What can I expect when I attend Sex Therapy?
Sexual difficulties can affect any of us and are far more common than most people realise.
It's easy to believe that the people around you are having a much more exciting and satisfying sex life than you are and these thoughts can leave you feeling low and isolated, affecting your self confidence and self esteem. It often isn't the case, as most people don't share their sexual problems and disappointments with others. Psychosexual Therapy can help you to explore difficult emotions and gain perspective, whilst helping you create the fulfilling sex life that you desire.
Your first appointment will give you the opportunity to describe your situation, feelings and concerns and your goals for therapy. If you decide to go ahead with further sessions, I will undertake a detailed history gathering. This can be helpful in understanding the background to the issue and the reasons why it may have started and what is keeping it going.
We will consider the potential biological, psychological and social/relationship elements that may be impacting on your sexual situation and this knowledge will enable me to develop a tailored treatment plan. This may include:
- Education on anatomy and arousal
- Information on sexual dysfunctions
- Discussion about sexual myths and beliefs
- Communication and intimacy exercises
- Touch and sensuality exercises (sensate focus)
- Experimenting with new techniques
- Using helpful tools e.g. vaginal dilators/trainers for vaginismus
- Exploration of thoughts and feelings about sex, sexuality and relationships
Please note that you will never be asked to do any physical or sexual exercises during the sessions.
I will ask for feedback on homework exercises and we will regularly assess progress towards your goals.
The following are examples of common scenarios (as sex therapy is confidential, these are not actual clients):
- A young couple, with limited sexual experience come along to find out more about sex in general as they may feel that lack of knowledge and confidence is holding them back.
- A male in his 50s has developed erectile dysfunction which has lead to him avoiding sex with his partner for fear that he won't be able to maintain an erection. This has created tension and loss of closeness within the relationship with his parter fearing that he no longer finds her attractive. They attend the sessions together to have the opportunity to discuss their feelings about this change and to discover whether it will be possible for him to regain erections and to consider different ways to enjoy sex together.
- A young woman in her 20s has vaginismus (involuntary tightening of the pelvic floor) meaning that tampon use, insertion of fingers or sexual intercourse are not possible. She is in a relationship but prefers to attend sex therapy on her own initially, to have the time and space to work through this condition.
- A couple attend due to mismatched libidos which is causing arguments as one feels pressured into having sex, whilst the other feels rejected and frustrated. They are hoping to find ways to manage this difference that are acceptable to both and to regain intimacy.
- A couple are considering changing from a monogamous to an open relationship and would like to discuss boundaries and rules in a neutral environment
- A male client has always experienced premature ejaculation but this has become more of a concern for him since he has separated from his partner. He would like to find ways to last longer during intercourse and increase his confidence sexually.
If you have any questions about Psychosexual Therapy online or in person, please either see FAQ or contact me by phone or email for a brief chat.