"Sex lies at the root of life, and we can never learn to reverence life until we know how to understand sex."
— Havelock Ellis
What is sex therapy?
Sex therapy focuses on the resolution of sexual problems while increasing the capacity for joy, mutual pleasure, and connectedness. Sex therapy is conducted by licensed mental health professionals, such as therapists, psychologists, and counselors, who have specialized training, experience, and supervision in treating sexual problems. I further honed my expertise by completing a rigorous certification process through the American Association for Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT).
Despite the common belief that good sex should just happen naturally, sex is an art form that takes time to understand and develop. Few people have had opportunities to learn and talk about sex in a safe, non-shaming, and accurately information-rich environment. Consequently, even though most of us feel like we should just "know", it can feel uncomfortable to talk openly about what we do not know about sex. I will help you become comfortable, while giving you the information and tools you need to enjoy sexual relationships that are:
Protected from HIV, STIs, and unwanted pregnancy,
Congruent with values,
Sex therapy with me begins with a phase of assessment, during which time I take a thorough bio-psycho-social-sexual history, while offering pertinent sexuality education. I consult with your doctor or other health care providers, as appropriate. I then share my findings and recommended treatment plan with you. The next phase involves our collaborative intervention work, during which time I assign homework, and meet to talk about and modify your homework experiences such that they are most effective. This is the time for traditional psychotherapy as well, if it is part of your treatment plan. Sex therapy concludes with a review session, and follow-up sessions as needed.
Why do people seek sex therapy?
Some of the many reasons why people seek sex therapy include:
Low or no sexual desire.
Difficult or no orgasm.
Out of control sexual behavior (some people use the term "sex addiction").
Pelvic or genital pain.
Differences in sexual desire, values, fantasies, preferences.
Changes in sexuality during the lifespan, particularly with aging, and major life events.
Loss of passion, or "spark."
Perceived fetishes, or concerns about sexual interests.
To schedule an appointment, please send me a message using the form below:
Selected works and experiences:
Mary discusses changing the language of how we talk about virginity in Bustle.
Mary discusses mental health challenges among people with pelvic floor disorders in HelloFlo.
Mary is interviewed by HelloGiggles on kissing.
Busting myths about male sexuality: Implications for therapy with men, women, and couples. Dr. Joe Kort, with the Mind Body Training Institute, November 2017.
Fisher, M. & Fisher, A. (2017). Sexual Dysfunctions in Couple and Family Therapy. In
Encyclopedia of Couple and Family Therapy, New York City, NY: Springer.
Fisher, A. & Fisher, M. (2017). Alfred Kinsey. In Encyclopedia of Couple and Family
Therapy, New York City, NY: Springer.
Fisher, M. (2016). Treating polyamorous and consensually non-monogamous patients.
Presented at the Association for Women in Psychology inservice, Salt Lake City, UT.
Fisher, M. (2016). Becoming a Kink-Aware Therapist. Presented at the American
Association for Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, Meet & Greet,
Utah chapter, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Fisher, A. & Fisher, M. (2016, April). Attachment and quality of life among consensually
non-monogamous individuals. Presented at the Society for Sex Therapy and
Research, Chicago, Illinois.
Fisher, M. & Fehlberg, A. (2016, March). Mixed orientation marriage: Clinical and ethical challenges. Presented at the LGBTQ-Affirmative Therapists Guild, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Fisher, M. (2016, February). Treating polyamorous and consensually non-monogamous
patients. Presented at Women in Private Practice, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Fisher, A. & Fisher, M. (2015, August). The other poly: Navigating consensual non-
monogamy. Sunstone Symposium, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Fehlberg, A., Fisher, M. (2015, March). Why Stay? Gay Individuals in Heterosexual
Relationships, presented at Generations, Salt Lake City, Utah.