We provide sex therapy to individuals and couples.
“I want to feel closer to my partner”
“I want to feel more confident in the bedroom”
“I want to last longer”
“I want sex to be fun again”
“I want to want sex”
If any of these sound familiar, then sex therapy might be right for you.
WHAT IS SEX THERAPY, EXACTLY?
Sex therapy is a form of talk-based therapy that focuses on improving parts of your sex that may be lacking. The goal is to make changes that last long after therapy ends. What some people might not know about sex therapy is that it can actually look quite similar to other forms of therapy; the difference is that we are focusing on sexual health and intimacy.
Thanks to recent advances in sexual health research, we now know that a medical-only approach to treat sexual problems simply doesn’t work for most people. The “little blue pill” isn’t a magic cure-all for most men, and there is no “little pink pill” for women!
Here’s a glimpse at the Top 3 treatments used to treat sexual problems:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
CBT teaches us that our experience in the bedroom is more closely related to the stuff our mind if telling us about the situation, rather than the situation itself.
By learning to change unhelpful thinking and behaviour, we can improve mood, lower stress, strengthen a sexual response, and make sex more enjoyable again!
CBT is what we call a “change-based” approach to therapy, and it is one of the most effective therapies out there.
Mindfulness refers to a state of being fully present in the moment, and doing so without judgment. By learning to observe our experiences in the bedroom without getting caught up in our thoughts or reactions, we become less overwhelmed, happier, and sex gets even better!
Mindfulness is what we call an “acceptance-based” approach to therapy, and is one of the fastest growing effective therapies we have for sexual health.
There are a number of tips, tricks, and tools in sex therapy to improve our sex lives. These tools can help people last longer, reach orgasm, and enjoy sex more. Some techniques target behaviour (e.g., practicing new ways of being intimate either alone or with a partner), while some techniques focus more on how we think about sex (e.g., making sex less of a ‘performance sport’ and more of an ‘enjoyment activity’).
Sex therapy has been around for a long time and continues to gain momentum.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM SEX THERAPY AT THE TRI HEALTH CLINIC?
As a clinical-scientist, we stay on top of advances in the field of sexual health to be able to offer to most cutting-edge proven treatments, and to personalize them to fit your unique needs.
Sex therapy can look different from person to person, based on their needs, their histories, and their goals.
My treatments are based 4 major principles:
Let’s face it; sex ed isn’t great. We all have beliefs about sex; unfortunately, many of these beliefs are “sex myths” not “sex facts”. False information about sex can be quite damaging. I will work with you to identify and correct sex myths. Better beliefs about sex help us achieve more enjoyable sex.
It’s important to understand that there are many factors that have led you to where you are today; the good, the bad, and the ugly. Sexual difficulties don’t “just happen”. You can’t change what you don’t understand, so self-knowledge is an important part of change. We also put special focus on the strengths you bring to the table.
Therapy is an active process; change doesn’t happen by sitting in a therapist’s office once a week (although it would nice if that were the case!). In therapy, we will strengthen the skills you already have, build new skills you may be missing, and let go of behaviours that may no longer be working
Change doesn’t happen overnight, but constantly checking in to see “Am I better yet?!” can actually do more harm than good. Using questionnaires, I will track your progress so you don’t have to. We will work together to ensure we stay on track to meet your goals for therapy
Therapy may occur individually or with you partner. Remember that sexual difficulties are not an “individuals problem”; they exist within a relationship. So if you have a partner, I strongly encourage they come to sessions, too.
In order to best serve you, sex therapy is available in-person or online. Online therapy uses a program with secure, encrypted technology to maximize your privacy.
Try Tri Health for the Following
ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION (ED)
“I can’t keep it up”
One-third of men will have ED at some point in their life… and that number goes up to three-quarters of men after the age of 75. Sometimes, ED can be the result of medical issues (cardiovascular health, diabetes, prostate cancer treatments). More frequently, though, ED is caused by a mix of physical, mental, and relationship factors. So for many men, ED doesn’t go away with medication (like Viagra, Cialis, or Levitra). This is because “the little blue pill” doesn’t fix the underlying problems that lead to ED. Treating ED is Dr. Bossio’s specialty.
“I’m embarrassed to tell my partner that I like…”
Sexual interests can vary widely! We don’t know the exact percentage of people with kinks, fetishes, or “atypical sexual interests” out there, but if the Fifty Shades of Gray phenomenon taught us anything, it’s that kinks are extremely common!
However, some people can experience feelings of shame, embarrassment, or confusion when they find themselves (or their partners) turned on by things that seem out of the ordinary. Some people may want to find ways to incorporate their kinks into the bedroom. Alternatively, it’s very common to have kinks that are exciting to think about, but we’d never want to actually do in real life. Kinks exist on a continuum. At the Tri Health Clinic, we can work in a safe, non-judgemental space to prevent atypical sexual interests from getting in the way of an enjoyable, fulfilling sex life.
“It’s not supposed to hurt this much, is it?”
Burning. Cutting. Ripping. Stinging. These are not typically words that bring to mind “good sex”. But, unfortunately, for 8-14% of women, this is a reality (yes, that many women experience chronic genital pain). Genital pain, also known as provoked vestibulodynia (PVD), vulvodynia, or dyspareunia can leave women feeling alone and broken. And no, it’s not all in your head. The leading research on genital pain shows that vulvodynia is best treated using a multidisciplinary approach, which involves pelvic floor physiotherapy, gynaecology, and psychology. As a psychologist at the BC Centre for Vulvar Health, Dr. Bossio gained expertise in the leading treatments for women with genital pain, and have had the pleasure to see countless women improve. We use the same science-based tools at Tri Health Clinic. There is hope for you, too.
“I want to last longer”
Premature ejaculation is one of the most common sexual complaints for men. Climaxing too soon can be really frustrating. Many people may not realize that the cut-off for a diagnosis of “premature ejaculation” is 60 seconds; anything longer than that is considered completely normal. However, being upset about reaching orgasm too soon can be a serious problem, regardless of how long you actually last. There are proven techniques to last longer for men with premature ejaculation, and there are techniques to enjoy sex more, regardless of how long you can last.
SEX AND ILLNESS
“My body just isn’t working the way it did before I got sick…”
One of the biggest unspoken challenges of illness is the impact it has on a person’s sexuality, or a coupe’s intimacy. Illness brings many barriers to a fulfilling sex life, including changes to the body, fatigue, pain, medical or surgical side effects, or even changes to a couple’s dynamics. Dr. Bossio spent years working with prostate cancer survivors and their partners, developing treatments to help improve their intimate lives after the devastating effects of cancer treatments. Working with individuals and couples trying to maintain intimacy in the face of illness is one of Dr. Bossio’s passions.
PROBLEMS REACHING ORGASM
“I just can’t orgasm! I feel like my body is broken!”
Sometimes it feels like the whole “goal” of sex is to reach orgasm, so if we don’t easily hit that target, we can feel like a failure. Having difficulty reaching orgasm does not mean that there is something wrong with you, your body, or your relationship. There are many factors that can get in the way of men and women reaching orgasm, and usually it is due to a combination of physical, mental, and relational factors. Becoming orgasmic is possible, and sex therapy can help.
“It feels like we’re just roommates at this point”
Frequently couples will come see us at a point in their relationships where sex and intimacy have stopped altogether. Although a couple may love each other very much, they may experience a time where “the spark is just gone”. It is important to know that there are proven ways to improve intimacy, even when it has been long absent. It’s never too late. For many couples, seeking professional help for a sexless relationship can open the doors to a whole new world of intimacy that they didn’t even think possible. This works best when both members of the relationship come to session. It can be possible to bring intimacy back into a sexless relationship if only one member comes to treatment, but it will likely be more challenging and it may take longer.
“I want to want it, but I just don’t”
Up to 40% of women experience low sex drive, lack of sexual desire, or reduced sexual arousal. This is–by far–one of the biggest barriers to women having a fulfilling sex life. Low libido is also the most common sexual problem for men, too (but much less discussed). Low sex drive can lead to problems in the relationship. For single folks, a low sex drive may be a barrier to dating.
Having a low sex drive may not be a problem for some people, but there is help available when it is a problem. In my experience, many people who have a low sex drive often wish their sex drive was a bit higher; they tell me “I want to want sex with my partner, I just don’t”. Not craving sex does not mean that you are “sexually broken” or “just not a sexual person”, and it doesn’t mean that “there is something wrong with my relationship”. It is a common – albeit sometimes unpleasant – human experience. There are very effective treatments to increase sexual desire and enjoyment that don’t involve medication at all.
“My issue isn’t listed here”
Sexuality and sexual health are complicated! If the issue that you are dealing with isn’t listed here, not to worry. Contact us today to give us a picture of what you want help with. If we can’t help, we will try to help connect you to someone who will.