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Somerset Hunterdon Warren Psychological Association

Gender Dysphoria: Overview of a Model for Assessment and Treatment

  • Friday, March 20, 2020
  • (UTC-03:00)
  • 600 Mountain Blvd, Watchung NJ 07069


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Somerset Hunterdon Psychological Association

                             Friday March 20, 2020                              “Gender Dysphoria: Overview of a Model for Assessment and Treatment”

                                                Presented by:

                           Stephanie Sasso, Ph.D.

  • Time: 11:00- 11:30 Registration and Welcome, 11:30-12:30 Lunch, 12:30 2:30- Presentation/Q&A
  • Location:Watchung Valley Golf Club 600 Mountain Blvd, Watchung, NJ 07069

                Workshop Cost: $35 SHPA members / $45 non-members 

                Two Continuing Education (CE) Credits for Psychologists: CE fee and evaluation completed online.

  • CF Fees:  NJPA: Sustaining Members-Free, NJPA Members-$15, NJPA Non-Members- $25.  
  •  About the Speaker:  Stephanie Sasso is a New Jersey licensed psychologist (#5227), practicing at Rise Psychological Services in Highland Park, NJ. Her areas of practice include, “Providing culturally sensitive and identity-affirming individual, couples, and group therapy to a diverse group of adults, with specialization in couples, sexual issues, and sex and gender diverse clients in private practice.” In addition she provides “individual and family therapy to a diverse group of children and adolescents, including a specialization treating transgender and gender expansive youth.”  Stephanie Sasso also works with “transgender and gender expansive individuals across the life span, including family and transition support and surgical evaluations.” She engages in community and professional speaking events to provide education about “sex and gender diverse youth and adults. Her consultation with schools includes working on “affirming policies and best practice with gender diverse and LGBTQ+ students, including co-writing a transgender student policy.”  Stephanie Sasso has been a member of the Middlesex County Association of Psychologists since 2005 and served as president of that affiliate from January of 2015 to 2016. Since 2014, Stephanie has been a member of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health since 2014.

                Workshop Overview: “This presentation will bring participants beyond a basic understanding of gender identities  to begin developing a deeper sense of gender Dysphoria; the primary distress impacting the mental health and  wellbeing of those who choose to undergo social and/or medical gender transition. It will explore the experience  of Dysphoria in depth, as well as the opposing experience of gender euphoria. It will then cover how these  concepts can be explored with clients not only assess Dysphoria clinically, but develop a targeted treatment  plan.” “The presentation introduces my treatment model which is based on the interaction between distress  stemming from gender-related experience (gender Dysphoria, minority stress, and false-self trauma) and primary      mental health conditions, if any. It provides the research basis for this model, and highlights a number of areas in which the treatment of gender Dysphoria differs from much of our work, detailing how this must change our treatment considerations in the following ways:

  • 1)     The distinction between internal Dysphoria and that experienced due to the impact of external/societal interactions and need for corresponding multi-systemic treatment approaches.
  • 2)     The interplay between medical and mental health treatment.
  • 3)     The critical importance (often counterintuitive) of treating gender Dysphoria first, rather than focusing on primary mental health symptoms.
  • 4)     The need for constant assessment, particularly as Dysphoria can mask or imitate other disorders, and false-self trauma can obscure those core aspects of self and personality that might allow for optimal diagnostic clarity.”

         Learning Objectives:

  • 1.     Distinguish internal and external experiences of gender Dysphoria, providing one example of each, and listing two key questions to assess each.
  • 2.     List three core ways in which assessment and treatment planning may differ when treating gender Dysphoria versus more conventional diagnoses.
  • 3.     Summarize research about the outcomes of medical intervention in treating gender Dysphoria in order to demonstrate the importance of appropriate and timely referral and collaboration with medical providers.

       Target Audience: Psychologists, Social Workers, Mental Health Counselors, Marriage and Family Therapists, Graduate                                           Students                                                                                                                                                                                                                Program Sophistication:  Intermediate: Some basic knowledge of the specific content is required                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Dr. Sasso does not have any commercial support and/or conflict for interest for this program.                                                                                                    ADA Accommodationsavailable upon requests. Email Virginia Walters ( with written accommodation requests no later than March 16, 2020.                                                                                                                                                                        Register: Online and pay at  or contact Mark Aronson by March 18,2020, at, or send a check payable to SHPA to: Mark Aronson, Ed.D. 12 Quimby Lane Bernardsville, NJ 07924   Registration cancellations made more than 48 hours in advance of the program will be refunded (less administrative fees).     Sponsorship: This workshop is co-sponsored by NJPA and the Somerset Hunterdon Psychological Association. NJPA is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychologists. NJPA maintains responsibility for the program and its content.



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