Pink Therapy: Beyond Gay and Straight

On March 12th 2016 the UK LGBTQ+ therapy organisation Pink Therapy ran a conference on working with bisexual people. You can read summaries of the conference here and here, and view all of the talks on the Pink Therapy YouTube channel for the conference.

New article on bisexual counselling competence


Brooks, L. M. & Inman, A. G. (2013). Bisexual Counseling Competence: Investigating the Role of Attitudes and Empathy. Journal of LGBT Issues in Counseling, 7 (1), 65-86.

Researchers have identified factors that contribute to counseling competence and multicultural competence, yet there continues to remain a gap in bisexual counseling competence. Negative attitudes faced by bisexual individuals have significant implications for their psychological well-being and identity development. It is important for clinicians to explore their ability to empathize with this population and their attitudes toward bisexual clients. This study sought to determine whether clinician empathy and attitudes toward bisexuality were significant predictors of perceived and actual competence with bisexual clients. The study surveyed 101 clinicians. Multivariate multiple regression analyses revealed that only attitudes toward bisexuality were significant predictors of perceived and actual bisexual counseling competency. Implications and limitations of the study are discussed.

New guidelines for working with sexual & gender minorities

The British Psychological Society have just published guidelines for psychologists working with sexual and gender minority clients (also of relevance to therapists, counsellors and other practitioners). The guidelines are freely downloadable and available to all.

The document includes guideline statements covering:

  • The socio-political context and attitudes towards sexual and gender minorities
  • Key issues in sexual and gender minority work
  • Children and young people
  • Schools and families
  • Education and training
  • Professional development

Regarding bisexuality, the guidelines (which were produced before the recent Bisexuality Report) says the following:

“Bisexuality can often be completely overlooked as a potential sexual identity because Western culture is still prone to see gender and sexuality as ‘dichotomous’ (you are either a man or a woman, you are either attracted to a man or a woman, see also section on gender minorities below) (Barker, 2007).Therefore, many people feel pushed towards a gay/lesbian or straight identity rather than feeling that bisexuality is a legitimate sexual identity in itself.

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