Many people avoid sex therapy because of the stigma associated with it. But sex therapy is just talk therapy, and it can help individuals and couples learn to communicate better, resolve sexual issues, and find joy in their sexual lives again.
Sex therapy can help address a variety of issues related to sexuality and intimacy, from desire discrepancies in couples to sexual dysfunctions like pain during sex or premature ejaculation. In addition, sex therapy can also address more traditional mental health concerns like depression and anxiety. Sometimes, a sex therapist may recommend psychiatric care or a general psychotherapy session to address these other concerns prior to, or in conjunction with, sex therapy.
During the initial sessions, your sex therapist will ask you what brought you to this type of therapy and then help you identify the specific goals that you have for yourself. This can be similar to a regular therapy intake, but will include questions about your relationship with your partner (if you’re attending sex therapy as a couple) and your overall satisfaction in your life.
Then, your sex therapist can provide you with the tools and strategies to meet your goals. Some therapists use only talk therapy, while others incorporate exercises or sensate focus homework into their sessions. For example, a sex therapist at Blueheart might assign you with homework around understanding your sex drive and how your body responds to it by encouraging you to practice touching on yourself.