Sexual Identity

The term sexual identity typically refers to how one thinks of oneself in terms of to whom one is romantically or sexually attracted. Gender identity, sexual orientation and romantic orientation play interconnected roles in a person’s sexual identity. While your sexual identity might match your sexual orientation, this is not always the case. There are endless possibilities for sexual identity, all of which natural expressions of human sexuality. However, questioning or evaluating your sexual identity can be confusing and overwhelming process. If you are working through questions about your sexual identity, a qualified mental health professional can help. Reach out to one of TherapyDen’s sexual identity experts today.

Meet the specialists

I was clinical Director of one of only 4 LGBT mental health agencies licensed to provide services to the community in 1991 which brought me from Boston to Portland.

— Joseph Doherty, Psychologist in Portland, OR
 

I have worked in an LGBT community center that was committed to raising awareness and diminishing stereotypes regarding those of the LGBTQIA community. It is a personal mission of mine to take the stigma out of sex and sexuality as well as to serve the communities that get prejudged, including the poly/swinger/kink/sex worker communities.

— Alejandro Rodriguez, Mental Health Counselor in Lake Mary, FL

Sexuality is a broad and diverse topic. Though many believe our society is evolving and becoming more inclusive, at times we see trends that seem more polarizing than ever. I understand that sexuality can be fluid, and that it can and often does change over the course of our lifetimes. If you are exploring or struggling with your sexuality, it may help to talk to a sex positive counselor who specializes in this field.

— Elizabeth Harles, Counselor in Raleigh, NC
 

For clients who don't necessarily identify with "mainstream" ideas about sexuality, having a therapist who understands where they are coming from and brings sex positivity can make all the difference.

— Megan McDavid, Sex Therapist in Portland, OR

It is common for people to struggle with issues around sexuality, sexual self-concept, gender identity, sexual identification, trauma, sexual orientation, and sexual self-esteem. Yet one of the greatest expressions of our humanity, creativity, and individuality is through our sexual self-expression. Learn to identify and challenge the boxes, and expectations that imprison you and help you emerge into your true sexual expression and potential--a powerful experience unveiling of the deeper self.

— Andrea Scharlatt, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Oakdale, MN
 

I work with clients who are exploring their sexual identity and working on knowing themselves better.

— Lori Haas, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Wichita, KS

Sexuality counseling as “a process that addresses sex education, values clarification, exploration of sexual attitudes and beliefs, and exploration of self-image, sexual identity, gender role development and relationship issues.” As an individual who passionately supports inclusivity, I am aware of many of the inherited injustices members of the LGBTQIAP2+ community face. It is my goal to provide a safe space where individuals are able to fully explore and embrace their authentic self.

— Emily Snodgrass, Counselor in Eugene, OR
 

A client's sexuality is a key component in many relational and individual issues. Whether you identify as lesbian, gay, straight, bi, trans, queer, asexual or any variation thereof, your sexuality is a major factor in determining your preferences and sexual behaviors. Sexuality is about your sexual identity, about the gender roles you carry with you, and the "scripts" you learned from family, religion, society and significant others. All of these factors have contributed to your understanding of sexual expression. Sometimes, these interconnecting parts do not fit well together and can cause distress in your life. I believe one of my primary roles is to help you find out how to rework pieces of your sexual identity, your social conditioning and your sexual preferences so that you can feel integrated and content in your experience of your sexuality.

— Alana Ogilvie, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Portland, OR

My graduate studies in clinical psychology was centered around LGBTQ Affirmative Psychology, and as a member of that community myself, I have insight into the unique challenges that queer people face.

— Jin S. Kim, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Los Angeles, CA
 

Despite being a member of the LGBTQ community, I sought specific training to become a competent therapist for same. I have worked as a clinician in two LGBTQ centers and served as an advisor to a high school LGBTQ club. I am a member of Gaylesta, the Psychotherapist Association for Gender and Sexual Diversity.

— Nicole Rennix, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Napa, CA

Sexuality and gender are fluid. We may have been raised to believe we are something that we know deep inside we are not. I work with clients find and embrace their true identity

— Rachael Lastoff, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Newport, KY
 

It is common for people to struggle with issues around sexuality, sexual self-concept, gender identity, sexual identification, trauma, sexual orientation, and sexual self-esteem. Yet one of the greatest expressions of our humanity, creativity, and individuality is through our sexual self-expression. Learn to identify and challenge the boxes, and expectations that imprison you and help you emerge into your true sexual expression and potential--a powerful experience unveiling of the deeper self.

— Andrea Scharlatt, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Oakdale, MN

Nothing is so nefarious as the bully that we find installed inside ourselves. I have experience working with people in the coming out process and working to resolve the internalized homophobia that we're not often aware of.

— Gregory Gooden, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Pasadena, CA
 

It is extremely important to me to be an affirmative counselor for all affectional orientations, especially due to harmful practices some inflict upon this community. It is important for all of us to have an open and safe environment in which to explore our own desires and not feel pressure to label oneself or feel judged by our identities.

— Dr. Christina McGrath Fair, Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Stuart, FL