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Gay or Lesbian Issues

LGBTQ psychology is a field of psychology surrounding the lives of LGBTQ individuals, in particular the diverse range of psychological perspectives and experiences of these individuals’. It covers different aspects such as identity development including the ‘coming out’ process, parenting and family practices and supports for LGBTQ individuals, as well as issues of prejudice and discrimination involving the LGBTQ community.

Gay affirmative psychotherapy is a form of psychotherapy for non-heterosexuals, specifically gay and lesbian clients, which focuses on client comfort in working towards authenticity and self-acceptance regarding sexual orientation, and does not attempt to "change" them to heterosexual, or to "eliminate or diminish" same-sex "desires and behaviors". The American Psychological Association (APA) offers guidelines and materials for gay affirmative psychotherapy.[1] Affirmative psychotherapy states that homosexuality or bisexuality is not a mental illness, in accordance with global scientific consensus. In fact, embracing and affirming gay identity can be a key component to recovery from other mental illnesses or substance abuse. Clients whose religious beliefs are interpreted as teaching against homosexual behavior may require some other method of integration of their possibly conflicting religious and sexual selves.

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