June 13, 2022

Rachel McCrickard, LMFT

From our Founder

Each week, our founder, Rachel, writes about her learnings and reflections in our newsletter, Mondays with Motivo. Sign up below to receive it in your inbox.

Celebrating the LGBTQIA+ community

June 13, 2022

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By: Sarah McReynolds

Hi, friends!

Hope everyone had a good week! I’ve been looking forward to writing this next entry as it is near and dear to my heart while I continue my journey as an ally for the LGTBQIA+ community. Inclusivity is so important and something that is so sought after, yet not always achieved in today’s society. 

While Pride Month is something to be celebrated and lift people up, it’s also a time to advocate and process the huge hurdles we still have to overcome in terms of LGBTQIA+ rights. I say “happy pride” with a heavy heart given recent events in the news about the lack of LGBTQIA+ representation in educational settings or the outright discrimination of trans people.

As a society and as humans, we have to do more. Even the small things help such as following influential LGBTQIA+ people on social media, donating to nonprofit organizations, or supporting locally owned LGBTQIA+ businesses; and doing so every month of the year. 

The larger things come with social and political change. This is where I struggle as an ally. I do the small things and it doesn’t seem to make a difference. But I have to remember, the small things touch individual lives and still make an impact.

This week I am tossing the mic to one of our wonderful supervisors to ask him a few questions:

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Tell me a little bit about your background. 

I am a gay, cis, Korean American counselor with over seven years of experience in working with BIPOC and LGBTQ+ clients. I graduated in 2014 with my Master’s in Counseling from the University of San Diego, and I started my private practice in 2017. In 2021, I expanded my practice to include associates and I began to supervise clinicians to further the reach of my practice.

What does Pride Month mean to you? 

Pride means a lot to me. Growing up in a conservative, Christian, Korean American home there was never a discussion on anything that wasn’t within a heteronormative lens. Pride reminds me that I’m free to be me and that I am accepted for all my identities. It gives me a moment to reflect on my journey and celebrate my growth and learn to heal the scared inner child who grew up in an extremely homophobic home and community. Pride means freedom and it means acceptance. 

How do you support your community?

I support my community through providing therapy services as well making sure I have accurate information on community goings on. I also provide basic sex ed to the community to address a major shortfall in the therapy landscape. Additionally, I provide clinical supervision to the next generation of therapists as well as my peers to help them understand the LGBTQ+ community and how these identities intersect with culture and mental illness.

How can others support you during Pride Month and beyond? 

If you’re a part of the community, be out and proud of who you are, the LGBTQ+ community is in need of therapists with lived experiences who can speak directly and honestly to their clients. Provide consultations, speak to your experiences, and allow yourself to self-disclose if you’re comfortable. 

If you’re an ally, educate yourself on how to be respectful to the community. Use proper pronouns and be respectful when asking about someone’s identity.  Additionally, understand that the most important thing to help is simply to listen to a person’s experience and allow them to share as much as they’re comfortable. Everyone’s experience of being in the LGBTQ+ community is unique.

Who are some of the most influential people in your life (this can be personal connections or leaders in the community / world)?

I would have to say my best friend, Tiki Inacay, has been the biggest influence in my life. Without them, I wouldn’t have had the courage to come out and accept the messiness of my coming out journey. They have taught me to be bold in my identities and to be authentic to my story. 

I am proud to work for a company that has such an amazing community with people like Harry. I am grateful to live in a city like New Orleans that has so much pride in itself and support for the LGBTQIA+ community. 

As a lover of learning, I am SO excited that Harry mentioned education as being part of an ally. It plays a pivotal role in allyship as we grow and learn from each other. And how do we learn? We listen. We act accordingly. And then we learn some more, rinse and repeat.

What stood out to you in Harry’s answers? What does Pride Month mean to you? I’ve added a few songs to the Mondays with Motivo playlist (Spotify & Apple Music) to highlight some LGBTQIA+ artists so I hope you enjoy them. 

Thank you for letting me share, and thank you to Harry for sharing some of his story. 

Love is love,

Sarah McReynolds

(she / her)

Community Onboarding Specialist

Motivo

[email protected]

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