Image of a therapist and client in a counseling session.

6,560 people sought LGBTQ+ counseling help in North Carolina in the last year

Discover how starting LGBTQ+ counseling can support your own journey toward a happier, more fulfilling life.

Meet with a provider as soon as this week

Good news! We have 96 therapists in North Carolina available for an online or in-person session.

Starting LGBTQ+ counseling

What is LGBTQ+ counseling?

LGBTQ+ counseling is a type of queer affirmative counseling dedicated to assisting individuals and couples in navigating the intricate intersections of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and mental health, with a primary goal of fostering well-being, self-acceptance, and affirming a client's life experiences as a queer individual. Although not all LGBTQ+ individuals seek specialized counseling, a substantial number discover vital support and empathy within these inclusive and affirming therapeutic settings.

How does LGBTQ+ counseling work?

Thriveworks LGBTQ+ counseling in Asheville, NC typically begins with an initial assessment to understand your specific needs. LGBTQ+ counselors aim to create a safe, inclusive, and affirming environment for anyone within the LGBTQ+ community by encouraging self-acceptance and offering an understanding of your identity and experiences. The therapy addresses issues like coming out, discrimination, mental health challenges, and gender transition, and provides support for LGBTQ+ relationships.

Why is LGBTQ+ counseling important?

LGBTQ+ counseling is incredibly important because it can help queer individuals accept their identity, learn self-love, and give them important tools for facing the challenges of being a queer person in today's society, among many other benefits. LGBTQ+-affirming therapists can understand the unique perspective and experiences of queer individuals as they help them process past trauma, address family conflicts, treat issues with anxiety, and more.

Is LGBTQ+ counseling conducted in person or online?

Thriveworks LGBTQ+ counseling in Asheville, NC is conducted both in person and online by video. We encourage you to choose the option that works best for you.

How long does LGBTQ+ counseling last?

The number of sessions for LGBTQ+ counseling depends on the specific needs and goals of the individual. It could encompass a relatively limited series of sessions or extend into a longer counseling plan. The precise quantity and duration of sessions typically emerge through collaborative discussion with the counselor, taking into account the client's progress and their therapeutic objectives.

Need more help deciding?

One of the reasons the world loves the Olympics is because they are a mirror of the world. For example, in 2018’s Winter Olympics at Pyeongchang, two openly gay athletes competed. Both Adam Rippon and Gus Kenworthy used their platform to speak openly and advocate for more understanding and acceptance of athletes who are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, or Questioning. Rippon and Kenworthy exemplified so much healthy change that is happening for the LGBTQ community that is experiencing more and more acceptance and understanding. Kenworthy competed in another Olympics before he came out, and he reflected upon that time, saying, “It pushed me to this place where I needed to come out and I’m so happy that I did. To take that step meant a lot for me and for my mental well-being.” The Olympics, unfortunately, was also a reminder that the world is still not always a safe place for LGBTQ individuals. Adam and Gus competed out of the closet, but they also told stories of athletes and coaches who came out privately to them. Yet, these individuals faced abuse and discrimination if they came out to the world. Great strides are being made for acceptance and equality, but there is more work to do. Here are a few sobering realities that those within the LGBTQ community face:

  • For LGBTQ youth (ages 10-24), a leading cause of death is suicide.
  • “Minor stress” is a common experience for LGBTQ people. They often experience heightened anxiety due to experiencing higher rates of harassment, abuse, family rejection, prejudice, and social exclusion.
  • The rate of mental illness (for disorders such as PTSD, substance abuse, Major Depressive Disorder, and the like) in the LGBTQ community is three times higher than it is in cis-gendered and straight populations.

One of the most important foundations of mental health is self-awareness and self-acceptance. All people deserve love and support, but LGBTQ individuals often face barriers to their well-being simply because of who they are. Thriveworks Asheville Counseling offers LGBTQ capable counseling because we want everyone to experience self-acceptance and good mental health.

How Can LGBTQ Capable Counseling Make a Difference?

The mental health profession has a history of pathologizing those in the LGBTQ community. Before 1973, the American Psychological Association officially defined homosexuality as a disorder, but even since the authorized definition has changed, attitudes have not always shifted. Thus, many LGBTQ people face a dual stigma: those who need mental health care the most may have the most difficulty finding it. Some mental health professionals still try to fix their clients’ sexual orientation and gender instead of leading these clients toward self-acceptance.

Many people in the mental health care community and within the LGBTQ community are working to change the dual stigma. Therapists are becoming more and more educated upon the needs that their LGBTQ clients have and the best way to help them find the healing and care they deserve. If you are considering working with a therapist, here are a few tips for finding a LGBTQ capable mental health professional:

  • When scheduling your session, ask whether the counselor has experience working with LGBTQ clients, and feel free to ask for examples.
  • Always following your gut. If your intuition does not feel safe, do not proceed. Try a different therapist. If you are satisfied with the answers, move forward with the relationship.
  • As you feel comfortable with your therapist, let them know that LGBTQ capable therapy is important to you.
  • When you are ready, disclose information about your gender and sexuality.
  • When you are ready, disclose past trauma, current abuse, and/or mental health challenges you are facing.
  • Healing is the primary agenda for therapy, and there is no list that could contain the topics that may be address there. Just a few examples of topics LGBTQ clients may raise include…
    • Safety concerns
    • Gender and sexual identity
    • Healthy communication
    • Dealing with discrimination and non-acceptance
    • Dating and other relationships
    • How and when to come out
    • Family concerns
    • Addiction
    • Transcending gender roles
    • Eating disorders
    • Depression
    • Self-esteem issues
    • Anxiety and stress
    • Past trauma and abuse

In order for healing to take place, trust must be built between clients and therapists. As clients feel safe, they often share about their traumas and triumphs, weaknesses and strengths, successes and failures. Therapy is often about healing past wounds, but healing also has a future aspect. Clients and therapists look back, but they also look forward, working toward building the client a life where they feel loved and experience the acceptance they deserve.

Scheduling an Appointment at Thriveworks Asheville for LGBTQ Capable Therapy

Think about what is going on in your life. If you are thinking about working with a mental health professional, consider reaching out to Thriveworks Asheville. If counseling is your next step, we are ready to walk with you. We offer LGBTQ capable therapy, and we have appointments available. When you contact our office, a person, not a voicemail, will answer. Our scheduling specialist will help you make an appointment. Your first appointment may be within 24 hours of your first call. We offer evening and weekend sessions, but we do not put our clients on a waitlist (because we do not keep one). We also work with many different insurance companies and accept many different forms of insurance. Call Thriveworks Asheville today.

Pricing & insurance

Our therapists accept most major insurances. We accept 585+ insurance plans, and offer self-pay options, too.
Learn more about pricing for therapy and counseling services at Thriveworks.

Our Asheville therapists and counselors accept 27 insurance plans

  • Aetna

  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina | BCBS

  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina | BCBS Medicare Advantage

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield | Anthem (Blue Card)

  • Carelon

  • Caresource

  • Carolina Behavioral Health Alliance (CBHA)

  • Cigna | Evernorth

  • Cigna | Evernorth EAP

  • Cigna | Evernorth Medicare Advantage

  • Compsych

  • First Health Network

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Self-pay costs at Asheville
Talk therapy

Talk therapy

Includes individual, couples, child/ teen, & family therapy

First session


Ongoing sessions


Talk therapy


Includes reducing symptoms with medication & management

First session


Ongoing sessions


Hear from our clients

5.0 Learn about verified reviews
Shannon is such a God send. I am so thankful to be working with her. I look forward to healing with her.
Read more Shannon is such a God send. I am so thankful to be working with her. I look forward to healing with her.
Diane Feb 2024 verified review
Andrew is very intelligent and clearly understands how to make important connections and provide resources!
Read more Andrew is very intelligent and clearly understands how to make important connections and provide resources!
Francisco Jan 2024 verified review

Where to find us

Getting here

Thriveworks Counseling & Psychiatry Asheville is off of Patton Avenue, and near Thirsty Monk and Jerusalem Garden Cafe. Across the street is Pritchard Park and Sonora Cocina Mexicana.

Phone number

(828) 523-9140

Languages spoken by NC providers

  • English
Friday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Saturday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Sunday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Monday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Tuesday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Wednesday 8:00am - 9:00pm
Thursday 8:00am - 9:00pm

Shown in ET

Friday 7:00am - 9:30pm
Saturday 7:00am - 6:00pm
Sunday 8:00am - 5:00pm
Monday 7:00am - 9:30pm
Tuesday 7:00am - 9:30pm
Wednesday 7:00am - 9:30pm
Thursday 7:00am - 9:30pm

Shown in ET

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