Search Results: Cognitive

You are browsing the search results for cognitive

Sex Therapy—What Is It and Who Needs It? – Part 1

I’m often asked about my work as a sex therapist. I’m surprised at how few people have any sense of what a sexologist does. While I can’t speak for all my fellow therapists, I can tell you a bit about my own practice.

Most of the work I do is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT): short-term, goal-directed and personally liberating (I don’t believe this kind of therapy should become a lifestyle). Basically, I suggest that people with sexual issues change the behaviors that contribute to their problems as a surefire way to solve them. I try to give my clients all the tools they need to successfully work things out on their own once the therapeutic intervention is over. This approach doesn’t fit everyone; however, 99.9 percent of the people I work with respond positively.

I encourage my clients to give themselves permission to investigate their sexuality. This in turn assists them in taking charge of making themselves feel better and/or perform better. And as soon as they do, they almost immediately have a greater sense of wellbeing. Like they say, nothing breeds success like success.

Once we identify an area of concern, my client and I create a plan of action for them to implement. I believe the more an individual is part of their own healing process, the more productive that process will be.

Sadly, I find that fewer and fewer people are willing to give their sexual issues the attention they deserve. Rather than investing the time and energy to get to the bottom of their issues, many opt instead for the quick fix—the “Give me a pill for that” mentality. They’re often unwilling to make the necessary lifestyle changes to actually solve their problems. For example, I encounter people who are eating themselves to death, or abusing alcohol or drugs. Of course they have the accompanying sexual response issues—erection problems for men and arousal concerns for women. They may desperately want to resolve these issues, but without committing to any change in behavior—i.e.: “I want my erection back, but I won’t stop drinking”—such interventions almost always ends in disappointment.

Sexual dysfunction of one sort or another is the issue I see most recurrently in my practice, although the reason why a client reaches out varies. Sometimes an individual’s tolerance level peaks, and they finally decide to do something about an issue that may have been smoldering for years. Sometimes it’s a partner who brings in their proverbially “broken” partner, telling me to “fix him/her.”

Couples often seek sex therapy together, as sexual problems tend to be more obvious within relationships. However, by the time the couple comes for therapy, the issues have most likely been plaguing them for some time. The relationship often comes close to ending before the couple agrees to address the problem. For example: Say a guy brings his wife in because she’s “frigid,” whatever that may entail. They’ve been married for X-number of years, and he’s finally had it. She, on the other hand, doesn’t want to be in therapy, because she doesn’t really think there’s anything wrong with her. She just doesn’t want to have sex anymore, and she doesn’t want to discuss it. Period.

This is a difficult way to start therapy. Resentments are high and frustrations rage. If the couple does continue, we usually discover that there’s also something desperately wrong with the husband. Inevitably, we ascertain that he’s an ineffectual lover—and his inability to pleasure his wife is the root of her “problem.” It’s often painfully clear that he knows little (if anything) about his wife’s sexual needs or desires. Meanwhile, the wife has never had permission to know her body, so she’s unable to help or direct him. As you can imagine in a case like this, there’s a load of remedial sex education that must come before anything else is resolved.

Couples also seek therapy when one spouse has cheated on the other. The “cheat-ee” declares, in no uncertain terms, that this therapy is the last-ditch effort before “the end of the road.” Often in such cases, it’s too late for a successful intervention, because each partner is so angry and shamed that the chance of turning the situation around is slim. Sometimes the best we can do is end the relationship with as little acrimony as possible.

In difficult couple counseling situations like this, my first effort is to get the couple to disarm. There will be no sex therapy—and God knows there is a need for sex therapy—until there is some semblance of peace between partners. If we don’t establish at least a small bank of goodwill, our efforts are doomed.

We’ll pick this up next week at this time.

Got a Sex Question?
You’ve come to the right place.
Contact me here: questions@drdicksexadvice.com

No time to write?
Give Dr Dick a call.
(866) 422-5680
Toll Free — Voicemail — HOTLINE

Would you like to talk about your sexual concerns, feelings, lifestyle or experiences?
Arrange for a consultation HERE!

Either way, you can be assured of my complete discretion.

Purely Sensual

Hey sex fans,

I have a swell, and oh so special, Product Review Friday for ya. Today is a twofer, don’t cha know. We’re experiencing a bit of a backlog in our reviews and while generally I post only one review a week, today we have two. One product comes to us from a new company joining our review effort for the first time. The other product comes to us from a good friend and stalwart in the industry. Please join me in welcoming Intimate Organics and welcoming back LELO.

These reviews are brought to you by Dr Dick Review Crew members Brad and Jada.

Intimate Organics Adventure – anal relaxing spray — $17.78

Brad
Hey everyone, I’m here to tell you about Intimate Organics Adventure. It’s an anal relaxing spray. Curiously enough this product is marketed exclusively to women. But ya know what? Men have assholes too. And Intimate Organics Adventure is equally effective on a dude’s bunghole as it is on a chick’s.

When I haven’t bottomed for a while, and I’m talking about either diddling myself with a dildo while I beat off or having my GF peg me, I want to ease into the experience. Gettin bum-fucked is a kick when it is worry free. So anything I can use to take the edge off is a big plus in my book.

Ok, after saying that I just realized that didn’t come out right. I don’t want to suggest that “anything” that takes the edge off is good. The reason I’m correcting myself is that I have tried other anal relaxers. Actually they were anal anesthesizers and that was the problem. Some of the products I tried in the past used benzocaine and it numbed the shit out of my hole. This was way over-kill and it was also dangerous. If I couldn’t feel what was going on down there I couldn’t tell if I was about to injure myself, nor could I be any help to my partner with the strap-on. So no more of that stuff for me!

Intimate Organics Adventure is different. Their herbal-based spray does not numb, because it doesn’t contain any anesthetic elements. Their unique formula contains a certified organic extract blend with the natural potency of clove, goji berry, aloe and lemongrass. It’s great. My GF, Kitty, thinks so too. Once she saw how much I enjoyed my butt she decided to give up her ass too.

I’m certain that the Intimate Organics Adventure was a big part of her decision to try anal. This chick is super fussy about what she puts in and on her bod. The fact that this product is organic really impressed her. The lady-friendly packaging didn’t hurt the effort either.

Intimate Organics Adventure is a spray, I already mentioned that, and it’s the consistency of a light lube. But ya gotta know that this product does not replace the need for a high-quality lube. When it come to anal penetration of any kind, you’re gonna want to use lots more lube than a couple of spritzes of this product. only thing ya got to remember is ya have to wait about 10 minutes after applying the Intimate Organics Adventure before applying the additional lube. This product is also latex and condom friendly.
Full Review HERE!

LELO Flickering Touch Massage Candle —— $29.15

Jada
I’m a sucker for scented candles. I have them all over the house. I once took a class in aromatherapy and I learned a lot about how essential oils, and other aromatic compounds can alter a person’s mind, mood, cognitive function or health.

So when Dr Dick offered me the Flickering Touch Massage Candle to review I knew I was in for a treat. I am very fond of my LELO pleasure objects. I reviewed The SORAYA way back in January and was so impressed that I’ve picked up two others LELO vibes since. One I gave as a gift.  I know, how generous!

The Flickering Touch Massage Candle did not disappoint. It lives up to the LELO name in every way. Lets start with the packaging. It came in a simply elegant black box, with mauve and black accents. And all the packaging is biodegradable. The candle itself comes in a gorgeous black glass container with a designer silver lid. It dresses up anywhere you put it.

I received the Vanilla & Crème De Cacao candle, but there are two other candles in the LELO line — Black Pepper & Pomegranate and Snow Pear & Cedarwood. (Please Mr LELO, send us others to review!)

The candle is made from natural soy wax, shea butter and apricot oil. And because it is a massage candle as well as aromatherapy, when you dab it on your skin, or your lover’s skin, the effect is outstanding. It absorbs nicely, like a fine body oil should. And it leaves your skin delectably smooth and lightly fragranced.

If you are into sensual massages and romantic play the Flickering Touch Massage Candle is just the thing for you. My husband and I went to the San Juan Islands for an amorous weekend get away for our anniversary last month. I made certain that the Flickering Touch Massage Candle would accompany us. My husband liked the scent too. He’s sometimes critical of my aromas, because he claims some are too sweet or feminine. But he liked the Vanilla & Crème De Cacao just fine.
Full Review HERE!

ENJOY!

My Latest Book

AT LONG LAST!


(Click on the book art above to purchase.)

Synopsis
================
For centuries homosexuals have been vilified and persecuted by the Catholic Church, but throughout all of its history the Church has had a very inconvenient secret. Many of its clergy and religious men and women, even those in the highest echelons of the Church, were and are homosexual. Little was known of the lives these religious people live until the publication, in 1981, of the groundbreaking, Gay Catholic Priests; A Study of Cognitive and Affective Dissonance.

I am the author of that study and I am a gay priest. But the media firestorm that erupted after its publication and the backlash within my religious community because of its publication eventually destroyed my public priesthood. The story of my 13-year battle with the Church to save my ministry exemplifies the spiritual isolation, emotional distress and ecclesiastical reprisals every gay priest most fears.

A Brief Description
================
Secrecy, Sophistry And Gay Sex In The Catholic Church provides an intimate and disturbing look into the unseemly inner-workings the Catholic Church. It is primarily a story about how this institution deals with dissent in its midst, but it also shows to what lengths the Church will go to silence a whistle-blower. What I am about to recount happened between 1981 and 1994. It involves the highest levels of the Vatican bureaucracy, secret documents, corporate incompetence, canonical corruption, and institutionalized homophobia on an epic scale.

The publication of my dissertation broke the seal on the Vatican’s gay secret. The press dubbed me “The Gay Priest,” but my research and what it implies made patently clear that I wasn’t the only gay priest. In fact, there is a sizable segment of the clergy population that is gay and these men are forced to live duplicitous lives of repression in secret.

The Church’s single-minded effort to quash the emerging story and silence me showed that I needed to be “dealt with” in the most severe fashion; an example had to be made of me. If other priests started coming out of the closet, demanding to be treated with dignity and respect it would certainly undercut the entirety of Catholic sexual moral theology—there is no place for non-reproductive sexuality in that paradigm.

The irony is that at the same time my story was unfolding an unimaginable scandal, involving hundreds of Catholic priests across the globe, was also brewing. Cardinals, bishops and provincials worldwide were, and still are, furtively shuffling pedophile priest from one crime scene to another. They were, and still are, involved in a massive corporate cover up of their own crimes and those of their brother clergy.

While I am being singled out for 13 years of Church vitriol, public character assassination and communal shunning—my superiors claim that they are simply trying to protect the Church from scandal—these same Church leaders and others are lying, prevaricating and sabotaging any effort to uncover the burgeoning clergy sexual abuse scandal that would soon rock the front pages of newspapers all over the world.

The public panic, among Church officials, exhibited toward me—a single up-front gay priest in their midst—is in stark contrast to their apathetic and anemic response to the systemic clergy sexual abuse that engulfs them.

I am confident making the comparison between my struggle and the clergy sex abuse scandal, because I have first-hand knowledge of this abuse criminality. I was repeatedly sexually molested as a 14-year-old boy in an Oblate seminary in southern Illinois.

My story is the story of a Church that will go to any length, even to violate its core principles—Gospel values that form the fundamental tenets of faith—to protect its public image. In other words, this is a story of a Church out of control.

Secrecy, Sophistry And Gay Sex In The Catholic Church: The Systematic Destruction Of An Oblate Priest, is presented in two distinct parts.

  • Part 1 is a detailed account of my 13-year struggle with the religious community I once belonged to, The Missionary Oblates Of Mary Immaculate, to preserve my priesthood. It reads like an ecclesiastical who-done-it.
  • Part 2 is my complete doctoral thesis, Gay Catholic Priests; A Study of Cognitive and Affective Dissonance.  I included it in this volume, because this is precisely what set this controversy in motion.  It illustrates and reveals the plight of gay Catholic clergy and the fierce repression the Vatican imposes upon them. It is also the 30th anniversary of its limited publication as a monograph before the Vatican silenced me. It’s been out of print for well over 25 years.

I invite you to “Like” us on Facebook HERE, “Follow” us on Twitter HERE and visit our new site and blog HERE.

Come As You Are

Name: Valeri
Gender: Female
Age: 38
Location: Dubuque IA
Dr Dick: I just went through a very painful divorce. My husband of 18 years up and decided that he wanted to start over…in a new job, in a new state with a new girlfriend, someone 12 years his junior. I must be completely blind, because I didn’t see any of this coming. Sure we had our problems, what marriage doesn’t? I want to move on too, but I feel so stuck. I feel like this big loser. The few tentative forays into dating have been horrible. Every guy I meet is this lying sack of shit. Sorry, does that sound too bitter? HELP!

Damn girl, that’s fucked…big time! It’s hell when relationships go belly-up, and I don’t care if they are business relationships or relationships of the heart. If there’s an established bond of trust that is broken it’s gonna smart. And when the bond is broken unilaterally, it’s even worse. But what can you expect when you’re dealing with humans.

Surviving a break-up is not unlike surviving a death. In fact, the demise of a relationship is very much a death in every sense of the word. I believe that any relationship worth talking about has a life of its own; you see, it’s greater then the sum of its parts. I gotta tell ya, I see a lot of this in my private practice. A couple drags in their relationship and it’s immediately apparent that it’s on life support. They’ve actively throttled the relationship to within an inch of its life, and they want me to fix it. Most of the time the option to “fix” has long passed. All we can hope to do, at this point, is preside over the death of the thing, providing its passing with as much dignity as possible. But to tell the truth, when a relationship is in such grave condition, and there is very little good will left between the partners, sadly there’s not gonna be a lot of dignity when the thing finally expires. It breaks my heart, but what are ya gonna do?

Many years ago a therapist working with sick and dying people wrote a book called, On Death and Dying. In it the author, Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, identified five stages of dying — 1. Denial: The initial stage: “It can’t be happening.” 2. Anger: “Why ME? This is so unfair!” 3. Bargaining: “Just let me live to see my son graduate.” 4. Depression: “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?” 5. Acceptance: “It’s going to be OK.”

I find it helpful to use these same identifiable stages to talk about the end of a relationship, particularly a relationship that ends unilaterally. If you don’t mind I’d like to walk through these stages with you so that you can see how applicable they are to someone in your situation.

Grieving the death of a loved one, or a relationship, involves the whole of us — our physical, emotional and social selves. We have to relearn, or cognitively adjust to, our new self without the loved one or relationship. Moving through the end of things is hard to work. And to survive it; we need be patient with ourselves. You, on the other hand, seem to be having a particular problem with this since you say you feel like a loser. That kind of mindset is not going be particularly helpful. So, if you can please jettison that kind of thinking. Or at least try to have a bit more compassion for yourself. Maybe you could shelf that self-deprecation for a while, until you get your bearings once again.

A person is faced with a fact that is too painful to accept and so she rejects it instead, insisting that it can’t possibly be true despite overwhelming evidence. This is Stage 1 — Denial! “Honey, I’m moving out. I’m getting a new job in a new state. Oh, and I have this new, much younger girlfriend too.” “This can’t be happening! Sure we’ve had our troubles, I’ll grant you that. But so does every relationship.” Denying the reality of the unpleasant fact may actually serve a purpose. It’s a coping mechanism for dealing with something overwhelming and too shocking to take in at once.

We have a gut-wrenching emotional response to the injustice, humiliation, and betrayal. This is Stage 2 — Anger. Depending on the kind of person we are, we may actively express our anger by lashing out verbally or physically. Or we may passively express our anger — turning it inward becoming silent, sulking or passive-aggressive. We may even consider harming our self as a way of punishing the other.

We try to fix what’s wrong. This is Stage 3 — Bargaining. “We can make this work! I’ll change, I promise! I know I can make you happy. Stay for the sake of the kids. What will the neighbors say? This will kill your mother! What does she have that I don’t have? You’ll never be able to show your face in this town again.” Hmmm, does any of this sound familiar, Valeri?

All our efforts to reverse the inevitable course of things leave us emotionally drained and exhausted. This is Stage 4 — Depression. Why bother with anything — family, friends, work, personal appearances, whatever — life as we knew it is over. We can’t seem to project ourselves beyond the ending of things. In the bleakness we often begin to self-medicate. A little too much food, booze, drugs? As if depression is not punishing enough, we often pile it on. I’ve heard some many people say; “hurting myself is the only thing that makes me feel I’m still alive.”

Slowly we begin to regroup. Maybe it’s through sheer willpower, or the interventions of friends and family, or maybe it’s just time itself. But we stop resisting and move toward acquiescence. This is Stage 5 — Acceptance. We stop resisting what we cannot change. Even if the end was un-chosen, undesired and inescapable, we can still willingly choose to accept it.

I hasten to add that these stages are guidelines. They are not presented in the order that they always happen. Nor is one stage predicated on the other. How long a person is in one stage or another is situational. However, I do hope this was helpful. What is certain is you will experience a wide range of feelings and emotions.

Some suggest the therapy of keeping yourself busy as a means of healing and moving on. This may sound elemental, but it’s not as easy as it seems. Most of us tend to wallow in our misery. We are way too indulgent with sitting on the pitty-pot. While you definitely need time to recover from the divorce, this period of heartache will have an end. And ends of things always led to beginnings of other things.

You now have certain freedoms that you may not have had while you were married. Once the initial period of grieving is over, it is important to jump back into life. Become more involved in your social group. Going out might seem unappealing at first, but it’s better than staying home and feeling sorry for yourself. If you’re only dating assholes, I’ll bet you’re fishing in the wrong holes, so to speak. The internet makes it so much easier to connect with quality people of ever stripe. Use this tool wisely. May I suggest that you start by connecting with people with similar interests as you, rather than posting a profile and photos on a dating site.

Of course, it is necessary to have some time with yourself to realize that you can survive and even be happy without your dick of a husband. The secret to successful grieving is that you need to feel the pain in order to get through it. Therefore, using drugs (prescription or recreational) and alcohol to numb yourself only make things worse.

You might consider working with a therapist to help you understand why your relationship ended. With a little luck you’ll learn how to avoid blaming yourself for the demise. No one is without fault, and your husband definitely has more than his share. But blaming him for everything will do you no good. You are neither totally to blame, nor are you the helpless victim. Lingering at either extreme will rob you of your self-esteem.

At first, being single might seem weird or even unappealing. But being single has its perks. Being single allows you to focus on you and take better care of yourself. And what better way to do that then by reconnecting with your sexual-self. Masturbation is gonna be your best friend during this transition period. Lavish time and pleasure on yourself. You’re worth it! Indulge yourself; instead of chocolate, get yourself a supped up vibrator and kick that thing into first gear, maybe even second! By spending more private sexual time with yourself, you’ll reconnect with who you are and what you want. This will make it easier for you to later choose a partner who can and will satisfy your needs.

Good luck

Therapy Available

I’m a Clinical Sexologist in private practice here in Seattle. I’ve been a practitioner of psychotherapy, sex therapy and relationship counseling for over 30 years. I am a sex positive and kink aware helping professional.

I am available weekdays, some evenings and weekends so you can comfortably fit your sessions in around your work, family and social life.

If you would like to talk to someone about your sexual thoughts, feelings, lifestyles and/or experiences then arrange for a consultation at our mutual convenience.

WHAT I OFFER / THERAPY, COUNSELING, CONSULTING or COACHING SESSIONS
I provide therapy in a variety ways —

  • on the telephone
  • online
  • in person

All sessions are 60 minutes in duration. Telephone and online appointments are paid for in advance via Paypal.

Here’s a bit more about the way I work.

I don’t believe therapy should become a lifestyle. Thus, my therapeutic intervention is short term, goal directed and personally liberating. I generally contract with my client(s) for four, six or eight visits (clients of course can terminate at any time). This way we build in an automatic termination date, keeping all of us focused on the goal and honest about the progress we’re making. And, more importantly, the end is always in sight. Rarely do I see client(s) for more than eight session in a row. If my client(s) doesn’t have what he/she/they need to work independently on the problems he/she/they face by that time, then I didn’t do my job properly.

I also firmly believe in at-home-work and journaling. These things keep my client(s) integrated and involved throughout his/her/their with me. Our time together will be concentrated, so there will little time to waste…either yours or mine.

My fee is $110 per session. I do, however, offer a sliding fee schedule for those who have need of that.

You’re welcome to contact me for an appointment if you’d like to move forward with this. You can reach me at: dr_dick@drdicksexadvice.com

TELEPHONE
Some people find it easier to talk about intimate aspects of their life over the phone rather than in person. Access therapy from the comfort and privacy of your own home, car or office. Telephone therapy helps get round geographical, transport and mobility issues.

ONLINE
I can also provide my services via the most commonly used chat and message platforms such as Skype, Yahoo Messenger, etc.

SCHEDULE THERAPY
To book your therapy session(s) email me your preferred date and time dr_dick@drdicksexadvice.com. We will then arrange your preferred payment method. Sessions can be made in block bookings or singly whatever suits your budget and commitments. Early booking is advisable.

CANCELLATIONS
A 24 hours notice is required from the client to cancel or change a booked appointment time. Clients will not be entitled to a refund or an alternative appointment if a cancellation is made with less than 24 hours notice.

PUNCTUALITY
All sessions will start and end at the agreed time. Late calls or visits will result in a shorter consultation. All consultations are by appointment only.

SERVICES
Clinical services cover a full range of sexual heath concerns including:

— Guilt associated with religious upbringing or training.
— Sexual trauma and/or sexual abuse
— Conflicts or sexual dissatisfaction between partners.
— Ejaculation and/or erection concerns.
— Orgasm concerns.
— Sexual orientation/lifestyle preference.
— Sexual inhibitions.
— Socio-sexual skills.
— Sexual misinformation.
— Love and sexuality.
— Jealousy and possessiveness.
— Poor body image.
— Unsatisfactory sexual outlet.
— Safe-sex concerns.
— Sexuality and illness or disability.
— Sexuality and grieving.

My practice combines the best of a short-term cognitive behavioral therapy model with a compassionate, person-orientated counseling technique. My purpose is to help clients come to terms with their sexual problems and conflicts as these relate to their own life values, expectations and goals.

My services are open to individuals, couples, families and groups, of any sexual persuasion, who have sexual concerns. I am available for lectures, workshops, and in-service training.

BACKGROUND
Since the completion of my doctoral studies in 1981 I have been involved in a wide range of sexological activities including counseling, teaching, lecturing, writing, publishing, video production, in-service training and facilitating groups and workshops.

I’ve been writing this online sex advice column for well over fifteen years now.
I am the founder and former Executive Director of the nonprofit organization, PARADIGM; Enhancing Life Near Death — an outreach and resource for terminally ill, chronically ill, elder and dying people.

My therapeutic training includes The Institute for Advanced Study in Human Sexuality San Francisco, The University of California, San Francisco Human Sexuality Unit, and The Pacific Center for Human Growth, Berkeley.
Besides my sexological training I carry a Masters degree in Theology from the Jesuit School of Theology, Berkeley.

I am Board certified by The American College of Sexologists, The American Board of Sexology and The American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors and Therapists.

Richard Wagner, M.Div., Ph.D., ACS





SEO Powered by Platinum SEO from Techblissonline
Get Adobe Flash player