Topic - Cultural, Social & Racial Issues

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We've gathered Psychotherapy Networkers most popular posts and arranged them here by topic.

Race Matters

How Far Have We Come? Ken Hardy Weighs In

Ken Hardy

By Kenneth Hardy - If ever there were a critical moment for constructive and courageous conversations about race, power, and privilege in our practices, communities, and the broader society, this is it.

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Feminism and Psychotherapy

Harriet Lerner on the Legacy of the Women's Movement

Ryan Howes

By Ryan Howes - For 30 years, psychologist Harriet Lerner has been one of the leading feminist thinkers within the profession, as well as an enormously successful author who brings the insights of therapy to a large general audience. In the following interview, she speaks about her body of work, and addresses the question of the continuing impact of feminism on psychotherapy today.

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What It Really Takes to Communicate with Boys

Helping Unresponsive Clients Expand Their Limited Emotional Vocabulary

Adam Cox

By Adam Cox - As we raise and support the next generation of boys, it's vital that we help them find the words to define themselves and relate to others. To do so, therapists and parents alike must go beyond the business-as-usual inquiries about thoughts and feelings to discover conversational approaches that stimulate a real connection and encourage them to open up to a broader range of verbal expression.

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VIDEO: Stephen Porges on How Trauma Affects Our Ability to Connect

The Science Behind Healthy Relationships

Stephen Porges

Stress responses aren't only vested within the sympathetic nervous system’s capacity to support fight-or-flight behaviors. There’s another defense system that’s mediated through a vagal circuit, says Stephen Porges, creator of the Polyvagal Theory. In the following video from his 2016 Networker Symposium keynote address, he explains how the vagus nerve is affected by trauma, and what this means for our ability to build meaningful relationships.

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Six Things Therapists Are Saying After the Election

. . . And Why You Shouldn't Be Afraid to Call Out the Chicken Littles

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - Regardless of where you stand politically, it’s hard to deny that the 2016 presidential election was one of the most stress-inducing in recent history. Democrats and Republicans alike continue to wrestle with lingering anxiety and tension. But none of this comes as a surprise to most therapists, who’ve been on the front lines of treating post-election stress. Here are some valuable lessons they’ve taken away from their recent work helping clients in these post-election times. 

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Are You Suffering from Planetary Anguish?

Reversing Climate Change May Not Be Beyond Our Reach

Mary Pipher

By Mary Pipher - We live in a culture of denial, especially about the grim reality of climate change. Sure, we want to savor the occasional shrimp cocktail without having to brood about ruined mangroves, but we can’t solve a problem we can’t face.

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In the Wake of the Election ...

Taking Heart

Rick Hanson

By Rick Hanson - Editor's Note: In the wake of the turmoil of the long election campaign and Tuesday night’s unexpected results, many of us—both therapists and clients alike—are wondering how to make sense of our emotional reactions and how to get our bearings again. Putting the politics aside, what do we know as therapists that can guide us in moving forward in both our personal lives as well as our work with clients?

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The 2016 Election Is Raising Ethical Concerns for Therapists

Is There a Place for Politics in Therapy?

Chris Lyford

By Chris Lyford - It's almost a cardinal rule that therapy and politics don’t mix. However, concerned about the stakes in this year’s presidential election, some therapists are wondering whether they have a professional, and even moral, obligation to bring politics into the consulting room.

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Understanding the Roots of Political Differences

How Political Leanings Boil Down to Moral Beliefs and Group Loyalties

Ryan Howes

By Ryan Howes - Perhaps you've had the experience of getting lost in a political argument in which you became exasperated that people on the other side couldn't see what was so obvious, despite your best efforts to reason with them. In the following interview, author Jonathan Haidt explains why politics is ultimately about our stance on fundamental moral beliefs and group loyalties--things that aren't usually influenced by facts, figures, or rational policy debate.

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Psychotherapy's Duty to the Wider World

Reflections on the Challenges and Rewards of Volunteer Work

Jeffrey Kottler

By Jeffrey Kottler - Who has time to change the world when we already have our hands full trying to make a living and get through the obstacle course of a normal work week? It's not impossible. I now spend several months each year working in remote regions of Nepal, helping lower-caste girls, who are at the greatest risk of being forced into early marriage or trafficked into sex slavery. It's when I'm here that I feel most alive, and at least for the few months after I return, I feel a new clarity and focus about what's most important.

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