Sexual health is the integration of the somatic, emotional, intellectual, and social aspects of sexual being, in ways that are positively enriching and that enhance personality, communication, and love.
–World Health Organization
Sexuality is a conduit to your intimate self...
Whether you’re sharing with others or not
What is sex therapy?
Sex therapy is a way of addressing mental health through the lens of sexuality and intimate experiences—positive and negative.
Sexuality is a complex orchestra of memories, thoughts, emotions, desires . . . playing continuously through our lives, though the volume and tempo may change, and instruments may trade in and out.
Sometimes parts get out of tune which can throw off the whole delicate harmony. The screeching dissonance resonates far beyond the personal stage and unhinges whole sectors of our lives.
More often than we’d like to admit, trauma plays a major role in human sexuality. In the US, 1 in 5 women report a rape at some point in their lives. And 1 in 6 men have experienced some form of sexual assault or abuse. Sexual harassment is everywhere—often normalized as part of our culture.
Traumatic experiences lodge in our memories and hide in our subconscious. Sensory triggers we may not even recognize can make those memories fire again and again.
Sometimes we don’t even realize we experienced trauma...through memory suppression, emotional manipulation, or misapprehension.
But PTSD is like the law—pleading ignorance doesn’t save you.
Sexual trauma can cause:
As a culture we’re not well practiced talking about sex, good or bad. But sexual health is vitally important to mental health and overall well-being. And what constitutes sexual health is as unique to the individual as any fingerprint.
That’s where sex therapy comes in. Since the World Health Organization first included sexual health among the pillars of health (along with physical, mental, and spiritual), sexuality has been taken as seriously as a scientific study.
Decades of research & evolution have given us numerous tools & methods to help people safely explore and understand their own sexuality and sexual health. Sex therapists use a combination of modalities & tools to help clients make progress.
Sex therapy is about:
Self-improvement is a fundamental part of the human journey. Take the first step toward a better you.
What isn't sex therapy?
A therapist’s job isn’t to solve your problems. It’s to guide your path to self discovery with tools, accountability, strategy, and critical analysis.
Let’s talk SEX POSITIVE
Sex therapy isn’t just for couples.
Every conscious human has a sexuality to contend with—no matter how active or dormant.
I firmly believe everyone can benefit from objective discussions with a sexuality expert.
Your sex therapy toolkit includes:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Psychodynamic (Insight Oriented)
I became a therapist because therapy changed my own life—and I wanted to share that gift with as many people as possible. In my ongoing quest for continuing education, I’m in the home stretch of becoming AASECT certified as a sex therapist in Richmond, Virginia.
My clients run the spectrum from daily PTSD episodes to maintenance counseling... from single to polyamorous/open. My comfort level has yet to be reached. My philosophy is authentic and judgment free—informed by experience.
Valerie McDonnell, LCSW
What I do:
Alternative lifestyle coaching
Couples & Family therapy
Discuss porn, kinks, fetishes, etc.
What to expect
Evaluation and Assessment: Our first conversation is about what’s been going on in your life, and any specific reasons for seeking therapy.
Treatment plan development: Together we’ll build a strategy for addressing the goals you set. Your plan might include exercises, scheduled communications, cognitive restructuring tools, etc.
Weekly 50-minute sessions: We’ll talk about discoveries and doubts, self-analysis and emotional experiences through the week. We’ll analyze and adjust as needed, tailored to your own progress.
Prices and Scheduling
Sex Therapy by hour
Half-hour phone session
Sex Therapy & Relationship Coaching Packages
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