How can a social worker help me with sexual problems? Can Sex therapy and counseling help?
People who render assistance in the field of sexuality are usually
specialized in different methods of assistance. In the beginning the
contacts are usually weekly and last about 45 minutes. One way to organize
the different methods is to separate them into three basic methods. These
are: behavior therapy, psychoanalytic therapy and a system approach.
Besides these methods, psychoeducation is important. The therapist explains
what could be the matter and how mental factors may influence physical
factors. Openness about sexuality and being able to pose questions a lot.
Behavior therapy assumes that behavior that has been learnt can also be
unlearnt and vice versa. There are different forms of sexual behavior
therapy: e.g the sex therapy of Masters and Johnson which assumes that
people have sexual problems they haven't been taught to experience sexual
behavior in a positive way. This means in general that people relearn at
home how to make love by means of exercises in caressing, feeling and
Another form of behavior therapy is the rational-emotive
therapy (RET). This assumes that people with sexual problems have imaginary
thoughts about a certain situation. For example: a man wants to get an
erection when he makes love to his wife, but in advance he gets all sorts
of disturbing thoughts: e.g 'I will probably fail again'. The therapist
will make the person aware of these thoughts and will try to replace them
by positive and arousing thoughts.
The psychosexual therapy of Kaplan: this therapy is a combination of sex
therapy and psychoanalytic therapy.
Psychoanalytic therapy: this goes back to the past of the person.
Negative experiences of the past and the corresponding feelings that
haven't been dealt with may cause problems.
System therapy assumes that people in a relationship can influence each
other in such a way that problems could arise or that sexual problems
become worse. An example of this is a vaginistic woman who is being put
under pressure by her husband to have intercourse.
In general it is important to get along with the social worker and that
the method of treatment appeals to you.