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Counseling African American Men, 3-video Series
Effective therapy with African American men requires an in-depth understanding of their current and historical struggles, and a willingness to confront topics which may require both therapists and clients to be uncomfortable. This groundbreaking online course combines numerous sessions and expert commentary that will increase your confidence and efficacy in working with Black men.
Race and racism are obviously charged and difficult topics that may seem like the elephant in the room, and therapists are often uncertain how to address them. Yet ignoring these issues comes at its own peril. In this compelling three-video course therapist and educator Darrick Tovar-Murray, PhD convincingly lays out the case that failing to bring these uncomfortable issues into the room will greatly limit your ability to form an authentic and powerful connection with African American men.

Through riveting clinical demonstrations, and accompanying candid conversations with Psychotherapy.net Founder Victor Yalom, Tovar-Murray demonstrates compassionate and collaborative techniques for creating the safe space and meaningful connections for African American men to grow and heal in therapy. Volume One breaks down the societal forces and developmental issues common to this population, and then highlights clear, effective strategies for overcoming the barriers and pitfalls therapists often encounter when treating them. These struggles and strategies are then further explored in Volumes Two and Three, which follow three African American men throughout their courses of therapy. Together they explore the transgenerational impact of race and racism, give focus to the lenses through which African American men experience the world, and delineate methods for building the strong therapeutic alliance that is pivotal to successful therapy outcomes.

By watching Tovar-Murray masterfully meld narrative and client-centered techniques, you will learn how to help Black men heal the transgenerational scars of racism. By exploring the stories your Black clients were born into, you will more effectively help them strengthen their sense of identity and develop self-empowering counter-narratives. Examining the profound influence of family, culture and history, as well as the destructive stereotypes like the “angry Black man” and the “absent Black father”, you will expand your ability to relate to your Black clients.

Spanning over nine hours, these highly lauded training videos will deepen your sensitivity to the role that race plays both inside and outside of the therapeutic space so that you can connect better with your African American clients and make more targeted and meaningful interventions that lead to growth and healing. 

What therapists are saying…

“Dr. Tovar Murray intentionally offers a therapeutic space for Black male clients to narrate their intersections of identity without fear of judgment, criticism, or skepticism. Salient examples of tackling the complex issue of historical and contemporary racism many Black male clients face in daily life is provided. The therapist skillfully examines race, identity, strength, and resiliency while navigating the importance of self-disclosure, connection, and agency within session. This timely demonstration can be a foundation for some therapists, students, and professors or a key reminder for others within our racialized society.”
—Sam Steen, PhD, Associate Professor School Counseling, George Mason University
“Dr. Tovar-Murray masterfully demonstrates that therapists don’t need special interventions or tricks up their sleeves to work with Black male clients. Rather, he shows that building an authentic, therapeutic relationship is the key that unlocks the door to Black men's wellness.”
—Dr. LaTonya Summers, LCMHC, Professor, Jacksonville University and Founder of the Black Mental Health Symposium
“An invaluable resource for professionals counseling African-American men. Dr. Tovar-Murray will deepen your understanding of racial experiences and their profound psychological effects on the day-to-day lives of Black men. His methods for addressing the multi-layered identities of African-American men can be easily incorporated into your existing therapeutic approach. I recommend this video series as an absolutely necessary resource for all counseling professionals.”
—Poonam Doshi, PhD, Assistant Professor, Psychology & Mental Health Counseling Department, Pace University
“This comprehensive online course is insightful and much needed. Tovar-Murray's unique style of working brings to light the unwritten narratives of African American men, giving them a voice in a space where they have often felt silenced and stigmatized. This series will be amazing in training a new generation of counselors.”
—Dr. Shirlyn M. Garrett, EdD, Assistant Professor, Director of the Counseling Graduate Program, Chicago State University
“Counseling African American Men humanizes how the experiences of racism, stereotypes and trauma affects Black men and their mental health. These experiences, whether shared or idiosyncratic, need to be heard, enabling counselors to engage in a culturally responsive and humanistic practice.”
—Dr. Jordan Shannon, PhD, Assistant Professor, Seattle Pacific University
“Counseling African American Men is extremely powerful, and will benefit a wide range helping professionals. This course covers common challenges that African American men face daily, yet often feel unable to express, as they are deliberately silenced and in turn profiled as angry, problematic, and even criminal. These videos offer clinicians and students an opportunity to provide culturally competent treatment to African American men in a caring and meaningful fashion.”
—Mary Brown, MS, LPC, Doctoral Candidate, Capella University
In Depth
These compassionate and masterful demonstrations will offer clinicians of all levels the opportunity to sit right alongside Tovar-Murray as he creates meaningful relationships and the foundations for healing with three African American clients.

Christopher has struggled all his life to fit in— first at school, then in the military, and most recently in relationships and in the workforce. Angry, depressed, having turned to alcohol to regulate himself and disenfranchised, he feels angry, vulnerable, isolated and without direction despite his immediate family ties and proud ancestry. When we first meet him, he asks us to “wake up and be black in Chicago one day and see if people look at you the same way, clinch their bag tighter, get nervous and stop talking when they’re walking past you.”

Chad is freshly out of a long-term relationship, unemployed, struggling with insecurity and self-doubt, and trying to balance a complex identity comprised of being gay, raised as a Jehovah’s witness, and Black. When we first meet him, Chad tells us what it is like to feel invisible and asks us to consider that “as a black person... you’re getting all these signals around that you’re threatening to the point where you now got a literal target on your back and can be killed because of it.”

Carver presents primarily with issues in his relationships with women— both his ex and current girlfriend with whom he has a child. Underneath his sadness and frustration are the residual effects of having experienced an absent father and his difficulty feeling anger about this. When we first meet him, Carver reminds us that as a Black man, “self-preservation is the first order of law— if that means being on guard 24/7, then the answer is yes, but that is the burden and it’s very heavy to carry that.”

Watching and learning from Tovar-Murray’s work with Christopher, Chad and Carver will not only enhance your clinical practice with African American men, but with all of your clients.

Length of Series: 9:13:01

English subtitles available

Darrick Tovar-Murray, PhD, is an associate professor of counseling in the Department of Counseling and Special Education at DePaul University in Chicago, where he teaches a wide range of graduate-level clinical and counseling courses. He is the author (with contributions from Jan Louis Gaetjens) of Basic Therapeutic Counseling Skills: Interventions for Working with Clients’ Thoughts, Feelings and Behavior (Cognella, 2017). Dr Tovar Murray’s primary area of scholarship is multicultural counseling, and his research interests include identity development, African-American well-being, and counseling and spirituality. 
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