Services

Sexuality & Gender Identity - Ottawa

Now providing virtual sessions all over Ontario

MN Psychotherapy Services Ottawa

Sexuality & Gender Identity Services

Explore your sexuality or gender identity in a safe therapeutic space. Sexuality and gender identity are integral parts of overall well being.

Working with a therapist who is aware, supportive and experienced, can make a positive change in your life.

My sessions focus on the context and intersectional perspectives and how they affect the person’s sexuality and gender identities. We would discuss issues related to coming out, cultural, religious and social constructs of non-conventional identities, and more

We will work together to process feelings and thoughts surrounding your sexuality or gender expression.

I am a kink and fetish- aware professional.

What is gender identity?

Gender identity is one's own internal sense of self and their gender, whether that is man, woman, neither or both. Unlike gender expression, gender identity is not outwardly visible to others.*

Sexual orientation

refers to the enduring physical, romantic and/or emotional attraction to members of the same and/or other genders, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and straight orientations.

Sex

refers to a person's biological status and is typically assigned at birth, usually on the basis of external anatomy. Sex is typically categorized as male, female or intersex.

Gender

Gender is often defined as a social construct of norms, behaviors and roles that varies between societies and over time.

Services for Gender and Sexual Diverse Individuals LGBTQI+

If you are questioning your sexual or gender identity or you’re facing a gender- and sexuality- related issues,  LGBTQI+ affirming psychotherapy  can support and help you.

Issues addressed in Sexuality & Gender Identity Therapy Ottawa, Ontario

  • Gender identity, including questioning one’s gender identity, transitioning, and coping with discrimination and prejudice
  • Sexual orientation, including coming out, exploring one’s sexual identity, and dealing with discrimination and prejudice based on sexual orientation
  • Sexual dysfunction, including issues with sexual desire, arousal, and ability to orgasm
  • Sexual trauma, including coping with the aftermath of sexual abuse or assault
  • Relationship issues, including dealing with discrimination and prejudice in relationships, navigating non-traditional relationships, and building healthy relationships
  • Body image and self-esteem related to one’s gender and sexuality
  • Parenting and family dynamics related to one’s gender and sexuality
  • Career and workplace issues related to one’s gender and sexuality
  • Navigating and accessing healthcare related to gender and sexuality

FAQs - Gender and Sexuality Therapy, Ottawa

  • LGBTQI affirmative Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): This form of therapy focuses on identifying and changing negative thoughts and behaviors that may be contributing to the issue.
  • LGBTQI affirmative Person-centered therapy: This approach focuses on creating a safe and non-judgmental environment where the individual can explore their thoughts, feelings, and experiences related to their sexuality and gender identity.
  • LGBTQI affirmative Interpersonal therapy (IPT): This therapy focuses on relationships and communication, and can be helpful for addressing issues related to relationships and family dynamics related to sexuality and gender identity.
  • Gender Affirmative Therapy: This approach is for individuals who are questioning their gender identity or considering transitioning. This type of therapy focuses on providing a safe and affirming space for clients to explore their gender identity and provide support and guidance in the transition process.
  • It’s worth noting that some therapist may use an integration of different modalities and not just one type, it’s important to find a therapist who is trained and competent in working with issues related to sexuality and gender identity and that you feel comfortable with.

Therapy can help individuals understand and accept their gender identity or sexual orientation by providing a safe, non-judgmental, and confidential space to explore their thoughts, feelings, and experiences. A therapist who is trained and competent in working with issues related to sexuality and gender identity can provide support and guidance in the following ways:

  • Helping individuals understand the range of gender identities and sexual orientations that exist, and how to identify their own.
  • Helping individuals understand the impact of societal expectations and stereotypes on their gender identity and sexual orientation.
  • Helping individuals understand the impact of their personal history and experiences on their gender identity and sexual orientation.
  • Helping individuals understand and cope with any negative feelings or emotions they may have related to their gender identity or sexual orientation.
  • Helping individuals understand and communicate their gender identity and sexual orientation to others, if they choose to do so.
  • Helping individuals understand and navigate discrimination, prejudice, and any other challenges they may face related to their gender identity or sexual orientation.

Additionally, therapy can also help individuals to increase their self-awareness, self-acceptance and self-esteem, and build a sense of self-worth, which is crucial to live a fulfilling life.
It’s important to note that everyone’s journey is unique, and therapy can be tailored to meet the individual’s specific needs and goals. It is also important to find a therapist who is competent and trained in working with issues related to sexuality and gender identity and that you feel comfortable with.

There are several ways to find a therapist who specializes in treating issues related to sexuality and gender identity:

  • Ask for referrals from healthcare providers, friends, or family members who have had a positive experience with a therapist.
  • Check with professional organizations such as the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, or the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) for a list of therapists in your area who specialize in sexuality and gender identity.
  • Use online directories such as Psychology Today, GoodTherapy.org, who specialize in treating issues related to sexuality and gender identity.
  • Check with your insurance company to see if they have a list of therapists in your area who specialize sexuality and gender identity.
  • Consider reaching out to LGBTQIA+ centers, college campus counseling centers, or other organizations that may have a list of therapists who specialize in issues related to sexuality and gender identity.

It is important to interview the therapist, ask questions and feel comfortable with them before scheduling an appointment. Also, make sure that the therapist is licensed, trained and competent in working with issues related to sexuality and gender identity, and that they use an affirmative approach.

Yes, there are several self-help resources available for individuals dealing with issues related to sexuality and gender identity. Some examples include:

  • Books: There are many books available that provide information, support, and guidance for individuals dealing with issues related to sexuality and gender identity. Some popular titles include “The Velvet Rage: Overcoming the Pain of Growing Up Gay in a Straight Man’s World” by Alan Downs, “Transgender 101: A Simple Guide to a Complex Issue” by Nicholas Teich, and “The Gender Quest Workbook: A Guide for Teens and Young Adults Exploring Gender Identity” by Rylan Jay Testa, Deborah Coolhart, Jayme Peta.
  • Online Support Groups: There are many online support groups available for individuals dealing with issues related to sexuality and gender identity. These groups provide a safe, confidential, and supportive space for individuals to connect with others who have similar experiences.
  • Websites: There are many websites available that provide information, support, and resources for individuals dealing with issues related to sexuality and gender identity. Some popular websites include the Human Rights Campaign, The Trevor Project, and PFLAG

Insurance coverage for therapy related to gender identity and sexual orientation issues can vary depending on the individual’s insurance plan. OHIP does not cover therapy services unless it is performed by a medical doctor.

During a therapy session for issues related to sexuality and gender identity, you can expect the following:

  • Confidentiality: The therapist will ensure that your privacy is protected and that any information shared in session will not be shared with anyone without your consent.
  • Safety: You should feel safe and comfortable discussing your thoughts, feelings, and experiences related to your sexuality and gender identity.
  • Support: The therapist will provide a non-judgmental and supportive environment where you can explore your feelings and experiences.
  • Exploration: You will be encouraged to explore your thoughts and feelings related to your sexuality and gender identity. This may include discussing your experiences, any challenges you may be facing, and your goals for therapy.
  • Education: The therapist may provide you with information and resources that can help you better understand your sexuality and gender identity, and the different issues that may be associated with it.
  • Coping strategies: The therapist may help you develop coping strategies to deal with any challenges you may be facing related to your sexuality and gender identity.
  • Acceptance: The therapist will support you to accept and understand yourself, as well as to navigate any challenges you may be facing related to your sexuality and gender identity.
  • Affirmation: The therapist will use an affirmative approach, which means that the therapist respects and affirms the person’s sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Flexibility: The therapist will work with you to set goals for therapy and will adjust the therapy to meet your specific needs.

It’s important to note that everyone’s experience in therapy is unique, and the process can vary depending on the individual’s needs and goals. It’s also important to find a therapist who you feel comfortable with and who you trust.

Experience You Can Count On

About MEGO NERSES

I am an Ottawa-based Registered Psychotherapist and have a full-time private practice. In the past, I worked in social service agencies for many years. I offer individual, relationship, and sex therapy in English, Arabic, and Armenian to adults 18+, and I do not work with minors.

In 2011, I earned a master’s degree in Counselling from the University of Ottawa. I am a Registered Psychotherapist in Ontario (CRPO#001132) with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario. In addition, I am a Certified Counsellor with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA#3058). My clinical training focuses on relationship and sex therapy and trauma/PTSD. Since 2013, I have been at Algonquin College as a seasonal professor, teaching courses in mental health and addiction.

I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to publish peer-reviewed articles and contribute chapters concerning Counselling, coming out, and trauma related explicitly to LGBTQ+ refugees and newcomers to Canada. I have presented numerous workshops and continue to offer trainings nationally and internationally on the mental health of LGBTQI+ and SOGIE refugees and asylum seekers.

In 2020, I launched my online learning platform to offer courses to clinicians who work with the refugee population. Learn more about my elearning platform at www.mnelearning.ca

Professional expertise

Early in my professional career, I specialized in individual therapy and served clients with depression, anxiety, PTSD and grief. Since then, I have taken my clinical work to a higher level and gained expertise in four areas: PTSD and Trauma, Sexuality and Gender Identity, Sex and Relationship Therapy, and Refugee mental health issues. I have received various trainings in these areas since choosing to specialize. As an example, I received training from Division 56, Trauma Psychology, Physicians for Human Rights, and the Global Institute of Forensic Research in writing immigration evaluations for immigration courts. Furthermore, I have completed multiple trainings in trauma/PTSD therapy and relationship therapy (Poly. Kink). I have participated in numerous training opportunities in the field of sex therapy, sexuality, and gender identity. 

I am a LGBTQI+/poly/kink/CNM supportive and informed therapist.

Therapeutic approaches
In addition to Narrative Exposure Therapy for PTSD (NET), I have also been trained in Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) for PTSD and Experiential Therapy and Focusing. I integrate social justice and rights-based principles into my work as a trauma-informed therapist.

Awards
In recognition of my dedication to helping LGBTQ+ refugees and asylum seekers in Canada, I received the 2017 Humanitarian Award from the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA).

AffiliationsI have an international affiliate membership with Division 56, Trauma Psychology, the American Psychological Association (APA), and the Global Institute of Forensic Research.

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