Individuals who are transgender, transsexual, nonbinary, genderqueer or gender non-conforming often feel that the gender they were assigned at birth is too restricting or does not reflect who they really are. Transgender is a broad term used to describe a very diverse group of people. Transsexual individuals may desire a complete transition from one traditional gender presentation to another. Genderqueer, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming individuals may challenge gender norms by expressing a gender identity that is unique to them.
Non-Transitioning individuals are often the most isolated. Gender support services often focus on those who want to be out and have the freedom to express their identity. Most of the non-transitioning people I know face practical considerations that prevent them from satisfying that desire at this time in their life. They have a deep internal experience of gender that they do not want to outwardly express. Just as those who transition need support, people who do not transition need support.
Parents and Partners of gender nonconforming individuals also need care. I have a great deal of experience helping parents and partners with their own concerns and their own transitions.
I am currently serving my second term as a member of the board of directors of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health and am one of the authors of The Standards of Care for the Health of Transgender, Transsexual, and Gender Non-Conforming People V. 7. (2011). I have worked with hundreds of people who identify as transsexual, transgender, genderqueer, crossdresser, male-to-female, female-to-male, and identities too varied to list. Our work together is not limited to gender issues, but will address you as a whole person. Relationships, work, sexuality, family, and emotional well-being are all affected by one’s gender experience. Each person experiences gender identity in their own unique way. Clients who come to therapy for assistance with transgender or transsexual issues represent a broad range of people. They come from all backgrounds and with a wide range of goals regarding gender expression.
Transgender support services include:
- Psychotherapy to increase personal insight, facilitate decision-making, support relationships, and explore options.
- Meetings with parents, partners, siblings, and other important people because gender exploration and transition affects everyone.
- Letters and reports to doctors and insurance companies so that individuals have access to hormones and surgery. (I provide such letters only for ongoing psychotherapy clients.)
I also provide letters and reports necessary for individuals who need to change documentation such as name, birth certificate, passport, social security and drivers' license.
Rachlin, K. How To Write a Letter for Surgery and Hormones. Contribution to book Chapter in Trans Bodies, Trans Selves: A Resource for the Trans Community. 2014 Laura Erickson-Schroth, editor. Oxford University Press: New York, NY.
Jacobs, L. A., Rachlin, K., Erickson-Schroth, L. & Janson, A. Theory of Mind and the Intolerance of Ambiguity: Review, Treatment Considerations, and Two Case Studies of Individuals with High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorders and Gender Dysphoria. Under Review. Expected publication date Winter 2014.
Donatone, B. & Rachlin, K. (2013 expected) An Intake Template for Transgender, Transsexual, Genderqueer, Gender Nonconforming, and Gender Variant College Students Seeking Mental Health Services. Journal of College Student Psychotherapy. In press.
Rachlin, K, Hansbury, G. & Pardo, S. T. (2010). Hysterectomy and Oophorectomy Experiences of Female--to--Male Transgender Individuals. International Journal of Transgenderism. 12:155-166.
Rachlin , K., Dhejne, C. & Brown, G. R. (2010). The Future of GID NOS in the DSM-V: Report of the GID NOS Working Group of the WPATH GID Consensus Process. International Journal of Transgenderism. 12(2): 86-93.
Rachlin, K. The Questions We Ask: Conducting Socially Conscious Research with Transgender Individuals. Book Chapter in Handbook of Research with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Populations, 2nd Edition: 2009. William Meezan and James Martin Editors. Routledge: New York.
Schneider, M., Bockting, W. O., Ehrbar, R. D., Lawrence, A. A., Rachlin, K., & Zucker, K. (2009). Report of the Task Force on Gender Identity and Gender Variance. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Rachlin, K., Green, J., & Lombardi, E. (2008). Utilization of Health Care Among Female-to-Male Transgender Individuals in the United States. Journal of Homosexuality, 54(3), 243-258.
Rachlin, K. (2002). Transgendered Individuals’ Experiences of Psychotherapy. International Journal of Transgenderism, 6(1), available at http://www.wpath.org.
Rachlin, K. FTM 101: Dispelling Myths About the Invisible and Impossible. Book Chapter in The PhallusPalace: Female-to-Male Transsexuals. 2002. Dean Kotula editor. Alyson Publications: Los AngelesCA.
Rachlin, K. (1999). Factors Which Influence Individual’s Decisions When Considering FTM Genital Surgery. International Journal of Transgenderism, 3(3), available at http://www.wapth.org.
Papers and Presentations (This is just a sample. I do not keep track of all of them.)
February 25, 2012. Medical Transition without Social Transition: Supportive Care for Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Nonconforming Individuals. Transformations: Clinical Perspectives on Transgender Experience and Cultural Context. Symposium sponsored by GLAP, Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy, New York University.
September 25, 2011. Treatment without Transition: Use of Gender-Affirming Medical Interventions for Non-Transitioning Transgender and Transsexual Individuals. Biennial International Symposium of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health. Emory Conference Center Atlanta, Georgia.
April 22, 2010. The Evolution of the Standards of Care: Towards Empowerment and Access. Luncheon speaker at the IFGE 2010 Capital Conference in Washington DC,
March 26, 2010. Keynote Address. Challenging Assumptions about Identity Expression. Beyond the Boxes: Emerging Trends in LGBTQ Mental Health Conference. University of Minnesota.
February 20, 2010. Challenging Cases for Experienced Therapists. (With Coauthor Arlene Istar Lev LCSW, CASAC) In Translation: Clinical Dialogues Spanning the Transgender Spectrum. GLAP, Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy, New York University.
February 23, 2008. Engaging Transgender Clients & Standards of Care. Also Clinical Considerations for Clients in Early Transition. Both papers presented at the GLAP, Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy, Transgender Symposium for Clinicians, Columbia University School of Social Work.
August 14, 2008. Report of The APA Task Force on Gender Identity, Gender Variance, and Intersex Conditions. Paper presented at the 116th American Psychological Association Convention, Boston.
August 19, 2005. The Questions We Ask: Conducting Socially-Conscious Research with Transgender Individuals. Paper presented at the 113th annual convention of the American Psychological Association, Washington, DC.
September 2003. Flexible Use of the Standards of Care #1: Psychological Evaluation in Lieu of Psychotherapy (coauthor John Capozuca). Paper presented at the XVIII Harry Benjamin International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria. Ghent, Belgium.
September 2003. FTMs experiences of Hysterectomy and Oophorectomy (coauthor Griffin Hansbury) Poster presentation at the XVIII Harry Benjamin International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria., Ghent, Belgium.
November 2001. Trends in the Evolving FTM Community: Challenges for Clinical Providers. Paper presented at the XVII Harry Benjamin International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria. Galveston, Texas.
November 2001. Utilization of Health Care Among FTMs in the United States. (coauthor Jamison Green) Paper presented at the XVII Harry Benjamin International Symposium on Gender Dysphoria. Galveston, Texas.
August 2001. Transgendered Individuals’ Experiences of Psychotherapy. Paper presented at the American Psychological Association 109th Annual Convention, San Francisco, CA.
March 2001. Working With Transgendered Women in Recovery. Presented at the Speak Out conference sponsored by The Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center of New York City.
February 2001. Key Note Address. The View From The Wings. Presented at The True Spirit Conference sponsored by AMBOYZ, Washington, DC.
October 2000. The Effects of Gate-Keeping on Experiences with Psychotherapists. Paper presented at The Fourth International Congress on Sex and Gender, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
August 1999. Meeting at The Gate: A National Survey of Transgendered Individuals’ Experiences of Psychotherapy. Paper presented at The Harry Benjamin International Dysphoria Association XIV Symposium, London, England.
September 1998. Factors Which Influence Consumers’ Decisions Regarding Female-To-Male Genital Reconstructive Surgery, Paper resented at The Third International Congress on Sex and Gender, Oxford, England.
September 1997. Factors Which Influence Consumers’ Decisions Regarding Female-To-Male Genital Reconstructive Surgery. Paper presented at The Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association XV Symposium, Vancouver, BC, Canada.
August 1997. Intimacy Issues for Partners of Female-to-Male Transsexuals. Paper presented at The Third FTM Conference of the Americas, Boston, Mass.
June 1997. Partners in the Journey: Psychotherapy and Six Stages of Gender Revelation. Paper presented at the Second Congress on Sex and Gender, King of Prussia, PA.
April 1996. Sexual Issues Brought Into Psychotherapy Early in Gender Transition. Paper presented at The Second Annual Transsexual Health and Empowerment Conference, sponsored by The Gender Identity Project of The Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center of New York City.
August 1995. No-Hormone Non-Operative options for Female-to-Male Transsexuals, and Observations on FTM Men - a Therapist’s perspective. Both presented at the First FTM Conference of the Americas, San Francisco, CA.
April 1995. Transgender Issues in Psychotherapy: A Six Stage Model. Paper presented at The First Annual Transsexual Health and Empowerment Conference, sponsored by The Gender Identity Project of The Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center of New York City.