Until recently, the lives and issues of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual (LGB) people have been rendered largely invisible in the larger society and in the counseling professions. LGB-affirmative counseling professionals are no longer without voice; however, the stories of navigating sexual orientation as counseling professionals have not be told or explored in any systematic way. Deconstructing Heterosexism in the Counseling Professions uses the personal narratives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and heterosexual counseling psychologists and counselor educators to deconstruct the heterosexist discourse in the counseling professions, envision a discourse of sexual orientation equity, and make practical suggestions for addressing sexual orientation in professional life. The narrative approach encompasses a diversity of stories and experiences including an emphasis on racial and cultural contexts. These narratives and their analyses serve as a means for the individual and collective self examination that is needed to move LGB affirmative practice, training, and scholarship from the margins to the center of what it means to be a counseling professional.
• Rather than a focus on "how to", the focus is on stimulating collective and individual self examination and providing empowerment and guidance to counseling professions in navigating sexual orientation in one's professional life.
• This book exposes and challenges the heterosexist discourse in the counseling professions AND examines how to build the strength and complexity of the current LGB affirmative counter discourse in the counseling professions.
• The chapters in the second section of the book provide unique treatments of difficult issues for counseling professionals concerning sexual orientation: tensions between race and sexual orientation, and issues around openness versus other ways to manage a minority sexual identity.
• The book is authored by over 30 counseling professionals and contains narratives about the experiences of over 20 professionals, many of whom are well-known in the LGB affirmative counseling and in the larger fields of counseling psychology and counselor education.
Deconstructing Heterosexism in the Counseling Professions will be essential reading for graduate students, practitioners, and faculty who are interested in issues of sexual orientation and are in counseling psychology and/or the many sub-specialties of counseling. It will also be of interest to counseling professionals whose primary interest may lie in other issues of diversity, particularly the multicultural and feminist professional communities.