Sexual Difficulties

Sad couple in bed

      As a Certified Sex Therapist I have the requisite education, training and experience to help you. I work with couples and individuals who are either having particular problems in their sexual functioning or who are unsatisfied with the quality and/or frequency of their sexual activity. I help clients with a wide range of sexual concerns, with special skills in couples issues, low sexual desire, erectile dysfunction, rapid or delayed (inhibited) ejaculation, adults sexually abused as children, women having problems achieving orgasm, and sexual compulsions and addictions.

     I believe that sexuality is a primary component of human fulfillment and overall happiness and should not be ignored or rooted in fear or shame. I know that virtually all sexual problems and issues have solutions and can be resolved. I’m a “sex-positive” therapist, meaning I believe sexual activity between consenting adults is good, healthy and necessary for a full and satisfying life and relationship. Studies have proven that regular and healthy sexual activity reduces stress and depression, improves heart functioning, reduces occurrences of disease, and improves overall health – as well as keeping relationships healthy and strong.

      I don’t find talking about sexual issues any more difficult than discussing any other health issues, although many of my clients (and, unfortunately, many therapists) do find the subject challenging. It’s my job to make you feel at ease and open to improving this vitally important part of your life.

I am an AASECT Certified Sex Therapist who works with both couples and individuals – trained and experienced in treating most sexual dysfunctions and couple’s problems. Contact me for help with: Erectile Dysfunction (ED) Delayed Ejaculation Rapid or Premature Ejaculation Male & Female Sexual inhibitions Female Anorgasmia (Preorgasmic Primary and Secondary) Low Sexual Desire Couples’ Desire Discrepancies Sexual Trauma Non-medical sexual pain issues Desire for Enhanced Pleasure I also have had much experience and success in treating infidelity in couples. This is a very challenging area and I can help you get past the pain, trauma and loss of trust and begin the process of rebuilding your marriage and/or relationship.
      My philosophy is that each individual already has the resources to overcome these issues, but may need help from a trained, empathetic and non-judgmental professional to achieve success. To facilitate this growth, I create a safe, warm, positive environment to provide the appropriate therapeutic services for individual and couples who have the courage to ask for help with their problems – problems such as these:

Erectile Dysfunction (ED)

     Erectile dysfunction is the persistent inability to attain or maintain a older couple3satisfactory erection until the completion of your sexual activity. This can be a physical issue, treated by a medical doctor, but much more often is caused by psychological or relationship issues. If you can get erect for masturbation, you don’t need, or want, a pill!

      I have a very high success rate working with men and their partners to learn to work together to restore confidence and achieve strong and lasting erections, without the use of pill, needles or pumps. Beware of ads from those clinics that promise quick fixes and unrealistic results – do some research before you invest your time and money on these kinds of cures.

Early/Rapid Ejaculation (also called Premature Ejaculation)

      This is defined as ejaculation with minimal sexual stimulation before or shortly after penetration and before the person wishes it. The majority of male adolescents and young adults begin their sexual lives as premature ejaculators, but as they gain experience they develop ejaculatory control. As with most sexual dysfunctions, this has to be put in context –  is it lifelong or a recent condition, what has changed in your life, new stressors, relationship issues, physical illnesses or new medications? Understanding and setting realistic expectations for both you and your partner is important. After discussing your particular experience with rapid ejaculation, we’ll set goals and begin working on relaxation skills, the arousal process, and exercises you do at home to increase the duration, enjoyment and satisfaction for both you and your partner.

Delayed Ejaculation (formerly called Retarded Ejaculation)

      Delayed Ejaculation is the persistent or recurrent delay in, or absence of, orgasm after a normal sexual excitement phase during sexual activity. Substance abuse and prescribed medications can contribute or cause this frustrating condition, but it is usually related to relationship problems and repressed anger, depression or anxiety, heavy use of pornography, or even an idiosyncratic masturbation style. We will explore all possible contributing factors to arrive at a treatment designed for your individual situation. Working together with your partner to teach you both how to increase arousal and sexual interplay is important and will be pleasurable and sexually fulfilling.

Female Anorgasmia – Primary & Secondary (inability to acheive orgasm)dramatic image of troubled teenager

      Inability to achieve an orgasm is rarely a physical issue. Anorgasmia is usually related to intimacy issues, feelings of fear and anxiety, or a sense of not being safe within the intimate relationship. It can also be due to a lack of information on just what an orgasm is, and how you can, through a simple, healthy and enjoyable process, learn of the many ways to reach orgasm.

     Whether you’ve never had an orgasm, or at some point ceased to be able to achieve orgasm, I help women understand the physiological and emotional processes at work and give you ‘homeplay’ assignments that will result in success. This process can either be done alone or with your partner.

Female Sexual Pain (Dyspareunia/Vaginismus)

     Dyspareunia is recurrent or persistent genital pain related to sexual intercourse that may occur before, during, or after intercourse. Vaginismus is having spasms of the muscles in the outer third of the vagina that are involuntary and recurring or persistent, which make intercourse painful and difficult, if not impossible. These are very difficult problems for couple’s to handle – they create frustration, anger, hurt feelings and blaming.

     Once you see your gynecologist to rule out a medical problem, it’s time to sit down and talk about what’s going on with you as an individual and in your relationship. Is it a lifelong problem or a result of a traumatic event? Was there sexual abuse in your past or some misunderstood fear of sex, pregnancy, or intimacy? If you are open and desirous of a resolution to your problem, we can find a way to get you there.

Low Sexual Desire

     This can be as common in men as in women. It is characterized by a general lack of interest or avoidance of sex and few or no sexual fantasies. While a medical doctor can help if you have abnormally low hormone levels or other medical issues that can cause this, there are many more relationship and psychological causes of this problem. Individuals and couples come to me because their low desire is related to high stress, mood or anxiety disorders, previous traumatic sexual experiences including rape and molestation, religious and/or cultural conflicts, or unresolved sexual orientation issues. Perhaps the most frequent contributors to Low Sexual Desire are the relationship discord, poor communication, unresolved resentments and difficulties with our partner’s sexual style, and body image issues. All of these, and it’s usually a combination of contributors, can be resolved in our sessions, after determining the root causes.

Male & Female Sexual Inhibitions

     Some of us just can’t allow ourselves to let go and enjoy sex purely for the sake of pleasure. Due to internalized family messages, religious teachings and other cultural influences, and/or a history of sexual trauma, we have mental and emotional blocks to fully relaxing, appreciating and sharing our sexual selves with our partner. Despite our desire to let go and our intellectual understanding of the importance and benefit of healthy sexual activity, we need someone to help us understand these blocks and push through them. I can help you sort out this confusing dilemma and find a way to understand yourself, your background and your natural desires to have the happy and rewarding sexual life you deserve – it will make your partner pretty happy too!

Couples’ Desire Discrepancies 

    What is the right amount of sexual activity for a committed, rules-happy-couples-break-demonogamous couple? It’s a trick question because only you can decide what is right for you.

      The problems arise when one partner desires sex more or less frequently than the other. In any relationship someone is the “low-desire” partner. Working together we can help you navigate through this challenging maze to learn how to be more in sync and satisfied with your sexual relationship.

Sexual Trauma

     If you’ve been a victim of rape, molestation or other kinds of traumatic abuse, your sexual functioning and enjoyment can be severely affected. Talking to a psychotherapist who has special training in sexual issues can help you understand the problems you’re having, and assist you in working through them to achieve the kind of romantic and sexual relationship you desire and deserve.

Desire for Enhanced Pleasure

     Do you have a good, problem-free sexual relationship with your partner but want to take it to the next level? Let me help you explore the fantasies and desires you have. Building a rock solid relationship is the key to having the trust and safety in your partner to shoot for the stars sexually. I can help the two of you find the path to an even more exciting and satisfying sex life.

     Call me to discuss your particular concerns and get on the path to a more healthy, fulfilling and satisfying sex life in Orange County & Southern California.

What Happens in Sex Therapy?