Therapists’ Biases Regarding LGBTQ People

As members of the larger heteronormative society in which they are socialized, therapists hold biases about LGBTQ identities, relationships, and families. In this context, biases are negative beliefs or prejudices against the LGBTQ community or preferences for heterosexual or cisgender (i.e., individuals whose anatomy and biological sex matches their preferred gender identity and presentation) identities, relationships, and families. Research suggests that the biases that therapists hold can negatively influence the therapy process and clients’ lives.

Although ethical codes of conduct require that therapists be nonjudgmental and nondiscriminatory in their work with clients, the reality is that therapists hold a wide range of biases related to the LGBTQ community. This entry focuses on different types of biases that therapists hold as well as the ways these biases ...

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