B E N T

Psychological Services for Gender & Sexual Minorities

Boulder, Colorado

BENT is the division of my psychotherapy practice that focuses on working with members of gender and/or sexual minority communities.

 
 

GENDER
One of the main reasons I decided to become a psychologist was in order to be able to work with transgender / transsexual / gender-queer / gender nonconforming folks. I view gender identity as a uniquely individual and endlessly varying experience. I thereby see all experiences and expressions of gender as part of the natural spectrum of human life and an important aspect of personal development, not as an illness or aberration.

My philosophy: I am committed to using my expertise in psychological health and healing to help people who experience oppression due to their gender identity or expression to live more comfortably, safely, and with greater contentment inside their own skin. In a society that is so phobic of gender variance that it not only marginalizes and silences these individuals, but often lashes out against them violently, I see providing supportive therapy as social justice work. I am adamant that freedom of gender identity and expression be considered a fundamental human right.

My training: While I have sought out specialized training on how to work with gender as a psychotherapist, my approach is most centrally informed by my undergraduate work in women’s studies, where I was lucky to learn to think about gender in a phenomenally complex. I promise a non-judgmental approach that is not driven by any agenda other than helping you to grow into better alignment with yourself and your world. 

The “letter”: have experience conducting assessments and writing letters for clients wanting to begin hormone therapy or seeking surgery. I will work with your medical providers to facilitate this process. Each assessment is unique, and I will work with you to determine whether you can simply complete a single assessment, or whether a course of psychotherapy would be recommended as well.

Children & Adolescents: As with adults, I work with children and adolescents who are in all stages of gender exploration and/or transition. I provide diagnostic assessments for youth whose families want to better understand their child’s gender identity, mental health letters for the “safe folder,” ongoing psychotherapy for youth and their families, parent coaching, and letters in support of puberty blocking and/or hormone therapy.

Other supports: I am available to meet with family members, schools, and employers/HR departments to help ease communication around transition, coming out, and establishing appropriate support systems.










 

SEXUALITY
GLBQQ (gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, questioning): you may be seeking therapy primarily because you are having difficulties or have questions directly related to your sexual orientation. Or you might be seeking therapy for another reason, and just want to know that your sexual orientation will not be an "issue" for your therapist. I can undoubtedly provide an educated, non-judgmental ear in either of these cases. You will find that while I am unabashedly queer-positive, I am also well acquainted with the terrible suffering that some people experience because of their sexual orientation, and can help folks to navigate the many layers of distress (personal, familial, relational, occupational, spiritual) they may be confronting in coming out or being out.

Other Sexual Minorities: Basically, those who are into a type of relationship (say, polyamorous) or sexual behavior or community (say, BDSM) that falls outside the "vanilla mainstream." Again, I can help you to address concerns directly related to your sexuality, or allow you to be comfortable knowing that I bring a particular awareness and acceptance of these activities to our work together as we focus on other topics.

SEXUAL TRAUMA                 

Certainly I do _not_ assume that members of gender and sexual minority groups have a history of sexual trauma. But for those who do, there is frequently additional shame, isolation, and/or difficulty associated due to one's gender or sexuality. This is a particularly important area of my work, as I am able to combine my expertise in providing cutting-edge treatments for the after-effects of sexual trauma with a complex awareness of how gender and sexuality can influence people's experiences.







              A chilly day at Boulder Pride 2009...


Tara Eastcott, Psy.D.

2955 Valmont Road, Suite 120

Boulder, CO 80301

720.236.2821

www.tarapsyd.com

drt@tarapsyd.com