Constructing a Queer Life: On the Choice to Parent, or Be Child-Free

Constructing a Queer Life: On the Choice to Parent, or Be Child-Free

Arrow Pointing Over Rainbow

Many people grow up following a cultural life script: you go to school, get a job, marry your one true love and start a family. Happily Ever After! At least, that’s a common scenario many cultures, based on heteronormativity, have historically supported. But as many of us grow up, we realize that that version of

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My One Problem

arch reflected in water

It is always foolish to oversimplify complex problems. Nonetheless from the viewpoint of the Dreaming, regardless of the complexity of your life, you can have only one problem – ignoring the Dreaming background to reality. Ignoring the Dreaming means marginalizing the deepest unformulated experiences that create your actions in everyday life. Every time you ignore

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Polyphobia: Anti-Polyamorous Prejudice and Discrimination

group overlooking sea at sunset

Eli Sheff is considered a leading expert when it comes to polyamory and stigma. Eli is the CEO and Director of Legal Services at the Sheff Consulting Group, a think-tank of experts specializing in diverse subcultures and under-served populations. The following is an article she wrote for Psychology Today about polyphobia and discrimination.  Prejudice is making judgements about

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Domestic Violence: Power and Rank Dynamics

people walking through train station

I practiced family law for 10 years, some 20 years ago now, taking on several domestic violence cases. The police would be called to a house because a man had physically beaten a woman. By the time the police got there, he had released his anger freely, privately; publicly, he presented as calm and rational. The woman, being less powerful, was less free to fight back and express her anger privately; feeling safer once the police had arrived, she was now free to express her terror, anger, and viewpoint.

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How to React After Accidentally Misgendering Someone

sketched figures facing one another

This article was originally published in 2014 through the Q Center in Portland, OR. We are delighted to share it with you. Being misgendered can create an uncomfortable, embarrassing and even unsafe situation for many trans* individuals. There’s no doubt that when working toward creating or contributing to safer, more accessible spaces and services for

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Green House Experiences & Insights

Greenhouse Psychotherapy Training Program Logo

We are now accepting applications for the Green House 2019 Cohort. Launched in 2016, the Green House is LifeWorks’ postgraduate psychotherapy training program. Participants join us here in Chicago for 12 months of tuition-free learning and real-world clinical experience centered on self-development, individual supervision, and cultural competence. Wondering if the Green House is right for

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Meet Jacque Pfeifer, MAMFT

Jacque Pfeifer, MAMFT is one of four therapists to join LifeWorks this year through the Green House, our postgraduate psychotherapy training and mentoring program. What first drew you to the Green House? Initially, I was drawn to the Green House program because I am passionate about working with marginalized communities, especially the non-monogamy and LGBTQ communities. As

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Meet Meryl Morris, LCSW

Meryl Morris, LCSW is one of four therapists to join LifeWorks this year through the Green House, our postgraduate psychotherapy training and mentoring program. What first drew you to the Greenhouse? I first became aware of LifeWorks after meeting Rami Henrich and Cindy Trawinski at the 2015 Alternative Sexualities Conference. They invited me to a KPACT

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Caring in Uncertain Times

elderly woman in sunlight

We are pleased to share this post by Jacqueline Boyd from The Care Plan.  Jacqueline is a tireless advocate for healthcare needs of the elderly and LGBTQ+ community providing guidance and planning for her clients.  by Jacqueline Boyd “How will changes to the Affordable Care Act affect my insurance coverage?” “Will my 85-year-old parent be

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Why Do Sex Workers Need Our Support?

statues holding hands in solidarity, sex worker support

by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. and Cassandra Damm, LCSW In a previous article, we introduced the topic of sex work, considered its history and politics, and explored some identifying attributes of the diverse population of individuals sometimes referred to as sex workers. In this article, we would like to offer a few guidelines about the many

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Dreaming Our Way Into the Future

dreamcatcher

At this time in our world, we may need the power to dream and the ability to understand one another’s dreams more than ever.  Our colleague, David Bedrick, J.D., Dipl. PW has been writing about dreams and other psychological and social issues for many years now.  In the blog below, originally published by Psychology Today, David

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Managing Fear After the Election

Hope with flowers

Managing fear has been difficult for many people in the days following the 2016 US Presidential Election.  No matter which candidate you supported, you may find yourself overwhelmed by distressing news reports, tense conversations with loved ones, and your own complicated feelings. LifeWorks is an explicitly inclusive therapy practice that welcomes all people. We know how

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A Gratitude Experiment

Woman smiling serving customer

“Thank you.” Two words most of us say countless times each day.  Saying ‘thank you’ recently came up in a client session and we started processing what that phrase means.  Are we saying the words when we are expressing gratitude or just out of habit? I remember my mother (as many parents do) training me

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Sex Work & Sex Workers 101

by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. & Cassandra Damm, LCSW It has been a pleasure and very enriching to be working with the folks at SWOP Chicago, the local Sex Worker Outreach Project, to develop a support group for sex workers. Cassandra Damm is a social worker who volunteers with SWOP Chicago and co-authored this blog post which

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Interview with Jo Flannery, AMFT, MA Sexology

Jo Flannery, AMFT, MA Sexology, is one of four therapists to join LifeWorks this year through the Greenhouse, our postgraduate psychotherapy training and mentoring program. The Greenhouse provides new clinicians with opportunities to develop their identities as therapists, deepen their skills and unique strengths, and expand their cultural competence through hands-on experience and educational modules.Click

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Cultural Competence and Bias

Painting of faces and hands

As therapists, we recognize our ethical obligations to know and acknowledge the limits of our training and skills. We know that our expertise grows over time with experience and supervision, training, reading, dialogue and further training. These activities contribute to our mastery of specialized areas, methods or skills. But what about cultural competence? How do

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In the Shadow of Disney World

Palm Tree Shadows

ORLANDO SHOOTING JUNE 11, 2016 When I think Orlando, I think of sun filled days,  blue skies, parents and grandparents offering up days of fun and excitement, showering their children with the time of their lives at Disney World. But from  yesterday on, I will think of Orlando in a different way.  I will think

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Becoming a Poly Ally: How to Start

pink rectangles on red background

This blog was inspired by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) blog How to Be a LGBTQ Ally. I am grateful to HRC for their groundbreaking leadership in the fight for the rights of LGBT people in US and around the world. To read the original HRC blog, click http://www.hrc.org/blog/entry/how-to-be-an-lgbt-ally For a lot of people, learning

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8 Ways to Take Action Against Islamophobia

five people holding "Hug a Muslim" sign

Prejudice, stereotyping, bias—however we understand these tendencies and attitudes, we can learn to identify, confront, wrestle with, accept, and change them within ourselves. Sometimes, however, doing so is possible only with great difficulty. Discrimination takes many forms, including harassment, bullying, hate speech, and scapegoating. Such behaviors put others at risk, cause harm and—at times—may even

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Growth and Decay in Life: What Sustains Us?

snowflake

“Life has always seemed to me like a plant that lives on its rhizome.  Its true life is invisible, hidden underground in the rhizome.  The part that appears above ground lasts only a single summer.  Then it withers away-an ephemeral apparition.  When we think of the unending growth and decay of life and civilizations, we

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