Psychology, Department of
The Often‑Circuitous Path to Affirming Mental Health Care for Transgender and Gender‑Diverse Adults
Date of this Version
Current Psychiatry Reports (2023) 25:105–111
Purpose of Review We describe recent research regarding access to affirming mental health services for transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) adults and explore new resources available for therapists to inform evidence-based practice with TGD clients.
Recent Findings Barriers and facilitators at all socioecological levels impact TGD adults’ mental health help-seeking. TGD adults often interface with mental health providers while accessing gender-affirming medical care, though new standards of care are likely to alter this typically common path to mental health services. Efforts to improve therapist education, such as therapy manuals, are increasingly available and a necessary step to increase the number of competent, affirming therapists.
Summary More work—both advocacy and research—is needed to fully expand accessible, affirming mental health services for TGD adults. Better understanding factors impacting different steps of the mental health help-seeking process and conducting randomized controlled trials of affirming mental health services are important next steps.
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