Schools in the USA
Back to Career Search     

Sex Therapist


Description

Sex. It's the most natural thing in the world. But, for many people, it's also frightening, mystifying, and difficult to talk about, let alone engage in. Often, when people have been sexually molested, endured a sexually-related illness, or been psychologically traumatized, they are unable to react sexually. They may no longer trust others, they may no longer feel loving towards themselves. They may believe their sexual feelings are dangerous and wrong. For these people sex therapists are important, because it is these therapists who can work the clients through their problems, and encourage them to accept themselves and sex as important parts of their lives.

Sex therapists work with individuals and couples who are having trouble relating to their partners or to themselves sexually. They listen, they advise, and they listen some more. They work within the belief system that sex is good, that relationships should be meaningful, and that intimacy is a desirable goal. Sex therapists meet all sorts of people, and must be non-judgmental, non-sexist, and not homophobic. They treat emotional problems, communication difficulties, and past traumas as part of the therapy. Sex therapists try and get to the root of the problem, as well as addressing the surface issue. These may only be the result of a much bigger problem, and it is up to the therapist to uncover and treat that underlying issue.

Parents may choose to visit a sex therapist to discuss how to deal with their child's emerging sexuality. The children will most likely never see the therapist, as the therapist only advises the parents on sexual education, and how to talk with their children about protection, hetero- and homosexuality when the time comes. Sex therapists may host workshops and classes for families, school groups, and community and religious centers, giving information on everything from abuse recovery to using a condom.

Sex therapists also help people who are experiencing difficulties because of physical disabilities, illness, surgery, aging, or alcohol abuse. They may be trained in a number of areas, making them ready for any issue or complaint that may come up.
 
View Schools for this Career: 
         Related Careers
arrow Addictions Counselor
arrow Bereavement Counselor
arrow Career Counselor
arrow [ view all related careers ]



Program Spotlight
Matching School Ad
Brandman University
Take a new step in your education with Brandman University.
Programs Offered:
  • Credential in School Counseling
  • MA in Counseling with School Counseling Emphasis
  • BA in Psychology
  • And more...

 

 



  Interests and Skills  
First of all, sex therapists need to be comfortable discussing the sex lives of strangers openly, honestly, and in detail. Therefore, they must be professional, mature, and non-judgmental. They need to be good listeners, as well as excellent communicators. They need to have an interest in anatomy as well as psychology. They need to be skilled mediators, as they may be dealing with couples who have differing views and opinions. They need to be sensitive, tactful. respectful, and they need a good sense of moral ethics. Sex therapists should be interested in other people's problems, and, most importantly, they need to view sex as a healthy, important part of adult life.
 

  Typical Tasks  
  • Interview the individual client, or the client couple, to obtain relationship history and understand sexual and non-sexual patterns and dynamics
  • Help them understand their feelings and behavior through various techniques
  • Ask leading questions, in an effort to guide their thinking
  • Help each person develop healthy communication skills, so they can express themselves sexually
  • Coach them in new skills and strategies to deal with issues
  • Consult with or refer clients to other social services
  • Keep clear, confidential records of clients' progress
  • A typical day for a sex therapist will involve a lot of listening. They will listen to the client's complaints, and try to develop a diagnosis as to why their client is unhappy sexually. They will give advice, and ask questions. They will come up with strategies to help the client, and try and restore feelings of trust, comfort, and self-worth through couples' sessions, group sessions, games, role playing, and by speaking with other social service workers or physicians who may have come in contact with the individual before. They also update comprehensive reports documenting their clients' progress regularly, and stay informed about new findings in the study of sexuality and couples' therapy.

  Workplaces, Employers and Industries  
  • Sex therapists can find themselves working in various places, including private clinics, hospitals, community centers, and in the media (television, radio, and newspapers and magazines). When meeting with their clients, they will have comfortable offices, in which they clients feel at ease, and are able to discuss the most private of problems. They may work alongside physicians, teachers, and social workers. They usually have regular hours, with evenings and weekends off.

  Long Term Career Potential  
Sex therapists can choose to work in hospitals, clinics, and in private practice. They may choose to open their own practice after gaining experience in the other environments. Anyone working as a sex therapist is most likely qualified to move on to family and marriage counseling. There is also the option of returning to school and becoming a nurse or a doctor, or a professor of sexuality studies. Sex therapists also write books, articles, and even get television and radio shows in order to better address the sexual issues of the public at large.
 

  Educational Paths  
Sex therapists usually have at least a bachelor's degree in psychology, family studies, medicine, nursing, pastoral counseling, social work, or sexology, along with a course or diploma in counseling and therapy. The educational path of a potential sex therapist should cover sexual and non-sexual therapy techniques, as relationship problems and past traumas can be the main glitch in the client's sex life.

It is a good idea for sex therapists to register themselves with an association. Registration ensures clients that the therapist is a legitimate, trained counselor. Certification by these associations requires that therapists have rigorous, recognized training, so it may be a good idea to contact an association to plan your specific educational path.
 

Featured Schools

Matching School Ads
University of Phoenix  Online
At University of Phoenix, we believe everyone deserves access to higher education.
Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in Counseling/Clinical Mental Health Counseling
  • M.S. in Psychology/Industrial- Organizational Psychology
  • A.A. in Psychology
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Online, CA

 
Brandman University  Online
Take a new step in your education with Brandman University.
Programs Offered:
  • Credential in School Counseling
  • MA in Counseling with School Counseling Emphasis
  • BA in Psychology
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • San Diego, CA

 
Stratford Career Institute  Online
Earn Your Diploma from Home!
Programs Offered:
  • Drug & Alcohol Treatment Specialist
Campus Locations:
  • , PA

 
Liberty University  Online

With more than 300 online and residential areas of study, Liberty offers programs from the certificate to doctoral level.

Programs Offered:
  • MA in Professional Counseling - 60 Hour
  • PhD in Counseling - Professional Counseling
  • MA in Professional Counseling(48 hr)
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Lynchburg, VA

 
Grand Canyon University  Online

Earn your degree online with Grand Canyon University. We offer approximately 100 bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs in a variety of fields that can be completed 100% online.

Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in Christian Counseling
  • M.S. in Christian Counseling of Substance Abuse and Addictive Disorders
  • M.S. in Professional Counseling
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Phoenix, AZ

 
Intercoast Colleges  Online
Get your career started with Intercoast Colleges.
Programs Offered:
  • Alcohol & Drug Counseling Studies
Campus Locations:
  • , CA

 
Walden University  Online
Earn a respected bachelor's degree, master's degree, or Ph.D. online at Walden University.
Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in School Counseling - General Program
  • Ph.D. in Psychology - Counseling Psychology
  • M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (CACREP-Accredited)-General Program
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • , CA

 
Post University  Online

Experience an education that helps you realize your potential in a way that fits you best. Request more information about Post University today.
 

Programs Offered:
  • M.S. in Human Services - Clinical Counseling
  • B.S. in Human Services / Counseling
  • M.S. in Human Services - Drug and Alcohol Counseling
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Waterbury, CT

 
The University of Liverpool  Online
Want to study at a UK university without leaving your house? The University of Liverpool offers online Masters and Doctoral programmes.
Programs Offered:
  • MSc in Mental Health Psychology
  • MSc in Organisational and Business Psychology
  • MSc in Psychology
Campus Locations:
  • , CA

 
Argosy University  Online
Welcome to Argosy University

Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its seven colleges: Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Business, Education, Health Sciences, Undergraduate Studies, The Art Institute of California and Western State College of Law as well as certificate programs in many areas.
Programs Offered:
  • Counseling Psychology(EdD) (Online)
  • Clinical Mental Health Counseling (MA) (Online)
  • Pastoral Community Counseling (EdD) (Online)
  • more programs...
Campus Locations:
  • Phoenix, AZ

 
Matching School Ads
  Universities and Colleges
Clarkson UniversityColorado School of MinesDalhousie University
Oral Roberts UniversityPenn State HarrisburgTemple University
The University of HoustonThompson Rivers UniversityUNB Saint John
University of AlabamaUniversity of ArkansasUniversity of British Columbia
University of IowaUniversity of New BrunswickUniversity of Oregon
University of OttawaYork University
Agriculture and Bio-resources | Allied Health and Health Sciences | Applied Business Technology | Architecture
Business Administration | Computer Science | Cosmetology and Esthetics | Culinary, Travel &Hospitality | Dance 
Engineering Technology & Applied Technology |Engineering | Film | Fine Arts and Design | Humanities and Liberal ArtsJustice and Security
Music
| Natural and Applied Sciences | Naturopathic and Holistic MedicineNursingPublic Administration & PolicyReligious and Theological Studies
Sport Sciences and Physical Education | Teacher Education | Theatre
Articles | College News | Videos | Feedback | Career Search
Home | About Us | Contact Us | Faq | Terms of Use | Policy Statement | Site Map | Cities Site Map

Copyright 2003- 2014 QuinStreet, Inc. All Rights Reserved.