Who do we think we are? Lessons from emergent gender and sexual identities – Neil Young
Time & Location
About the Event
Lessons from emergent gender and sexual identities.
Gender and sexual identity are lenses through which all of us are constantly negotiating our place and meaning in the world, against a background of powerful binaries and stereotypes, most notably male/female and gay/straight. Yet, in recent years we have been seeing a sea change amongst teenagers and young adults, who are increasingly resisting traditional, binary gender identities and not defining themselves as heterosexual.
In this full day workshop – and with the support of the creative arts – we will examine the impact of this generational shift for us as therapists and the clients we work with of all ages. How have our own experiences of gender and sexual identity – good, bad and indifferent – shaped who we are and how we react in our professional lives? How might our experience of and being witness to institutional and individual sexism, misogyny, anti-LGBT prejudice and/or rigid gender roles play out in our lives and in the therapy room?
This training will create a safe space to explore our beliefs and experiences through structured exercises, case studies and exploration of contemporary culture and research about lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans (LGBT) children and young people. The day will involve a mix of individual, pair working, small and large group discussions, films clips and triad work with plenty of time and space to digest and reflect along the way.
Aims and objectives
- To explore the fluidity of sexual and gender identity formation and the enduring power of binary gender and sexual identities and dominant stereotypical roles
- To offer participants the opportunity to creatively explore the embodied realities of external and internalized prejudice within themselves and the wider training group as well as reflecting on dominant power dynamics across society and their impact
- To examine the reality of LGBT and gender-fluid children and young peoples’ lives, including emergent gender and sexual identities, discrimination, coping strategies and their implications for us as human beings and therapists.
Learning outcomes – what participants will be able to demonstrate in terms of knowledge and skills following the workshop
Participants will be given the opportunity to:
- Explore the importance of ongoing personal work and embodiment as a prerequisite to therapeutic work with children and young people – and the inner child and teenager of adults – in order that their clients – are welcomed into a safe and therapeutic space in all their diversity.
- Better understand and reflect on the structural realities of dominant power relations and discrimination, including homophobia, bi-phobia and trans-phobia alongside an exploration of the intersectional impacts of race, faith, immigration status, class, disability, age and the prejudices connected with their expression and existence.
- Consider developmentally helpful approaches to working ‘clinically’ with children and young people – and the inner child and teenager of adults – including creativity and the arts.
- Understand the importance of a secure attachment in the developing child and how the absence of this for many LGBTQ and gender-fluid children and young people can have long-lasting impacts on their quality of life.
About Neil Young
I have over 20 year’s experience as a trainer and queer community advocate – from setting up youth projects in inner city and rural contexts (including Mosaic Youth LGBT Youth Centre to advocating for LGBT Londoners as an Advisor to the first two Mayors of London. I have for many years, designed and delivered training, workshops and conferences on gender and sexual identity and the impact of prejudice to professionals, including therapists.
Last year I published ‘Young People: Not Straight, Not Narrow’, in the BACP University & College Counselling Journal, exploring changes in gender and sexual identities amongst young people in the UK and beyond. Partly based on interviews with therapists, academics and youth workers, the article includes analysis, top tips and resources for therapists. I have just graduated with a distinction from my MA Integrative Arts Psychotherapy at the Institute for Arts and Therapy in Education and am working in placement at ELOP, an LGBT community project.
I look forward to meeting you on the training, which is open to all trainee and qualified counsellors and psychotherapists.
07940 112 142
Photo © Neil Young Photography
Cost £55 / £50 (for Aashna residents & students)
All Aashna events include a vegan/vegetarian lunch.
- Full Price£55£550£0