This week, I really had my work cut out for me with spelling. Do you find sometimes that there are just some words you perpetually have to keep looking up? One of mine is Presence. Yes, it’s one “s’ followed by a “c.” I mention this because this week’s guest is Christhmus Presence. And I can’t spell that either. There’s an “h” after the “t.” I’m embarrassed to say that it took me a while to realize that my guests name rhymed with seasonal gifts. Christmas Presents?
Anyway, you’ve perhaps heard of a Renaissance Man, well, Chris is one. Not in that debonair or arrogant way, but in the literal sense of someone with a vast number of talents and areas of knowledge.
He’s definitely absorbed a ton of wisdom in his years, but you’ll probably not find anyone as humble. Though we recorded this last season, his gentle spirit still casts a warm and fuzzy glow. Christopher is an advocate for restorative justice and practices in the Bay area. He started Therapists of Color for Social Justice.
I would be remiss if I didn’t highlight that he runs a number of Black-Indigenous-People-Of-Color (BIPOC) Telehealth Groups for adults and also 7th and 8th graders. He also has Asian Pacific American groups. These are donation based groups that run ten weeks run by clinicians of color.
You can find him on his website as Christhmus Presence at http://www.christhmuspresence.com.
In this episode, we discuss ways in which to decolonize behavioral health and open up ways of healing that go way beyond talk therapy and are particularly restorative for people of color. Chris notes that there is no text book on how to decolonize the white institution of therapy.
When we allow our own DNA to resonate in a way that is not titrated though English, the language of the oppressor of many BIPOC individuals, it allows us to put other things into the frame of our healing beyond traditional therapy. We discuss how there’s something beyond English that’s held in our bodies which non-traditional healing can help us access.
You can find me on social media on Instagram, on Facebook in an online supportive community for anti-oppression advocacy or on my website providing education, marketing and racial trauma training for service providers interested in self-reflection regarding implicit bias or understanding BIPOC perspective.
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