Date of Award

Spring 5-21-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Sarah Hamil


Mental health involves acts of naming and noticing, thus the hypocrisy of harm within mental health programs is explored and discussed through interpersonal and structural means. In a space that is meant for safety and care, inaccessibility, pejorative terminology, pathologizing identity, and exclusionary tactics are riddled throughout the layers of the mental health field. From campus, to literature, to different forms of therapy racism and transphobia work against non-dominant groups through interlocking forms of oppression. The centering of Western, White ideology is harmful to students in these programs, as well as the clients of BIPOC, QTBIPOC, and trans* communities. Mental health professionals are unequipped to work with these demographics, as there is much less research and clinical practices to support them. By not attending to these issues, higher education and its research is complicate in cyclical racial and transphobic harm. Without acknowledging said issues and working towards more expansive forms of care, mental health professionals will continue to harm their clients.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.




The author owns the copyright to this work.