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Velvet Rage Book Process Group

Velvet Rage

 

This group is centered around the book “The Velvet Rage” which deals with the ongoing issues of finding authenticity as gay and bisexual men.  It’s creative in that it is a process oriented book club where there is both discuss and self-reflection.  The objective of the velvet rage group is to help identify one’s stage of development through shared experiences, and to shift from unrecognized shame and loneliness to authenticity.  The principles of the group include understanding, openness and non judgmental reflection, insight and awareness.

A recent article in the Huffington Post, ‘The Epidemic of Gay Loneliness’, stated that although equality is being achieved, ‘the rates of depression, loneliness and substance abuse in the gay community remain stuck in the same place they’ve been for decades. Gay people are now, depending on the study, between 2 and 10 times more likely than straight people to take their own lives. We’re twice as likely to have a major depressive episode. And just like the last epidemic we lived through, the trauma appears to be concentrated among men. In a survey of gay men who recently arrived in New York City, three-quarters suffered from anxiety or depression, abused drugs or alcohol or were having risky sex—or some combination of the three. Despite all the talk of our “chosen families,” gay men have fewer close friends than straight people or gay women. In a survey of care-providers at HIV clinics, one respondent told researchers: “It’s not a question of them not knowing how to save their lives. It’s a question of them knowing if their lives are worth saving.”’

Alan Downs writes in his book, The Velvet Rage, ‘As gay men, we are uniquely qualified to bring the message of compassion, forgiveness, and self-acceptance — for we have been there and know how important it is to be proud of who we are.  The destructive influences of shame are everywhere in our world, and it is my sincere hope that this book will start a movement that…pushes us on the world stage as the leader of self-acceptance and awareness…to offer compassion, acceptance, and most of all, the hope that comes from knowing that no matter who you are or what you have done, you are worthy of love.’

The cornerstone of the The Velvet Rage is that ‘understanding our differences, loving ourselves without judgement, and at the same time noticing what makes us fulfilled, empowered, and loving men….[yet at the same time] while we are different, we are at the same time very similar to all others’ in our daily struggles.  This is what makes the group so powerful.

For more information complete a contact form or email me at joseph@districtcouseling.com.  Visit my location and rates page for that information.

Depression in Gay Men

Depression in Gay Men

The latest research shows that depression within the gay male community has grown considerably in scope in recent years. A recent survey showed that as much as 24% of gay men have tried to commit suicide while 54% have experienced suicidal thoughts in the past. This has been an ongoing problem within the gay community as men struggle with abuse and with their own internal feelings concerning their sexuality. In this latest post we’ll address depression in gay men and look at how men can find the help they need to ensure a healthy emotional life for the future. Read more

Tips for Dealing with Childhood Trauma as an Adult

Tips for Dealing with Childhood Trauma as an Adult

The latest research shows that childhood trauma is linked to anxiety, depression, and relationship issues in adulthood. Early childhood issues may impact the functionality of brain structures such as the hippocampus and alter neurobiological mechanisms that manage stress responses. This research highlights the importance of addressing childhood problems once you’ve reached adulthood and of working with a therapist to resolve long-standing challenges. Read more

A Guide to Your LGBTQ Mental Health Resources

A Guide to Your LGBTQ Mental Health Resources

It’s widely known that members of the LGBTQ community can experience significant mental health challenges including anxiety and depression. These challenges range from problems with family members refusing to accept their sexuality to difficulties developing and maintaining supportive networks. It’s important to understand that help is available for your challenges. This is a brief guide to the LGBTQ mental health resources available to the community. Read more

Common Mental Health Issues Faced by Gay Men

Common Mental Health Issues Faced by Gay Men

Society, in general, is often not kind to those that don’t fit traditional norms and roles. While many parts of the country are becoming more accepting of the LGBT community, gay rights and societal acceptance still have a long way to go. Many gay men still face discrimination and are associated with negative stigma. It’s not surprising then that gay men are roughly three times as likely to experience more mental health issues as heterosexual men. Read more

Top 10 Men’s Health Blogs

Top 10 Men's Health Blogs

Traditionally, men are more reluctant to seek help for physical or mental issues than women. Masculine stereotypes such as the need to “tough it out” make many men feel uncomfortable seeking any type of help, which we all know is not good for yourself, or those closest to you. Luckily, there are many good blogs out there dedicated to men’s health, so you can browse in relative privacy to find out all the answers you’ve been dying to know. Read more

Top 10 LGBT Blogs

Top 10 LGBT Blogs

Whether you’re a part of the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) community yourself, or know a loved one who is, there are plenty of online resources available that provide honest and helpful advice and a supportive online community. If you are seeking advice on coming out, or simply looking for ways to connect with others like yourself, the LGBT community is alive and thriving in the blogosphere. Read more

How to Cope With Anxiety

How to Cope With Anxiety

Anxiety is a term you may have heard of, or perhaps even experience yourself, but it’s a term that is often used, sometimes incorrectly. To clarify, everyone experiences some anxiety from time to time; however, for some people, it is a debilitating, life-altering condition. You need to seek help when anxiety levels interfere with your day-to-day life. Read more

3 Crucial Issues Addressed in Premarital Counseling

3 Crucial Issues Addressed in Premarital Counseling

There is no denying that one of the happiest moments we can have is realizing we’ve found someone that we want to spend the rest of our lives with, and that person feels the same. Getting married is one of the great adventures that we all share, regardless of culture or country. But this great joy needs to be tempered with some realism, because while love is important in a lifelong partnership, it is not the sole determining factor in a successful marriage.

This is why premarital counseling can be a very important step on the road to beginning a new life together. These types of counseling sessions aren’t here to determine whether you’re a good match or not, the couples have already made that determination for themselves. What they are here to do is make sure that couples understand—and discuss—some of the important issues that are now about to become major factors in their lives. Three things, in particular, should be addressed during such counseling sessions, and we’ll go over them here.

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Social Anxiety In Adults

Social Anxiety in Adults

Social anxiety seems, on the surface, to be a trifling, almost incomprehensible condition to the average American. We are a country that is built on friendship, neighbors, and huge cities filled with millions of people. What could an American, living in a country like that, possibly have against interacting with other people?

The reality, however, is that many people across the country do have problems interacting with others. For some, this may exhibit itself as an awkward shyness that merely makes them slow to open up to other people and make friends. For others, it is a crippling anxiety that prevents them from making any meaningful connections or interactions with other people.

Professionally, it is referred to as “Social Anxiety,” and here’s what you need to know about it.

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