Sex therapy, to put it simply, is the clinical and professional focus on sexuality and sexual concerns being presented by an individual or couple. Sex therapy employs the same psychological modalities as typical therapy, but they are used to assist with the sexual presenting problem. Individuals or couples (traditional and non-traditional couples) could benefit from sex therapy and for various topics around psycho-sexual issues.
Below are some common reasons people seek therapy with a sex therapist, but likely any issue that would fall under the realm of sexuality, can possibly be treated by a sex therapist, so keep in mind this is not an exhaustive list. Do not hesitate to contact us if you'd like to ask a question!
"Life has gotten too busy... My body has changed... I just don't feel like it, anymore." // "My partner doesn't seem interested in me anymore. What changed? They used to be so into me."
This is a common occurrence within long-term relationships and with the natural changes of family structure. Desire levels naturally wax and wane throughout life, but therapy could possibly help you to discover the reasons why and how to regain some of that spark back into your life and relationship.
Fetishes / Uncommon Attractions
"If they ever found out I was turned on by this, they would freak out!" // "Why am I attracted to this? Is this normal? Does this mean I am not normal?" // "I can't control this attraction, so I should just accept I have to hide it."
Having a sexual fetish or attraction to something society at large would find "abnormal," does not, in fact, make you abnormal! Our sexual attractions can vary widely and sometimes cause guilt or shame. We can help you better understand your attractions and possibly reduce the shame, guilt or discomfort with it.
Delayed Ejaculation / Premature Ejaculation
"I can't control how fast it happens. I'll never be able to give my partner what they want." // "All I can think about before being sexual with my partner is if it will happen again or not."
Ejaculation issues (ejaculating too quickly or not at all or taking too long) can be a stressful situation for an individual and the partnership. A sex therapist can help to understand more of where the issue is coming from and build up skills to try and get it to a level of comfort. These types of issues are very common for men, so you are definitely not alone if you are experiencing this issue! Sex therapy could also be a potential way of dealing with the concern without medication.
"Am I gay?" // "I feel like sex really doesn't matter to me, but I feel pressure that it should. What's wrong with me?" // "I can't disappoint my parents/loved ones. They would be crushed if they knew."
The therapists at InnerStrength believe that sexual orientation (who you fall in love with) is a spectrum of options but in a world of hetero-normative (heterosexuality being considered "the norm") it can sometimes be confusing if we feel differently. A sex therapist could help with orientation questioning or dealing with the process of coming out and/or embracing and loving who you truly are.
Pain During Intercourse
"It feels like excruciating pain when my partner tries to have sex with me." // "I don't want to disappoint my partner, so I just avoid sex altogether, because it hurts to have sex."
Painful penetration or movements during sexual intercourse could possibly mean (if there is no medical reason for it) a sexual pain disorder is causing the discomfort. A sex therapist can, through talk therapy, help determine what could be underlying cause and help to ease it to allow for sex to be enjoyable and comfortable again.
"Sex is just...gross. Every time I try, I just think of what happened to me and it's scary." // "I don't know why I rely so much on sex for feeling loved after all I've been through." // "I feel so broken. How can I trust others again?"
Some individuals have had traumatic sexual experiences, whether from assault, rape or being forced to do something they did not want to, that may be impacting their current ability and comfort to be sexual. Working with a sex therapist can possibly help with the healing journey from these types of traumas. What happened to you is not your fault!