In the past couple of weeks, the Oprah Winfrey Show has featured a prominent sex therapist named Dr. Jen Berman. Dr. Berman has been featured on a series on Showtime and also has her own sex therapy center in Chicago.
Those of you who follow my blog may know that I support a great deal of what Oprah Winfrey does on her show – she makes people think and talk about things they might not otherwise be inclined to discuss. Her show thrusts subjects into your living room and encourages you to face uncomfortable issues.
So, when I recently saw that Oprah’s show was focused on sex therapy, I eagerly tuned in. People ask me all the time if I do sex therapy or if I know someone who does. I am not a specialist in sex therapy, and people whose issues primarily relate to sex should really see a specialist in this area. A clinical psychologist can get additional training in sex therapy, but most graduate schools and internships don’t promote enough awareness of sex issues to allow the graduates to treat these issues effectively – you really should have a lot of specialized training. And the truth is that I don’t know anyone who does. Yes, I can do some research to find someone, but the point is that sex therapists are not very prevalent.
For many years, regular ol’ therapy carried quite a stigma – nobody wanted anyone to think they were…crazy! Of course, we’ve matured a little bit as a society and people have come to realize that everyone on earth could probably benefit from a little therapeutic tune-up. On the other hand, sex therapy still must hide in the closet. Ask yourself how comfortable you would be telling a co-worker that you need to leave work early to go see your sex therapist. What would they think? What a pervert!
If you didn’t get a chance to catch either of the past two Friday episodes of the Oprah Winfrey Show, do a little research to see if you can find a rerun of it. The show does a wonderful job of highlighting some common sex issues and offers hope that people can actually solve some of these problems. Tune in and you may realize that you could benefit from a little sex therapy yourself.