“I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.”

—Maya Angelou

Sex Therapy for Abuse Survivors

Sex Therapy for Abuse Survivors

Relationships and sexuality are often core areas affected by physical and sexual abuse. It is common for survivors to do a great deal of healing and find that sexuality continues to be a challenge. Given our dual expertise in trauma therapy and sex therapy, we have developed this as a particular niche for our work. We work with both couples and individuals, trading lenses among sex therapy, trauma therapy, and couple therapy, finding that all of these aspects need attention. We work carefully with our client(s) to find the right pace and intensity of work. On a 10-point scale (where 0 is calm and 10 is extreme distress), We often encourage our clients to work in the range of 4–6. Without pushing yourself enough, you may not find the gains you are seeking, but if you push yourself too far, you risk being flooded, and no one heals when they are flooded.

Together we will monitor reactions and deepen our understanding of triggers while developing strategies for coping and moving through. What often results is a true desensitization, where the things that were once so provocative and upsetting are now much more comfortable, and very possibly even enjoyable. Our hope for you is not just to tolerate sexual experiences and get through them (the ‘white-knuckling’ approach), but to truly experience sex in a different, safe, and positive way.

It always bears stating that sex therapy is like all other psychotherapy: we talk about what’s happening for you. There is never touch or nudity involved in sex therapy.

We know it can be intimidating to move into this work, but we feel very hopeful, having been witness to many moving success stories.

Evanston Relational Psychotherapy is LGBTQ-affirmative and welcomes people of all genders, sexual orientations, relationship configurations, and lifestyles.