Gender Non-Conforming

Gender Non-Conforming or Gender Creative

Gender Non-Conforming or Gender Creative

 

Gender Non-Conforming or Gender Creative individuals are people whose gender expression does not follow the stereotypical “rules” surrounding what is expected in male or female within our society. 

You may wonder what is gender non-conforming or what does it mean when people are gender creative? 

In our society, we commonly categorize individuals as male or female. 

Therefore, those people who identify themselves as either side of the binary are expected to conform to a particular style and behavior. 

Someone who identifies as female is expected to wear “feminine” clothing such as dresses, leggings, skirts, specific shirts, etc. Females are also assumed to wear makeup, have longer hair, and no facial hair. 

Those who identify themselves as male are expected to wear “masculine” clothing such as sports attire, pants, more solid colors, and usually not bright clothing. These are some of the “rules” that are gender conformity. 

When an individual does not ascribe to these set of rules or engages in shifting gender expressive play (through clothing, makeup, etc), this is breaking gender conformity or the binary. 

Gender non-conforming individuals are those we are focusing on here.

There are a variety of ways people can choose to break gender conformity through the varying ways gender is expressed. 

Some common options are: 

  • Mannerisms
  • Dress and attire
  • Makeup
  • Hair style
  • Accessories 

Individuals who are gender non-conforming or gender creative may have a different style completely or may fluctuate between what the culture considers masculine and feminine. 

Some people who identify as non-conforming may present more neutral or androgenous, while others may shift their gender expression based on activity, crowd, emotion, or internal desire. 

People who are gender non-conforming or gender creative may identify with their assigned gender or may identify with other identities. 

These identities can include, yet are not limited to:

  • Non-binary
  • Gender queer
  • Gender fluid
  • Gender bending
  • Gender non-conforming
  • Or something else. 

The important thing is learning to understand each person's identity and not making assumptions about those you meet. 

If you are wanting to learn more about someone’s identity, be sure you are doing it for them and their comfort, rather than for your own needs. This is often a good place to start by knowing your intentions. 

You can also seek therapy or reputable sources who can help support you in learning and understanding. 

It is your own responsibility to learn more rather than anyone in the community teaching you. Seek a professional if you need, that specializes in this area of focus. 

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


Queer Women

Queer Women

 

Queer women are wonderful. Even though I may be biased that queer women are wonderful, hear me out and let me explain the why! 

 

What does Queer even mean?

Back in the day being dubbed “queer” was a slur and negative. 

People used that to insult people in the LGBTQ+ community or to insult someone's perceived identity (often feminine men). 

Recently, we as a community have reclaimed the term “queer”  to be empowering and create a sense of community rather than as an insult. 

When you hear the word queer (not “what a queer” or “you are sucha queer” those are still negative), it indicates someone within the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, etc (LGBTQ+) community. 

The word queer encapsulates for many relational, sexual, and gender identties. 

 

Queer Women

So queer women are people who identify as women and are on some piece of the LGBTQ+ community spectrum. 

As queer women, we come in a variety forms, identities, and belief systems. Some of these identities are within sexuality identities of bisexual, lesbian, gay, pansexual, etc. Some of these identities are within gender: transgender, cisgender, nonbinary, femme, genderflexible, etc. 

Relational identities such as monogamous, polyamorous, swinging, open, etc. 

Often queer women, specifically “lesbians” are boiled down to either being super “butch” or about lesbian orgasms. Some queer women are butch, many like to orgasm, but in my experience queer women show up in so many different ways. Please do not boil us down that simply. 

Queer women are on a spectrum of gender and sexual fluidity. In my practice, I work with many queer women. As a queer woman, it is amazing to learn the diversity of this part of my community. 

Not one of us is the exact same, but we all seem to intersect in some way or another. 

This intersectionality is important in our collective growth, and learning from one another allows us to reach new levels of empowerment and discovery.

I learn so much from my queer clients, in general, and my clients who identify as queer women. 

Being able to break the stereotypes, defy the patriarchy, and show up and be who we are is an empowering process to be a part of. 

I have so much pride to know and work with them on this collective, healing journey towards growth and empowerment. 

 

Collective Healing

In my practice, I have bore witness to collective trauma of the queer community. 

This includes, yet is not limited to queer women. 

The intersection of the identity as “queer” and “woman” has created a unique experience for queer women. The intersection of sexism and homophobia and if they are people of color add racism in the mix.

Bearing witness to the pain, the hurt, the trauma is heartbreaking. These brave women, who have fought and been harmed by a system of oppression. 

This harm has reverberated through their beings and they are wanting to heal. 

It is so sad to hear the stories of failed attempts at therapy - not on their part - but on the therapists part. 

Therapists have tried to hold space for them and their experiences but were far beyond their depth in being able to facilitate a space to heal or to recognize the intersections of systems of play that were continuing their trauma as queer women. 

When we (collectively) are able to hold space for queer women in therapy, where we recognize the various intersections and systems at play, we allow for the trauma and harm to be confronted in a way that allows for healing. 

As therapists, it is our job to work towards facilitating a space of healing, growth, and change. In order to do that, we have to allow for the space to be one of vulnerability. 

My hope is that through more therapists and clients being able to work together to create more spaces for (yet not limited to) queer women, we allow for collective healing and growth. 

Queer women, I am sorry that in so many ways you have not felt seen or heard in the mental health field. I am sorry that in so many ways you were retraumatized in your experiences. 

Although, I cannot take away that pain for you, I can offer a space in a practice where we are committed to growth, learning, social justice, and doing better! 

We want to hear you, we want to see you, and we want to support you. We are here to empower you at Life Coaching and Therapy, LLC. Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


get high school students talking

High school love advice and how to get high school students talking!

High school love advice and how to get high school students talking!

 

Finally… high school love advice and how to get high school students talking!

Do you want to know more about high school love advice or how to get high school students talking? So did some of our friends!

So a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist EXPLAINS high school love advice and how to get high school students talking!

This video will answer some of your questions.

So, you are here because you want to know high school love advice and how to get high school students talking!

In this video I will answer “Do you want to know more about high school love advice” and “how to get high school students talking” whoo hoo!

Amanda Pasciucco, an AASECT certified sex therapist and owner of Life Coaching and Therapy, shares her tips to success! Amanda has been featured multiple times on CNN, Playboy, PornHub, Maxim, Daily Mail, Men’s Health, Hartford Courant, HeadSpace, VICE, and more!

 

DOWNLOAD OUR "BEHIND THE SCENES OF COMMUNICATION" GUIDE

https://gn91oeao.pages.infusionsoft.net ←HERE

 

Watch now:

 

NEW VIDEOS EVERY WEDNESDAY AT 9 AM EST

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer.

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists!

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems.

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do.

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


National Couples Day

The 3 Parts of an Optimal Sexual Experience on National Couples Day!

The 3 Parts of an Optimal Sexual Experience on National Couples Day!

It is National Couples Day on August 18! How do you celebrate? 

Have you ever heard of this hallmark holiday? 

For me, National Couples Day just solidifies my wedding anniversary! 

Do you have special traditions or celebration ideas? I’m often in favor of a tradition or celebration with my partner… especially if it is just us!

 

9 Things to Do Other Than Watch a Screen Tonight! National Couples Day

  1. Evening stroll
  2. Listen to an Audiobook
  3. Sit outside
  4. Biking or hiking
  5. Meetup.com to go to an appropriate event
  6. Bedroom date night
  7. Dress up and take photos together in the house
  8. Cook your favorite dinner
  9. Journal together on your goals for the upcoming year

If you do what you have always done, you will get the results you have gotten. 

Do not move too quickly into deciding what you will do. 

Enjoy the process of discussing it with your partner(s). Why not? 

Describe your idea of an amazing couples erotic template to them. 

See if it is even close. 

Then ask if you can describe yours. You may be off, and that’s ok. 

There is a bridge to connection if you are both willing!

 

National Couples Day Tips for a Relationship Reboot

Being yourself, authentically seen, and the presence and ability to let go! Connection with your partner in the moment is a wonderful goal for National Couples Day. Just connect. No expectations - just fun and pure pleasure. 

Activate what you felt in the beginning again! 

 

The 3 Major Components of an Optimal Sexual Experience!

National Couples Day

1.Updated Communication Strategies - learn to use NVC or our communication e guide

Hear out your partners’ needs and be honest about what you are/aren’t open to, and what you’re willing to explore. Once you have gone back-and-forth talking about your preferences and desires, clearly outline what is in your comfort for the night!

Speak to them the way they like to be spoken to. Ask your partner their favorite nicknames to be called by you. Ask them which one has an effect on them erotically (if any). 

2.Revitalizing Passion - the tricky part is being tuned into what’s going on inside yourself and being connected with another person. 

What is your partner’s vision or desire for this ritual? Can you do another one next week for what you desire? Why only have one night? 

3.Scheduling Time without Screens - Why no phones or screens? Because being embodied is about being alive to THE PRESENT moment in each other’s embrace (eye gaze or touch) with the goal that nothing can distract you.

More specific considerations that have worked for me that may or may not work for you:National Couples Day

  • Take loving care of myself and my spouse by lighting candles
  • Keeping our home neat
  • Listening to white noise sound machines, or agreeing to the playlist of the night. 
  • No television, no movies, and no radio. My team even helps me publish all these posts on days that I am with my partner, so it seems like I am here, yet it’s really them. I am ACCEPTING the support instead of feeling guilty that I can’t do it all! 

Give yourself more than your usual amount of time to plan and prepare for days with your partner that are supposed to be sacred or special! 

Plan it into your calendar, just like you would an event, and schedule LESS work or “distractions” to prioritize your partner. 

This shows our partner that we are putting in the enthusiasm we did in the beginning of our partnership. 

If you have any questions, or for clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized sessions on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. 

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call us at 203-733-9600 and press 0 to leave a message, or make an appointment.


Boundaries

The Boundary Trap - What are Boundaries? 

The Boundary Trap - What are Boundaries? 

 

Boundaries have become the new buzzword - so what the heck are they?

They are ways to create limits or express needs. 

They can be physical, emotional, spiritual, verbal, sexual, etc. 

Boundaries are the ways in which we say what is or is not okay for us. This could be in the way we want to be communicated with, the way we are loved, the way we are touched, the way people show up for us, and the way people speak to us.

Our culture sucks with boundaries… which is probably why boundaries have become such a buzz word in our society now. Our culture has focused on what I call: aggressive, active, or passive boundaries. 

In the United States, we live in a dominating society where aggression and dominance are reinforced… down to the ways we even communicare. 

 

Aggressive, Passive, or Active?

Most of my clients come to me either utilizing aggressive or passive boundaries. 

Aggressive boundaries can use physical or (most often) verbal strategies. 

Aggressive boundaries is engaging in what I consider to be dominating, abrasive, coercive, demanding, controlling, shaming, blaming, or critical tactics. In my experience, these strategies result in compliance, rebellion, or conflict. None of which work towards connection and understanding. These boundaries are typically “at someone” and can be reactive boundaries. This is usually as a result of not having boundaries respected unless they were loud and big.

An example of an aggressive boundary would be: “You can never do anything right. Don’t help me anymore because you are an idiot. I know what is best and you either need to get on board or else.”

Passive boundaries are people who either do not set boundaries at all or are VERY unclear. People who struggle to set boundaries at all usually fall in this category. 

People who set passive boundaries often feel resentful because those around them do not understand the boundaries resulting in these individuals overgiving. These individuals may be conflict avoidant, may have not learned how to have a voice, or learned their needs were not important. 

Boundaries

An example of passive boundaries would be: 

  • feeling uncomfortable with something someone is doing and saying nothing
  • not responding
  • lying about your feelings such as saying “its okay”
  • over-committing and saying “yes” when you mean “no.”
  • Saying “whatever you want to do” 
  • Using vague language like “I mean maybe it’s a sorta thing that I….”

Passive Aggressive is the combo platter of boundaries. It is vague statements or boundaries that usually are accompanied by sarcasm, anger, or contempt. 

People who set passive aggressive boundaries are often unclear, rude, indirect in trying to get what they want or need. People who are passive aggressive often do not know how to get their needs met, may be conflict avoidant, or struggle to be vulnerable. 

An example of this would be: “I guess I didn’t need that anyways” with a sarcastic tone or non-descript tone.

Active Boundaries are clear, compassionate, and communicative. Active boundaries are when we are able to share what we need without engaging in violent communication techniques. 

These boundaries show how we need or what we want from others without engaging in destructive communication patterns that create disconnection and conflict. 

An example of this would be: “I feel really frustrated and hurt when you speak to me that way. I would ask in the future that we work together on communicating differently so that we both feel more safe.” or “I am noticing that I am uncomfortable when you touch me like that, is it possible for you to ask in the future? If you cannot do that, I am going to have to find another way to feel like I can be more comfortable around you.” or “In the future, when you go to get something to eat can you please also reach out if I need anything to? I felt really hurt when I did not have dinner too. In the future that would be so cool because I would feel really loved and seen.” 

 

Boundaries, PEOPLE!

So often we struggle to do this. It is so important that we find ways to communicate our needs through boundary setting. At LCAT, we use Marshall Rosenberg’s Nonviolent Communication as a guide to help our clients and ourselves navigate these difficult conversations. 

Boundaries are not something many of us are comfortable with in our culture and it is so important that we remember boundaries are FOR US not AT others. 

When we are able to focus on boundaries being for us and not AT others, we are more able to set them in an active way rather than a passive and/or aggressive way. 

Let us help you get there!

We are here to help at LCAT, we have various therapists who have training and understanding in all the A/a’s. Please join us on your healing journey!

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


parenting in a pandemic

Parenting in a Pandemic

Parenting in a Pandemic

 

Parenting in a pandemic; 2020 has proven to be one of the most unique years in modern history! 

Most notably due to of COVID-19 or the Coronavirus, parenting in the pandemic has become a primary focus! 

A notable challenge has been parenting in a pandemic, especially during the quick changes.

Parenting during a pandemic has proven to be much more difficult than I think many parents predicted. 

I have spent many sessions working with parents discussing: the lack of accessibility or time they have to balance the needs of their kids, work (paid or unpaid), finances due to job changes or loss, online schooling, and everyone home with limited opportunities outside the home. 

 

Stressors of Parenting in COVID-19

What became clear to me throughout this is that each unique age and stage of the child determined challenges for children. 

For me, I am a single mother of a 1 year old so my daughter loves being with me and those that love her. She enjoys exploring wherever she is or whatever is in front of her… for instance, she loves shoes. 

So entertaining her was less of an issue for me as it may be for many parents with older children. 

For me, I have found socialization and consistent attention to be the most difficult when one is juggling all these roles at once. 

For other parents, taking on the schooling process has shown to be a major and stressful undertaking. 

Other parents cite “keeping kids busy” as a primary stressor or concern. 

Whether it is social-emotional development, ability to engage in varying activities, mental health, stress level, motivation, or something else, parents are sharing new and creative ways to meet their kids needs.

Many parents shared these woes, whether their children were young like mine or school aged. 

A predominant developmental task for childhood is socializing, exploring, and learning (language, emotions, people, etc.). 

COVID19 has certainly inhibited the ability to socialize and confronted them with learning and exploring in ways that parents typically do not do. 

Many parents, including myself, have had to find creative ways to build social and emotional development in children with the limited resources we have. 

Parents have shared finding new hands-on activities, exciting ways to utilize technology, going back to old school techniques of the great outdoors, and finding connections with their kids they have not otherwise found. 

Parenting in a Pandemic

 

Can We Do it All?

The short answer is HECK NO! I will also provide a longer answer if that is useful. 

As parents we have these moments of pure genius where we see something differently and creatively find ways to engage our children, yet that does not negate all the hardship and stress that goes into being a parent right now. 

So many parents express levels of shame or guilt of not “being enough” for their children. 

Parents express feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and working around the clock between their children, taking care of their home, and finding jobs/engaging in paid labor positions.

My clients often (myself included) often worry what the long term impact of this will be to our children. 

Feeling like you have to be everything for your child; whether that is teacher, friend, activities director, social planner/coordinator, healthcare provider, personal chef, tutor, childcare provider, parent, snuggle buddy, scientist, explorer, maid, nanny, custodian, therapist, housekeeper, grocer, etc. while also trying to meet the needs of yourself, other children, partners, and family. 

Not to mention if you were able to maintain employment during this… add job responsibilities. 

Parents feel guilty for needing to resort to increased screen time for their kids or struggling to remain consistent with boundaries. 

Here’s the thing… THAT IS OKAY! WE ARE LIVING IN A PANDEMIC.

So I will say to you what I say to many of my clients:

Take a deep breath in….and out… and slow the EFF down. 

Breathe in self compassion and understanding because… just in case you did not hear me in the back… WE ARE LIVING IN A FREAKING PANDEMIC!

So many parents express feeling more exhausted than they have ever felt due to being within their homes, surrounded by the same people. 

The function of school was a lot to take on, and the needs of children are still present. 

Radical permission to know that you cannot be 100% of everything for anyone, yet there are tips I have learned parenting in a pandemic to share! 

 

Tips and Tricks to Parenting in A Pandemic

What we work on so often in therapy is utilizing your resources, collaborating when you can, and engaging in some level of self care. 

  • Finding ways to connect with other parents (online forums, zoom, phone or text, following social media, social distancing while wearing masks)
  • Exercise or movement while distancing yourself from others
  • Finding safe ways for your children to connect with other children (online, hygiene conscientiousness, social distancing, and mask wearing, etc.)
  • Basic self-care (eating, drinking water, batheing, sleeping or getting out of bed)
  • Asking for help for those that you feel safe inviting back to your life (physically, emotionally, or socially)
  • Go to therapy (see what I did there? :) )
  • Engage in community based activities online (religion, 12 step, protests, etc)
  • Finding new hobbies 
  • Prioritizing without overgiving or overfunctioning (I.E SET BOUNDARIES)
  • Finding time to check in with yourself, with your child, and with any partners or loved ones

These are SOME options for you, and I invite you to find creative strategies for you to find what works for you. 

The most important thing to do is find connection for yourself and with your loved ones (children and partners included) as well as being able to set boundaries for yourself, your family, and your children. 

These are some intense times… it’s important to find ways that work for you and your kids. 

Remember to have self-compassion and give yourself and your family a little bit more grace that you may normally parenting in a pandemic.

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


gender expression

Gender Expression and Gender Identity

Gender Expression and Gender Identity

 

What is it? 

It is talked about so much now and so often we find people needing more information about gender and its different facets. 

I am writing this as a way to help create some clarity surrounding gender, gender conformity, and gender expression - I hope it helps!

 

What is Gender?

Gender is a social construction that we focus on how we show our gender which stereotypically is man/boy or girl/woman. 

As we have progressed in the understanding of gender, many are able to see that gender is beyond the binary of man and woman. 

Gender is how we express our experience of being male or female regardless of natal (birth) sex. 

Reminder: sex and gender are different.

 

Gender Expression

Gender is something we express to those around us, it is not something we are “born with.” Without gender expression people would not necessarily know our gender because again sex and gender are different. 

Gender expression is how we show our gender through clothing, what we wear, jewelry, make up, art, hair style, colors, etc. Gender is not tied to our genitals or physical body, we are assigned a gender at birth based on our “natal” or birth sex. 

As we age, we learn to express our gender in what feels comfortable for us. Many people are influenced on what society prescribes us to where based on our assigned genders. 

Others express their gender based on what feels most right for them regardless if that is within societies standards of expression of gender or not.

gender expression

 

Gender Conforming

Gender conforming individuals are people who adhere to “normative” cultural standards surrounding gender expression. 

This would be a woman dressing in feminine attire or what our culture would consider acceptable for a woman (dress, leggings, certain colors, etc.) or a man dressing in “masculine” attire (pants, athletic gear, polos, tshirts, etc). 

The majority of our culture is “gender conforming” because that is what is expected and acceptable. 

People, generally, like to feel connected and accepted in our culture so most people will follow or conform to what is “in style” or “appropriate” for their gender.

Gender conforming can also be defined as following the “rules”  to your assigned gender at birth or your natal sex. 

Some would not consider transgender people to be gender conforming, even if they are wearing clothes that match their gender. 

Most of the clients and people in our world are gender conforming. 

What I work on with these clients is challenging these “normative” beliefs in order for them to assess what truly is comfortable for them so that it is a conscious choice rather than an unconscious one. 

So often when we conform, we do not think, we just do without being conscious. Whatever your choice is, I want you to realize it is a choice.

 

Gender Non-Conforming or Gender Creative

Gender Non-Conforming or Gender Creative are people who’s gender expression does not follow the stereotypical “rules” surrounding what is expected in male or female attire. 

Additionally, individuals who are gender creative may have a different style completely or may fluctuate between what the culture considers masculine and feminine. 

Some people may present more neutral or androgenous while others may shift their gender expression based on activity, crowd, emotion, or internal desire. 

People who are gender creatives may identify with their assigned gender or may identify with other identities such as non-binary, gender queer, gender fluid, gender bending, gender non-conforming, or something else. 

For the clients that I work with who are gender creatives, often have a strong sense of internal identity and also really connect with the spectrum of masculinity and femininity. Others do not connect to either at all. 

 

Gender Identity and Gender Expression are NORMAL!

To be clear, there is nothing clinically problematic or concerning about gender expression or identity AT ALL. 

The individuals who see me and are gender non-confomring or creative are either seeing me for a completely different reason (and just want an identity affirming therapist) or are wanting to work through how to manage the difficulties within our society with “non-conforming.” 

As you may imagine, someone who is not conforming to societal norms experiences a lot of unique stressors, and with gender expression being something that you “show” the world - it creates a lot of difficulty due to people’s hate and inability to learn and grow. 

Regardless of how you express your gender, whether you conform or not, at LCAT we see you and we are here to help provide a safe, comfortable environment for you to explore yourself and learn and grow to be in your best empowered self!

We are here to help at LCAT, we have various therapists who have training and understanding in all the A/a’s. Please join us on your healing journey!

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


stop comparing

How to stop comparing yourself to others and other couples

How to stop comparing yourself to others and other couples

 

Is it finally time to stop comparing yourself to others… especially other couples? 

Whether a pair of celebrities or a couple in your circle of friends, there’s usually a couple in your life that you compare yourself to. 

STOP COMPARING! 

Yes… another couple may be physically beautiful, or somehow manage that magical balance of having creative careers and a satisfying sex life that they can’t help but brag about. 

A dynamite celebrity couple like John Legend and Chrissy Teigen may have you looking at yourself and your partner with disappointment - like what if you had the money, the fame, or chemistry… if only then, your relationship could be just as perfect!

You know though… that is what you want to believe.

Intellectually, you know they have issues too, yet at the back of your mind, you can’t help but hear the seductive whisper from your insecure subconscious: couples goals! 

You want to believe that the grass is greener on the other side… because that feels somehow enticing to compare.

Comparisons are often, if not usually, problematic, and especially when comparing your relationship to one that you only know through social media. 

Social media is where people can post a carefully curated version of themselves - you know “the projected” masked self. 

The version that is “airbrushed” without the flaws, the loneliness, and the lack of communication. 

We see this when people post a heavily-filtered selfie, or perhaps embellish their accomplishments to seem higher status. The same goes for relationships and couples goals that you are judging from afar.

So, seriously… Before you get too preoccupied with couples goals, stop your frantic, unrealistic comparisons and turn them into healthy aspirations for your own relationship.

Harmful Comparison: “They are always all over each other! We never even hold hands.”

Healthy Aspiration: “I would love to connect more by holding hands or physical touch in our daily lives. Is that something you are open to?” 

First of all, why are you envious (wanting what they have) about another couple’s PDA? 

If you find you are admiring couples that are physically affectionate on public platforms, it might be that you need more connection via touch in your relationship, or you’re more shy about PDA and wish you were able to be open about how much you are valued and appreciated in your relationship. 

Or… you may be single and focusing on others rather than working on yourself! 

You don’t need to do exactly what your inspirational couple is doing, or do anything you’re not comfortable with, yet taking the time to learn about yourself and to communicate to your partner about your needs and requests is a great start. 

It could be as simple as taking more photos together!

Harmful Comparison: “They post so many photos as a couple! My partner must be ashamed of me because they never post my picture.”

Healthy Aspiration: “How do I want to be shown I am loved? How does my partner? Is the way I am showing them love landing for them?”

Different strokes for different folks! #couplesgoals! 

When you see a couple posting a lot of photos, it can make you begin to wonder why you aren’t posting about your partner, or why they don’t post about you. 

Did this bother you before, or just after seeing another couple post about each other all the time? 

Is it about the public declaration of love, or do you genuinely prefer a quieter, more private relationship?

stop comparing yourself

Chances are your partner is NOT ashamed, and is just respecting your privacy as a couple or they just aren’t that into social media. 

Chances are you picked up on something that is more about you and your need than it is about them! It is your job to communicate THAT with your partner or to yourself to process in therapy. 

The most important thing is finding out what expression of love makes you feel most valued by your partner and yourself, and if it means more selfies, let them know! 

Be open to the new and creative approaches that come about! 

For example, putting a date night on the schedule, could mean more time spent together on hobbies, or them doing more stuff around the house, or even just telling you they love you!

Harmful Comparison: “Wow, they’re on another vacation together? We can’t even find a weekend getaway.”

Healthy Aspiration: “We need to make more time for adventures together- even if it has to be local!”

A tropical vacation would obviously be awesome, whether you bring your partner or not! Yet, the reality is, sometimes the money just isn’t there… or there is covid19. 

Also, the couple you are comparing yourself to may just have different priorities… so what makes you think using their strategies will actually bring you the same joy or pleasure it brings them? 

Perhaps you are saving for a house, yet they want to rent forever and never have children so they can travel. Or perhaps you have student debt because you have your dream career, yet they just have financial freedom. 

Notice the difference between what feels urgent and what actually is important to you. I have a bunch of clients who realized that they were just living a life that was photo worthy without actually getting pleasure from it. 

If you find yourself longing for more adventures, try and be creative with local options - a picnic, a night in a local hotel (with room service!), a short road trip to a nearby outdoor tourist attraction.  

Everyone can use a staycation - anything that will shake up the routine and get you out of the house... individually or preferably if partnered, together. 

Your envy towards this couple could also be a sign or dissatisfaction in areas of your life other than your relationship. 

Are there ways you can carve out more time for yourself and/or your partner? Are there areas of your life that are causing you more stress than they’re worth? 

It is worth discussing solutions with your therapist if you feel exhausted or like you need to escape in order to spend some quality time with your partner.

Harmful Comparison: “They look so perfect. We’ve really let ourselves go...”

Healthy Aspirations: “I’m happy we are so comfortable with each other and I would request you support me in my individual health goals if you can.”

It can be so hard not to hate on yourself when you see someone who you believe is more attractive, slim, or stylish than you. 

And if you’re a couple that are more the stay-at-home-in-sweatpants type you might feel a little inferior. But why should you?

stop comparing yourself

It can be a wonderful thing to be candid and comfortable with each other! 

Of course, everyone likes to put in some effort now and then, yet you can be sure that the couple you’re envying have days where they don’t want to glam up. 

And if they don’t, who cares? What works for YOU is what matters. 

Now, if you want to get into fitness together or change it up in other areas of life, it helps to be able to support each other. 

After all, you are two independent people with lives, goals, and aspirations. Therefore, helping each other achieve these dreams is about as noble of a goal you can have as a couple!

Bottom line - TLDR: comparison is harmful and you cannot know what other people are going through in their couples goals! 

It is much more productive to have couples goals for your unique needs as a couple - that reflect the needs of your unique relationship. 

Being in a couple and doing your own thing, being supportive of each other, and growing and developing with new communication strategies and new shared experiences? 

Now, THOSE are some couples goals!

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


Feeling Lost - Hello, My Name is Uncertainty

Feeling Lost - Hello, My Name is Uncertainty

Feeling Lost?

Over the last several years, and especially the last several months, there has been a lot of uncertainty for many of the clients I work with. What I have noticed is that with this level of uncertainty, people feel lost, confused, and overwhelmed. People are expressing more and more stress at the current state of our world between the civil rights/social justice call to action and the pandemic.

People are reporting feeling “trapped,” “lost,” “overwhelmed,” and even paranoid. All these feelings, I liken to the level of uncertainty in our world right now. Many of my clients symptoms of trauma are flaring up and I am noticing a lot of regression in people. As a therapist, all of these things make A LOT of sense to me given looking at the greater factors at play in our world and the systemic impact this has throughout our world, our communities, our families, and ourselves.

For many clients who have been marginalized or oppressed - the uncertainty is bringing a resurgence in the feelings of “learned helplessness.” When we unpack this dynamic, it is a feeling of extreme difficulty and people often feel stuck because they have so many barriers to access change. This concept is used in a variety of ways, but to me it makes most sense as we are looking at it through the eyes of those who have been oppressed by the way our world works. For many clients in this category, I am noticing that any movements they have felt at a personal or community level have been removed, recreating the intense feelings of uncertainty and learned helplessness.

 

What is Uncertainty? Why do we need it?lost and confused

Uncertainty can exacerbate symptoms of anxiety, depression, and trauma. This often results in people engaging in strategies that have been unhelpful in the past when they have had these feelings of loss or uncertainty. These strategies to get people’s needs met that are no longer adaptive can look like overcontrolling, secrecy, impulse spending, explosive emotions, avoidance, isolation, chasing or pursuing people, eating disorders, self destructive/injurious behavior, addiction, affairs, and numbing. 

People who experience symptoms anxiety, depression, and trauma often feel needs for the direct opposite of uncertainty - certainty. Certainty allows people struggling with these disorders to feel more control and predictability. When uncertainty increases, it often results in feelings of chaos and disorder around people - this unpredictability results in stress. 

When working with my clients, I work hard to support them in creating ways to balance their need for certainty and uncertainty. Here are some ways to help create more certainty and uncertainty in your life.

 

Ways to Create Certainty

Certainty is the need for structure, predictability, and organization. Often people use inappropriate attempts to control their surroundings as a strategy to access certainty. The problem with this is that we cannot control anything other than ourselves, our reactions, and our choices. When we work to do that for others we create a false sense of security and conflict in our relationships.

Here are some strategies that you might find useful to create certainty: 

  • Creating hobbies
  • Predictable routines (waking, bedtime, etc)
  • Scheduling connection points with friends, family, or partners
  • Journaling
  • Organizing your space
  • Organizing your time 
  • Engaging in self-care
  • Planning a meal
  • Healthy connections with people you trust and are rejuvenating for you
  • Exercise
  • Watching movies or shows with people in your life, video calls, intentional shared time 
  • Join cause that you believe

 

Ways to Create Uncertainty

Often times we associate uncertainty with things “that are not good.” Uncertainty is the need for creativity, adventure, spontaneity, and chaos. Often times people can be stuck in uncertainty if they are unable to be reliable or may engage in addictive behaviors and/or relationship patterns to meet this need. With too much uncertainty people do not have any structure, predictability, and often live in chaos.

Here are some strategies that may be useful in meeting this need healthfully: 

  • Creativity or artistic endeavors
  • Exploring a new area of where you live or somewhere outdoors
  • Unplanned trips or adventures
  • Sex
  • Meeting new people (consensually)
  • Role play
  • Learning a new skill
  • Pushing your comfort zone
  • Work on your own healing
  • An activity that increases adrenaline (in a safe way)
  • Engage in a debate

 

Although these suggestions are helpful in a microlevel, it may allow to create some self-efficacy and mastery. This will not cure the feelings of learned helplessness or the uncertainty in the world, but these suggestions may offer some ability to have some personal empowerment. Steps towards personal empowerment can help each of us take steps towards change and hopefully if all of us take steps this change can make the changes that are NECESSARY at the macro level. As Margret Mead said “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.”

If you are looking for extra support during these tough times, we offer tele-therapy sessions here at LCAT and are happy to help!

YouTube page where she provides free information at The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it.

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.


coworker sex

Coworker Sex

Coworker Sex

 

Most corporate policy manuals will have some lengthy explanation about why coworker sex is banned and penalties and blah blah blah. Reality shows that most people have sex with a coworker at some point.

It’s the ultimate taboo, so it’s a wonder so many of us find ourselves mixed up in it. Workplace romances are scandalous, which makes them a bit more fun! Odds are, if you ask most couples how they met, it will have some connection to work or their professional lives. It’s a game of odds.

The Coronavirus pandemic has taught us a lot of things. One of them is how much we rely on social interactions at work to fulfill us. This, of course, is something the work from home crowd has known for years. We often overlook how important that chit chat in the lunchroom is and how much those work happy hours sustain us.

People tend to find sexual partners amongst the people they spend time with. While mobile dating apps make it a bit easier to meet people, romantic relationships naturally develop when you’re close to someone.

It’s unrealistic to expect coworkers to not have any sexual contact. Most offices play out like an old soap opera. They’re complex webs of who’s dating who and which person stole someone away from someone else. We love it and hate it and love it again some more.

Coworker sex is bound to happen. If you feel it coming on and you’re down to get frisky, here are some things you should know before you jump in.

 

Don’t Get Anyone in Trouble

Unless you’re in some sort of small business or start-up, the chances are coworker sex and romantic relationships are forbidden. The extent to which a company can take any meaningful legal action against you is on shaky ground, however, that doesn’t mean they can’t make your life or your partner’s life more difficult. You could even find yourself out of a job.

That goes double for if you’re in a relationship that spans management levels. As a manager, seeing someone you directly manage is a big no-no, and can land you in hot water.

Discretion is the keyword here. There’s a big difference between getting a bit too drunk at the company mixer and hooking up with a colleague and developing a serious relationship with one of your coworkers.

Learn when to keep things quiet. If you’re unsure, err on the side of discretion. The two of you are the only people who need to know.

 

Gauge the Emotional Situation Wisely

Have you ever had incredible, mind-blowing sex with someone who was borderline crazy? Like, they were jealous, obsessive, insecure and a bit maniacal? You just couldn’t stop yourself because the sex was so good, right?

For whatever reason, sex with someone unpredictable can be amazing. You’re kissing one moment and the next thing you know they turn on some move you’ve never seen and it’s life-changing. Still, there’s that lingering thought in the back of your mind that they’re going to show up on your doorstep at three in the morning or go nuts if they find out you’re seeing someone else.

Now, imagine dealing with that at work, where things can get interesting. Well, that’s the risk you take when you dive right into coworker sex with no regard for how emotionally stable the other person is.

Make sure you and your partner are on equal footing when it comes to the level of commitment expected. The last thing you want is to have them announce your “relationship” in front of the office when you didn’t see it coming.

It goes both ways as well. Be careful about how quickly you fall for someone at work. Coworker sex might be great, just don’t imagine it to be more than it is. Again, communication is key. Talk to your partner to make sure you’re both on the same page.

 

When Worlds Collide

It’s happened before and it will happen again. You’re new in the office and fall for the first person who shows you meaningful attention. The coworker sex is great and feelings are intense. As you become more comfortable in your settings, though, you realize they’re just not for you, so you break things off.

Things might be a little off between you two at work. Hopefully, you’re both mature enough to not let it bleed over into what you do every day. Months go by and things return to normal.

With coworker sex, you’re always rolling the dice a bit. One of the luxuries we have meeting people through an app or online is that when it over, it’s easier to separate. You never have to see them again if that’s the way you want it.

Sex with someone at work, though, isn’t that simple. And don’t even mention if you start a workplace romance with multiple coworkers. That’s asking for trouble.

It happens, though, and the best thing you can do is be honest with each of your partners every step of the way. Don’t give dishonest or misleading signals that tell them this is something more than it is. That’s a recipe for hurt feelings and resentment. You don’t need someone stiff-arming you at work because a date went wrong.

 

Enjoy the Connection of Coworker Sex

On a positive note, coworker sex can be amazing because there’s a mental connection there that is hard to match. If you’ve worked together for a long time, there’s an understanding there. There will be less awkward small talk over drinks because there’s already something of a foundation for a relationship.

Coworker sex can be great. You can both complain about the boss, gossip about team members, and your schedules are likely to match each other. Plus, something is scintillating about sneaking around under everyone’s noses. It’s like you’re doing something forbidden, which makes it a whole lot more fun!

You can get more free content on relationship and sex tips by checking out my Youtube Channel - The Sex Healer

If you know someone that would benefit from this information, feel free to share it. 

Life Coaching and Therapy (LCAT) is a relationship coaching and sex therapy practice that transforms our clients lives through our flexible, multi-technique approach and pleasure-skills training provided by systemically-trained and licensed therapists! 

Our team of compassionate, licensed therapists and certified sex therapists help Millennials and Baby Boomers alike who visit us for a variety of relationship, intimacy and sex problems. 

LCAT provides on-site appointments, as well as video chat and text therapy programs. For clients hoping to take their intimate lives to the next level through personalized coaching on YOUR terms, learn more about our Text Therapy Program.

Learn more about how LCAT can help improve your life at What We Do

Call or text us at 203-733-9600 or make an appointment.