Gender-Affirming Therapy in Los Angeles

Embrace Your Journey: Tailored Support for Every Step of the Way.

If you feel you need it, please reach out for help. I would be honored to help on your journey.

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Toby Barron Therapy

Hi! I'm Toby

I’m a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW #89672) based in Los Angeles, California. I’ve been lucky enough to work in the fields of mental health and sex and gender for over ten years and I am still grateful and excited to be here.

I Offer Both Online and In-Person Sessions in Los Angeles and Burbank.

My Locations

Los Angeles

2502 Hyperion Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(424) 835-0516
Click for Directions

Burbank

3808 W Riverside DR.
Burbank, CA 91505
(213) 986-6194
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Have Questions? I offer a Free 15-Minute Consultation.

What is gender-affirming therapy?

Gender affirming therapy is vital for the well-being of trans* folks whose experience parts with societal pressures. This form of therapy addresses the mental, emotional, social, and physical needs of people who are struggling with identifying their gender, are struggling with gender dysphoria, or just need a place to unpack their experiences.

As a gender-affirming therapist, I work with people who are coming to terms with their gender identity or body, or who are getting ready for gender-affirming surgery. Moreover, I can provide guidance for partners or family members who want to understand gender diversity and how they can show their love and support.

Gender affirming therapy plays a significant role in the daily life of gender-nonconforming people and nonbinary individuals. Gender-affirming care is a multi-faceted approach that can help gender diverse folks improve their quality of life and, if needed, manage mental health disorders.

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Gender identity understanding and acceptance

Feeling ostracized or misunderstood in one’s identity can have a surprisingly significant impact on their mental health. When arbitrary societal norms around gender don’t align with your authentic identity, many individuals find it takes a toll. Together, we’ll hold space for feelings of confusion, rejection, and uncertainty with the goal of creating a safe space where you can explore your gender. At the same time, we’ll hold equal space for the feelings of euphoria and love that come with finding your best self.

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Gender identity affirmation

Gender affirming therapy focuses on helping individuals affirm their gender identity and express themselves authentically. Moreover, affirmative therapy allows every trans person and gender-diverse individual to manage any potential transphobic attitudes that they may harbor towards themselves. I’ll help you learn to express your gender identity to others and live your best life. This type of therapy aims to help you set aside expectations and conventional gender roles, and find what makes you feel most like yourself.

Gender-based anxiety management

Unfortunately, the world today still harbors fear and may reject gender non-conforming folks. While there is some increase in awareness and understanding, gender-diverse individuals continue to find themselves the target of gender minority stress, victimization, and rejection. We’ll work to develop coping skills and mechanisms to manage anxiety-inducing experiences, and manage any low self-esteem or depression that this stress incurs.

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Family/Partner therapy for a solid support system

A support network is crucial for individuals who struggle with their gender identity. The need for acceptance and love is a big part of everyone’s lives, and when absent, it may lead to negative thoughts, low self-esteem, depression, and even suicidal ideation. Your support network may have questions regarding gender identity and transition. Gender-affirming therapy can be a space for them to learn to accept, support, and adjust.

Why gender-affirming therapy is vital

Gender-affirming care is meant to help affirm and support transgender patients in their gender identity. Individuals navigating gender identity can at times develop mental illness. This kind of therapy provides an opportunity to explore your needs and identity in a safe environment, under the care of a therapist.

I have been working as an LGBTQ-affirmative therapist for many years, and I am a vocal supporter of the trans community. In my work, I support LGBTQ clients as they deal with depression and anxiety, and provide them with effective tools to cope with discrimination and oppression. My experience and education allow me to guide trans and gender nonconforming patients through the path to self-acceptance, self-esteem, and self-love.

Furthermore, I can provide counseling before and after various gender affirming medical services, like gender-affirming hormone therapy, and insurance letters for gender affirmation surgery. Accessing life-altering medical procedures, like hormone treatment and surgery, can have profound (generally positive) effects on a person’s mental health. Getting proper mental health care is an excellent way to process these experiences while you align your body with your authentic self.

Start Your Journey to Wellness Today. Schedule Your Free Consultation

Remember that you’re not damaged and you’re not broken. From time to time, whether we seek it or not, all of us need a little help. Sometimes it can be a little difficult, maybe a little scary to admit, but getting help is the fastest path to feeling better. Don’t hesitate to reach out today.

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01.

Initial Consultation

We’ll have a brief call to get to know each other. We’ll discuss your needs and how I can help.

02.

In-Person or Telehealth

Our sessions will be held virtually for your convenience. No long commutes to come see me.

03.

Time to Do the Work

Recovery can be a long and difficult road, but it’s worth it. We’ll work through it together

Get Started Today

To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Frequently Asked Questions

Gender-affirming therapy is a very important resource in supporting individuals who are transgender, non-binary, or exploring their gender identity. This approach prioritizes providing an affirming space where clients can explore and embrace their identity. Even if gender identity isn’t the primary reason a client comes into therapy, many report it’s a relief to not have to fear or anticipate invalidation from their therapist. Research and clinical evidence support the effectiveness of gender-affirming therapy in improving mental health outcomes for gender-diverse individuals. 

The benefits of gender-affirming therapy typically include:

  • Reduced gender dysphoria
  • Improvements in depression, anxiety, and overall psychological well-being
  • Increased self-acceptance
  • Support for those undergoing gender transition

Gender-affirming therapy focuses on several core themes designed to support the well-being and affirmation of individuals exploring their gender identity. The themes are:

  • Affirmation of gender identity by recognizing and validating an individual’s gender identity and experience
  • Exploration of gender identity by providing a safe space to understand and articulate their feeling about their gender and how it relates to their overall identity
  • Support for gender expression by encouraging and helping individuals to express their gender in ways that feel authentic to them
  • Management of gender dysphoria by providing strategies and support to manage and reduce feelings of discomfort or distress associated with gender dysphoria
  • Coping with discrimination and stigma
  • Navigating the transition process
  • Building a supportive network by facilitating connections with supportive communities
  • Empowering individuals to make informed decisions about their lives

Gender dysphoria refers to the psychological distress arising from a discrepancy between a person’s gender identity and the sex they were assigned at birth. It’s characterized by a strong, persistent discomfort with one’s assigned gender or physical sex characteristics, leading to significant emotional distress, anxiety, and impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. The main aspects of gender dysphoria include:

  • Identity Discrepancy: A marked incongruence between one’s experienced or expressed gender and the gender others would assign them, often accompanied by a strong desire to be of a different gender or to be treated as such.
  • Distress: Individuals with gender dysphoria experience distress or discomfort with their assigned gender role or physical sex characteristics, which can manifest as depression, anxiety, and social isolation.
  • Desire for Transition: There may be a strong desire to undergo treatments to alter physical characteristics (such as hormone therapy or surgery) and to make social changes (like changing names, pronouns, or clothing) to align one’s external presentation with their gender identity.
  • Impact on Well-being: Gender dysphoria can significantly affect an individual’s well-being, leading to challenges in daily functioning, relationships, and overall mental health.

It’s important to note that gender nonconformity, in itself, is not the same as gender dysphoria. Many people may not conform to societal expectations of gender without experiencing distress or discomfort. Gender dysphoria is specifically about the distress related to the incongruence between one’s experienced gender and assigned sex at birth.

The goals of gender-affirming therapy are tailored to support and validate the experiences of transgender, non-binary, and gender-diverse individuals, focusing on their unique needs and journey. This means that your journey and goals may be different from someone else, even if on the surface your situations may seem similar. 

From a ten thousand-foot view, some of the goals may be:

  • To affirm and validate your gender identity and experiences
  • Alleviating the symptoms of gender dysphoria
  • Promoting self-acceptance and self-love
  • Reduce anxiety, depression, and stress often associated with gender-related discrimination and stigma
  • Navigating the transition process, if applicable
  • Developing coping strategies for dealing with societal challenges, discrimination, and minority stress related to gender identity
  • Improving relationships with friends, family, and partners
  • Helping you build a supportive community of individuals and resources

If you’re unsure about your gender identity, know that it’s completely normal to have questions or fears about gender and transition. Exploring your gender identity can be a deeply personal and sometimes challenging journey. If you’d like help navigating your questions and feelings, feel free to reach out to me.