• Sexuality in the Therapeutic Relationship: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of the Experiences of Gay Therapists

      Porter, James; Hulbert-Williams, Lee; Chadwick, Darren; University of Wolverhampton; University of Chester (Taylor & Francis, 2014-10-17)
      Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) clients have reported experiencing heterosexist/homophobic attitudes from heterosexual therapists, but this has seldom been discussed for gay therapists. Such experiences could impact the therapeutic process and a gay therapist’s willingness to self-disclose their sexuality. Self- disclosure of sexuality can be therapeutically beneficial for LGBTQ or heterosexual clients. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with seven gay male therapists and analyzed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Five themes emerged: affinity for work- ing with LGBTQ clients, heterosexual males’ resistance to the therapeutic process, the impact of homophobia within the therapeu- tic relationship, empathy through shared humanity, and utilizing therapist sexuality as a tool within the therapeutic relationship.