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Sexual Sabotage: When People Don’t Allow Themselves to Enjoy Sex

Sex should be one of life’s great joys. But some people, even if sexually active, are unable to experience a real sense of satisfaction.  The joy of lovemaking often gets sidetracked because of deeply held negative beliefs about sex or oneself.  For some, the lack of emotional enjoyment may be accompanied by physical problems such as difficulty becoming aroused, or an inability to reach orgasm.  But even of those who are able to function sexually, many do not enjoy sex. Read More…

To Parents of Teens

Something is different. He/she is not the same. Whether it be the clothing, the typical teenage “attitude,” the “later” that never comes when you ask them to pick up their room, or something darker—withdrawal, angry outbursts, long sleeves that are hiding cuts or scratches, blood shot eyes on a Saturday night, or that “earthy” smell sticking to their clothing and hair that you remember from decades ago. Whether it be the recent plunge in grades, missed school, the new peer group that you would hate to run up against in a dark alley, the older, slicker looking boyfriend (“But I love him”) that you don’t approve of…something has changed. Read More…

Adolescents with ADHD and ADD

Mother says, “Show me your agenda with your homework assignments.” Mom does spot checks on the school website to double check her adolescent’s agenda, look for teacher notations regarding missing homework assignments, and to monitor grades.

“What would be the most logical homework assignment to start with,” mother coaches. “It looks like you are losing focus. Why don’t you shoot a few hoops for ten minutes outside. Then come back.” Read More…

Hypnosis: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is hypnosis and how does it work?

A. Hypnosis is a state of inner absorption, concentration and focused attention. It is like using a magnifying glass to focus the rays of the sun and make them more powerful. Similarly, when our minds are concentrated and focused, you generally become more receptive and responsive to the suggestions that are given. Read More…

Sex Therapy in Newport News, Virginia

Sex therapy takes up about half of Anne Aja’s caseload. The Newport News therapist holds certifications in marriage and family therapy and additionally in sex therapy. “It’s hard to work with a couple and not talk about sex,” she says. To gain licensure from the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors and Therapists (AASECT) took her many additional hours of courses and workshops. “You have to really know yourself and recognize your own values and how you feel about different behaviors — gay sex, old people, masturbation,” says Aja (pronounced “Asia”), who has a grown son and daughter, and three grandchildren, from her 25-year first marriage. Now remarried, she says, “It’s exciting to have similar interests. We do have a lot of fun together.” We met her in her spacious, light-filled office that overlooks water to talk about her work. Read More…

To Couples

She: “He never talks to me.”He: “She never stops talking and over-reacts to everything.”
She: “He never helps out.”He: “Every weekend it’s another honey-do list.”
She: “He should know what I want.”
He: “I can never figure out what women want.”
She: “He won’t let me vent and process my day. He always tries to fix things.”
He: “When I try to help, she says I’m controlling.”
She: “He yells.”
He: “She yells.” Read More…

“Feelings, nothing more than feelings . . .”

Most of us are “phobic” of our negative feelings. We do all that we can to cling to the positive, happy ones. But when a negative emotion sails through, we panic—heading for the self-help books, Oprah, substance abuse to numb. (“Snap out of it.” “Pull yourself up by the boot straps.”) We are afraid to feel sadness, grief, disappointment. It might hurt. Read More…

Sexual Addiction: Is it Real or an Excuse?

According to the DSM 4,  (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) there is no such diagnosis of a “sexual addiction”. The concept of sexual addiction is a new and emerging field. While one could spend hours debating whether or not there is a diagnosis for this condition, many people are suffering from too much sex on the brain. Read More…

Eating Disorders and Disordered Eating

She speeds towards the day care facility through rush hour traffic after a full,stressful day at work. It’s five o’clock. She’s hungry, tired, and irritable, and the toughest part of the day is about to begin—cranky kids, soccer practice, dinner preparation, supervision of homework, laundry, bath time. She jots down a reminder to stop for milk.There doesn’t seem to be a second for letdown. The only comfort is the chocolate she later nibbles on from the children’s Easter baskets, the large, sinful bowl of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream she dips into as she picks up the house, the rich, left-over brownies in the kids’ lunch boxes, and the eventual full blown binge by nine o’clock. Guilty, she counters this binge by (pick one or two) purging, taking six laxatives, vowing to start Atkin’s, South Beach, diet pills, daily exercise “ tomorrow. Read More…

A Mental Tune up for 2010

It has been a joke and a common sense notion that people who talk to themselves are kind of nutty.  However, psychology is recognizing more and more that we all talk to ourselves constantly.  There is even a name for it, the “internal dialogue”. It is like we have different voices in our heads, typically learned from our environment or our childhoods.  Depending upon what we are saying to ourselves in our heads, the expectations we have, the way we interpret things, and the pictures we create in our minds, that determines how we feel and how we react. Read More…