There is a pause after I tell people what I do, while I wait to discover their reaction, wondering if I should have only said that I am a therapist. It is that pause, my own questioning about what to do, the sometimes uncomfortable reactions and the rewarding responses that all add up to why I decided to specialize in sex therapy.
Having satisfying relationships in all aspects including sexual, physical, and intimate can be important. Yet this is an area where there is discomfort in talking that occurs even in professional settings. Often times people are reluctant to ask for help for sexual discomforts, issues, or concerns, or even when things are not going as best as they would like. Yet sexuality is such an important component of our existent. Sex can be an important aspect of many adult intimate relationships.
Sexuality and sex, what I am even talking about? In the context, of this blog, sex is referring to physical acts or sexual activity. Sexuality encompasses your body image, gender roles, gender identity, sexual orientation, eroticism, genitals, intimacy, relationships, and love and affection. Sexuality is also formed by your attitudes, values, knowledge and behaviors which are influenced by your families, culture, society, faith and beliefs.
When defined like this sexuality is a huge part of our lives, even if we are not talking about it and sexual activity is a small portion of our sexuality. When there is a challenge or issue in one aspect of your life, it is bound to affect others. As so many areas of our life influence our sexuality, a sex therapist can help you navigate the stressors in everyday life and how they impact your relationships, how they impact how you see yourself, and how they impact how you navigate through the world.
Just like in the picture above there are different sizes, textures, and colors of balls of yarn, there is more than one way to have a healthy relationship. Part of sex therapy is finding the where the thread is tangled and giving you the tools to untangle your personal ball of yarn. Those tools will look slightly different in each relationship as each relationship will have it's own distinct qualities.