I came to psychosocial counseling for a variety of reasons. First of all, there is my passion for working with people, which always allows me to have exciting encounters. Then there were my growing interest in the field of psychology as well as my own therapy experiences, which showed me how much positive change is possible. And finally, there was my journey to discovering and celebrating my queer identity. I wish I had queer psychological support that didn’t require me to explain basic issues around sexuality, relationships, and gender over and over again.
That’s why I made it my goal to create such a space with queer.growing.support. I recently graduated from my three-year training in counseling at GFK Institute in Zurich. I write more about my methods here.
Maya Wohlgemuth, *1989
My Counseling Principles
Through my counseling, I offer a queer space for self-awareness, self-exploration, and overcoming difficult situations. I assume that you know yourself best. In my sessions I do not offer solutions, but I am happy to help you find your own way. The body is equally as important to me as the psychological, mental, spiritual. I regularly take supervision and strive for transparency in the counseling process. This can also mean that I refer someone to a specialist if I am not able to accompany them appropriately.
My ideal is to create a difference-sensitive space. I borrow the word “difference-sensitive” from Mai-Anh Boger. I understand this to mean a mindful approach to the experiences we have because of our different positions in society. The goal is for as many people as possible to feel comfortable in this difference-sensitive space. This involves a constant examination of my own privileges and position of power as a “mental health professional.” I also see psychosocial counseling as political work, which is why it is important for me to be transparent about my experience. The following labels, among others, determine my perspective within our (Swiss) society: white, middle class, with university education, non-religious, neurotypical, non-binary trans, dyadic, pansexual, non-monogamous.
Our sessions are not detached from the social structures. In the case of experiences such as discrimination, we can work together in counseling to find a way of dealing with the situation that is right for you. However, the fact that racism, ableism, queerphobia, classism, etc. are ingrained in our society should also be given space and such experiences should not be psychologized away as an individual problem.
Training in psychological counseling
Three-year part-time training at the GFK Institute in person-centered counseling and process facilitation.
at ETH Zurich in “History and Philosophy of Knowledge”.
A longer journey took me to many countries, which also led to livint in China for two years.
at the University of Zurich in literature and linguistics.
SGfB – Swiss Society for Consulting
2019-2021 Peer-To-Peer Counseling as part of the Team at HAZ.
Since 2022: As part of my part-time work for a patient organization, I offer individual counseling for people with epilepsy. This counseling is based on a model developed by psychologists and draws from Donna Andrews’ „Taking Control of your Seizures“