Can Kink Scenes Help Resolve Trauma?

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Many people have reported how kink and BDSM have helped them work through traumatic situations in their past however, there wasn’t much research/data around how kink and BDSM could help someone work through past traumatic events in their life. I recently completed a course from TASHRA (The Alternative Sexual Health Research Alliance) entitled Kink & Healing: Two Approaches with Julie Lehman, LMFT and Andrew Pari, LCSW, CCTP. I love this organization as it really is doing some interesting things around alternative sexualities and therapy and any training they put on or put out is thorough and research-based. This training talked about how kink and BDSM scenes are being used for healing within participants. It is clear that kink is NOT therapy, but it IS therapeutic, and preliminary research is being conducted to explore ways that kink can have therapeutic benefit for those that are experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, and other mental health concerns. Personally being in the kink would for the past 13 years I can say that kink and BDSM has immensely helped me with trauma, anxiety, and spiritual growth so I know first hand how beneficial it can be. This training offered significant insight to who is consciously using kink to address trauma, how much, the similarities between therapeutic interventions and models of therapy and kink scene/play, and a model of how clients can consciously use kink to work through their own trauma.

People Are Doing This! But Who, How Much, and for what Issues?

Dr. Richard Sprott presented some very preliminary answers to two questions around using kink scenes to address past traumas. At the time of presenting he shared that these numbers were just informational and expected to change with more respondents.

Have you have ever consciously used a kink scene to address past trauma?
33% Yes (83)
55% No (139)
13% Not sure (32)

How many scenes have you done that intentionally addressed past trauma?
4+ scenes: 28% (28)
1-3 scenes: 38% (37)
1 scene: 10% (10)
Not Sure: 23% (23)

The nature of the original traumatic experience was overwhelming sexual, such as sexual assault, abuse, childhood sexual abuse, and rape. Additional traumatic experiences were related to partner abuse, shame, and consent.

While it is always a fine line for therapists who work with kinksters advising them to use strong caution when working with mental health themes such as trauma in the context of kink, what we are understanding is that people are doing this and finding a lot of benefit from it. So it is good that efforts are being made to understand it.

Here is an interview with Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Certified Sex Therapist Samantha Manewitz did on “Can Kink Help Transform Trauma?” and the parallels between kink-scening and trauma work.

A Proposed Model for Constructing these Scenes

The biggest take away I took from the training was a proposed model, called the Somatic Mastery of Sexual Trauma Model, that Andrew Pari, LCSW, CCTP presented on. I italicized proposed because this isn’t a currently accepted or validated model for trauma, but I found it a nice framework on how conscious kink and therapy could intersect to address traumatic experiences. The model looks like this:

I love the collaborative nature of this model where the therapist can do much of the work with the client and help them create spaces to prepare for re-enactment, role play, aftercare, etc. as well as offer so much clinical treatment around the trauma. The Somatic Mastery of Sexual Trauma Model is a therapeutic blend of Prolonged Exposure Therapy, Attachment Theory, Dramatherapy, and Trauma Release Exercise.

If you are interested in working with a sex therapist to work through trauma with kink and BDSM, please reach out below!

Healing Sexual Grief

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What is sexual grief? According to Edy Nathan (2023), sexual grief is a natural response to an unnatural sexually traumatic event or experience which can occur over the span of one’s life.

I recently took a webinar from Edy, who was talking about her book-in-the-works, Healing Sexual Grief and wanting to share her thoughts on sexual grief and how to heal from it.

Nathan says we don’t talk about sexual grief, and that we really didn’t have an accurate label for this experience that is felt by many, and spoken by none. Sexual grief is about the primal part of you that has a sexual self, a sexual birthright, and when that sexual self is harmed, traumatized, neglected, hurt, it results in
– self-loathing

What’s left in the shattered soul is a lost sense of self.

Sexual grief can play “hide-and-seek”, or lay dormant and resurface throughout ones life. I describe grief and trauma as something that never quite goes away, even if you do the work, but it comes back around and around throughout your life. Each time it emerges, powerfully, triggered, activated, raw, its time to focus a new strategy on managing it.

Sexual grief can look like a lot of things, but I’ll share a few examples that I have come across in my work that I think does a good job of explaining what sexual grief actually is.

Sexual grief resulting from an interrupted sexual development. This results in the loss of sexual innocence, ones sexual “purity”, disrupts their entire sexual sense of self and beyond. Grief relates to what happened, what could have been, who the person could have been, sexually and beyond, had the incident(s) not occurred, the responses of others, and the loss of a life that was supposed to happen except for the traumatic event.

Sexual grief because of sexual dysfunction, injury, pain, medication side effects, just not being the sexual person that you thought you would be. Letting go of sexual myths, ideals, and expectations that cause grief around that. Not having sex or pleasure in the way that “everyone else does”. Feeling different or othered because of what is perceived as an abnormal difference in sexual functioning.

Sexual grief because of you are living a sexual life you didn’t expect to be living. Perhaps you are married and expected a blissful lifetime of sexual freedom and pleasure, but instead you or your partners expectations aren’t met. Sexual grief because of orientation issues, including asexuality. Sexual grief because decisions that you made lead to low sexual desire, drive, or pleasure.

Nathan describes sexual grief as a “hostage taker”. Edy presents six “hostage negotiation strategies” to tackle sexual grief. If you want to learn more about sexual grief and how to negotiate with the hostage of sexual grief, Edy Nathan has a 5 Part Video Series on YouTube on Sexual Grief. You can find the first part here:

If you would like to tackle sexual grief and start living a more healing and whole sexual life, please reach out using the form below or email to get started on that journey.

Sex Toys and Vibrators in Sex Therapy

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Sex toys, vibrators, sexual health aids, dildos, lube etc. are often recommended in sex therapy for pleasure enhancement, sexual functioning concerns, and sexual pain and dysfunction. Recently, I took a course with Dr. Caleb Jacobson on the Clinical Uses for Sexual Health Aids (February 5, 2023) and wanted to write a post on commonly use of sex toys and sexual health aids in sex therapy.

These are just some of the commonly used and recommended sexual health aids out there. While I have personal and professional experience with some of them, I do not have experience with all of them so please do not take this blog as a specific recommendation for any of these sex aids.

Additionally, it is important that you work with a qualified sex therapist and/or pelvic floor physical therapist if you are trying to solve any sexual functioning concerns or dysfunction as generally a DIY approach to sexual functioning concerns is usually not recommended and can actually make an existing problem worse.

Common Sexual Health Aids

  1. Lube
    • Water-based- ie: ID Glide
      Pros: Can be used with sex toys/condoms and pretty body safe
      Cons: can get sticky or dry out easier (Pro Tip: reactivate with water… keep a spray bottle near the bed and refresh your water-based lube with a little water)
    • Silicone-based- UberLube
    • Hybrid- Sliquid Silk
      Pros: You don’t have to apply it as often, smooth in application, doesn’t leave a sticky feeling while using it, Can use it with condoms
      Cons: Can stain sheets/clothes, cannot use silicone lubricant on silicone sex toys (can be used on medical grade silicone)
    • Oil-based- coconut oil based Coconu
      Pros: natural and can be gentle on the body
      Cons: not compatible with condoms, if you use these with a latex condom, condom may break
  2. Women/Vulval/Vagina Sex Toy Categories
    • Internal Toys- created to simulate penetration or intercourse
    • External/Internal Toys- combines internal and external stimulation
  3. Male/Penis/Testical/Prostate Sex Toy Categories
  4. Anal ToysB Vibe
    • Plugs
    • Beads
    • Dildos/Vibrators
    • Dilators
  5. Trans Toys
  6. Couples Toys

Sexual Health Aids for Sexual Issues

Female/Vulval/Vagina Owner Sexual Issues

  1. For clients with female/vulval/vagina orgasmic disorder, pre-orgasmia, difficulty orgasming
  2. For clients with female/vulva/vagina desire issues, less interest in sexual desire
  3. For clients with female/vulval/vagina pain and Genito-Pelvic Pain Disorders

Male/Penis Owner Sexual Issues

  1. Erectile issues
  2. Delayed/inhibited ejaculation
  3. Early Ejaculation/Premature Ejaculation

Boost Kegel Exerciser for Men

These are just a few suggestions for sexual health aid and sex toys used in sex therapy. If you are interested in working with me and learning more, feel free to fill out the form below.

Erectile Issues? Read This Before You Call a Sex Therapist

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If you or someone you love is concerned about their erectile control and are having issues with erectile dysfunction, early or premature ejaculation, or are having trouble ejaculating, it’s never too soon to reach out to a qualified sex therapist that can help you with the issue. In fact, the sooner the better. I see way too often that penis-owners will try to apply do-it-yourself fixes to erectile issues (stop masturbating, stop porn, start masturbating, start porn, Viagara/Cialis/Levitras, going off medication, fantasizing, etc.) that just wind up furthering the problem. In fact, men who have erectile functioning concerns have some of the most dedicated attempts to solving their sexual issue on their own and would rather try everything they can find that might be a solution before reaching out to a professional for help (kind of like not asking for directions when you are clearly lost!)

If this sounds like you or someone(s) you love, then reading this blog can help point a lost ship in the ocean towards a safe harbor of erectile control and confidence. I’ll break it down in a few easy pointers that can help:

  1. Accept that there isn’t just ONE cause of your erectile concerns, even if you are convinced that it started because of X. All sexual issues are multi-causal, meaning there are many different reasons why the sexual issue is occurring. When clients come to me, I am interested in not only what you think the origin is of the issue, but also the issues that are maintaining the concern as well. There are likely a LOT of things going into this issue and part of my job is to help figure out what those things are and minimize the impact they have on your erectile control or remove them all together.
  2. Your body is not designed to be sexual if it is in a state of stress, fear, anxiety, or relationship conflict. We are mammals, and if our body is in any state of fear, we are really not designed to be sexual. So if you have underlying anxiety or anxiety related disorders (OCD, panic issues, mood issues, hoarding, body focused repetitive behavior, etc.), that is likely a big cause of the problem- where your erection is a SYMPTOM of a bigger, greater issue.
  3. Your erection might be telling you something else that is wrong. We have high expectations on an erection. It should just be ready to go, at all times, rain, snow, gloom of the night. But the erection has an opinion about things and often can be the first alarm bell that something isn’t right- physiologically, relationally, psychologically, neurologically, or other. It’s important that we listen to the erection and really make sure we are looking at anything that may be effecting it. Sex is so often a symptom to a bigger, more obvious problem and our bodies, and the erection, often speaks loudly so that we will listen to it.
  4. Partners play a huge role in the development and maintenance of erectile and ejaculation issues. If your partner gets disappointed, frustrated, sad, or questions their self-worth, attractiveness, sexual skill when your erection doesn’t do exactly what they or you expect it to do, your partner is part of the problem too. Many people just want to “send” their partner to sex therapy to “fix your issue”, but this is exactly the attitude and perspective that created and/or maintained this problem to begin with. When partners play a role in a problem, they also need to play a role in the solution and likely will be invited into sex therapy to work on how they are contributing to the issue.
  5. Certain personality characteristics are more likely to have erectile and ejaculatory issues. If you are “Type A” or a perfectionist, you might have been rewarded for these characteristics in your professional and personal life. But this type of personality or thinking is terrible for your sexual functioning and sexual satisfaction. Sex, by nature, is extremely imperfect. And your sexual self does NOT appreciate being held to any standard but acceptance and positivity. Perfectionists are chronically unhappy and need to do some therapeutic work to deconstruct their values.

If you need more information, I recommend you to a few resources:

Coping with Premature Ejaculation

Coping with Erectile Dysfunction

Hard Conversations Podcast

Can Cannabis Help Your Sex Life?

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As more and more states in the US decriminalize, medicalize, and legalize marijuana and THC related products, cannabis and sex comes up a lot with my clients. A few months back (2021), I virtually attended the 2021 AASECT Annual Conference and was very impressed by the panel presentation featuring Chelsea Cebara ( and Jordan Tischler, MD ( I took some notes to write this blog to help my clients and others understand how cannabis can be utilized therapeutically for sexual concerns.

To start, I want to be clear, I am not a cannabis or marijuana expert and do not have the adequate training or experience in cannabis and sex to make any formal recommendations or for you to read this blog and say that I an expert. Just merely reporting a small amount of information that I absorbed from this presentation or my own research.

What Does Cannabis Help With Related to Sex

Cannabis and Pain

Canabanoids are anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic and can help with inflammation or spasmodic pain which can contribute to sexual pain and orgasmic functioning. There is over 60-70 years of data on the use of THC and cannabis for the treatment of pain. The sexual issues that cannabis can treat around pain include:

  • The pain and spasmodic pain related symptoms of endomietroisis
  • Symptoms related to menopause such as hot flashes, insomnia, depression/anxiety, decreased libido, sexual pain
  • Vaginismus/Dyspareunia (sexual pain in females)
  • Neuropathy (which can cause sexual pain and sexual disorders)

Cannabis and Mental Health Issues related to Sexual Issues

There is a lot of evidence that having a mental health issue is a contributing factor to having sexual issues, with anxiety and depression being the most common that I see with clients. Cannabis has been shown to help with the following mental health issues (which I find in sex therapy being often comorbid with sexual issues in my clients):

  • Anxiety (a huge contributing factor in sexual issues)
  • Depression
  • Insomnia (if sleep is disturbed, usually sex is as well)
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Cannabis and Sexual Issues

  • Helps with delayed orgasm
  • Increases libido and arousal
  • Remarkably helpful in increasing orgasm frequency and intensity of all groups
  • Increase vasodilation which can lead to increased arousal and vaginal lubrication which is a passive process from that peripheral vasodilation
  • Sexual Pain- cannabis can shift the perspectives of pain
  • It can address the things that are hitting the breaks so the gas can emerge (see Nagoski’s work on Sexual Accelerator and Brake Systems)
  • Increase vulnerability,
  • Enhanced embodiment,
  • Enhanced being in the moment and mindfulness

What Evidence Exists for Cannabis and Sexual Functioning

I can’t even begin to say that I’m an expert on this but I’ll offer a few references to some recent studies (last five years) on cannabis and sex. After reviewing these and more studies, it does appear that cannabis has more positive effects on women and sexuality than men (in fact, the research and anecdotal reports seem to align that cannabis actually can contribute greatly to increased sexual functioning issues in men, however, I think for certain issues I have seen it be helpful such as increase sensation, decrease anxiety, hep with pain or neuropathy).

A 2017 study says those that use marijuana have more frequent sex.

A 2017 study concluded that the majority of female marijuana users who used marijuana before sex reported a better overall sexual experience, an increase in sex drive, a more pleasurable orgasm and a decrease in pain.

A 2019 study says that marijuana improves satisfaction with orgasm in women.

A 2019 study reported that many participants in the study found that cannabis helped them relax, heightened their sensitivity to touch, and increased intensity of feelings, thus enhancing their sexual experience, while others found that cannabis interfered by making them sleepy and less focused or had no effect on their sexual experience. 

A 2019 study suggests that erectile dysfunction is twice as high in cannabis users compared to controls.

A 2020 study concluded that increased frequency of marijuana is associated with improved sexual functioning in women.

How Should One Consume Cannabis for Sexual Healing

The real key to this in finding a way to consume cannabis to minimize the intoxication (high) while maximizing the benefit of the THC says Tischler (2021). If there is really no intoxication/high its unlikely that it is going to work so the goal in treating someone with cannabis is finding a minimum effective dose. Maximize benefit, minimize that side effect (intoxication). Additionally, intoxicated sex comes with risks, requires planning, and a huge focus on consent.

According to Dr. Tischler (2021) inhaled cannibus is particularly good with sexuality and partners and he recommends vaporizers, suppositories, capsules, and THC lube. Topicals are mostly recommended for sexual issues because they can be localized. Best practices for consumption are topical, ingested, and vaporized. THC “pens” or cartridges are not recommended and Tischler recommends “straight up flower” for vaporization. Combusting the flower (smoking, joints, bowls, bongs, blunts, etc.) is not recommended due to the fact that the heat can actually damage the THC content and that transmission into the body can be very harmful.

Tischler (2021) recommends THC content to be between 15-20%. If you start using the 30% pure THC, Tischler says, that is pharmaceutical grade, its not a very effective medicine and is often a dysphoric experience. He suggests 15-25 mg of THC for the average person and dosing is very important.

A note about CBD, according to Tischler (2021), CBD is at best supportive but hasn’t been really shown much significant impact on sexual systems. Tischler also warnes about some potential interactors so doing your research and consulting with a qualified health professional is recommended.

You’ll see I recommend you consulting with a qualified healthcare provider before experimenting with any of this. There are potential complications related to cannabis use such as Cannabinoid hyperemesis syndrome (CHS). CHS is a condition that leads to repeated and severe bouts of vomiting. It is rare and only occurs in daily long-term users of marijuana. Marijuana has several active substances. These include THC and related chemicals.

Recommended Products

There are some products that are specifically designed for sexual and intimacy and include:

Foria THC (only available in some states, cannot ship cross state lines)

Velvet Swing (only available in Washington and Oregon): This is the only THC lube that is barrier compatible. Everything else out there is going to be oil-based and not compatible with barriers (condoms, dental dams, etc.)

Best Practices around Cannabis and Sex

Tischler and Cebara (2021) shared some best practices when trying out integrating cannabis into your solo and partner sexuality. Here are some highlights:

  • Consult with a qualified health professional before trying any substances.
  • When trying something new, start with just yourself and then masturbate. If you have a positive or neutral experience a few tries, invite in a trusted partner.
  • Open up and be present to the possibilities. Try things without expectation or judgment.
  • Focus on what feels good: PLEASURE IS THE MEASURE. There is no “shoulds”.
  • Journal after the experience to reflect on it and keep track of what works for you.

All this being said, it is important that you work with a qualified health provider and a sex therapist to discuss cannabis as an option for the treatment of sexual issues or symptoms associated with sexual dysfunction. It is important that you don’t DIY your own therapy and sex therapy without thoughtful intention, especially when substances and sex are involved. If you would like to work with me on this, please feel free to reach out!

Coronavirus: Work from home, Do Therapy, and HAVE SEX! Sex Therapy during a time of Crisis

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Coronavirus is SCARY.  There is a lot of misinformation out there and the information that is out there is constantly changing.   One thing is certain and that all information sources agree: staying home is safer than being out and about in public and reduces your chances of contracting/spreading germs, illness, and the coronavirus.  

So if you are lucky enough to have a job that allows/wants you to stay home during this time of uncertainty, why not take advantage of the flexibility that working from home has to offer and invest in yourself, your relationship, and/or your future by getting around to that “to do” item of going to online sex therapy?  Most people talk about wishing they had time to work on their relationship, and cite busy and stressful work schedules and differing schedules as a factor that prevents them from doing so, but online sex therapy is perfect for this period of time that is uncertain and where it is safer to stay home than be out and about. 

I am writing this post kind-of tongue in cheek (although I am totally available for telehealth sessions- register as a client and see my availability by going to and am not trying to capitalize on a unpredictable, dangerous, and deadly situation.  But there is some truth to making the most of your time at home when you and your partner(s) are available to do some work on the relationship or just yourself.  And tight quarters and long hours together can have mixed results, so why not get a little extra help from yours truly.  

Even though I’m kind of kidding with my title,  while I have your attention, here are some helpful articles/media that I have found have given me some information that I found helpful and reasonable.  In a time of misinformation, it’s important that we are careful on consuming media, making sure it is accurate and reasonable.  If you feel like information is sensationalized, check your source, and always cross check with the CDC website.   (I don’t know how relevant these links are now, since the situation is constantly changing, so consume with caution)

Here is a really normal guy, who got coronavirus, and felt like junk but describes the virus: 

I love John Oliver explaining the basics, he does it engaging and doesn’t feel to fear mongering or too dismissive: 

As John Oliver explains- we need to find ACCURATE information about the disease in order to make the best decisions for ourselves.  Here are some things me and my family are doing to prepare for really the unknown, since it isn’t clear how this is all going to pan out (tolerating uncertainty is a real skill- if you lack the ability to tolerate uncertainty, working with a therapist that specializes in cognitive-behavioral therapy is really helpful). 

  1. I discuss with my partner on a regular basis the current events that are going on.  
  2. I limit my consumption of media to 1-5 pieces of information a day and stay away from media that is intentionally sensationalistic or fear-mongering. 
  3. I check in with my partner about what I’m feeling and come up with a plan to address the unknown. 
  4. We have a plan for our child if/when daycares close- we’ve connected with grandma’s (one local, one out of state) if/when we need them and have all come together and decided how we would handle needing to keep him home.  Is childcare stressing you out?  How Working Parents Can Prepare for Coronavirus Quarantine 
  5. We stocked up on some essentials- mostly dried toddler milk and some of the kiddos favorite food.   We have committed to keeping our gas tanks full and making sure we don’t run out of too many things in case we do have to quarantine.   This article talks about what you need and what you don’t. 
  6. We have used our teledoc quite a bit during cold/flu season, and feel comfortable using that if we were to get sick. 
  7. We have a local pharmacy that delivers if needed.  
  8. We’ve talked about how we would help our neighbors, friends, and people who rely on us for income to keep their lives as continuous as possible.  We come from a place of privilege and recognize that not everyone is in as good of a situation as we are. 
  9. I’ve discussed with my clients about their preparedness for the unknown and encouraged them to meet online if there is concern about them being sick.  I’ve committed to doing the same. 
  10. We’ve reviewed handwashing and handsanitizing in our household, and commit to sanitizing things more frequently.  

While the situation is continuously changing- what do you and your family need to help weather this storm?  The best thing to do is talk with your friends and family and come up with a plan and answer these questions?

  1. How can I limit my interaction with the public?  Is working from home an option?  Is delivery an option?  
  2. How can I help those that might be less fortunate than me who might be in a different socio-economic place than me?  Do my neighbors have food and medicine?  How can I help my friends, family, neighbors, and those in need?  Are there kiddos that rely on food at daycare and school that might be hungry?  
  3. What resources do I have access to that can help me in a time of crisis?  
  4. What resources do I need that can help me in a time of crisis?

I’m here for y’all- at a distance if you are sick.  Take care of yourselves and your loved ones and if you are in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, or Texas, lets take advantage of this time together to get started on some work.  Nothing like a health crisis to make us focus on our (mental) health. 



Money, Sex and Relationships: What is Financial Therapy

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In my nearly 12 years in private practice as a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and AASECT Certified Sex Therapist, I have found that relationships that are struggling with sex often also have some dysfunction around money.  This doesn’t necessarily mean that they don’t HAVE money, but can appear as one or more partners having a strained relationship with money or the relationship has difficulty talking about money.  Or the clients attachment to money is not conducive to their financial goals.   These clients would greatly benefit from financial therapy.

Recently, I attended the 9th Annual Financial Therapy Association Conference in Austin, TX.  Financial therapy has been an secondary interest of mine, not only because I’ve seen a strong connection between sexual issues in a relationship and financial issues, but my partner and I have also had our own journey of overcoming relationship challenges with finances and personally, as a small business owner, I held a significant amount of fear and anxiety about finances that affected my ability to enjoy my work.  So I know first hand how important working through your financial issues individually and relationally is.  Such as your sex life and your relationship is something that always needs attention, work, and growth, so does your financial self/selves.  

What is Financial Therapy?

Financial Therapy is a process informed by both therapeutic and financial competencies that helps people think, feel, and behave differently with money to improve overall well-being through evidence based practices and interventions.  

Financial therapists are equipped to help people reach their financial goals by thoughtfully addressing financial challenges while at the same time attending to the emotional, psychological, behavioral, and relational hurdles that are intertwined.

The field of financial therapy is really new, forming through a Financial Therapy Forum in 2008.  The main tenant of financial therapy is that finances, our relationships, and our emotional lives are heavily intertwined.  Financial therapy often is a collaborative process between finance, economics, and financial planning professionals and mental health professionals that help individuals and relationships work through all aspects of your financial issues. 

Financial therapists can look a variety of ways.  Financial therapy can be a collaboration between a financial and mental health professional in a two practitioner model (Goetz & Gale, 2014), can be a financial professional with a mental health background, a mental health professional with a financial background, or a financial coach or money coach.  The difference between a financial planner and a financial therapist is the training and focus on the emotional, psychological, and behavioral connection to finances. 

My role in a financial therapy partnership is absolutely the mental health profession in the two-practitioner model.  I do ever pretend to know what are good decisions financially, but I will say that I do know that having a healthy relationship with money is essential for a healthy relationship in general.  

What does Financial Therapy Treat?


financial photoAccording to the American Psychological Association Stress in America Study, the highest source of stress annually is money.  Anxiety and stress greatly impacts a persons quality of life and their relationship, and anxiety and stress about money can be an incredible source of discomfort in a relationship.  

Clients who exhibit higher levels of generalized anxiety will be more likely to engage in problematic financial behavior, regardless of their income, marital status, education, or financial knowledge.  Anxiety overrides financial knowledge often in decision making and can be very destructive.   Anxiety, low financial knowledge, and risky financial behaviors can contribute to an overall unhealthy relationship to money.  

In addition to causing financial issues, anxiety can greatly impact sexual issues (Read more here on my blog Sex and Anxiety). 

Money Disorders

The following disorders exist in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual- IV (DSM-IV):

  • Workaholism
  • Compulsive Buying (Onlomania)
  • Gambling
  • Hoarding
  • Financial Dependence

Problematic Money Behaviors

  • Financial Denial
  • Underspending
  • Overspending
  • Financial Enabling
  • Vow of Poverty
  • Financial Enmeshment
  • Squandering Sudden Windfalls
  • Poor Financial Decisions
  • Financial infidelity

Relationship Issues Related to Money

Couples fight about money but they are often not fighting about money, they are fighting about what money means to them.  Money can mean a variety of things to each of the partners.  

Attachment theory around money and caregivers also play a large part in our relationship to money AND sex (Read more on my blog Sex and Attachment).

What does Financial Therapy look like?

As mentioned above, financial therapy that I work involved a two-practitioner model where I am the mental health therapist and I work closely with a financial professional.  In our financial therapy, we will do a variety of assessments around financial health and wellness from a historical perspective and help clients set clear goals.  We aim to cultivate a trustworthy and healthy client-financial therapist relationship.  We believe that financial education and awareness is empowerment and aim to use psychoeducation and financial education to create awareness and competency in financial and relationship issues.  

Would you Benefit from Financial Therapy?

Take a moment to look at the following statements (adapted from Lown, published in the Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning Volume 22, Issue 2 2011)

1 = Exactly true 2 = Moderately true   3 = Hardly true 4 = Not at all true 

1. I have trouble solving difficult problems even if I try hard.

2. It is hard to stick to my spending plan when unexpected expenses arise.

3. It is challenging to make progress toward my financial goals.

4. When unexpected expenses occur I usually have to use credit.

5. I am not confident that I could deal efficiently with unexpected events.

6. When faced with a financial challenge, I have a hard time figuring out a solution.

7. I lack confidence in my ability to manage my finances.

8. I have trouble solving most problems if I invest the necessary effort. 

9. I worry about running out of money in retirement.

10. I have trouble remaining calm when facing difficulties because I cannot rely on my coping abilities. 

If you feel like some or most of these are exactly or moderately true, maybe you might want to find a financial therapist that can help you attempt to work on your financial health and wellness.  You can fill out the form below for more information.  


Pantyhose Fetish

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Recently, I published a #FetishFriday episode on pantyhose fetish and what ensued really was quite impressive (See my full channel here:

My two most popular videos were on the site for 11 and 10 months and grossed over 10,000 and 7,800 views respectively (those were on #AdultBabyDiaperLovers and #Ballbusting).  My Pantyhose Fetish #FetishFriday video was on YouTube for just ONE WEEK and grossed over 6,200 views… making me think that perhaps folks who are into pantyhose fetish are really looking for information and there are a LOT of people out there that like it.  So I figured I would write a blog on some of the questions that people brought up about Pantyhose Fetishes and provide more information on this pleasurable and popular fetish.

Who is into Pantyhose Fetish?

There aren’t many statistics about what genders likes pantyhose fetishes or how each gender participates.  Generally, more men than women like to see women in pantyhose and eroticize women wearing pantyhose.  Men also like to wear pantyhose.   Women often like wearing pantyhose and enjoy how it feels and looks, but also like turning their partner(s) on.  Non-binary/trans/queer folks also love pantyhose and I would suspect that this fetish is high up on the list for folks who are transgender as well as those that like trans/non-binary and queer.  So in short, I’d say its probably a pretty popular fetish amongst all genders and probably an equal amount of people like to wear as like to see others wear.  Unfortunately, there isn’t any good data about people who like pantyhose so I’m just giving you my best estimates.

Some reports say that more men than women enjoy this fetish, but I don’t really think we have the data to back that up (Kinkly, 2018).  One blogger described pantyhose fetish as “male-dominated” but again I think actual data is limited:

How do pantyhose fetishists like to participate with pantyhose?

pantyhose photoThis is largely variant, some like to wear it, some like to touch it, some like to see others wear it, some like to sniff it, some like to watch someone put it on or take it off, some like to be tied up with it, some like to be choked by it, some people like to be gagged by it, some like to be forced to wear it, some like to buy it, and on and on it goes.  Pantyhose is such a versatile tool sexually that it can be used for just about anything!

Below are some ways that people get sexually and sensually aroused with pantyhose through their pantyhose fetish (can be one, multiple, or all!):

  • Wearing pantyhose
  • Watching others wear pantyhose
  • Buying pantyhose
  • Watching others put on/take off pantyhose
  • Using pantyhose as bondage restraints and gags
  • Putting on and off pantyhose
  • Being forced to wear pantyhose

What are some theories on why people are into pantyhose?

There appears to be three main reasons why people like pantyhose:

  1. They like the way it looks
  2. They like the way it feels
  3. They like the idea of it

One blogger described her love of pantyhose in this way:
“Pantyhose possess enormous power, yet, by design, they are extremely delicate and feminine, causing an irresistible vulnerability for the wearer.” (ActSensuous Blog, 2008)

My thoughts are that pantyhose are a very sensual material, and activate a lot of different senses:

    • Visual: the look of pantyhose, either the way you look in it or the way that someone else looks in them
    • Tactile: the feel of the pantyhose- this is a predominant reason why, people love the way pantyhose feels on them or when they touch them or how it feels to have their legs rub together in them.  The tactile sense is highly activated with pantyhose.  Also, people report how sliding pantyhose into a show is also very smooth and pleasurable, so how a pantyhosed person interacts with other objects, like clothes, shoes, etc.
    • Olfactory: the smell of pantyhose, specifically how pantyhose makes genitals and feet smell.  Traditionally, pantyhose aren’t a very “breathable” material and often cause feet and genitals/groin to sweat/perspire more, which creates more odor and a special type of odor- which many people report as being very pleasurable.  Foot smelling is a fetish in and of itself, and is often accentuated by pantyhose.  Here is my #FetishFriday video on #Footsmelling:

  • Taste: I am not sure if pantyhose has a particular taste, but it relates to the above odor/perspiration that pantyhose inspires that relates to taste with oral sex and feet licking.  From the increased perspiration, increase the odor (not always bad, just different and specific) that people find very pleasurable.
  • Auditory: I think this sense is very subtle and can either be no sound at all, or just a subtle rubbing/sliding sound when they are worn.  But also can be very activating of sexual arousal.

 Are there any thoughts to why this fetish is created?

This is an interesting question.  Many people point to this fetish being created in an older generation of sexually active adults, specifically those that might have had female teachers, babysitters, caregivers, even their parents secretaries when they were little sort of always following a dress code of “women wear hose and heels” and so their eroticization of womens’ legs and pantyhose stemmed (no pun intended 🙂 from these early experiences.

I think also the sensual nature of pantyhose contributes to why people like it and why it is eroticized.

Across the board, most experts agree that a pantyhose fetish often begins in childhood, but that isn’t to say that some people develop pantyhose fetishes in young adulthood and adulthood.

Here are some thoughts by pantyhose users on how their fetish developed:

“I think mine developed over time as my Grandma would raise her skirt and adjust her stockings quite frequently. She had great legs for her age and overtime I would watch for her to adjust. I even found myself looking for women getting in or out of car doors as we all now Leg shots occur. As a Truck Driver I found myself gazing into passing cars on the highway. I also wore them at every chance I got at the homes of my Aunts and of course my own mom’s. until I could purchase them on my own. Internet buying made it even easier. Earliest time I can remember is around ten years old and I still war them off and on at 67.” (DB, 2018)

“What drives my passion for pantyhose on women? Like many other comments on this post, it started during childhood. My mother was…and still is a very elegant woman. My 4th grade teacher wore dresses, pantyhose and heels all the time. In middle school the passion really kicked up a few nothces. That’s when I really started liking girls, and girls back then in the 80’s wore them all the time. Yes. In middle school. With dresses and high heels. So did some of the teachers. My stepmother also was, and still is very elegant and wore them all the time. So I assume my father liked them too, we have never discussed this, but it is evident that my taste for women who wear them followed along with his. Pantyhose legs always got my attention, even before puberty. Then there was the TV commercials, Daisy Duke, and the Solid Gold Dancers. My junior year I lost my virginity to my step-sister. She wasn’t my step-sister yet at the time. It was when my Dad was dating my step-mother. She was six years older than me, and we got along great. For some reason she was comfortable to be around….and like her mom….wore pantyhose all the time. They even looked more like sisters rather than mom and daughter. Anyways, my first sexual experience was with a lady in pantyhose. It was quite a sensation, and from that moment on I was locked in, and began to rapidly climb out of my shell.” (AxelX10, 2017)

“I didn’t know about my fetish at the time but a few years ago my mom told me when I was a young child around three or four years old I would sit under the dining room table after church or whatever and feel on women’s legs that were in pantyhose like my aunts, my mom’s friends or whoever was wearing them. Not In a sexual way of course but she guessed that I just like the feel of them or something … My mom doesn’t know about my fetish with pantyhose, legs and feet as an adult, but when she told me that story at random I knew then … That’s where it first began for me. My fetish for legs, pantyhose and feet has only grown.” (Ink, 2017)

What are some other fetishes that might go along with a pantyhose fetish?

From my research and comments made by my viewers, people who are into pantyhose can also be into a variety of other kinks and fetishes out there including:

    • Foot smelling fetish (pantyhose often creates a sweaty, odorous foot which many foot smelling kinky folk just love)
    • Foot fetish (with pantyhose)
    • Being into legs (shapely, long, strong, etc.)
    • School girl fetish (as they wear pantyhose)
    • High heel fetish (with pantyhose)

If you want more information about pantyhose as a fetish, this blog post and then the HUNDREDS of comments on it provides a really rich source of education and experience from all different types of folks that enjoy pantyhose- I highly recommend the read:

And if you are located in the states of Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, and Texas, and are looking for a sex therapist, please feel free to submit this form below and I’ll get in touch with you about starting sex therapy.

Introduction to Ballbusting and Cuntbusting: How to Do it Safely!

Rhiannon No Comments

My #fetishfriday episodes are very popular on YouTube, with subscribers and viewers from all over the world!  My second most popular video is on #Ballbusting and from that video, viewers have requested me to do another couple videos: one on #cuntbusting and one of how to do ballbusting and cuntbusting safely.  In doing my research on the safety factors in ballbusting and cuntbusting, I couldn’t find very much accessible information besides pornography, which prompted me to write this blog on how to do ballbusting and cuntbusting safely!

In case you haven’t seen my two videos, here they are, explaining what ballbusting and cuntbusting is:


What is ballbusting and why do people like it?

Ballbusting is the general colloquial term for any type of cock and ball torture directly involving the testicles.  Ballbusting is the squeezing, tight binding, slapping, spanking, hitting, punching, kicking, or striking of the testicles, scrotum, or perineum using hands, feet, or torture aids such as whips, chains, paddles, floggers, humblers, or other manmade devices.

kick photo

ballbuster is the person who administers these activities and can be any orientation or gender.  (Kinkly, 2018)

Neuro-chemically, endorphins can be released during the pain of ball busting that can create a sexual high or enhance sexual pleasure, especially if the man is already sexually aroused.  In some cases, a man will ejaculate during ball busting.

Ballbusting and BDSM

Ballbusting is a CONSENSUAL act performed by adults who understand their roles and the purpose of what they are doing.  Ballbusting touches upon all of the BDSM subcategories: Bondage (tying/binding of the testicles), Dominance/Submission (dominant usually is the ballbuster, submissive is usually the ballbustee), Discipline (ballbusting is a form of humiliation and punishment), and Sadism/Masochism.  Many people who enjoy being ballbusters have a sadistic side (like causing pain in others) and many who enjoy ballbusting are masochistic in that they experience pleasure through pain.  Men who are ballbusted often have a fetish for shoes, boots, feet, or legs.  Ballbustees (men who are being ballbusted) report feeling pleasure from the vulnerability that they feel when being ball busted.  The dominant/submissive power dynamic creates a lot of pleasure and can become aroused at the thought of their master busting their balls (Kinkly, 2018).

People like ballbusting for a variety of reasons and the testicles are a common target on a submissive’s body for a dominant as the testes are often seen to represent a man’s sexuality.  People report finding ballbusting erotic because the testicles are important for sex and reproduction and the thought of nullifying these organs can be very arousing for a dominant partner (Kinkly, 2018).

shock photoBallbusters report enjoying the power they feel when they bring a submissive man to his knees in shock and pain.  There doesn’t need to be much stimulation or force behind ball busting as it is such a sensitive area, and it can bring dominants a great deal of pleasure and entertainment.

Other Variations of Ballbusting

Ballbusting is also known as tamakeri, a Japenese term that means “testicle kicking”.  Tamakeri tends to put an emphasis on martial arts and self-defense by showing women attacking mens testicles.  It mostly focuses on attacks by women and often involves sexual intercourse after the attack.

Other variations of ballbusting or cock-and-ball torture can be:

Ball stretching

Cock cages

Needles/Nails through Scrotum and Penis

Injecting Penis

A way less popular known fetish is the fetish of cuntbusting- read and watch more about this curious fetish:


Cuntbusting, as a parallel to ballbusting, is a masochistic/power activity in which a female is struck in the groin. This may involve kneeing, kicking, punching, clawing and squeezing, using the knees, or any other object to inflict pain upon the sensitive Bartholin’s Glands within the female’s vulva or upon the clitoris itself. This can be performed by any gender or orientation but is also performed on a woman, by another woman.

Cuntbusting in terms of a fetish, is a consensual, sexual act aimed to create pleasure from the pain of being struck, hit, kicked, stomped, or otherwise impacted in the vulva or vaginal area.

For the same reasons as ballbusting, cuntbusting can also engage all of the BDSM dynamics.  Many cuntbustees are tied up during a cunt busting session, or restricted (bondage) and are being disciplined or punished by their mistresses/masters/tops/dominant.  Most report either one side and/or the other side enjoying their role (the sadistic/masochistic dynamic) and all parties often report it is a fun activity (even if it is painful, because for some, that is the fun).

Interestingly enough, however, that while men often enjoy watching or fantasizing about cuntbusting, there is often more acceptability for female-to-female cuntbusting rather than male-to-female cuntbusting.  I have some theories of why that is, but can’t validate it with anything online or immediately accessible so I’ll keep them to myself right now.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of valid information out there (when googling cuntbusting, you really only get pornography, youtube videos of cuntbusting in movies and on clips [mostly funny], and one guy who wrote two books of poetry on cuntbusting).

Poem 3
May your cunt be busted
So it will sting
Then when you’ve recovered
Search for cuntbusting on Bing

-Andrew Bushard, Let’s Cherish Cuntbusting, 2015

Poem 2
This world needs ballbusting
Never forget it
Just not now
Instead, it’s cuntbusting time
More and more cuntbusting
A fetish we need to spread

– Andrew Bushard, Let’s Use Free Speech to Exalt Cuntbusting, 2015

Also known as twat busting, pussy kicks, cunt splitting, taco shots, and cunt punt (are there others?) a simple search won’t result in very much, hence why I wrote this blog to help folks who are interested in ballbusting-cuntbusting

How to “bust” safely

The biggest concern about ball- or cuntbusting is doing it safely as not to cause permanent damage or extreme pain.  These areas are extremely sensitive and need to be handled and interacted with with care.

Whenever we engage in any type of impact play we have to take special care to make sure that our PLAY does not permanently or even temporarily cause us physical, psychological, or emotional harm.

Whats also important is that we don’t sacrifice safety for the pleasure/pain dynamic and that we are aware when we are in subspace, we can often tolerate very high levels of pain but that doesn’t necessarily mean our tolerance equates to safety.  Pain is a good indicator of going too far- but how do we reconcile the fact in ballbusting-cuntbusting that the POINT is often pain?

In cunt busting, the point of contact aims to be the clitoris, vulva, and pelvis and a full on impact kick or punch can actually compress the clitoris and vulva against the pelvis and pelvic bones causing extreme pain and possibly lead to chronic pain issues like bruising on the vulva and clitoris, bruising to the pelvic bone, and vulvodynia.

This pain can negatively affect other sexual experiences, in the short term and the long term.  A bruised pelvis can make other sexual and non-sexual experiences painful, and long term pain and impact on the vulva/vagina/clitoris can reduce sensitivity or create longterm pain (some cyclists and horseback riders report repeated impact can create pain and reduce sensitivity during sexual stimulation).  A straddle injury is an injury when there is impact to the pelvis and cuntbusting and ballbusting can often result in this.

In ball busting, the point of contact actually aims to be the balls, and pain can be accomplished without direct impact to the pelvis, which may reduce pain, compression, and damage to internal organs, but still is risky to the testes and general reproductive system.  This brings up the point of ballbusting affecting fertility.  Some research studies have reported “evidence of subfertility” with research participants with testicular trauma  (Kukadia et al., 1996).

There have been some reports of people being afraid of a “ruptured testicle” but no one reporting that that has happened.  Some report that testosterone can decrease with impact but I found no research studies confirming this.

With ballbusting, there is concern about damage to other parts of the “plumbing”.  Looking at the graphic below, you can see how sensitive and close other important parts of the reproductive system are to the testes:

It’s important that we make sure that what we are doing doesn’t damage any of these other essential reproductive AND urinary functions.

Other risks in ball busting:

Penile Fracture

Testicular Trauma

To learn more about testes and why they are so important to take care of, read 9 Ballbusting Things You Should Know About Testicles 

Here are some safety tips

  1. Discuss long before you do anything with ballbusting-cuntbusting with your partner(s) about why you are interested in it and what about it turns you on or interests you.  Listen to your partners view with an open mind and without judgment.  It took a lot for your partner to bring this up to you- most people are very ashamed about their desire to play with this.
  2. If you do decide to pursue this with a partner, make sure you have some safe words to go along with the play.  I like the Stoplight Format for safewords, as it allows you to give feedback to your partner(s) about where you are at.
  3. Begin to categorize what you want to try in a few different ways:
    1. Figure out what are Mild/Moderate/Severe Activities and what you want to be doing:
      1. Mild Ballbusting-Cuntbusting: slaps/pinches
      2. Moderate: kicks, knees, punches
      3. Severe: getting tied up and and a bat being taken full force to the genitals
    2. Levels of Force
      1. On a scale of 1-100% force, figure out what that looks like.
      2. Practice on a pillow or a punching bag at the gym- figure out a common language with your partner so they don’t come at it at 100% force your first go around.
      3. Some folks recommend staying at 50% force for safety and pleasure reasons.
  4. Contract with your partner around this type of play and put it into writing.  This is important to have in case a healthcare provider or law enforcement gets involved and doesn’t understand that this type of play is consensual.  Read more from the National Coalition of Sexual Freedom about this issue (and if you haven’t considered it you should since abuse vs. consensual play is often a little gray in the eyes of the law):
    1. Consensual SM Activities: A Field Guide for Law Enforcement
    2. SM Issues for Healthcare Providers
    3. Police Interactions ? What to do when you deal with police
  5. Take precautions to engage in this safely
    1. Wear a cup, jockstrap, or jillstrap with severe impact play.  I know it might not be as sexy as just doing it (but you can find sexy-ish ones out there that might fulfill other fantasies), but if you want to be able to play for a while, you need to keep yourself healthy.
    2. Have the buster wear soft/padded shoes to absorb some of the impact.  If using fists, use boxing gloves for padding.  If using the foot, use kickboxing foam boots for more padding.  Take care of both the buster and the bustee as both can get injured.
    3. Have a mentor that is also into this who might more experience in it to give you tips and tricks of the trade and be a place you can ask questions.  Having a community around this type of impact play is really important for checks and balances to make sure you have someone to check in with about whether what you are doing is SAFE, SANE and consensual (sometimes subjectively we can’t always be the person to know what is “safe” and “sane” if we derive pleasure from pain.
  6. Know when to seek medical attention.  Here are some suggestions on when to seek medical attention:
    1. Severe pain in the region
    2. Any penetrating injury to the scrotum/vulva
    3. Bruising and/or swelling of the scrotum/vulva
    4. Trouble peeing or blood in the urine
    5. Fevers after testicular injury or vulval injury
  7. Know your limits- just because it feels good doesn’t mean you should go harder.  There is real risk to this type of impact play so don’t push yourself.  See if you can find a sweet spot where pleasure is maximized and damage/risk in minimized.

I hope those practicing this out there have found this article helpful and that it filled in some gaps for folks who are practicing ballbusting-cuntbusting.  As a disclaimer, I want to be clear that I am not a sex worker, professional dominatrix, or someone who will or does engage in this practice.  I am a sex therapist who is trying to make a difference in the field and help people engage their kinky side in a safe and consensual way.

If you are seeking a sex therapist and reside in the states of Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, and Texas, please fill out the form below.  If you are seeking a therapist in another state, I suggest going to and seeking out a therapist in your state.  Happy busting!




Learning More About an Adult Baby and Diaper Lover

Rhiannon No Comments

One of my most popular #FetishFridays segments is on Adult Baby Diaper Lovers as a “fetish” (remember, we use that term loosely around just fun, fetish-y, fantasy, and fantastic sex play”).  With over 10,000 views and counting, its the most viewed YouTube video I have on my channel- which begged me to write a blog around Adult Babies and Diaper Lovers.

Some of the information I have written here is from a presentation from the 2018 AASECT Annual Conference entitled.  “Talk about Taboo! Interpreting the World of Age Play: Adult Babies, Diaper Fetishes, Littles and Middles” by Rhoda Lipscomb, PhD, CST.

You can read more about her study on AD/DL’s here with her doctoral dissertation here.

There is a lot more information out there for Adult Babies/Diaper Lovers but here is just a general overview around AB/DL.  My aim is to allow AB/DLs to be able to find an affirming and non-judgmental sex therapist to help them when they feel like they need therapy!  AB/DLs often report not feeling comfortable sharing with their therapist their enjoyment of AB/DL for fear of judgment or fear that they might be linked in with a sex offender category.  This isolates AB/DLs even more, and encourages shame and secrecy.


Clinical Definitions (according to DSM- highly pathological and I don’t diagnose any of my clients with these diagnosis nor agree with how they apply, these terms might be something to be aware of.

  • Paraphilic infantilism (needs to be significant distress or impairment around
  • Autonepiophilia (fetishistic side)

Common Terms

Adult Baby or AB:
“An adult baby is a mature person who likes pretending to be an infant. An adult baby may play the role of a baby full-time or only some of the time. The lifestyle adult babies practice is known as infantilism.Being an adult baby can be a way for some people to enjoy a sexual fetish known as paraphilic infantilism or adult baby syndrome. However, some adult babies have no sexual motivation for their role and enjoy engaging in playing activities. Most adult babies play infants of their own gender. However, some adult babies, known as sissy babies, play infants of the opposite gender (Kinkly, 2018).  Adult babies can be sexually fetishistic, yet also possible to be non-sexual.  More of an ego state or identity.”

(Please note: the videos in this blog helpful but I don’t always agree with the language or representation in the video, but I think it does do a decent job of sharing these particular ABDLs experiences).

Diaper Lover or DL:

“Diaper fetishism is a sexual fetish where an individual derives sexual pleasure from either wearing a diaper, seeing others wear diapers, or both.

Diaper fetishism is associated with infantilism and child-like fantasies. For some individuals it is only the thought of wearing a diaper, or the thought of someone else wearing a diaper that causes sexual arousal, while for others it is the infant/caretaker role-play that stimulates excitation. For some individuals it is messing (urinating or defecating) in a diaper that is the source of arousal.

Diaper fetishism can also be used within the context of BDSM activity, where the diaper is used as a source of humiliation” (Kinkly 2018).  Diaper lovers are a sexual fetish by classic definition.diapers photoAB/DL– both a little bit of diapers and a little bit of adult babies


Little refers to a submissive person who role plays a younger age. The little is the little girl or little boy in a daddy-dom BDSM role playing act. This person is dominated by a daddy. In rarer instances, the dominant person may be a mommy. The little dresses for the part. They also alter their voice to seem younger.

A middle is an adult who roleplays as an older child during age play scenarios. A middle is known as a type of age player.

Typically, a middle pretends to be someone aged from 11 to 17. Middles roleplay being older than adult babies and littles, but younger than bigs.

A big can also be called a Caregiver/Babysitter/Big/Mommy/Daddy: These terms are usually used to describe the one in charge. Feel free to identify with whatever term makes you feel most comfortable. (

Age Play

Ageplay is the idea of role playing someone of a different age than you biologically are. Many ageplayers prefer picking a role in the younger ages such as an infant, a toddler, a younger child, or a teenager. The specific age someone prefers will be unique to the person themselves.  (This video is helpful but I don’t always agree with the language or representation in the video, but I think it does do a decent job of sharing these particular ABDLs experiences).


  • This is not pedophilia.  This is erotic play and erotic theater, where consenting adults use their imaginations
  • There is a HUGE difference between coercive vs. non-coercive behavior:
    • When you don’t have the consent of others to be a part of your scene (public place) or when you participate with children/ACTUAL similar aged peers (playing on the playground with other three year olds when you are an age player).
  • ABDL Continuum
    • A survey that Lipscomb (2018) cited says that more people on the diaper lover side (sexualized) than the Adult Baby side
  • Sexual vs. Anxiety Reduction
  • Regression vs. Roleplay
    • Regression: the person thinks as a child of that age would think and act.  Even in deep regression the individual essentially is stil an adult with access to adult ab

Why am I an adult baby `


GENDER: 86% Male, 8% Female* (this was reported as being a very low statistic and that a lot more women involved), 6% transgender continuum

DEVELOPMENT: First interest is similar for males and females with peaks at approximately ages 3-6 and pre-puberty 10-12.  Women are more likely to develop an interest after the age of 20.

WHERE DOES IT COME FROM: Cause is unknown.  Most likely many possible causes.
– Trauma: research shows only 2-3% relate to trauma
– 54% surveyed thought it might be stumbling across AB/DL reference or being introduced by friend/lover
– 30% believe they may have been born with desire to wear diapers
Lot more research needs to be done.


Most AB/DLs come to therapy for a lot of reasons that many other people come to therapy for and don’t have hugely different issues from other populations.  Here is a list of common issues that clients who identify as AB/DL present with in therapy:

  • Shame
  • Guilt
  • Embarassment
  • Fear of being judged or thought to be a pedophile
  • Learning self-acceptance
  • Explaining to partner/family


AB/DL’s benefit a lot from therapy

  • Self-acceptance
  • Stress/anxiety reduction
  • Improve depression
  • Anger reduction
  • Sleep
  • Acceptance of partner/family
  • Balance between Big and Little Side


  • Fear of psychiatric community
  • Most advise others to seek therapy; won’t go themselves
  • 53% have seen a therapist, 21% have gone, never mentioned AB/DL, 13% mentioned it while there for other issues, 7% did therapy because of pressure from family/partner, only 5% went because they wanted help with their AB/DL interests


As a therapist who specializes in working with AB/DL, I aim to do a lot of

  • Co-occurring disorders: anxiety, depression, OCD, sleep difficulty, alcohol/drug abuse
  • Using interest in diapers to help treat some of these disorders
  • Bring balance between Big and little side

More Resources to learn more about AB/DLs:


Littles: Affects and Aesthetics in Sexual Age-Play

A Qualitative Exploration of Adult Baby/Diaper Lover Behavior From an Online Community Sample

Couples and AB/DLs, including podcast and blog: 

The Little Lounge

Dream a Little Podcast


There’s A Baby in my Bed by Rosalie Bent

Adult Babies: Psychology & Practices by Rosalie Bent


Teddy Con


Other AB/DL Conventions

A few other therapists that have expressed a skillset in working with AB/DLs:

Jennifer Rehor, LMFT, CST
Hernando Chaves MFT, DHS 

Colorado: Dr. Rhoda Lipscomp

Kentucky: Lanie Hopping, MA, LPA

Maryland: Stefani Levin, MSW, LCSW-C

North  Carolina: Krista Nabar, PsyD, LP, HSPP

Maine, Massachusetts, New York, New Hampshire and Texas: ME!  Rhiannon Beauregard, MA, LMFT-S, CST