Art Therapy as Treatment for Nonbinary People with Disordered Substance Use: The Art Therapists’ Perspective

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Srok, Lisa
Master of Arts in Art Therapy
This qualitative research study presents the results of an online survey that evaluated the professional experience of credentialed art therapists using art therapy as a treatment for nonbinary individuals with disordered substance use. The resulting information is valuable for understanding how art therapists utilize art to provide mental health care services for this demographic. The research also reviews literature regarding substance use, mental health care for transgender and nonbinary (TGNB) individuals, and the value of art therapy. The problem concerning the omission of nonbinary people in current research is examined along with the specific challenges faced by this community. Through the perspective of professional art therapists, this research study investigates the specialized needs and therapy objectives of nonbinary people with disordered substance use, gains insights into the benefits of art therapy with this marginalized group, obtains informative feedback related to the importance of identity to this demographic, and gathers and analyzes additional data that is relevant to serving the mental health care needs of this diverse community. The results of this research may be used for the future development of culturally sensitive treatment programs integrating art therapy for TGNB people with disordered substance use and for creating specific art therapy interventions for this understudied population.