Mental Health Platforms that are helping the LGBTQIA+ Community

Finding the right online therapist can often feel like a daunting task. For individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community, it may feel extra challenging to find a therapist who affirms their identity.

Srushti Pathak
New Update

What do we know about the mental health of LGBTQIA+ individuals in India? From being called names to being denied the basic fundamental rights that all others are guaranteed by the Constitution of India, despite law voting in favour of them, they go through hell. Fortunately, many therapists and mental health care providers practise affirmative therapy. This is an approach in which a therapist validates and advocates for the needs of LGBTQIA+ clients. And with advancements in the realm of online therapy, it’s possible to receive effective mental health care from the comfort of your own home.

So, for Mental Health Awareness Month, here is a list of platforms in India that people from the LGBTQIA+ community can seek help from for their dwindling mental health. 

1. Evolve

Image Courtesy: Evolve

To help sexual minorities in India and the world deal with the primary challenges of "embracing one's sexuality" and "coming out to loved ones," Evolve offers specially curated content. The app's content is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) - a type of treatment that intends to identify and change underlying thought patterns. When one logs in to the app, it creates a profile based on the age, gender, and sexuality. Once in, the app has five sections - a daily curated feed along with options for therapy, meditation, sleep, and journaling. Most sessions are short and are spread over a pre-decided timeline. For LGBTQIA+ individuals, Evolve's therapy sessions focus on coming out to loved ones, dealing with homophobia at home, and changing one's attitude. Evolve's co-founder Anshul Kamath said in an interview, "The LGBTQ+ community is the most underserved segment in the mental health market in terms of their propensity to seek solutions versus the availability of products or apps that actually address their needs.” This app is available for iOS as well as Android.

2. Manochikitsa


One of the leading counselling platforms for the LGBTQIA+ in India, the therapists here are trained to help people from the pride community accept themselves for who they are. They believe in providing a safe, affirming, and inclusive environment for members of the LGBTQ community seeking support. Their licensed clinical psychologists and senior psychologists specialise in LGBTQ issues, offering professional online counselling that respects one's identity and addresses specific challenges they may face. Accessible from anywhere in the world, their affordable sessions are designed to empower them, promote their well-being, and support their journey toward self-acceptance and fulfillment. Manochikitsa offers specialised counselling sessions like self-disclosure and reality therapy to interpret people's overwhelming feelings and tries to make them comfortable in their own skin.

3. The Humsafar Trust

The Humsafar Trust
Image Courtesy: The Humsafar Trust

The Humsafar Trust, India's first Community-Based Organisation for LGBTQ+ people, was founded in 1994 and has been working on LGBTQ+ health and rights for more than 25 years. The Trust started by welcoming lesbians and gays to its programs on Fridays at its drop-in centre. Numerous workshops on HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ+ rights were held at the drop-in centre, and it soon became evident that the trust would need to work hard to protect the community's health and human rights. The trust also provides legal support, crisis management, mental health, and nutrition counselling to its communities. This organisation was founded and spearheaded by Ashok Row Kavi, one of the leading and renowned LGBTQIA+ rights activists. He is a journalist well-known for having revealed his true identity long back in 1984, in an era when India was yet to start talking about the basic human rights of the pride community. 

4. Guftagu Therapy

Guftagu Therapy
Image Courtesy: Guftagu Therapy

Queer and trans-affirmative counseling helps LGBTQI+ individuals have a safe space to explore unique life stressors, relationship issues, and other related concerns. Established by Sadaf Vidha, Guftagu Therapy is located at Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, if one prefers to take their offline sessions. Otherwise, they are also available online and the online sessions are comparatively more affordable than the face-to-face sessions. Apart from counselling and psychotherapy sessions, it also offers mental health products, workshop podcasts and more.

5. Tangent Mental Health Initiative

Tangent Mental Health Initiative

Tangent Mental Health Initiative provides mental health care that is inclusive, queer affirmative, neuro-diverse and based on the social justice framework. Based out of Bengaluru, Tangent Mental Health Initiative is closely associated with inclusive and queer affirmative counselling services. The services are based on the social justice framework and are also neuro-diverse. The counselling slots are priced very affordably. There is also something called the ‘pay what one can’ slots that are specifically customised for those who cannot afford counselling sessions. These are thoughtfully priced at an even lesser amount than other mental health services, less than what one can ever find at most other mental health platforms for the LGBTQIA+ community.

6. Pause For Perspective

Pause For Perspective
Image Courtesy: Pause For Perspective

This mental health and wellness organization is led by a group of clinical psychologists and psychological counselors with over 30 years of rich experience in the fields of mental health, psychology, and education. The Hyderabad-based platform reaches out not only to people from the LGBTQIA+ community but also to all other individuals, irrespective of their gender identities. It offers single sessions as well as short-term three-month counselling sessions. Pause For Perspective’s modalities firmly sit on deconstructing dominant discourses and working on social justice models that ensure that they are aware of intersectionalities and their impact on mental health. 

So, if you know someone from this community, don’t hesitate to share this with him/her/them and lend support towards his/her/their mental wellbeing, should he/she/they need it.

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