If I wait for someone else to validate my existence, it will mean that I’m shortchanging myself.”
~ Zanele Muholi

Queer Exploration & Identity Integration Counseling

Unlike many of your straight and queer friends, your own sexuality has been a source of confusion or avoidance for as long as you can remember. Sometimes you feel so alone and different because it seems like everyone has figured it out except you. You rationalize by telling yourself, “Why even explore it when it’s only a small part of who I am anyway?”

But deep down you long for a meaningful connection and are afraid it may never be possible for you. You see your friends dating and having relationships and wonder if you will ever feel comfortable and authentically happy in a romantic partnership of your own. It all seems too scary to acknowledge your attraction toward people of the same gender—like too much work to even think about it.

You have a good idea about the origins of all this apprehension. Maybe you’ve received messages from your family that have caused you to think negatively about your sexual identity. Maybe you internalized messages you received from society or in your faith community. Maybe you worry about how family will respond and that has contributed to your not examining this part of yourself. Or maybe you’re concerned about the impact of your sexuality on your professional life and friendships, which has prevented you from acknowledging this part of your identity.

Whatever the reason, you’ve reached a point where you think it might be time to fully accept and embrace your whole self. You’re ready and open to exploring your sexual identity in hopes of having the relationships you desire most, and you recognize that you could use some professional support to do so most effectively.

Queer Exploration & Identity Integration Counseling

Unlike many of your straight and queer friends, your own sexuality has been a source of confusion or avoidance for as long as you can remember. Sometimes you feel so alone and different because it seems like everyone has figured it out except you. You rationalize by telling yourself, “Why even explore it when it’s only a small part of who I am anyway?”

But deep down you long for a meaningful connection and are afraid it may never be possible for you. You see your friends dating and having relationships and wonder if you will ever feel comfortable and authentically happy in a romantic partnership of your own. It all seems too scary to acknowledge your attraction toward people of the same gender—like too much work to even think about it.

You have a good idea about the origins of all this apprehension. Maybe you’ve received messages from your family that have caused you to think negatively about your sexual identity. Maybe you internalized messages you received from society or in your faith community. Maybe you worry about how family will respond and that has contributed to your not examining this part of yourself. Or maybe you’re concerned about the impact of your sexuality on your professional life and friendships, which has prevented you from acknowledging this part of your identity.

Whatever the reason, you’ve reached a point where you think it might be time to fully accept and embrace your whole self. You’re ready and open to exploring your sexual identity in hopes of having the relationships you desire most, and you recognize that you could use some professional support to do so most effectively.

If I wait for someone else to validate my existence, it will mean that I’m shortchanging myself.”
~ Zanele Muholi

How We Help | Queer Identity Counseling

At Charism Counseling Center, we provide counseling for clients in Chicago interested in exporting their queer identity. We believe sexual orientation is an important part of your overall identity, which plays a critical role in your understanding of yourself and your relationships. We specialize in helping clients explore their queer identities within the frameworks of gender, race and ethnicity. Most importantly, we recognize the need for our clients to have safe and affirming spaces to explore their sexual identity according to their own timelines. We will work with you to create clarity and acceptance, while affirming the life you may have only dreamed was possible for you. Contact us today to get started.