Advancing the Field of Human Sexuality

On November 28, 2015, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1

There were many of us who worked for over one year to create the following statement that was recently approved by the Board of Directors of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors & Therapists (AASECT).  When the statement was approved, Dr. Russell Stambaugh said, “With this passage of this position, AASECT is officially on record as supporting BDSM, polyamory and consensual non-monogamy as potentially sexually healthy lifestyle choices and behaviors.  This constitutes full implementation of Kinsey’s ideas about the broad range of sexually healthy behaviors.”

© Markus Gann | Dreamstime.com

© Markus Gann | Dreamstime.com

Sexual Expression including Orientation and Identity: Treatment & Education Foundations

 

It is the position of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists that we oppose any and all therapy models and interventions as well as any educational programs and curricula that seek to pathologize, dictate, or prescribe a person’s sexual orientation, identity, and/or consensual, sexual expression, whether or not it is conventional or atypical.  Regardless of how such clinical interventions or educational programs are labeled or named, AASECT recommends all helping and educating professionals to utilize best practices and culturally relevant resources for foundation and reference.

Furthermore:  AASECT affirms that sexuality is central to the human experience and sexual rights must be honored in order for sexual health and overall well-being to be obtained.  Informed by the best empirical research, AASECT recognizes human sexual experiences as diverse and supports the acceptance of sexual diversity while embracing consensual sexual expression within the framework of human rights and social justice.

AASECT accepts the evidence that human sexual experience includes a vast spectrum of sexual expression, orientation, and identities. These sexualities, between consenting adults when agreed upon, with permission, and assenting, are typically not psychopathological behaviors. Indeed, recent peer-reviewed research on these sexual experiences shows no correlation to pathology.

AASECT further asserts that all people seeking treatment and education about consensual sexual behavior, identity, or orientation deserve accurate information.  AASECT accepts that the empirical evidence is reasonably complete on reparative and conversion therapies that attempt to change sexual orientation or identity and shows that these techniques are experimental at best and overwhelmingly ineffective, with harmful consequences for clients widely documented.

AASECT takes the position that social justice plays an essential and foundational role in the organization’s mission.  Individuals have the right to be free as possible from undue constraints (e.g. discrimination, stigmatization, oppression and violence) along with the freedom to consensual sexual expression. Destigmatizing human sexual expression and experiences as well as creating and maintaining safe space for those who have been traditionally marginalized are essential practices for AASECT members who are predominately mental health practitioners and educators.  This overarching goal compels AASECT to disavow any therapeutic and educational effort that, even if unwittingly, violates or impinges on AASECT’s vision of human rights and social justice.

I was delighted to honor my friend, Doug Braun-Harvey in Minneapolis yesterday as Dr. Eli Coleman and the University of Minnesota announced the first research fellowship of its’ kind.  Few issues in the world of sex therapy are more misunderstood than out of control sexual behavior.

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From left to right: Neil, Dr. Anna Randal and Doug Braun-Harvey.

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Understanding “Sex Addiction”

On October 29, 2014, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1
Our society has created so much confusion about the concept of sex addiction that it has become difficult for the consumer of counseling services to know which way to turn.  The following is an excerpt from a good article that helps to clarify the situation.

Myth 1: Sex addiction is about sex and only sex…

Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation’s LGBTQ-Integrative Program Director Buster Ross teaches a course on sex addiction at the organization’s graduate school and took a similar stance as Skurtu.

Buster Ross

“Sex addiction, also referred to as hypersexuality, was considered for the most recent revision of the diagnostic manual clinicians use when making diagnoses, the DSM 5,” he said. “After extensive review, it was not adopted as a diagnostic condition because there was insufficient evidence to support such a diagnosis as a primary condition.”

“It’s not that the struggles aren’t real,” he continued. “It’s just that professionals are not convinced that ‘sex addiction’ is its own condition, perhaps best understood as symptomatic of other underlying mental health disorders (ADHD, impulse disorders, trauma-related disorders, bipolar disorder, stimulant-use disorders).”

Ross, an AASECT certified sexuality counselor, added the most effective treatment will come from therapists who understand eroticism from a sex-positive orientation and choose to focus on treating the underlying disorders instead of using labels like sex addiction that contribute to shame and the sexual disempowerment of clients.

“Sexuality professionals within AASECT are certified to treat sexual problems from a diverse range of approaches, offering alternatives to an addiction model, something necessary for issues as complex as modern sexuality and relationships,” he said.

To see the entire article you can go to:

http://www.datingadvice.com/home-page-feature/6-common-sex-addiction-myths-debunked-by-the-experts

To read more about my treatment philosophy you can go to:

http://www.doctorcannon.com/sex-addiction/

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Tiger and Sex Addiction…

On January 16, 2010, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1

 

It was only a matter of time before Tiger ended up in rehab for “sex addiction.”  I’ve been predicting this scenario publicly since November.  It appears that Tiger is now at Pine Grove Behavioral Health and Addiction Services in Mississippi, not South Africa as originally reported.  The lesson I hope women will take away from my posting today is that men don’t cheat because of your appearance, which is a common belief that women latch on to .  Take a look at this picture of Elin Woods.  Trust me, Tiger’s admitted “transgressions” didn’t have anything to do with her looks!  Infidelity is about unfulfilled needs, low self esteem, compulsivity, irresponsibility and a low emotional IQ.  Cheating can be about getting even and a lot of other things including narcissism which raises a lot of questions about Tiger.  If you would like to read more about the impact of “sex addiction” and infidelity, you might enjoy an article I was interviewed for by the leading women’s magazine, “She Knows”.  http://www.sheknows.com/articles/812944

The Year of the Tiger…

On January 3, 2010, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1

 

2010 is The Year of the Tiger.  Not only that, but Chinese New Years falls on February 14th this year.  Hmmm.  I bet Valentine’s Day is a little different in the Woods household this year. But here’s the deal: Regardless of how bad it looks, it may not be over for Tiger and Elin. People who are compulsive about sex can be just as compulsive about healing if given the chance.  If Tiger and Elin want to make this work and hold their family together, they can.  Believe it or not, I have seen couples with much bigger problems heal and learn to love each other like never before.  It may look hopeless, but don’t count Tiger out from coming back yet. Just ask Roco Mediate!

The Boney Finger of Blame…

On September 19, 2009, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1

We’ve all done it.  “If only my partner would do X, Y, or Z, our relationship would be so much better.”  With that in mind, I hope you enjoy the following story by Valerie Cox as much as I do…

“A woman was waiting at an airport one night,
With several long hours before her flight.
She hunted for a book in the airport shops.
Bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop.

She was engrossed in her book but happened to see,
That the man sitting beside her, as bold as could be.
Grabbed a cookie or two from the bag in between,
Which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene.

So she munched the cookies and watched the clock,
As the gutsy cookie thief diminished her stock.
She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by,
Thinking, “If I wasn’t so nice, I would blacken his eye.”

With each cookie she took, he took one too,
When only one was left, she wondered what he would do.
With a smile on his face, and a nervous laugh,
He took the last cookie and broke it in half.

He offered her half, as he ate the other,
She snatched it from him and thought… oooh, brother.
This guy has some nerve and he’s also rude,
Why he didn’t even show any gratitude!

She had never known when she had been so galled,
And sighed with relief when her flight was called.
She gathered her belongings and headed to the gate,
Refusing to look back at the thieving ingrate.

She boarded the plane, and sank in her seat,
Then she sought her book, which was almost complete.
As she reached in her baggage, she gasped with surprise,
There was her bag of cookies, in front of her eyes.”

Whoops!

(Story contributed by the world’s great son, Ki Cannon)



patti

She may not be Bill Clinton, but she is definitely one of the most important people in the field of sexuality.  Dr. Patti Britton is the Immediate Past President of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT).  www.aasect.org. Past President’s of AASECT read like the “Who’s Who” of sexuality professionals.  AASECT is the leading organization that certifies sex therapists throughout the world.  As I was thinking about the honor of having Dr. Britton appear on our show, I couldn’t help but think back to the elation I felt the day I learned that my 75 page application to become an AASECT Certified Sex Therapist was approved by the certification committee.  In addition to adherence to a strict code of ethics, AASECT Certified Sex Therapists are required to meet a long list of educational, experiential and clinical requirements.  Few people are better equipped to discuss any sexual concern than Certified Sex Therapist, Dr. Patti Britton.  I hope you will join us for what promises to be an excellent show.  For more about the show: www.sexandintimacyshow.com.   To learn more about Dr. Patti Britton: http://www.yoursexcoach.com/

 

There are some things I just couldn’t make up and this is one of them.  A 33 year old woman from the great state of Pennsylvania is getting hitched to an amusement park gondola ride.  The couple has been dating for over a decade with the bride-to-be having ridden the ride 3000 times during the 10 year courtship.  The ride is manufactured by a company called Weber and as is the custom, the bride will adopt Weber as her surname. Very traditional, don’t you think?  The cool thing is that the bride is a church organist so she can play her own wedding march.  It seems they are practicing safe sex as long as she wears her seatbelt and she seems to be satisfied with her sex life so there isn’t much for me to do here.  A source close to the situation who asked not to be identified told me the happy couple will be going to Disney World on their honeymoon.

Recovering from infidelity…

On December 4, 2008, in Uncategorized, by drneilcannon1

Yesterday shined a spotlight for me on the process required to heal from infidelity.  I had a couple in my office that was in week 14 of therapy following an affair.  Three months earlier this couple was on the verge of divorce.  Neither party wanted to be in therapy and in fact after the first session the couple was so mad at each other I wasn’t certain if they would actually come back.  This week when I saw them they had grown to the point that they are closer and more intimate than ever.  They are looking forward and dreaming about the future.  Fast forwarding to the same leather couch in my office two hours later I was working with a different couple who was in week 2 of a similar situation.  The anger was raw.  The mistrust rampant.  Shame and guilt filled the room.  Divorce was on the table.  It was difficult for the second couple to see any glimmer of hope.  The major difference between the two couples of course is where they are in the process.  There is a myth that couples cannot recover from affairs.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.  As demonstrated by the first couple, an affair can actually act as a catalyst to enhance communication, love, sex and intimacy.  The one thing we know about people who are willing to make the effort and fight through the pain is that there is always hope, possibility and potential.  www.doctorcannon.com.