Racial Identity

Racial identity is a multifaceted construct, the development of which is a lifelong process that involves how a person interprets messages about racial groups. Racial identity has been described as the significance and meaning of race in one’s life. Our racial identity is an important part of how we see ourselves and how others see us. Racial identity development is relevant to all racial groups – but typically plays a larger role in the experiences of minorities. Many things can influence an individual’s racial identity, including pop culture and current events. If you are working through issues related to racial identity, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s experts today.

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Today’s cultural climate is taxing. Your life matters. Through the Woods offers counseling that’s sensitive to cultural issues and the experiences of people of color. Counseling at Through the Woods lets you process trauma, think out loud in a safe place, and truly feel seen. Let your experience be witnessed.

— Rosalind Herrington-Moxon, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in Olympia, WA

I am a member of the Anti-Racism Committee of the Mid-Atlantic Group Psychotherapy Association and I work with the Center for the Study of Race, Ethnicity and Culture at the Washington School of Psychiatry.

— Jonathan Lebolt, PhD, Psychotherapist in Bethesda, MD

Today’s cultural climate is taxing—your life matters. Through the Woods offers counseling that’s sensitive to cultural issues and the experiences of people of color. Counseling at Through the Woods lets you process trauma, think out loud in a safe place, and genuinely feel seen. Let your experience be witnessed.

— Rosalind Herrington-Moxon, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor Associate in Olympia, WA

As someone who identifies as a QWOC, feminist, and social justice advocate, I'm particularly passionate about working to restore wholeness and health within black, brown, and queer communities. So often, therapy fails to address the impact of racial identity on one's experience in the world. Integrating social context into treatment means recognizing not just systemic racism and intersectional oppression, but also cultural traditions, expectations, and pride into our work.

— Shawnese Givens, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Boston, MA

I prioritize greater contexts of generational, ancestral and community strength as we navigate difficulties you may be experiencing. I also strive to support you in re-discovering your power by examining the sociopolitical histories of the many physical places we inhabit.

— Alex Subbaraman, Psychotherapist in Richfield, MN

The focus of our practice is work with people who have been stigmatized due to otherness. Often this is the result of systemic oppression. In addition, we have experience working with people trying to make sense of who they are due to issues surrounding transracial adoption.

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

I entered the field of therapy because I noticed there is a lack of support and structure for those who are racial minorities. Our world is filled with rhetoric of what it means to be a racial minority now and my goal is to ensure that you belong.

— Cayla Minaiy, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Beverly Hills, CA

Much of my graduate level research and training has been in understanding the complex racial identity development of people of color and White individuals. My dissertation research included examining how Black clients responded to White therapists who overtly broach cross-racial differences in the therapy session.

— Catherine Bitney, Clinical Psychologist in Austin, TX

Many of my clients, who have reported symptoms of anxiety or depression also describe experiences where they have faced hostility or discrimination. Some struggle with what it means to be multicultural in a compartmentalized world. Others have struggled with self-acceptance and rejection from members of their own race. All seem to benefit from talk therapy to validate feelings that are often dismissed by others. CBT has been effective in helping to learn coping skills.

— Rachelle Burrell, Clinical Social Worker

I am a Vietnamese - American and child of a war refugee. Navigating multiple cultures in one’s family lineage, especially those which clash with each other, means that multicultural people have to constantly pick and choose among value sets that are not always in agreement. As a multiracial person it’s important to have a healthy sense of your identity - who you are, who you are not, and who you would like to be, in a way that respects your cultural background.

— Elaine Dove, Licensed Professional Counselor in Austin, TX

Transracial adoption is the act of placing a child of one racial or ethnic group with adoptive parents of another racial or ethnic group, and the majority of transracial adoptions in the US have involved the placement of a non-white child into a white family. What has been less simple to quantify are the long-term social, emotional, & spiritual implications of transracial adoption on the transracial adoptees themselves, and shining light into these murky areas is my primary clinical focus.

— Andrés González, Therapist

As a Black therapist, I will give you the space to process your identity and racial trauma, as well as, any challenges that come with navigating a white supremacy society.

— Marc Campbell, Licensed Mental Health Counselor in ,

As a person of color raised in the U.S., I understand it is extemeley difficult and traumatizing to deal with the daily issues that racism and systemic racism create. I work with individuals that seek to understand how their racial identity humanizes and empowers their being in this world.

— Julio Garibay, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Gardena, CA

Race informs every area of our lives--relationships, social, familial, financial, educational, medical, gender, class, safety and more. I believe deep and profound healing can happen through the exploration of racial identity. I use a decolonizing framework to assist clients in defining the impact of race in their lives and work to develop and recognize the client's strengths and inner resources to navigate race-related stress and trauma.

— Camara Meri Rajabari, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in ,

As a multiracial/mixed person, I have several years of experience learning about mixed race identities and racial identity development. In addition to my own lived experience, I draw on academic research, films, novels, personal accounts and more in my approach to this topic.

— Matt Bouse, Therapist in Ann Arbor, MI

As a therapist of multiracial and multicultural background, I have experienced the push and pulls of celebration my culture alongside being ashamed of other parts. Navigating these many lines can be tricky, however I believe that through a collaborative conversation, we can honor ourselves and our identities in a way that makes sense to us.

— Brandon Tran, Associate Marriage & Family Therapist in San Diego, CA

In the U.S., colonization and imperialism have functioned to extract power and voice from many. As a result, the line between trauma & culture for many folks of color (especially Black & Indigenous) can become blurred. My approach is rooted in celebrating & exploring identities, and understanding how our stories can nourish connection to self and others.

— Alex Subbaraman, Psychotherapist in Richfield, MN