As a SonderMind clinician, understanding clients’ unique needs is key to providing care that drives better outcomes. That’s why we’re sharing insights from Jacqueline Pleasant, MA, LPC, a SonderMind therapist and member of the BIPOC community. In the following Q&A with Jacqueline, she shares her experiences and observations regarding the unique needs of BIPOC clients, and how clinicians can best support this community as a whole.
I have experienced, as a woman, sexism, which has created my beliefs to treat others how you want to be treated. As a woman I have had to fight to be heard along with I had to speak louder to be taken seriously. I have learned to not have expectations from others and allow them to have the freedom to be themselves. As a clinician of color in this field, I have experienced some clients want a clinician of their culture. Of course, this is a preference which may not be as important as building rapport and does the clinician have the needed expertise. However, I believe this should be an educational moment for the client. Also, I have experienced, because I am a clinician of color, I would get the more severe clients on my caseload with expectations to work miracles. I recall experiencing situations where I wanted to do more to help a client but was reminded it was not allowed. Sometimes I struggle with feeling I am not doing enough to help people who are having mental health challenges.
I have observed the most common therapy needs are bipolar, depression, anxiety, stress, and PTSD.
I believe we as clinicians could make a difference by volunteering services to needy communities or starting a nonprofit organization. We could offer workshops to educate the black community about mental health and work through removing the stigma. I think we can support our Black patients by going into the community, providing literature, giving quick assessments and resources to give them a guide. I do believe it is important to educate black patients about their rights and privacy as well. We must continue to educate ourselves and the public about the importance of mental health.
At SonderMind, we’re here to support clinicians in providing high-quality, evidence-based care that meets the mental health needs of the BIPOC community and all clients. That’s why, as a SonderMind clinician, you get access to resources to ensure you’re supported in delivering high-quality care, every step of the way. Check out these articles to further your knowledge and enhance your skills to best serve clients and their unique needs:
SonderMind invests in our clinicians’ success and continued development, including access to career-building opportunities, ongoing training, peer consultations, continuing education (CE), and resources for delivering effective measurement-based care. If you’re seeking to improve your knowledge, awareness, and skills when conducting clinical work with the BIPOC community and want to drive effective care through evidence-based practices, consider joining SonderMind to get the support you need to reach these goals, and more.