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Psychotherapy for Emotional Difficulties in Gender Dysphoria

We are pleased to publish a blog written by one of the practitioners at The Wellbeing Rooms, Sandra Small CBT therapist. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Sandra at

Are you or your family having emotional difficulties or anxieties with gender dysphoria?

Gender dysphoria is the inner conflict and psychological distress between your biological sex assigned at birth with the gender that you sense or identify with. Gender dysphoria often begins in childhood but can be experienced after puberty or later.

It is possible to express your identity gender in different ways. Some people will understand and accept their gender identity but are still comfortable with their biological sex. Many wish to change their apparel to the style of their gender identity and wish to be addressed by a different name or pronoun. Others will consider transition and seek treatments such as cross-sex hormone therapy, voice therapy or genital surgery. These can be single treatments or combined treatments.

Gender dysphoria can bring transphobia, discrimination, or stigmatisation from other people. Some reactions are hostile, the result of conscious and unconscious fears about what it means to deviate from gender norms. You may be verbally or physically assaulted, just for being you. You may lack self-confidence, and anxiety or depression may develop. You may be facing bullying or harassment at school or work. This emotional distress has significant impact on yourself and your relationships. Family, partners, and friends can be struggling to adapt to these changes in your lifestyle.

Psychotherapy is not intended to change people’s gender identity, but to achieve long term comfort with their identity and expression. Psychotherapy will provide guidance to build interpersonal skills, nurture resilience with emotional wellbeing, and develop coping strategies for any social anxiety or depression. The therapist can help to support you to understand and adapt your core beliefs to something more flexible and helpful such as: -

“I am worthy of love and life. I am resilient.”

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