Category: Cultural Humility

Your Best Friend Tells You They are Kinky

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by Carrie Jameson, LCPC So, your best friend tells you they are kinky and/or they practice BDSM (Bondage and Discipline [BD], Dominance and Submission [Ds], Sadism and Masochism [SM]). Whether it is your best friend, a sibling, parent, or child,  you may want to be an ally, but simply don’t know what to do or […]

Cultural Competence & Bias

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by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. 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, reading, dialogue and further training. These activities contribute to our mastery of specialized areas, methods or skills. But what about cultural […]

Beyond Ethics: Power in the Helping Relationship

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by Julie Diamond, Ph.D. When I was working as a therapist, I often asked myself about the future of psychotherapy. I even wrote an article about it in 2000, called Five Predictions on the Future of Psychotherapy. In it, I said that the paternalistic doctor-patient model will be replaced by a partnership model. I wasn’t […]

Power Dynamics Go Beyond Ethics

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Most graduate programs mention the issue of a power difference between client and therapist as a potential ethical issue. But power dynamics go beyond ethics: power dynamics shape how we feel and perceive ourselves and each other. Power is subtle and impacts the psychotherapy relationship as well most relationships. Clients in kinky or polyam communities […]

Polyamorous Relationships: The Long Haul

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by Rami Henrich, LCSW The following is an excerpt from a recently published article by Rami Henrich, that can be found in Elizabeth Sheff’s book, Stories from the Polycule: Real Life in Polyamorous Families. The first of its kind, this anthology collects stories and essays written by and about real people living in “polycules”: the […]

A New Polyamory Book: Stories from the Polycule

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We are pleased to announce that our friend and associate, sociologist and researcher, Dr. Elisabeth Sheff has just published a new polyamory book, Stories from the Polycule: Real Life in Polyamorous Families. The first of its kind, this anthology collects stories and essays written by and about real people living in “polycules”: the networks between people in […]

Everyone Has Bias

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by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. No one is immune from bias, not even us therapists! Everyone has bias. Therapist bias takes many forms, especially with regards to clients’ sexuality, gender, erotic orientation, etc… Bias ranges from misinformed opinions about BDSM to confusing polyamory with infidelity to other subtle perceptions, beliefs and attitudes.  Bias is a part […]

Therapist Bias

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by Cindy Trawinski, Psy.D. Bias influences all of us — even therapists. In fact, one 2011 study indicates that as many as 50% of clients identifying as polyamorous had seen therapists that they felt lacked cultural competency or were biased. Meanwhile, a 2006 study by Drs. Keely Kolmes, Wendy Stock, and Charles Moser found that […]