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On becoming an elder: an immigrant Latina therapist narrative

TitleOn becoming an elder: an immigrant Latina therapist narrative
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsFlores, YG
JournalWomen & TherapyWomen & Therapy
ISBN Number0270-3149
KeywordsAging, Cultural Diversity, Divorce, Family Relations, Family Therapy, Feminism, Hispanics, Immigrants, Life Experiences, Psychotherapists, Self Concept, Sex Role, Social Class
AbstractThe journey from student to licensed psychologist, from young adult to seasoned and mature clinician, and, last, to elder in the Latino therapeutic community entails multiple migrations. In this paper, I explore the recurrent patterns and themes of these migrations across boundaries of nations, class, sexualities, and family formations within and outside the therapeutic milieu. Interwoven in the narrative is a questioning of the gender roles and cultural mandates that, as a woman, wife, mother, lover, teacher, and clinician I have had to negotiate and renegotiate. Through a feminist lens, I examine the web of relationships, particularly with my chosen sisters, and the path to reclaim a more whole, integrated, spiritual, and embodied self. Positioned as an elder, I examine how this positionality informs and nuances my teaching and clinical work.