If you’ve found yourself on this page you’re likely either wondering what a sex positive therapist is or you know exactly what you are looking for and you’ve come to the right place.
What is a sex positive therapist?
Being a sex positive therapist basically means that I support and work with all forms of sexual expression that are consensual. I have knowledge and experience in working with people involved in various forms of sexual expression. In my work as a sex positive therapist I have worked with:
people exploring their first munch
furries (fetish and not)
polyamory (poly) (not always inherently sexual)
Couples and individuals exploring threesomes
various other fetishes
various other aspects of the kink scene
I should say a little more about polyamory here. Although choosing a poly lifestyle often involves sex, this is not always the case. The core of polyamory is the ability to have multiple romantic relationships. I like to think of this less as having sex with multiple people and more as having multiple people you feel a deep, close, emotional bond with. It’s probably true that the vast majority of poly relationships are sexual, but defining polyamory in terms of sex ignores the true value of being poly, which is the close, intimate connections it allows for.
Why people come to see me as a sex positive therapist
In general, the people who seek me out as a sex positive therapist are looking for someone who wont judge them for their sex lives. Aside from polyamory, I rarely get people who come to me saying that the main thing they want to work on in therapy is related to their kink life. It’s more often the case that they want to work on things in therapy that any other person would seek help for. They just want to know that they can also talk about their sex lives, the impact it has on their lives, and know that I’m going to have some idea of what they’re talking about and not judge them.
What if I’m into something you’re not familiar with?
The kink scene is huge! There are all kinds of things a person could be into and I’m sure I don’t know all of them. Sometimes I have people in therapy who talk about things I’m not familiar with, or terms I don’t know. When this happens I’m open with people about what I don’t know and we either talk about it together or I go get educated. The important part of what I offer as a sex positive therapist is my non judgmental support of whatever you might be into. So far I haven’t worked with anyone who has brought anything to therapy that has freaked me out :-p
I want my partner to be open to being poly but they’re resistant.
This is something I get a lot in therapy. I would say that half of the poly couples I have worked with have been on board with the idea together, and the other half have consisted of one person trying to convince the other. Usually the resistant person intellectually thinks it could be a good idea, but they’re fearful of the possibility of things going badly. I’ve worked with several couples going through this problem. In these cases it’s my job to help the two of you explore your needs, emotions, and the overall importance of your connection and security with each other.
If I’m involved in BDSM are you going to report me to the police?
This will sound funny to some people, but I’ve gotten this question more often than not in my BDSM clients. California law only mandates that I report abuse to minors, anyone above the age of 64, and dependent adults. I am also mandated to report any credible threats of imminent harm to yourself or another person. This is the part that scares people when coming in to talk about BDSM stuff.
Some who are unfamiliar with the kink scene could see BDSM as abusive or harmful. Although BDSM does often result in physical harm to those involved, this harm is welcome, appreciated, and consensual. In this regard, there is nothing to report. There is a difference between “I’m going to tie them up and choke them tonight” when talking about your sub (not reportable), and you saying the same thing about your mother in law (reportable). Consensual and non lethal= not reportable. Non consentual intent to harm/damage someone = reportable.
Your safety is most important
Most people you will run into in the kink scene have an understanding and respect for the need for safety. However, you might run into some creepers. If you were to find yourself in a worst case scenario situation, with somebody harming you against your will, stalking you, or disrespecting your safe word, then we would talk about how to deal with this situation and keep you safe. Depending on the situation, this might include a discussion about you contacting the police. However, aside from the situations listed above where I am mandated to report, I would never divulge any of our discussions to third parties. That would be a violation of your confidentiality.
I have been working with couples and individuals in therapy since 2008. I am a licensed marriage and family therapist in the state of California. Some people take this to mean that I specialize in marriage and family stuff, but really it means that my training in college focused on relationships. Throughout my career I have identified as a sex positive therapist and have been seeing clients in this regard since 2010.
Give me a call sometime
If anything you have read here resonates with you or you would like to talk more about sex positive therapy, give me a call sometime for a free brief phone consultation.
Joe Borders, MFT
Sex Positive Therapy in Roseville and Sacramento
1722 Professional Drive,
Sacramento, CA 95825
775 Sunrise Ave., suite 110
Roseville, Ca 95661