Q: Why do people use the services of a sex therapist?
People with a wide variety of goals seek better sex by consulting with a professional. You may wish to:
• increase your sense of freedom or sexual confidence
• receive support for trying new techniques or experiences
• get past obstacles you are experiencing
• manage health issues and maintain a good quality of life
• feel better about your body image
• create or renew trust in your relationship
• re-enter the world of dating after experiencing life changes
• resolve a mismatch in sexual styles or libido
Some people I work with are simply looking for all the knowledge they can obtain about achieving a high degree of sensuality and sensory expression in their lives.

Q: What happens in a typical session?
Sex therapy is a type of talk therapy. Everybody keeps their clothes on, and touching is not involved in the sessions. The initial session is a time for me to get some orientation to your goals and who you are, and to give you an experience of my style, beliefs and personality. Once we began work together we spend most of the time talking; depending on what we are working on, I may also suggest you do breathing exercises or visualization. In addition to the work in our sessions I frequently suggest activities or exercises to try at home, in private or with your partner that involve touch, playfulness or exploration. I may recommend books, blogs, videos or other resource materials to help you in gaining skills and awareness about your sexual self. I may help you find medical professionals or other specialists to consult, if that is relevant to our work.

Q: How long do we meet?
My appointments are typically booked in 50 minute sessions. The number of sessions we schedule depends on the issues and goals we are working on. After the first two or three times we meet, I can give you some estimate of how long I think it will take for you to achieve the kinds of improvements you wish to make. I always work collaboratively with you so that we’re keeping the conversation going about the progress you’re making and how our sessions are working for you. I give you lots of feedback and invite you to share your impressions and experiences of therapy with me as well.

Q; What about confidentiality? I’d be embarrassed if anybody knew I was looking for this kind of help.
I take scrupulous care with the confidentiality of your information, and everything you tell me is absolutely private. This means your information is always safe; records are on paper, locked and stored securely in my office. Any electronic correspondence with my bookkeeper is via encryption. I use an online scheduling system that meets the security standards of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I would not give information about our work to anyone, or even acknowledge that I know you, without your written permission.

Q: Do you just work with issues related to sex?
My background is in couples counseling, also called marriage and family therapy. I worked many years as a psychotherapist prior to becoming a Sex Therapist. In my practice I address a variety of issues related to emotions, relationship patterns, and concerns about finding meaning and purpose in life.

Q: Do you accept insurance?
Due to the sensitive nature of the conversations I have with clients and the need to protect your confidentiality, I do not belong to any insurance panels. I can provide you with a list of questions that will allow you to get clear and detailed information about your benefits from your insurer, and I will provide you with a receipt to obtain reimbursement when my services are covered by your insurance. I may have a scholarship slot available if your finances are limited, so let me know if you’d like to discuss this.

Q: How does someone become a Sex Therapist?
Sex Therapists have the same credentials and conditions for becoming licensed as other therapists: a Masters or doctoral degree plus two years postgraduate supervision. Beyond that, specializing in Sex Therapy requires 90 hours of basic education in human sexuality including:
Sexual anatomy and physiology
• Human development
• Relationship dynamics
• Research methods
Social and political aspects of sexuality
• Fetishes, kinks and other unconventional sexual behaviors
• Gender identity
• Impact of health conditions on sexual identity and expression
• Creative and alternative relationship structures
• Sexual development over the course of the life span

Certified Sex Therapists also complete 60 hours of coursework related to sex therapy interventions and techniques, and participate in a workshop called Sexual Attitude Reassessment, designed to address the therapists’ values, attitudes and beliefs. In addition, the candidate for Sex Therapist Certification engages in 50 hours of clinical supervision with a Certified Sex Therapy Supervisor.

The culmination of training for sex therapy is producing a detailed document about the therapist’s personal and professional learning, philosophy and views. Once these requirements are completed, the candidate submits letters of support and endorsement from other experienced colleagues who can vouch for their character and qualifications.

I participate in continuing education routinely, and well exceed the required 20 hours per year for maintaining my state license. I am in this field because I value lifelong learning, and I maintain a regular research practice about a broad array of subjects that interest me.