Therapy for Women’s Issues: Why Western Culture Needs to Do Better

By Jared Levenson - Reviewed on May 24, 2023
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In today’s fast-paced world, mental health care is more important than ever, especially when it comes to addressing the unique challenges faced by women.

From battling gender inequality and societal expectations to overcoming experiences of sexual abuse and harassment, women often face issues that can profoundly impact their mental well-being.

This article highlights the urgent need to prioritize and destigmatize therapeutic support for women grappling with the complexities of life in Western societies. In addition, the main focus of this article is talking about therapy for women’s issues in general.

What Issues Does Feminist or Therapy for Women Seek to Address

Unfortunately, western culture is not always very understanding of women’s issues.

  • From wage gaps and underrepresentation of other women in politics, business, and other areas to rape culture and motherhood, these issues can be difficult to navigate without the right support.
  • Mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder are common among women seeking therapy.
  • Women may also seek help with physical health concerns such as chronic pain, reproductive health issues, and gynecological care.
  • Additionally, women may seek support for dealing with the unique pressures they face in society related to gender roles and expectations.

This lack of understanding can lead to feelings of isolation and frustration that women struggle with, as well as a sense that no one truly understands what they’re going through.

Fortunately, therapy can help bridge this gap by providing a safe space where women can discuss their experiences without fear of judgment or stigma.

In therapy, women may explore their identity and how it has been shaped by cultural norms and expectations. They may also discuss the impact of systemic oppression on their lives and work to develop strategies for self-empowerment.

Mental health and societal issues unique to women

The University of Tulane1 reports mental health issues unique to women are often overlooked and under-researched.

  • Women are more likely than men to experience depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
  • Additionally, women face a greater risk of developing eating disorders due to societal pressures to conform to certain body types.
  • Women also tend to be more vulnerable to the effects of trauma and abuse, which can lead to long-term mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.

Furthermore, women may experience unique mental health issues related to pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood.

Society needs to recognize these unique challenges that women face to ensure that they receive the support they need.

What Disorders Are More Common in Females?

Women are more likely than men to suffer from certain disorders, such as anxiety, depression, autoimmune conditions, thyroid disease, stroke, bladder problems and urinary tract infections (UTIs), breast cancer, and heart disease.

According to the Journal of Abnormal Psychology3, researchers report that women are more than twice as likely as men to get an anxiety disorder in their lifetime. Additionally, women are more prone to arthritis and lupus than men. Alzheimer’s is also more common in women than men.

Maternal health issues can also be a concern for women. Women should be aware of the risks associated with pregnancy and childbirth and take steps to ensure they have a healthy pregnancy.

All women need to understand these common health issues so they can take proactive steps to maintain their health and well-being. Regular check-ups with a doctor or healthcare provider can help identify any potential problems before they become serious.

Post-Pandemic Impact on Women’s Health

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on women’s health, both physically and mentally, according to the Wilson Center2.

  • Approximately two-thirds of women reported an increase in stress and/or anxiety during the pandemic, with 23% saying the increase was significant.
  • Women are more likely to have gone without health care during the pandemic compared to men, and those with health and economic challenges were even more likely to go without care. The pandemic has also caused long-term damage to women’s work, health, and safety.

A study of over 28,000 women by the University of British Columbia found that women going through the stress of the pandemic are more likely to experience physical or other mental illness and health issues than men.

In addition, 1.8 million women dropped out of the labor force in the United States because of the pandemic, many in major urban areas like Los Angeles.

Caregiving is essential to work, yet caregivers—who are disproportionally women—are often undervalued and lack access to resources such as paid leave or child care support.

How Therapy for Women’s Issues Works

Feminist Therapy Part 1: What is Feminist Therapy?

In therapy for women’s issues, therapists provide an unbiased perspective on the challenges faced by women in society.

  • They also offer guidance on how to cope with these challenges and develop strategies for healthily dealing with them.
  • Additionally, therapists can help identify underlying causes of any other mental health symptoms or struggles that may be present due to the stressors associated with being a woman in today’s world.
  • Therapy isn’t just about talking either; it also involves practical tools like cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) which helps individuals recognize patterns in their thinking and behavior that may be contributing to their distress.

Other therapies such as dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) focus on developing skills such as mindfulness, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and distress tolerance which can help individuals better manage their emotions when faced with difficult situations.

Why Seek Therapy for Women’s Issues?

  • Women’s issues are often complex and unique, making it important to seek therapy to help address them.
  • Therapy can provide a safe space for women to explore their feelings and experiences, as well as gain insight into how they can make positive changes in their lives.
  • Through therapy, women can learn coping strategies to manage stress and anxiety, develop healthier relationships with themselves and others, and increase self-esteem.

Find a Therapist for Women’s Therapy on Talkspace

Talkspace is a highly recommended platform for women looking for therapy.

  • Our team at Online Mental Health Reviews bought the service and documented our experience as a “secret therapy shopper.”
  • Since many health insurance plans cover Talkspace, it’s possible that you can use the service for less money.
  • With more than 20,000 reviews on app stores and an impressive average rating of 4.7 or higher, Talkspace has proven to be a reliable choice for mental health help.
  • One of the best things about it is that you can choose your own doctor. This gives you a personalized and comfortable therapy experience.

If you choose Talkspace for women’s therapy, you can get professional advice and support that is tailored to your needs.

How Does Gender Affect Therapy?

Gender plays an important role in the therapeutic process, as it can affect the way a therapist interacts with their client and the outcomes of therapy.

  • Research4 has shown that therapists may be more confrontational and critical with male clients, while female clients receive more empathy and support.
  • Female therapists have also been found to be more empathetic towards their female clients than male ones.
  • Additionally, gender can influence how a client responds to therapy; for example, women tend to have a greater need to talk things out than men do. Counselors need to be aware of these gender differences when working with clients, as they can help create an environment that is conducive to successful therapy outcomes.

Is it Better to Talk to a Female or Male Therapist?

When it comes to deciding whether it is better to talk to a female or male therapist, there is no definitive answer.

Ultimately, the best predictor of whether therapy is successful is the bond the therapist and client share, regardless of gender.

  • Some people may prefer a female therapist because they feel more comfortable discussing sensitive topics with someone who can relate to their experiences as a woman.
  • Others may prefer a male therapist because they feel that he can provide a different perspective on their issues.
  • It’s important to take into consideration your comfort level and preferences when making this decision.

If you don’t have an immediate preference for either gender, consider researching potential therapists online or asking friends for recommendations before making your decision.

7 Steps to Find Therapy for Women’s Issues

Finding the right therapist for women’s issues can be a daunting task. However, there are some steps you can take to make sure you find the best fit for your needs.

  1. Determine what kind of support you need. This will help narrow down your search and ensure that you find a therapist who specializes in the area of your concern.
  2. Compile a list of potential therapists. Look for local resources, apps, organizations, and reliable online therapy options to get started.
  3. Ask about credentials and experience when considering different therapists. Make sure they have the necessary qualifications to provide treatment for your specific issue.
  4. Consider cost and payment options when selecting a therapist that fits within your budget. There are also low-cost or free options available if needed.
  5. Research how many patients have had similar issues as yours and what were the results of their treatment with this particular therapist or organization.
  6. Ask questions about policies, fees, payment plans, etc., so that you know exactly what to expect before committing to any one provider or plan of care.
  7. Finally, look into online therapy options if traditional in-person sessions aren’t feasible due to time constraints or other factors such as distance or disability status.

You may also use Zocdoc, the “Google” of mental health, known for its customer support. We bought and signed up for Zocdoc, in our review.

Should a Woman Have a Male or Female Therapist?

When deciding whether to choose a male or female therapist, it is important to consider the individual needs of the patient.

Generally speaking, both men and women tend to prefer a same-gender therapist because they feel more comfortable and trust their therapists more.

  • Women may find it easier to open up and talk about their feelings with another woman who can relate better to their experiences.
  • Additionally, some women may feel more comfortable discussing sensitive topics with someone who shares similar life experiences as them.

However, studies4 have shown that gender does not necessarily make much difference in terms of the effectiveness of therapy.

Can I go to the same therapist as my girlfriend?

It is possible to go to the same therapist as your girlfriend, but it is important to consider the potential ethical issues that may arise.

It can be beneficial for a couple to attend therapy together, as it allows both sides of the story to be heard and gives the therapist a better understanding of the relationship dynamics.

However, it is important to ensure that each partner feels comfortable discussing their issues in front of the other.

If one partner does not feel comfortable doing so, then it may be best for them to seek out an individual therapist instead. Additionally, some therapists may not accept couples who are both seeking individual counseling at the same time due to ethical considerations.

How do I Tell Her She Needs Therapy?

Telling someone you love that they need to seek therapy can be a difficult conversation, but it is important to approach the topic with sensitivity and understanding.

  1. Start by bringing up the idea in a comfortable or private situation, and share your own experience if you have been through therapy yourself.
  2. Clarify your motives for wanting them to seek help, and emphasize that you are not trying to judge them or tell them what to do.
  3. Offer to help them find a reputable psychologist, dial or watch as they dial to make an appointment, and even offer to drive them there.
  4. Be honest and clear about your reasons for thinking they could use support, but avoid using stereotypes or derogatory language.
  5. Finally, if you have gone through therapy yourself, talking about it can help convince your loved one that seeking professional help is beneficial.

Therapy for Women’s Issues Conclusion

Western culture needs to become more aware of the unique challenges faced by women so that we can do better at supporting them through these struggles.

Therapy for women’s issues provides an invaluable service by helping individuals gain insight into their experiences while also offering practical solutions and tools for managing any mental health difficulties they may be facing due to societal pressures or other sources of stress.

By recognizing the importance of this type of care, we can create an environment where all people feel supported regardless of gender identity, or background.

Finally, please know our team has covered similar therapy questions. For example, you may learn about therapy for anger, paying via HSA, your 1st therapy session, finding the right therapist, insurance coverage, women’s issues, ISDTP therapy, and how to talk about your feelings.

We’d love to hear from you too! Tell us what mental health software to review next on Online Mental Health Reviews. If you have stories about using a particular product or know of a discount code, please share so everyone may benefit!

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  1. Understanding Mental Health as a Public Health Issue. (2021, January 13). School of Public Health.
  2. The Lasting Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Women’s Work, Health, and Safety. (2023, May 17). Wilson Center.
  3. Eaton, N. R., Keyes, K. M., Krueger, R. F., Balsis, S., Skodol, A. E., Markon, K. E., Grant, B. F., & Hasin, D. S. (2012, February). An invariant dimensional liability model of gender differences in mental disorder prevalence: Evidence from a national sample. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 121(1), 282–288.
  4. Artkoski, T., & Saarnio, P. (2013). Therapist’s Gender and Gender Roles: Impact on Attitudes toward Clients in Substance Abuse Treatment. Journal of Addiction, 2013, 1–6.

If You Are In Crisis

In Case of an Emergency If you find yourself in a crisis, waiting for an online therapy session may not be the safest option. In urgent circumstances, such as plans to harm yourself or others, immediately call 911 for assistance. If you’re experiencing suicidal thoughts, reach out to the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by dialing 988, where help is available 24/7.

Additionally, you can contact the National Helpline of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). This free, confidential helpline offers support, information, and treatment resources for individuals struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues, 24/7, 365 days a year.

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