How do you find a sex therapist? Many couples have periods in their relationship where their sex life is struggling. This can be due to a number of factors, and more often than not it is the culmination of several factors. If you are feeling hopeless, you may need some help sorting out what is going on and guiding your growth. But finding help, especially when you are already distressed, can be really hard!
When it comes to issues within your sexual relationship, it can be very daunting to find the right person to help you heal and grow. A sex therapist can be really helpful, or it can be a waste of time and money. In addition, there are so many alternative options to choose from, like life coaching and other programs. In this post, we will talk about the pros and cons of each option and how to choose the best option for you!
There are a lot of different therapists out there, many of which offer help with sexual issues. Let’s first start with the pros and cons of seeing a sex therapist for your sexual issues.
Therapists are licensed professionals. To become a therapist requires a graduate degree and hundreds of hours of experience. They are well versed in the research and proven models of therapy. Therapists are often also specialized in working with tough problems like trauma, attachment issues, anxiety, etc.
Unfortunately, it can often be very expensive to see a therapist. Sessions can cost upwards of $100 each, and, sadly, insurance doesn’t always cover it. In addition, therapists are bound by an ethical code that protects client autonomy. Therefore, although they can share research and use therapy models to help you find your own solutions, therapists won’t offer straight up life advice.
Finding a Sex Therapist
If you do decide that a therapist is the right path for you, there are a lot of choices. When it comes to sex therapy, the gold standard for certification is the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT). This organization trains educators, counselors, and therapists. On their website, you can find AASECT certified professionals, and sort your search by country and state. Unfortunately, it can be even more expensive to see an AASECT certified therapist as they can be rare. Other therapists are also capable of helping with sexual issues. In addition, there may be specific circumstances in your life (such as trauma or a mental health diagnosis) that may be helped best through professionals trained in something other than sex therapy.
To find the right therapist, decide with your spouse if you feel it is worth seeking out an AASECT certified therapist. Reflect on your life circumstances and decide what factors you feel might play a role in your presenting problem. Decide if you would like to do couples therapy or individual work. You may also need to factor in your insurance and financial limitations. Once you have a list of therapists who may work, it is a good idea to contact these therapists and ask for a 10-15 minute phone call to assess if you can mesh well with this person. Give them a summary of your problems and ask what experience they have had in those areas. You may also want to let them know up front if you want to work from within a religious and moral context; if they are not willing to meet you there, you most likely should find a different therapist.
A therapist might not be the right fit for you right now. There are also many life coaches who specialize in marital and sexual issues. Here are some pros and cons to using a life coach.
Life coaches have a wider variety of price ranges, and so it may end up being a more affordable option than therapy. Coaches also tend to be more flexible (specializing in a wider variety of topics) and can give you the benefit of their life advice. A life coach can play many roles for you, such as friend, advisor, mentor, and mediator if necessary.
Life coaches have the space to be more flexible, and this is because there aren’t systems in place to regulate the training of life coaches. Therefore, you have to be sure you can trust the specific life coach you are looking at as each one will have a different set of beliefs, experience, and knowledge.
Get Your Marriage On! Founder Dan Purcell has helped so many of our GYMO community through coaching. He is a certified life coach, has been helping others with their sex lives since 2017, and runs the GYMO podcast where he weekly interviews other experts in the field. On top of all this, Dan is also a husband, father of 6, and an active Christian. If you decide a life coach is the right fit for you, contact Dan today.
Lastly, we have a unique resource for couples who are wanting to grow their intimacy and sexual connection with their spouse. Our Next Level! Program provides not only individual coaching with the one and only Dan Purcell, but also a community of other Christian couples who are working towards the same goal! Next Level includes discussion boards, question and answer forums, men and women’s only groups, coaching, and a private podcast of other coaching sessions that you can learn from. This option will end up being the cheapest and most value-per-dollar of all the options listed. Sign up, or join the waitlist, for Next Level! here.
Questions to Ask
Whether you choose a therapist or life coach, you will want to find someone that meshes well with you and your spouse. Here are some questions to either research or call and ask them before you start treatment.
- What experience do you have with marital issues? With sexual issues?
- Do you incorporate religious values into your work? How would you incorporate my moral/religious beliefs?
- Do you usually work with individuals or couples?
- How long have you been doing this?
- Can you give me an idea of what your process is like?
- How much will this cost for me per session (factoring in insurance)?
- How long does this process typically take?
- When would you be available to take on new clients?
Many couples find that at some point in their marriage, they get stuck. Often, numerous life factors combine together to halt sexual intimacy and pleasure. When we find ourselves in these situations, we sometimes need some outside help to assist in healing our relationship and making it better than ever. However, it can be really hard to find a person you trust to play such a vital role. Hopefully, this post can help guide you as you decide which type of professional you are looking for and how to find the best fit for you.