Sex therapy is a generally considered a specialized form of psychotherapy for adults, either individually or with couples, that focuses on sexual issues, often pertaining to sex within relationships, but also encompassing the gamut of sexual/emotional concerns which have a psychological nature with a physical or sexual representation.
What is the difference between Sex Therapy and Sex/Relationship Coaching?
Although my training is in clinical psychotherapy and sex therapy, I prefer to work as a coach/consultant for sex, dating, and relationship concerns. I prefer we not medicalize, considering them mental illness, relationship, sex and dating issues, and I prefer to work outside of the medical model. See my post on the medical model.
My coaching/consulting services appropriate for a vast array of people. People of all ages, sexual orientations, genders, religions, and ethnicities may choose to seek the help of sex therapists. My services are appropriate for:
- Individuals wanting to deal with sexual identity issues
- Couples wanting to increase intimacy, passion, romance
- People who want to deal with sexual fears, inhibitions and traumas
- People who are dissatisfied with their sexual functioning
- Couples wanting to increase their communication
- Individuals wanting to increase the overall qualities of their relationships, including dating.
There is no one “type” of person who can benefit from my serives and there are many more reasons to see a sex and relationship therapist or coach than those mentioned above.
MY PHILOSOPHY and MODALITIES
I consider myself to be sex positive. Sex positive refers to the celebration of our bodies, our sexuality as they are. Sex Positive encourages acceptance, with an emphasis on no judgement, and focuses on diminishing shame and guilt. The sex positive movement focuses on consent and pleasure, and sees most forms of sexuality as healthy when it's between consenting adults.
In our Western culture, body and mind are often treated as separate entities. Much of traditional psychotherapy tends to separate thinking and feeling from the physical bodily aspects. Sex therapy can assist you in drawing the bridge between mind and body because it focuses on physical manifestations with psychological roots.
Sex, gender roles and sexuality are a part of our lives, our identities, our personalities and our relationships, but are often treated as taboo subjects that no one wants to talk about....
Society and media's role in defining what is right, what is wrong, what is accepted and what is taboo often contradict your own feelings. Sex should be an intimate and enjoyable experience, and sexuality a life enriching endeavor that is an expression of true self, but so often we're riddled with confusion about identity, worry or guilt about our actions, and shame about the past. I can help you address this.
Society doesn't always want us to talk about sex, and often this leaves us lacking the skills to deal with sexual issues when they come up in our relationships and in our lives. Sex therapy is an avenue in which to explore such issues openly without judgment.
When you work with me, treatment will be holistic, encompassing healing from the inside out, often starting with the body and then linking to the mind and is solution focused.
I believe that sex therapy is a useful conjunctive tool in couples therapy and counseling, relationship counseling, life coaching, and to bridge between body and mind. Sex therapy addresses the intimate relationships we have with ourselves, our mental psyches, our egos, our physical bodies, our metaphysical, our personalities, our identities, our histories and ultimately our relationships with others, all of which in turn affects our lives.
As your coach, I will try to help you develop clearly defined issue/s and goals for your relationships and life, plans to work on that issue and resolve it, to find a way to make problems and causes have less of an effect or impact on your life. It is very common that relationship/sex coaching and sex therapy will start out with a focus on a specific sexual dysfunction or communication problems between partners in the bedroom, but once the layers are peeled back, some very basic patterns will be revealed, that are affecting other areas of your life as well. My goal is to help you heal in all areas.
Sex therapy and consulting may be brief, lasting anywhere from a few sessions (for couples) to more than a dozen sessions, but for more deep-seated problems treatment may be long term, and could last longer.
My approach tends to be more directive. I will be an active participant in your treatment, asking questions and giving suggestions and solutions, exercises (both physical and mental) to do at home (mostly for couples), and psycho-education in an effort to support your goals throughout your therapy.
Generally since I specialize in sexual issues, I am chosen over a general psychotherapist, psychologist, psychiatrist, or other helping professional, when the issues are very specifically sex related, or when sexuality seems like a central part of the issue. Some examples of issues that bring people to my relationship coaching, counseling or sex therapy are:
- Sexual trauma
- Lack of orgasm or arousal
- Difficulties with erections or ejaculation
- Problems with differing levels of desire in a couple
- Difficulties resulting from infidelities
- Sexual concerns as a result of illness or surgery
This list is not all-inclusive, and if you think you are interested in talking with me, I will spend at some time on the phone with you to determine whether or not I am the appropriate person to be meeting with.
Please note however, that during the course of our work together, in the case of sex therapy, relationship coaching and consulting there will often occur exploration of history, childhood, previous relationships, and past experiences, which may also uncover significant emotions, communication/relational patterns and lifestyle habits that have been learned and practiced throughout our lives.
I often utilize cognitive-behavioral techniques, motivational questioning or narrative philosophies in the session to help you work through these issues, help you gain insight into your issues, feel heard, supported and understood, have cathartic release, and to finally move forward in a more healthy and productive manner. Our sessions are often is focused on your relationships, your past, what you have learned and internalized and what ideals you've created, what patterns you've manifested in your life, and the gamut of underlying sources which contribute to the surface problem.
Sex or sexuality concerns may be the physical manifestation of a psychological condition. I do believe that for these reasons sex therapy is appropriate for the gamut of psychological and relationship issues.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any other questions regarding my services.
More information can be found at American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists.
I am also a Certified Hypnotherapist. I may suggest or recommend these modalities to help you uncover blocks in your unconscious mind which may be difficult to reach, or uncover, and for more difficult problems which seem to be deeply rooted in the past.