Hi there! I am pleased to have this opportunity to introduce Dr. Jordan Rullo
, a trained sex researcher with a doctorate in Psychology. Dr. Rullo has spent many years studying, researching, counseling, and teaching about sexual health. Please enjoy this valuable information from her!
Most sexual health concerns are treatable as long as you see a therapist who has been trained for your specific concern. Sure, a general therapist might not cost as much and may not have a waitlist, but if you can find a certified sex therapist it will likely be worth the money and the wait.
What is a sex therapist?
A sex therapist is a therapist who treats the sexual health concerns of individuals and couples. Whether that be a social worker, clinical mental health counselor, licensed professional counselor, or psychologist. Technically, any therapist can call themselves a sex therapist if they so choose, but the gold standard for sex therapy training is to be certified as an AASECT Certified Sex Therapist. AASECT stands for the American Society of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists. To become AASECT certified, therapists need to obtain hundreds of hours of education and supervised training in the practice of sex therapy.
How do I find a sex therapist?
The best place to find a certified sex therapist is the AASECT website
. All AASECT Certified Sex Therapists, who maintain their membership in the AASECT organization, are listed there. You can search by state and city.
What does a sex therapist actually do?
Sex therapists treat sexual health concerns, such as inability to orgasm, low sexual desire, difficulty with sexual arousal, sexual pain, erectile dysfunction, early ejaculation, etc. They help clients with out of control sexual behavior learn to regulate their emotions and behaviors. Sex therapists may treat sexual trauma, helping clients develop healthy sexuality in the face of a traumatic sexual history. Sex therapists often work with individuals and couples, and can help clients navigate monogamy and non-monogamy, a discrepancy in desire between partners, and how to sexually communicate.
DO YOU HAVE SEX WITH YOUR CLIENTS?
This is honestly one of the most common questions I get from people wanting to know what a sex therapist does! The answer to that is a resounding NO . A sex therapist does NOT have sex with their clients.
For some of you, that may be a relief, others may be thinking, “But, if you are not having sex with your clients, how do you treat their sexual health concerns?” Shocking news incoming: All of the above issues can be treated with talk therapy.
DIFFERENT SEX THERAPISTS, DO DIFFERENT TYPES OF SEX THERAPY
The type of therapy I do is called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT. This is a great, brief video explaining CBT
. CBT has thousands of research studies showing its effectiveness in treating a wide variety of mental health concerns.
CBT is based on the idea that our thoughts, specifically how we interpret the situations around us, determine our feelings and the actions we take.
If you have difficulty reaching orgasm, and every time you get intimate you fixate on not being able to reach orgasm, this is going to make it much more difficult to reach climax. You set yourself up to give up or fail. In addition, you are mentally removing yourself from the sensual moment and replacing it with a moment full of anxiety and perceived failure. Well, that doesn’t sound sexy at all now does it?!
CBT works to help you realize what you are thinking, determine why your thinking may be irrational, and learn to develop new, more rational ways of thinking. This will allow you to stay in the moment during those times. 🔥 🔥 🔥
SEX THERAPISTS ARE OFTEN TEACHERS
Often, I have clients who simply need, basic to advanced, sexual education to address their sexual health concerns. I frequently find myself teaching clients that the clitoris is substantially more important for orgasm
than the vagina, or reviewing a book of vulva images to confirm and educate them that their vulvas look just like everyone else’s.