Loss in the Lives of LGBTQ+ People

Laura S. Wheat, Ph.D., LPC, NCC

Wednesday, June 21, 2017
12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. CDT

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About the Webinar

Loss, whether death or non-death related, touches us all. Bereavement research in particular is steadily advancing, giving professionals a growing knowledge base from which to help clients and patients. However, even as we try for increasing inclusivity in research and practice, various groups still receive uneven amounts of attention, and one group particularly impacted by a lack of focus is the LGBTQ+ community. This webinar focuses on losses unique to this community, such as those inherent in the ongoing process of “coming out,” and on other common losses whose features may be unique for LGBTQ+ people, such as bereavement. With an estimated 3.5% of American adults identifying as lesbian, gay, or bisexual and approximately 0.3% identifying as transgender (Gates, 2011), it behooves thanatologists and everyone working with this population to understand the needs of this underserved community.


Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this webinar, participants will be able to:

  1. Distinguish losses unique to the LGBTQ+ community
  2. Describe the impact of disenfranchised grief and ambiguous losses on LGBTQ+ individuals
  3. Identify reputable resources for further development and advocacy


About the Presenter

Laura S. Wheat, PhD, LPC, NCC, is an Assistant Professor of Counselor Education at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, TN. She coordinates the college’s Grief Outreach Initiative (GOI), a service learning opportunity for any student enrolled in the university, graduate or undergraduate, to provide one on one support and mentorship to a grieving P-12 student in the local school system. She is currently conducting research on graduate student grief, pedagogy related to grief in counselor education, and the experiences of LGBTQ+ undergraduate students on a hostile campus. She has presented and published on grieving children and adolescents for the past ten years. She has been a member of ADEC for ten years and currently serves as Secretary of the Board of Directors as well as a member of the Committee on Committees. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in Georgia as well as a National Certified Counselor.

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