GLBTQ – Anxiety/Depression

     Anxiety and depression in the GLBTQ community is prevalent.  It leads to low self-esteem, excessive use of drugs/sex, and disconnect from people in your life.  Some LGBTQ men and women live truly lonely lives while others have friends and/or family around and still feel lonely.  Unfortunately, it can lead to suicide attempts, and, most sadly, the end of a life.

     The reasons for the anxiety and depression are numerous and legitimate.  It is also very possible to decrease or eliminate the anxiety and depression and increase the self-esteem of GLBTQ adolescents and adults.  I work with men and women in understanding the messages they received (and currently receive) about being GLBTQ and the impact these messages have.  We then begin to re-define the outlook each has about being GLBTQ in the face of the rejection and messages from certain segments of society.  All the while, I am working with each individual on incorporating healthy behaviors that reinforce a positive feeling about being LGBTQ.  

     Beyond the negative messages that many get about being GLBTQ, some anxiety and fear is created by believing that in accepting themselves as GLBTQ, they have to live some kind of, “gay lifestyle”.  I work with individuals in deconstructing that myth and building the life that they want to live.  The truth is that most of us who are GLBTQ are hard-working, law abiding, tax paying, non-addicted individuals who are surrounded by loved ones.  Some of us are single, some of us are in long-term relationships.  Some of us have kids and some of us don’t.  All of us deserve to be loved and accepted and we need to have love and acceptance of ourselves.

     VIOLENCE!  BASHING!  These are events that people experience and suffer silently because of fear and embarrassment.  Having been a victim myself, I know the anxiety, depression, and humiliation it brings.  I also know how important it is to deal with these events and fears.  If you have been the victim of violence, bashing, or threats, please don’t suffer in silence and humiliation.  Talking about your experience.  Getting perspective and strategies to deal with what happened to you can have a very positive impact in your life.  I know this from experience and I can provide you with the support, insight, and strategies you need.

     I am not a religious counselor.   I am, however,  very well aware of the role that some major religions have played in hurting GLBTQ adolescents and adults.  I also understand the value that religion and spirituality has for LGBTQ individuals and families.  I work with many in understanding and integrating their need for religion/spirituality in a healthy life with the messages they get from some religious individuals and entities.   Being active in your religious and spiritual practices and beliefs contributes to self-esteem and alleviating depression and anxiety.  This is not something that is important to everyone but if it is important to you, I would gladly talk to you about it or refer you to someone who is very good in this area.