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Sometimes the people who help us have sex negative ideas. Join me and Kati Morton in discussing what to do in these situations.

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Thanks for staying curious!
Dr. Lindsey Doe: Kati Morton is here, a sex-positive therapist to talk about sex-negative therapy.

-- Intro Cut Scene --

On Kati Morton's channel we just talked about sex therapy and sexology. Here I want to ask you about sex-negative therapists, because so many of my clients come to me because their regular therapists have shamed them in some way about being polyamory, or asexual or having a trans relative; and so they come to me saying "Lindsey, can you just hold this space for me because you're at least not going to judge me", but ideally I would love it if their therapists were just more educated and open-minded. So, as a therapist who I deem "sex-positive," what are some of the options that clients have if they don't feel comfortable with their regular therapists sex-negativity?

Kati Morton: So the first thing that I would say would be to talk with your therapist. I know you're like cringing over there and thinking "Oooh, it sounds so difficult and it sounds so hard" but the truth of it is that the therapeutic relationship is wonderful for so many reasons. One of those being it's a great place to practice those things that we usually don't want to do. And I think it's really important for people to A) be able to set healthy boundaries B) stand up for ourselves and C) Be an advocate. Sometimes, we have to advocate for things that we believe, and we need other people to understand that's where we stand. Especially in therapy, so they can meet you where you are.

Dr. Doe: So what language would someone use to communicate and advocate for themselves?

Kati Morton: Obviously put your own language to this - however it feels comfortable. But I think it's important, if you're feeling, like, sex-negativity, in session, the next session you go to, I would open with, if you can, "You know last week when we talked about the fact that I have sex with multiple partners-" or "I am bisexual" or whatever it could be that you felt was that you were judged and there was a negative response, then I would say to them "you know, last week when I talked about that, I really felt like you weren't hearing me and I felt really judged." And I know this is the most uncomfortable part, where there's silence, because I can guarantee the therapist is gonna go "oh. shit." You know, and they may not even realize that they said that and I'm sure they'll come out with an apology. "I'm so sorry, I didn't understand. I didn't realize it was coming across that way, that was not at all my intention"

But if they don't response to that prompting, and to that - to you confronting them, and speaking up for yourself, and your sexuality, at that point, then I would look for someone else. There are certain sites you can find, you know, sexologists and sex therapists if that's the realm you want to go into. I also know there's a lot of LGBTQIA+ therapists in general you can find, and making sure they specialize in that usually is a good sign that they're sex-positive. So, that would be kind of my second tip - would be finding someone else. 

Dr. Doe: yeah, preventative work I think is really helpful. That's what I recommend to a lot of my clients is that they interview a therapist before they even go into that relationship, so they know where they stand on issues that are important  to them. Another thing that - that you can do, is contact someone like me, or someone like Katie who you know is sex-positive, and an advocate for a good match between client and therapist, and ask that person if they would be able to facilitate some education for your therapist. Because one of the things that makes me really disappointed is when you've worked so hard with a therapist for so long and all of these aspects of your health and well-being, and then it comes to your sexuality, and they kind of push you out, or you don't feel equally safe there. And I would much rather my skill-set be taught to a therapist so that they can stay in that relationship.

Kati Morton: yeah, and that's really great too because, then my guess would be - and I'm sure there are going to be outliers, but my guess would be that they didn't realize that they were even doing it-

Dr. Doe: Hopefully.

Kati Morton: - because we don't really get trained. I mean I only had one class in all of my schooling and training that was a sex-education type class. It was "Sex and Sexology" but it was in undergrad. It wasn't even my grad- graduate program.

Dr. Doe: Any suggestions you would give to therapists so that they can be more sex-positive?

Kati Morton: I think a lot of it would be educating yourself and taking the time. Something that's been great, honestly, about being on YouTube for so long is: just hearing people's stories and experiences helps me better understand where people are at. Like it helps me to be more open-minded about it, and understanding because there are certain terms and terminology that I'm not privy to and I don't fully understand. But hearing someone talk about it then like "Oh that's what they meant. Oh interesting" and then I'm more aware so that I can be more sensitive if that comes up in my office.

Dr. Doe: How do you break up with the therapist if it's not good?

Kati Morton: It's not like a boyfriend or girlfriend, it's not like a family member, it's not anything like that. You can honestly just say to them "You know, I just really don't feel like we're connecting, and I'm going to have to move on to someone else where I really feel like I can do the work that needs to be done."

Dr. Doe: You heard it from the therapist!

Kati Morton: Yeah and trust me, there's not gonna be any hard feelings. It's not like that kind of relationship. They may ask, just for their own growth, hopefully they ask "could I just ask why, what happened, was there something that I did" so that they can better educate themselves so that it doesn't keep happening. And that's another opportunity for you to speak up! And tell them what's going on, and why you're upset! Advocate for yourself.

Dr. Doe: Stay Curious!