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VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.

The Counselor’s Role in Helping Students With Sexual Identity Issues: A Case Study of a Mother and Daughter

Rochelle C. Moss, Kristi L. Perryman, Katherine M. Cochran, and Edward F. Hudspeth


This article describes a qualitative study of the coming out process of an adolescent lesbian. The study traces the phases of the coming out process and describes the parallel process of her mother. The study is a phenomenological case study that shows findings consistent with Cass' model of sexual identity formation and identifies the following themes for the individual: (a) feelings of distress, (b) questions about being different and the effects of being different, (c) awareness, (d) certainty and relief, (e) feelings of pride, (f) feeling comfortable with self, and (g) helpful counselor behaviors.

Keywords: sexual identity development, school counselor, case study

PDF, 341.90 KB

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