How can we help you?
Choosing who to work with in therapy is a big decision and of course you have questions! This is a good thing – questions mean that you are invested in the process. We've collected some commonly asked questions here for you to look through. If you find that you have other questions or you need more information, just give our counseling office a call and we'll talk through any of your questions or concerns.
Psychiatric medications are sometimes used along with talk therapy, usually when people are diagnosed with mental disorders such as depression or anxiety.
Therapy and Medications
It is commonly recommended that talk therapy be incorporated into one's treatment whenever psychiatric medications are being used, as the combination of talk therapy and medications tends to work well together. An antidepressant may lift a person's mood, for example, allowing them to participate more fully in psychotherapy and therefore bring about more lasting change.
We have working relationships with trusted doctors, naturopaths, and nurse practitioners (ARNPs) in the area who can do medication management with clients if medication is appropriate.
The American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT) has very stringent requirements for training and experience in the area of sex therapy. Sexual health professionals have rigorous standards for academic preparation, supervised training and consultation, field-related experience and applied skills.
Training for Sex Therapy
Sex therapists read a great deal of academic books, attend many (many!) hours of clinical trainings and workshops in this specialty, do peer consultation, and study under seasoned clinicians who are considered masters in this field. Personally, I (Justin Pere) have studied with and experienced this field through Dr. Tina Schermer Sellers at Seattle Pacific University and Dr. Stella Resnick in Los Angeles, California.
Sex therapy works just like a typical individual or couples therapy session at our Seattle, WA counseling office - the focus is just on sex-related topics and is conducted by a therapist who is highly trained in this area. Clients are helped to talk through and understand the causes of their sex or intimacy challenges, as well as the known solutions to issues such as mismatched sexual desire between partners, low or no sex drive, overactive sex drive, sexless marriages, and more. Homework exercises are often given, as well as educational materials that help to bring the issue to its resolution.
Sex Therapy Governed by the AASECT
Sex therapy treatment is governed by the American Association of Sexual Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT). Sex Therapy does not ever involve physical instruction or observation of a sex act by the therapist. Sometimes folks have the misperception that there is any type of sexual activity that occurs in the therapy office, which is absolutely untrue. Persons participating in the session will always be clothed and maintain professional boundaries at all times.
Please reach out to us if you have other questions about sex therapy at our Seattle, WA office.
Absolutely! The four of us - Justin, Mary-lynn, Dan and John - all have a great deal of experience helping women in counseling and have always enjoyed working with female-identifying clients. Though one of our specialties is working with adults identifying as male (men's issues), our experience, training, and interests also include many of the issues women seek counseling for. At any given time a large percentage of our clients are female.
And for adults who prefer to work with a female-identified therapist, we're thrilled to have Mary-lynn Ballew onboard. Mary-lynn works with individuals and couples and has been a wonderful addition to our team. She goes in and out of being full (because she's good!) but please check out her profile page to see if she is currently available to help you.
Men's Therapy in Seattle, WA
Male-identified individuals enter into counseling for a number of reasons, many of them the same as those that bring female-identified adults into therapy, but the following are issues we often work with men on:
- Modern masculinity
- Men's roles in current society
- Depression & anxiety in male-identified persons
- Marriage/relationship problems specific to men
- Communication skill-building
- Restricted range of emotion
- Issues with intimacy or sex drive - whether low, no, or overactive
- Controlling or rigid behavior
- Affairs (having had, or currently in, or recovering from the spouse's affair)
- Marriage separation or divorce
- Questioning sexual orientation or gender identity
- Alcohol or substance abuse
Sex & Intimacy Therapy in Seattle
Not at all, and in fact many sex-related and intimacy-related issues such as low sex drive, problems bonding with sexual partners outside the bedroom, and so much more, have little to do with being in a partnered relationship. And if you are in a relationship but your partner is unable or unwilling to attend therapy with you, we can still work effectively on sex/intimacy challenges as an individual in therapy.
Here are some steps to ensure that you are getting the most of or your therapy sessions in Seattle, WA:
- Take some time after each session to review what was said and to really think about how to incorporate your therapy experience into your day-to-day life outside the therapy office.
- The most important work of therapy takes place in between sessions when the therapeutic hour is utilized outside of the therapist's office, so be sure to follow up on any tasks that were established in session.
- Be as honest with your therapist as you are willing, as he or she can't help you if you withhold important information.
- Trust that when moments in therapy are difficult, or the therapeutic work you do outside of the therapy session is difficult, that this is growth and positive change.
Book your next therapy session at Clarity Counseling Seattle
If you are looking for a new therapist, contact Clarity Counseling Seattle and we can discuss options for you.
There are a couple of common reasons why the process of therapy can be ineffective or, at a minimum, disappointing. For some, they may not have been truly ready to perform the necessary work of facing up to and working on the real issues at play in their situation, and this resistance stunted the process of creating lasting change.
It is not uncommon for people, though well-intentioned, to seek therapy in hopes of changing those around them rather than working on themselves. Thankfully, it is usually the case that when we change ourselves, those around us change as well.
Importance of Relationship Between Therapist and Client
For others, the pairing of client and therapist may simply not have been the right match. Though many therapists differ in their specific therapeutic approach, research shows that the single best determinant of success in therapy is the quality of the working relationship between therapist and client. *This applies to both individual and couples therapy.