Racism can take a toll on your Mental Health

Unfortunately, Black, Indidgenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) experience the effects of racism on a daily basis, to varying degrees.

Racism and discrimination can impact all areas of life: where you live, the type of education you can access, how safe you feel in certain places, the types of jobs you will be hired for, access to health care, incarceration rates, how others treat you, and how you view yourself.

Please don’t suffer alone. You are valued and welcome at Blake Psychology. The lives of BIPOC matter, and we are here to support you. We are willing to have difficult discussions and to sit with unpleasant emotions. Your anger, disgust, depression, and fear is justified. The atrocities that BIPOC have endured for centuries to present day have caused pain that takes time to heal.

Blake Psychology is a safe place for you to seek help for issues related to racism, or to receive multiculturally sensitive counselling for issues of any nature. We know that you have many visible and non-visible identities, and experience varying degrees of privilege and minority status across situations and contexts.

You might have experienced varying forms of racism, such as overt, covert, microaggressions, systemic, or all of the above.

What is Overt Racism?

Some types of racism are openly visible and easy to identify such as racist jokes, racial slurs, hate crimes, calling someone the n-word, or physical violence. Most people would find these behaviours to be socially unacceptable, yet unfortunately, they still occur today.

What is Covert Racism? What are Microaggressions?

Covert racism is when acts are subtle, perhaps even unintentional. Examples could include things like telling a black person “You’re so articulate” (which implies that you expected less), dressing up as a person of colour for Halloween, denial of white privilege, “color blindness”, and so on.

Microaggressions are brief, frequently-occurring interactions that are rooted in racism, sexism, homophobia, or other type of discrimination towards a marginalized group. They may occur intentionally or unintentionally, resulting in a negative impact on the recipient. Examples of racial microaggressions include things like commenting on how well an Asian person speaks English because you assume they are an outsider, unconsciously clenching your purse in an elevator when a Black person enters, or saying to someone “What are you?” in reference to their background.

What is Systemic Racism?

Systemic racism is when institutions are set up to discriminate towards certain groups, on the basis of race. Examples include: The Chinese head tax, residential schools, police brutality, discriminatory housing practices, targeted government surveillance, disproportionate incarceration rates, employment rates, and infant and mother mortality rates. An summary can be found here: https://www.benjerry.com/whats-new/2016/systemic-racism-is-real

How can Therapy or Counselling Help?

Therapy or counselling can provide you with a safe place to express what you have been going through, where you can feel heard, understood, validated, and supported.

Therapy can help you cope with trauma, loss, anger, grief, sadness, confusion, disgust, depression, anxiety, or any other emotion that you may be struggling with. Therapy is a place for healing: to work through pain, feel empowered, to grow and flourish.

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