Finlay Sarafa McHale is a queer Iraqi/Chaldean-American clinical social worker currently facilitating a free peer support group for queer SWANA people. They joined us for a wonderful conversation about how mental healthcare can be a tool for political liberation rather than means of detaching from it.
Finlay discusses censorship and Zionism in the mental health field, the challenges of developing culturally responsive practices in a profession with white-centric roots, and the myth of therapy as apolitical. They explain how traditionally strict expectations of “non-disclosure” regarding therapists’ personal or political perspectives can widen the power gap between therapist and client and place marginalized clients in the position of having to educate their therapist.
Finlay suggests resources to help queer and trans people of color find a therapist and questions to ask to evaluate if a therapist is right for you.
We also talk about the icky weirdness of going viral during a crisis in one’s community, such as the ongoing genocide in Palestine.
To view the resource list mentioned in the episode, click here!