Lost & Found: Finding Virtual Communities & Belonging in Fandoms


Lost & Found

We hear about being a part of a community in areas such as work, school, sports, religious, and cultural communities, for example, but what about non-traditional spaces? What can they offer?

Jamila Mahfudh, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT), Boontarika Sripom MA (ENFP 4w5, neurodivergent), and Lorran Garrison MAEd, PPS and School Psychologist (she/her) discuss how non-traditional, online spaces provide opportunities for people to feel connected and accepted. Virtual spaces allow people to embrace the nuances and complexities of identity, intersectionality, and authenticity, especially for BIPOC, LGBTQIA, neurodivergent and marginalized people, and find a place to belong.

To this day, there continues to be identities and communities that are valued less or silenced, but with the existence of fandoms and online communities, people can reclaim their voices, their preferred narratives and identities, and have reparative experiences in community with others.

Join in on the discussion and explore ways in which you can support others in finding their community—or find a new one for you!

Lorran Garrison (She|Her)

Little Brainstorm

Lorran Garrison (pronouns: she/her) was raised on the island of Guam in a quirky family made up of Vietnamese, Black, Filipino and many cultures and ethnicities. A licensed School Psychologist, she has her Pupil Personnel Services credential in CA. She also possesses degrees in History and Spanish, a Master’s degree in Urban Policy and Management.

She loves to travel, eat and cook unique foods, read and write comic books, and advocate for those in need. Lorran is dedicated to helping people feel heard through School Psychology and telling stories that break down stigma and create a more inclusive society.

Jamila Mahfudh, LMFT (She|Her)

Resilience Within Family Counseling, Inc.

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT) providing therapy, education and consultation.

Boontarika Sripom, MA (ENFP, 4w5, Neurodivergent)

Life Coach
Organized Messes

Boontarika Sripom, MA is a therapy-informed life coach. Her work focuses on coaching using archetypes and understanding the cognition of the differently wired, specifically highly sensitive, creative, and gamer folks. She believes knowledge, guidance, and compassion leads to insights, individual acceptance, and empowerment to change.

Boonie is a former preschool teacher, paraprofessional in special education, Outreach Counselor Intern, and College Counselor for creative students. She earned her Master’s in Clinical Psychology from the Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

Her favorite games are Age of Empires, World of Warcraft, and Minecraft. She is currently playing Fortnite, Animal Crossing, and Fire Emblem: Three Houses. #TeamFelix

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *