Culturally Sensitive Therapy

Culturally sensitive therapy is an approach in which therapists emphasize understanding a client's background, ethnicity, and belief system. Therapists that specialize in culturally sensitive therapy will accommodate and respect the differences in practices, traditions, values and opinions of different cultures and integrate those differences into therapeutic treatment. Culturally sensitive therapy will typically lead with a thorough assessment of the culture the client identifies with. This approach can both help a client feel comfortable and at ease, and lead to more positive therapeutic outcomes – for example, depression may look different depending on your cultural background. Think this is approach may be right for you? Reach out to one of TherapDen’s culturally sensitive therapy experts today.

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More westernized modalities focus on symptoms, whereas other cultures may include other facets of life like one's story and legacy. Communal trauma exists and can influence biographical change. Without the inclusion of one's culture and communal history; it is possible that both areas of dis-ease and appropriate treatment methods may be overlooked.

— Brittney George, Licensed Professional Counselor in , VA

As a therapist I not only welcome but celebrate all the “stuff” that comes with my clients’ identities and I will work within my professional role and in my personal life to advocate for the needs of my clients living in marginalized communities. Which is why I operate from a fat positive, sex positive, social justice, anti-oppression, and allyship framework.

— Amber Lynn Connell, Licensed Professional Counselor in Hatboro, PA
 

Cultural backgrounds have an enormous effect on the ways in which we operate in relationships (both with ourselves and others), work, school, and in the world at large. It is crucial to understand the influences that are present in your life in order to understand who you are, how you feel, and what you want to create in your life. It is possible to exist in the world in a powerful way despite the ways in which your identities may be marginalized. I can help you do that.

— Jennie Wang-Hall, Psychologist in San Marcos, CA

As a Black gay male therapist, I feel I understand people's needs who come from diverse cultural backgrounds. As a person who endeavors to be culturally humble, I encourage exploration in the areas of Age, Developmental disabilities, Indigenous heritage, National origin, Racial identity, Ethnic identity, Gender, Socioeconomic Status, and sexual orientation.

— Uriah Cty M.A., LMFT # 121606, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA
 

I have special expertise in bilingual assessment and multicultural competence in both graduate school and internship training. I have extensive clinical experience working with culturally diverse clients and continue to stay current in culturally sensitive therapy through workshops. I have published, conducted workshops, and served as an expert consultant in several states in the area of bilingual assessment.

— Marylyn Sines, Psychologist in Southlake, TX

Culturally sensitive therapy is important to me because it helps me to understand a client’s background, ethnicity, and belief system. With me practicing culturally sensitive therapy, I am able to communicate an awareness of my client's culture, beliefs, and practices, and I have an awareness of the client's goals and expectations.

— Chioko Grevious, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in Sacramento, CA
 

As a white clinician, I strongly believe it is my job to orient my work around acknowledging systems of oppression, because I know the therapy room exists in the world, not in a vacuum. I believe therapy can be a liberation tool against oppression because the more we can feel, grieve and talk about these systems, the more fortified we are to resist them. Your ancestral roots, intersecting identities, and cultural practices are an honor for me to make space for in our work together.

— Talia Chanoff, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in ,

For someone who holds an identity that is a cultural other, it is important that therapy is a space that is protected from further cultural othering. Culturally sensitive or Culturally humble therapy is a space that prioritizes and centers someone's cultural experience. Meaning, you don't have to defend why your family was the way it was - rather, you can experience acceptance for your cultural parts and process healing in therapy together.

— Ji Eun Ko, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in San Diego, CA
 

Culturally sensitive therapy emphasizes the therapist's understanding of a client’s background, ethnicity, and belief system. Therapists can incorporate cultural sensitivity into their work to accommodate and respect differences in opinions, values, and attitudes of various cultures and different types of people.

— Amelia Jayanty, Therapist in San Francisco, CA

As a Black gay male therapist, I feel I understand people's needs who come from diverse cultural backgrounds. As a person who endeavors to be culturally humble, I encourage exploration in the areas of Age, Developmental disabilities, Indigenous heritage, National origin, Racial identity, Ethnic identity, Gender, Socioeconomic Status, and sexual orientation.

— Uriah Cty M.A., LMFT # 121606, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA
 

As an immigrant, I recognize that we are all a product of our culture and that cultures contextualize what we believe to be good, acceptable, appropriate or permissible. Cultures also define what success means, what importance failures deserve and our relationships with those around us. I will help my clients by understanding their cultural substructure and help them build solutions that are respectful of the aspects of their cultural tapestry they want to maintain.

— Foad Afshar, Psychotherapist in Manchester, NH

Our practice takes an anti racist stance in all the work we do. We use a social justice framework in our work, understanding that we are constantly learning, educating ourselves, and being humble about our client's needs. Often certain behaviors and beliefs are pathologized by clinicians without taking into context a person's cultural beliefs and history.

— Karen Rothstein Pineda, Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Oak Park, IL
 

I was raised in a family that were open minded. Throughout my life I have sought to be involved in social justice activities. I acquired a minor in ethnic studies and surround myself with people different from myself to continue to grow. I seek opportunities for additional training in cultural competency. The most important thing that makes me an expert in this area is knowing that I am not an expert in others' lives and learning never ends, it is ongoing.

— ShannonElaine John, Counselor in Fort Morgan, CO

Personal life experience and 6 years professional experience

— Myra Flor Arpin, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in Shoreline, WA
 

In order to heal, you must be accurately seen and accepted! I see therapy as an opportunity for you to be seen in your wholeness, while we unpack the systemic and structural oppression you combat and survive every day. I utilize careful attunement in session to understand you as the incredible, unique, expansive person you are. Outside of session, I remain active in my own education to better understand various identities you may hold that are different from my own.

— Sam Krehel, Mental Health Counselor in , WA

Many of the clients who see me experience identity issues or trauma symptoms related to racially based or intergenerational traumas. My professional training and experience as an activist and advocate spanning decades underlies much of my focus on racial and social justice. I'm particularly attuned to issues of "difference" among those whose experiences do not reflect dominant thinking regardless of whether that experience reflects marginalization: Mixed-race, interracial and multicultural.

— Meira Greenfeld, Psychotherapist in Phoenix, AZ
 

I was raised in a family that were open minded. Throughout my life I have sought to be involved in social justice activities. I acquired a minor in ethnic studies and surround myself with people different from myself to continue to grow. I seek opportunities for additional training in cultural competency. The most important thing that makes me an expert in this area is knowing that I am not an expert in others' lives and learning never ends, it is ongoing.

— ShannonElaine John, Counselor in Fort Morgan, CO

It's my responsibility to stay aware of my privilege and bias in the therapy room, and acknowledge mistakes when I get it wrong. I demonstrate respectful curiosity about an individual's belief system and cultural background, as well as their unique experience in the world. I work to validate past and present experiences of systemic racism, misogyny, homophobia, and marginalization .

— Pamela Hamer, Psychologist
 

I hope to help my clients increase in insight, self-compassion, and authenticity while holding and acknowledging the larger sociocultural context within which we meet.

— Jessica Kim, Post-Doctoral Fellow in Seattle, WA