EMDR & Somatic Sex Therapy, Melbourne
What happens in a session?
Our work together is a collaborative process. I’m your guide, but you are always in control of what happens. At the beginning of our session we talk about your goals. The next part is helping you to relax and calm your nervous system. This could take a few minutes or it could be the whole session. Perhaps it could even take a series of sessions if you often find it difficult to relax. We move at the pace that works best for you.
The next step is working through the reasons you’re seeking therapy. You might want to learn more about sexual embodiment or work through an emotional, sexual or physical issue. The different approaches we could take are described below. You don’t need to know which type of session you want before you book in as we can figure it out together.
At the end of every session we will go through a process of integration. This could be a meditation style process, guided breathwork or a gentle conversation.
Sex therapy can be helpful in many situations such as troublesome libido, pain & numbness, sexual function, troublesome sexual thoughts, gender and sexuality confusion and emotional blockages. We can also discuss new things that you might want to try and curiosities you might have about sex.
Somatic Therapy & EMDR
Somatic Therapy is different from talk therapy, as we work with the body rather than just talking. This might look like breathing techniques, movement meditations, self-touch and embodiment exercises. I’m trained in Embodied Counselling, Somatic Regulation Strategies, Trauma Sensitive EFT Tapping and I'm a Certified EMDR Therapist. I use a combination of these techniques. Somatic therapy can be a wonderful preparation for EMDR therapy which is a type of trauma therapy.
EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing and involves using bilateral stimulation while thinking about disturbing memories or thoughts. While side to side eye movements are the traditional way of receiving this therapy we can also use tactile stimulation, movement and sound. This type of therapy can work quite quickly for single event traumas and also produce astounding results for complex trauma over time.
EFT Tapping stands for Emotional Freedom technique which is a meridian trigger point therapy. It involves tapping, massaging or holding particular trigger points on the meridians of Traditional Chinese Medicine while thinking of distressing thoughts and sometimes saying mantras. It can be a gentle way to work through distressing material and is something you can use as a calming technique between sessions when you need a bit more support.
When working with people who have Trauma/C-PTSD special care needs to be taken to not overwhelm the nervous system. This approach is different to regular EFT and goes at a much slower pace.
Embodied Counselling works with the premise that emotions are felt as sensations in the body. In this type of therapy we bring awareness to these sensations. Using breath, sound and movement we can help these sensations either move through the body or become more comfortable.
Somatic Regulation Strategies are body-based tools that we can use to help us calm and self-sooth. They could involve simple movements, such as shaking the body, or visualisations, tactile stimulation, breathing techniques and orienting exercises.
The bodywork I offer is a combination of Sexological Bodywork, Craniosacral Therapy, Trigger Point Therapy and STREAM (pelvic/genital scar remediation).
Sexological Bodywork was designed to help people learn about their bodies in a safe and embodied environment. It can involve intimate genital or anal touch while being guided in breath, body awareness and pelvic floor exercises. It can be quite an unusual thing to imagine if you’ve never experienced it, because this type of touch isn’t like that of a lover or medical examination. Sexological Bodywork can allow you to explore your own pleasure sensations without the pressure of sex.
Boundaries and consent are extremely important, especially with this type of work. You are completely in control of what we do. I’m a member of the Association of Certified Sexological Bodyworkers (ACSB) and the Somatic Sex Educators Association Australia (SSEAA) and work within their Code Of Ethics. All touch is one way from practitioner to client and gloves are worn for all gential/anal touch. Romantic relationships with clients are prohibited.
Craniosacral Therapy is a very gentle and soothing form of bodywork that can help to ease pain, anxiety and help calm the nervous system. It can involve cupping of the head or sacrum and making very slow and subtle movements.
STREAM is an acronym for Scar Tissue Remediation, Education and Management. It can be performed anywhere on the body 13 weeks post surgery/injury and where there aren't any mesh implants. This type of bodywork can be especially useful for postpartum injuries, genital scarring, hysterectomy, prostate removal, genital confirmation surgery and most pelvic injuries or surgeries.
Online or in person?
I offer sessions online through the zoom platform or in person in my cosy consultation room in Tarneit in the Western suburbs of Melbourne. Regarding covid safety measures, I supply Rapid Antigen tests (RAT) and offer testing for us both before the start of our time together.
Which session is best for me?
You don’t need to know which type of session is best for you before booking. Part of the work is figuring that out together. If you are confused as to whether you want an online or ‘in person’ session, I recommend booking online first. It will give you a chance to meet me, explore this type of work and see if we vibe together.
I provide professional support, supervision and education to Sexological Bodyworkers, Sex Coaches/Educators and Sex Workers by video call.