An Ecosystemic Approach to Supporting LGBTQ Youth
and their Families

CE Hours: 3.25
Cost: $58
Instructors: C. Wayne Jones, PhD, Sabrina Valente, MA, CFBT, CBMHS

Click here for Sabrina Valente’s Bio.

Therapists working in intensive, in-home programs are increasingly encountering youth who identify as LGBTQ.  One reason is that youth are coming out earlier and earlier.  In families presenting for treatment, caregivers often do not understand their child’s experience and at times can be rejecting of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This markedly increases the risks of negative outcomes for LGBTQ youth.  Therapists with little training in LGBTQ are at-risk of acting on myths or stereotypes and can become negatively isomorphic with nonaccepting communities.  This course is comprised of five webinars designed to help therapists to work from an LGBTQ-informed perspective,  understanding and helping LGBTQ youth in the context of their families and their communities. Particular focus is given to how to work with families in which caregivers are non-supportive/non-accepting of their LGBTQ youth.  The webinars in this course are comprised of edited portions of a live webinar presented to therapists working in Pennsylvania FBMHS programs.

This is a Intermediate Level course. The target audience is all behavioral health professionals working with children and adolescents.

Learning Objectives

  1. Identify current commonly used terminology for LGBTQ youth and why terms are important.
  2. Describe the six stages of identity development and the “coming-out” experience of LGBTQ youth
  3. Describe the transgender experience and how it differs from that of gender variant/non-conforming youth
  4. Describe strategies for joining and maintaining equal empathy with LGBTQ youth and their caregivers in nonaccepting families
  5. Describe strategies for strengthening family relationships by shifting caregivers to a more accepting and affirming relational posture with their LGBTQ child.

Course Outline

  • Unit I: The Spectrum of Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation (70 minutes)
    • Slide handouts
    • Webinars
      • Gender, Sex, and Identity
      • Understanding the Transgender Experience
  • Unit 2: Coming out as LGBTQ (65 minutes)
    • Slide handouts
    • Webinars
      • What It’s Like to Hide One’s LGBTQ Identity
      • Themes and Experiences of Coming Out as LGBTQ
      • The Six Stages of Coming Out as LGBTQ
  • Unit 3: Application of ESFT in Working with Non-Accepting Families (60 minutes)
    • Slide handouts
    • Webinars
      • Tips for Joining with LGBTQ Youth and their Families
      • Strengthening LGBTQ Youth Relationships with their Families

This course uses an online distance-learning self-paced format.  It includes recorded audio, recorded video-based webinars, and selected readings.  There are post-tests to ensure comprehension of the material. Participants can communicate with the instructors via the online moodle interface. Real-time communication with the instructor in our online, self-paced distance learning courses is not possible. However, participants can send an email to the instructor via the online moodle interface within the course and expect to receive a response within 48 hours. All course content, including post-tests, should take approximately 3.25 hours to complete.

Frequently Asked Questions
Visit our Self-Paced, Online Continuing Education Policies & FAQs for additional information regarding the CFBT online learning center, accommodations for disabilities, reporting problems with the course, instructions for viewing webinars, etc.

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