’s unique story. I offer a collaborative therapeutic environment that counters normativity and recognizes the impact of oppressive systems within our society. I utilize narrative therapy in my work, this approach will recognize your personal values and highlight your skills. I aim to assist you in exploring and strengthening the version of you that might be struggling to come to the surface.
(916) 510-0804 View (916) 510-0804
Photo of Beth Laskosky, BS, MA, AMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist Associate
Beth Laskosky
Marriage & Family Therapist Associate, BS, MA, AMFT
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95821
If you could embody all of your identities without shame and judgment - who would you be? Much of my work has been centered around neurodivergent, transgender teens. and LGBTQAI2S+ individuals. I enjoy working with all neurodivergent humans trying to navigate ADHD, executive dysfunction, low self-esteem, and identity formation & expression. As a queer therapist, I understand the safety and security needed to create a healing relationship. I also assist with psychedelic integration for individuals processing the larger meanings derived from healing mystical experiences and life transitions.
If you could embody all of your identities without shame and judgment - who would you be? Much of my work has been centered around neurodivergent, transgender teens. and LGBTQAI2S+ individuals. I enjoy working with all neurodivergent humans trying to navigate ADHD, executive dysfunction, low self-esteem, and identity formation & expression. As a queer therapist, I understand the safety and security needed to create a healing relationship. I also assist with psychedelic integration for individuals processing the larger meanings derived from healing mystical experiences and life transitions.
(916) 269-5556 View (916) 269-5556
Photo of Lira Ravenel, MA, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Lira Ravenel
Marriage & Family Therapist, MA, LMFT
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 94203  (Online Only)
I offer: Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP offered in California only), Support for the Transgender Community, Support for Gender Transition, LGBTQIA+ affirmative Psychotherapy, Support for the BDSM/Kink and Polyamorus community.
Do you feel trapped in a fog? Living but feeling unfulfilled, held back by things in your life that are out of your control? As a therapist I believe that you already have the answers you seek within. My role as your therapist will be to hold the lantern to guide you through the darkness and help you find your way to the answers you seek.
I offer: Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy (KAP offered in California only), Support for the Transgender Community, Support for Gender Transition, LGBTQIA+ affirmative Psychotherapy, Support for the BDSM/Kink and Polyamorus community.
Do you feel trapped in a fog? Living but feeling unfulfilled, held back by things in your life that are out of your control? As a therapist I believe that you already have the answers you seek within. My role as your therapist will be to hold the lantern to guide you through the darkness and help you find your way to the answers you seek.
View
Photo of Trisha D. Wallis, PsyD, LCSW, Psychologist
Trisha D. Wallis
Psychologist, PsyD, LCSW
Verified Verified
4 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95816
Hello, there! I treat a variety of mental health concerns, and I specialize in gender-affirmative care for transgender, nonbinary, gender diverse, and intersex people. You might be questioning your gender or want to talk with an experienced therapist. Perhaps you have come out & are finding dealing with other people’s reactions challenging. Perhaps stress has taken its toll and you are having symptoms of anxiety or depression. I can help you navigate these challenges to feel better. Working with neurodiversity is wonderful and I welcome all parts of your experience.
Hello, there! I treat a variety of mental health concerns, and I specialize in gender-affirmative care for transgender, nonbinary, gender diverse, and intersex people. You might be questioning your gender or want to talk with an experienced therapist. Perhaps you have come out & are finding dealing with other people’s reactions challenging. Perhaps stress has taken its toll and you are having symptoms of anxiety or depression. I can help you navigate these challenges to feel better. Working with neurodiversity is wonderful and I welcome all parts of your experience.
(916) 347-4794 View (916) 347-4794
Photo of Lori T Pranger, MA, LPCC, LMFT
Lori T Pranger
Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, MA, LPCC, LMFT
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 95816
Thank you for taking this first step to care for yourself. While it's hard to seek help, it can change your life. Many individuals have been socialized to believe that they are the reason for all of their difficulties in life. I focus on how the problem is impacting your life and on how you can rediscover your strengths to create an alternative approach to your life, so the problem no longer defines your life. I have experience in working with anxiety, depression, PTSD and gender dysphoria, and have worked with individuals who identity as transgender or gender nonconforming and the LGBT community.
Thank you for taking this first step to care for yourself. While it's hard to seek help, it can change your life. Many individuals have been socialized to believe that they are the reason for all of their difficulties in life. I focus on how the problem is impacting your life and on how you can rediscover your strengths to create an alternative approach to your life, so the problem no longer defines your life. I have experience in working with anxiety, depression, PTSD and gender dysphoria, and have worked with individuals who identity as transgender or gender nonconforming and the LGBT community.
(916) 621-6138 View (916) 621-6138
Photo of Heather Cassandra Blessing, MA, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Heather Cassandra Blessing
Marriage & Family Therapist, MA, LMFT
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95826  (Online Only)
Waitlist for new clients
Being a person who is transgender, gender expansive, or on the gender spectrum is not easy. It is never easy when you are different from societies' norms. Whether you are seeking help for your child or yourself, together we can explore who you are, who you hope to be and how to help you get there. Everyone deserves to live life to their fullest ability and authentically. If you are struggling give me a call. We can talk on the phone and if you feel comfortable we can meet for a session and see how we work together.
Being a person who is transgender, gender expansive, or on the gender spectrum is not easy. It is never easy when you are different from societies' norms. Whether you are seeking help for your child or yourself, together we can explore who you are, who you hope to be and how to help you get there. Everyone deserves to live life to their fullest ability and authentically. If you are struggling give me a call. We can talk on the phone and if you feel comfortable we can meet for a session and see how we work together.
(916) 512-1826 View (916) 512-1826
Photo of David Keith Nylund, PhD, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
David Keith Nylund
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, PhD, LCSW
Verified Verified
4 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95811
I have been a therapist for 35 years working in non-profits, managed care, and private practice. My current work is couples therapy utilizing a relationship focused, resolution based approach. I have experience in working with anxiety/depression; trauma; ADHD; eating disorders; and family therapy. I am a Social Work Professor at Sacramento State Univ. I conduct workshops nationwide/internationally. I serve as the Clinical Director of the Gender Health Center, an agency serving the transgendercommunity. I have worked with hunderds of transgender youth and their families. I teach for the Vancouver School for Narrative Therapy.
I have been a therapist for 35 years working in non-profits, managed care, and private practice. My current work is couples therapy utilizing a relationship focused, resolution based approach. I have experience in working with anxiety/depression; trauma; ADHD; eating disorders; and family therapy. I am a Social Work Professor at Sacramento State Univ. I conduct workshops nationwide/internationally. I serve as the Clinical Director of the Gender Health Center, an agency serving the transgendercommunity. I have worked with hunderds of transgender youth and their families. I teach for the Vancouver School for Narrative Therapy.
(916) 382-7565 View (916) 382-7565
Photo of Malakai Cote, PhD, Psychologist
Malakai Cote
Psychologist, PhD
Verified Verified
5 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95831
Not accepting new clients
I have training and experience addressing various mental health concerns that range from depression, anxiety, relational conflict to gender dysphoria.
I prioritize developing a therapeutic relationship that is founded upon trust, integrity, compassion, and non-judgment. The emphasis is less focused on "pathology" and more on strength, resilience, and developing an optimal worldview. It is my hope to support you to be more content in life, learn new ways to re-engage life and become more empowered to enact your vision of change. It takes tremendous courage to take the first steps toward healing, change, and growth. Thank you for considering working with me to support you on this journey.
I have training and experience addressing various mental health concerns that range from depression, anxiety, relational conflict to gender dysphoria.
I prioritize developing a therapeutic relationship that is founded upon trust, integrity, compassion, and non-judgment. The emphasis is less focused on "pathology" and more on strength, resilience, and developing an optimal worldview. It is my hope to support you to be more content in life, learn new ways to re-engage life and become more empowered to enact your vision of change. It takes tremendous courage to take the first steps toward healing, change, and growth. Thank you for considering working with me to support you on this journey.
(916) 414-9134 View (916) 414-9134
Photo of Sheila Ali, ACSW, MSW
Sheila Ali
Associate Clinical Social Worker, ACSW, MSW
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 94203
I focus on areas of traumatic events- abuse, chronic illness, death, divorce, disaster and war- complex cultural family problems and gender dysphoria, transition, GCS.
I continue to feel humbled by the power of therapy. Therapy will heal your pain. But it will not just relieve your suffering, a strong client-therapist fit will allow you to bear witness to the strength that comes from the courage of confronting the vulnerability within ourselves. Looking for a therapist should feel like buying a car- it needs to feel right, cost right and look right. Because that feeling of trust and safety is crucial to creating a space of brutal honesty as you begin to identify and explore your conscious and unconscious obstacles to equip yourself with the emotional tools and healing you seek.
I focus on areas of traumatic events- abuse, chronic illness, death, divorce, disaster and war- complex cultural family problems and gender dysphoria, transition, GCS.
I continue to feel humbled by the power of therapy. Therapy will heal your pain. But it will not just relieve your suffering, a strong client-therapist fit will allow you to bear witness to the strength that comes from the courage of confronting the vulnerability within ourselves. Looking for a therapist should feel like buying a car- it needs to feel right, cost right and look right. Because that feeling of trust and safety is crucial to creating a space of brutal honesty as you begin to identify and explore your conscious and unconscious obstacles to equip yourself with the emotional tools and healing you seek.
(925) 965-7775 View (925) 965-7775
Photo of Katya Mills, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Katya Mills
Marriage & Family Therapist, LMFT
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 95825
Katya has experience helping individuals suffering from: depression, anxiety, gender dysphoria, trauma, mood disorders, addiction, and psychosis.
Katya (she/they) is a therapist with over 15 years of experience. She graduated from JFK University with a MA in Holistic Counseling Psychology. She believes healing is a creative endeavor unique to each and every one. Life is an adventure with its ups and downs, and the adversaries we face come from within (anxiety, confusion, depression, fear) and without (circumstances, stigma, relationships, trauma). Sometimes we feel small, helpless and hopeless against them. Katya's intention is to develop a healthy alliance with you, and empower you to defeat your adversaries and reach your highest aspirations.
Katya has experience helping individuals suffering from: depression, anxiety, gender dysphoria, trauma, mood disorders, addiction, and psychosis.
Katya (she/they) is a therapist with over 15 years of experience. She graduated from JFK University with a MA in Holistic Counseling Psychology. She believes healing is a creative endeavor unique to each and every one. Life is an adventure with its ups and downs, and the adversaries we face come from within (anxiety, confusion, depression, fear) and without (circumstances, stigma, relationships, trauma). Sometimes we feel small, helpless and hopeless against them. Katya's intention is to develop a healthy alliance with you, and empower you to defeat your adversaries and reach your highest aspirations.
(916) 702-7354 View (916) 702-7354
Photo of Michael Lysaght, MA, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Michael Lysaght
Marriage & Family Therapist, MA, LMFT
Verified Verified
5 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95816
I specialize in treating LGBT concerns (individual and relationship), and augment my practice with specialized training in transgender care.
I offer teletherapy to clients in California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Colorado. I offer in-office visits in Sacramento. Sometimes we expect far too much from ourselves. Each client is invited into a space where there is no expectation and where they are free to be themselves, without fear of judgement or misunderstanding. Adults can sometimes struggle to find space to hold compassion for themselves. Any style relationship can also use a nonjudgmental time and space to feel heard, while building tools for communication.
I specialize in treating LGBT concerns (individual and relationship), and augment my practice with specialized training in transgender care.
I offer teletherapy to clients in California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Colorado. I offer in-office visits in Sacramento. Sometimes we expect far too much from ourselves. Each client is invited into a space where there is no expectation and where they are free to be themselves, without fear of judgement or misunderstanding. Adults can sometimes struggle to find space to hold compassion for themselves. Any style relationship can also use a nonjudgmental time and space to feel heard, while building tools for communication.
(415) 723-4141 View (415) 723-4141
Photo of Skylar Callum Rossy, ACSW, PPSC, Pre-Licensed Professional
Skylar Callum Rossy
Pre-Licensed Professional, ACSW, PPSC
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95811
I specialize in supporting folks regarding Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, Relationships, Life Transitions, and navigating queer and transgender identities.
Hello everyone! My name is Skylar Rossy (pronouns: he/him/his) and I’m an Associate Clinical Social Worker with Seeds of Growth Counseling. My goal is to support you with self-empowerment and growth as we navigate difficult emotions and life stressors together.
I specialize in supporting folks regarding Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, Relationships, Life Transitions, and navigating queer and transgender identities.
Hello everyone! My name is Skylar Rossy (pronouns: he/him/his) and I’m an Associate Clinical Social Worker with Seeds of Growth Counseling. My goal is to support you with self-empowerment and growth as we navigate difficult emotions and life stressors together.
(916) 378-7230 View (916) 378-7230
Photo of Refugio Pantoja, MA, Marriage & Family Therapist
Refugio Pantoja
Marriage & Family Therapist, MA
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95834  (Online Only)
I specialize in working with community members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ+) community. I strive to provide a safe affirming space for individuals to work on being able to better manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, improve relationships and strive to live authentically.
I specialize in working with community members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ+) community. I strive to provide a safe affirming space for individuals to work on being able to better manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, improve relationships and strive to live authentically.
(916) 794-3813 View (916) 794-3813
Photo of Heather Waddle, LCSW, CCTP, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Heather Waddle
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW, CCTP
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95820  (Online Only)
Welcome! Starting on a healing journey in therapy can be intimidating, but I'm here to make your experience a positive one. Using empathy and going at your pace is my goal. I have experience working with adults with a variety of symptoms. I have a passion working with depression, trauma, anxiety, gender dysphoria, formerly incarcerated, and substance misuse. I am competent in Narrative, CBT, DBT, restorative justice, and trauma focused approaches. I also have experience working with first responders including correctional staff. In addition, I have specialized training working with gender dysphoria and gender affirming assessments.
Welcome! Starting on a healing journey in therapy can be intimidating, but I'm here to make your experience a positive one. Using empathy and going at your pace is my goal. I have experience working with adults with a variety of symptoms. I have a passion working with depression, trauma, anxiety, gender dysphoria, formerly incarcerated, and substance misuse. I am competent in Narrative, CBT, DBT, restorative justice, and trauma focused approaches. I also have experience working with first responders including correctional staff. In addition, I have specialized training working with gender dysphoria and gender affirming assessments.
(916) 623-1980 View (916) 623-1980
Photo of Dr. Tristan C. Buzzini, PsyD, MA, Psychologist
Dr. Tristan C. Buzzini
Psychologist, PsyD, MA
Verified Verified
2 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95825
I also have specialized training and experience working with LGBTQQIA identified individuals with expertise in work with transgender, genderqueer, non-binary, and gender diverse youth and adults.
I sincerely believe in whole-person wellness and that mind, body, and spirit need to be nurtured for overall mental health and well-being to be stabilized. It is my hope to support you in taking the steps you believe need to be taken to live a healthy, fulfilling, peaceful, and empowered life. As an expert in mindfulness and meditation, I work with adults and teens to effectively manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, anger, impulsivity, and post-traumatic stress disorder. I am also skilled in working with individuals who struggle with substance use, conduct disorders, and academic challenges.
I also have specialized training and experience working with LGBTQQIA identified individuals with expertise in work with transgender, genderqueer, non-binary, and gender diverse youth and adults.
I sincerely believe in whole-person wellness and that mind, body, and spirit need to be nurtured for overall mental health and well-being to be stabilized. It is my hope to support you in taking the steps you believe need to be taken to live a healthy, fulfilling, peaceful, and empowered life. As an expert in mindfulness and meditation, I work with adults and teens to effectively manage symptoms of depression, anxiety, anger, impulsivity, and post-traumatic stress disorder. I am also skilled in working with individuals who struggle with substance use, conduct disorders, and academic challenges.
(916) 269-5660 View (916) 269-5660
Photo of Rosemary MacLaughlin, MSW, LCSW, Clinical Social Work/Therapist
Rosemary MacLaughlin
Clinical Social Work/Therapist, MSW, LCSW
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 95825
My specialty work has included: eating disorders, anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, personality disorders,relationship issues, gender dysphoria, illness, loss and end of life issues.
Therapy is an important step in a person's life, one that takes courage, awareness and careful thought. As a practicing psychotherapist for the last 15 years, I find it a privilege and honor to work with clients as they grow and learn about themselves and their lives. I believe it can be a wonderful opportunity to explore and move towards what is meaningful to you in your life. I also believe firmly that the therapist-client relationship is an important aspect in allowing for effective change and I strive to provide a warm, supportive and trusting environment throughout the process.
My specialty work has included: eating disorders, anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, personality disorders,relationship issues, gender dysphoria, illness, loss and end of life issues.
Therapy is an important step in a person's life, one that takes courage, awareness and careful thought. As a practicing psychotherapist for the last 15 years, I find it a privilege and honor to work with clients as they grow and learn about themselves and their lives. I believe it can be a wonderful opportunity to explore and move towards what is meaningful to you in your life. I also believe firmly that the therapist-client relationship is an important aspect in allowing for effective change and I strive to provide a warm, supportive and trusting environment throughout the process.
(916) 297-4561 View (916) 297-4561
Photo of Abigail Walker, MA, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Abigail Walker
Marriage & Family Therapist, MA, LMFT
Verified Verified
3 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95816
I have years of experience working with the transgender, queer and LGBT+ community.
Welcome, I’m Abby, I’ve always held a firm belief that I am a human first and a therapist second. I am honored to witness other’s journeys and enter the therapeutic space with wonderment and curiosity. I believe we require less fixing and more untangling from our problem stories. In my practice I come from a place of authenticity and deeply value the alliance that is formed between myself and who I am working with. I am person centered and prioritize the desired outcomes that bring people to see me. I invite people to show up fully as they are and it is my job to provide a safe space where folks can be fully seen, heard and valued.
I have years of experience working with the transgender, queer and LGBT+ community.
Welcome, I’m Abby, I’ve always held a firm belief that I am a human first and a therapist second. I am honored to witness other’s journeys and enter the therapeutic space with wonderment and curiosity. I believe we require less fixing and more untangling from our problem stories. In my practice I come from a place of authenticity and deeply value the alliance that is formed between myself and who I am working with. I am person centered and prioritize the desired outcomes that bring people to see me. I invite people to show up fully as they are and it is my job to provide a safe space where folks can be fully seen, heard and valued.
(916) 229-6865 View (916) 229-6865
Photo of Ashley Damo, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Ashley Damo
Marriage & Family Therapist, LMFT
Verified Verified
Sacramento, CA 95825
I am passionate about working with individuals in the LGBTQ+ community, specifically those within the transgender community.
Hello, my name is Ashley Damo. I'm a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) who is passionate about creating a safe and supportive environment for my clients as they work toward their personal goals. I utilize Cognitive Behavior Therapy while working with adolescents and adults seeking therapy to address anxiety, depression, life transitions, family issues, and relationship difficulties. I also use Affirmative Therapy to address specific needs of individuals within the LGBTQ+ community.
I am passionate about working with individuals in the LGBTQ+ community, specifically those within the transgender community.
Hello, my name is Ashley Damo. I'm a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) who is passionate about creating a safe and supportive environment for my clients as they work toward their personal goals. I utilize Cognitive Behavior Therapy while working with adolescents and adults seeking therapy to address anxiety, depression, life transitions, family issues, and relationship difficulties. I also use Affirmative Therapy to address specific needs of individuals within the LGBTQ+ community.
(916) 776-5585 View (916) 776-5585
Photo of Julie Strathdee, LMFT, Marriage & Family Therapist
Julie Strathdee
Marriage & Family Therapist, LMFT
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95811
I work with couples, adults, and teenagers seeking relief from panic attacks, depression and suicidal thoughts, self harm, gender dysphoria, sexual abuse, and childhood trauma and PTSD.
You’re overwhelmed, overstimulated, and searching for relief, and quite frankly, getting pretty desperate. That "best life" others seem to live feels just beyond reach, with a little progress one day, then sliding all the way back to where you started. It’s exhausting. You logically know you’ve overcome so much, but where is that strength everyone says you have? Together, we can foster compassion for the coping skills you’ve used to survive. These strategies deserve acknowledgment and appreciation because they have kept you alive.
I work with couples, adults, and teenagers seeking relief from panic attacks, depression and suicidal thoughts, self harm, gender dysphoria, sexual abuse, and childhood trauma and PTSD.
You’re overwhelmed, overstimulated, and searching for relief, and quite frankly, getting pretty desperate. That "best life" others seem to live feels just beyond reach, with a little progress one day, then sliding all the way back to where you started. It’s exhausting. You logically know you’ve overcome so much, but where is that strength everyone says you have? Together, we can foster compassion for the coping skills you’ve used to survive. These strategies deserve acknowledgment and appreciation because they have kept you alive.
(916) 698-0288 View (916) 698-0288
Photo of Messina Basta, ASW
Messina Basta
Associate Clinical Social Worker, ASW
Verified Verified
1 Endorsed
Sacramento, CA 95816  (Online Only)
Some of my favorite clinical acomplishments include reconnecting partners after a diagnosis of psychosis and supporting a transgender teen in coming out to his parents.
I’m comfortable working with clients across the lifespan, but I work best with those who have historically felt misunderstood and unheard, and even those that are distrustful of the therapy process. With that in mind, my goal is to make each client feel special and empowered during and after their time with me. I enjoy talking about “hard things” or even “taboo” things, and encourage my clients to use their time with me in whatever way they need. I don’t believe that progress is linear and I am interested in meeting my client where they are with their goals even if the starting point is simply making an appointment and showing up.
Some of my favorite clinical acomplishments include reconnecting partners after a diagnosis of psychosis and supporting a transgender teen in coming out to his parents.
I’m comfortable working with clients across the lifespan, but I work best with those who have historically felt misunderstood and unheard, and even those that are distrustful of the therapy process. With that in mind, my goal is to make each client feel special and empowered during and after their time with me. I enjoy talking about “hard things” or even “taboo” things, and encourage my clients to use their time with me in whatever way they need. I don’t believe that progress is linear and I am interested in meeting my client where they are with their goals even if the starting point is simply making an appointment and showing up.
(530) 212-7735 View (530) 212-7735
Transgender Therapists

As a gender-diverse individual, why might I want to see a therapist who is also gender diverse?

A trans or gender-diverse client may want to see a therapist who is also trans or gender diverse because the client may feel safer sharing their experiences and more confident that the therapist will understand, validate, and support them. But trans or gender-diverse clients can also benefit from therapy with cisgender therapists; this is a personal decision based on the connection between the client and the therapist, and if that connection is strong, therapy will be successful.

What if I cannot find a therapist who shares my gender identity?

Therapy can still be effective if a therapist does not share a client’s gender identity; a large body of research indicates that the most important factor in successful therapy is the therapeutic alliance. A therapist can also be interviewed for sensitivity and competence on gender identity and expression to ensure they possess appropriate knowledge and skills. Many therapists have excellent training and extensive experience working with gender-diverse clients, and that expertise can be invaluable despite a therapist not sharing the same firsthand experiences.

How can I recognize a good therapist for working with gender-diverse clients?

An experienced therapist should be able to help clients explore their gender identity and expression, alleviate discomfort related to their gender identity, treat mental health challenges and trauma, address existing relationships and communication with family members and loved ones, and determine the next steps pertaining to nonmedical or medical gender-affirming interventions. To recognize a good therapist, clients can ask about these topics and explore their comfort and connection with the clinician.

How might I inquire about a therapist’s experience working with transgender clients?

Clients should feel comfortable asking therapists directly about their experience working with transgender or gender-diverse clientele. For example, clients may ask about the therapist’s training and education with regard to gender identity, how many trans clients they’ve worked with in the past, and what sorts of matters were discussed. You may wish to inquire how a therapist specifically supports the needs of transgender clients or clients questioning their gender identity. A good clinician who is nonetheless not the right fit for you is often happy to make referrals to others based on the concerns you articulate in a preliminary conversation.