Frequently Asked Questions -

(Note: Links are to answers on this page.  Scrolling will reach the answers as well.)
 

What is sex therapy?
Sex therapy is counseling to help an individual solve or improve a sexual concern. You will be assigned a series of step-by-step exercises to practice during the week to build knowledge, comfort and ability in the physical and emotional and relational aspects of sex.  Other treatment tools include:

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  • Take home educational audio and video tapes

    New clients always welcome.
    Please email Mary or
    phone 408.371.4847.

  • Helpful sex education books
  • Workbooks
  • Homework assignments
  • A team approach that involves other physicians and professionals for consultation and treatment

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What is a sexual problem?
A sex problem can be a problem with how the mechanics of sex work for you at the present time like lack of orgasm or problems with erection or ejaculation, a past problem like a history of sexual abuse or negative messages about sex from childhood, a couple problem like fighting over how often you have sex or loss of interest on one partner's part.  I have listed a brief problem list below:
  • Lack of interest in sex
  • Inability to have intercourse
  • Painful sex or difficult entry
  • Problems with orgasm
  • Erection difficulty
  • Premature ejaculation
  • Issues related to rape or childhood sexual abuse
  • Sexual performance issues related to the stress of infertility or menopause
  • Coping with a chronic sexually transmitted disease or medical condition
  • Relationship conflict and lack of emotional intimacy that affect sex
  • The impact of anxiety & depression on sexual functioning
  • Lack of time and energy for sex
  • Problems with sex on the Internet

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Do you serve only heterosexuals?
Sexual problems can occur in all types of relationships; heterosexual, gay, lesbian, or bisexual. I respectfully work with people to find solutions that meet the unique needs of their relationship.

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Do you use surrogates in sex therapy?
No. Also, there is no physical touching in the session.

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What if I don't know what my problem is?
Sometimes people come to counseling to try and define their problems. Often anxiety or depression and loss of self esteem accompany sexual concerns and it is difficult to figure out what's wrong.

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Will my insurance cover the cost of therapy?
If you are using insurance, there is no guarantee that your insurance will cover your fees. You can check the amount of reimbursement allowed by calling the number on your insurance card and asking about mental health coverage for an out of network provider.

A monthly bill to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement can be provided upon request.

Fees are to be paid at the time of the session.  For your convenience, check, cash, Visa and Mastercard are accepted.

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How many visits will it take to solve my problem?
The number of visits required to solve or improve a person's sexual concern is unique to the concerns they present in counseling. I will ask you questions to develop a through understanding of the problem that brought you to treatment.

Based on these findings, I will suggest a personalized treatment plan and discuss it with you.

My initial intention is to try to do brief sex therapy. Brief sex therapy usually lasts 10-20 visits. Some people require only a visit or two to get what they need out of therapy and some require longer due to the complexity of their concern.

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How long is a counseling session?
A session lasts 50 minutes.

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How often do I come for counseling sessions?
Counseling sessions are usually scheduled once a week or every two weeks. In times of crisis I might see someone more than once a week.

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Are services confidential?
Your session is totally confidential and will be discussed with someone only with your prior written consent. Your confidentiality is protected by law. Certain state laws require that licensed mental health professionals report instances when a person is a danger to himself or others, or when child, elder, or dependent adult abuse is involved.

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I've never been to a counselor or talked to anyone about my problem before. How do I start?
Fear and embarrassment often keep people from discussing sexual dysfunction. I work with individuals and couples in a way that will allow you to comfortably discuss these subjects so we can work on finding solutions. Ask yourself what you have to lose if you give it a try. Find a way to make the first contact.

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Do I come alone or with my partner to the first visit?
This can be discussed at the time you schedule an appointment. It is best that your partner know if you are starting counseling if you hope to include him or her in sessions in the future. Clarify what you would be best for you and discuss that with your partner. If your partner won't come to counseling, benefit can also be gained by coming alone and working on the problem from your side.

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What if I see someone I know in the waiting room?
People come to counseling with me to work on many different kinds of issues. There is no way for anyone to know if you are coming to discuss sexual issues or work related problems. Again, what you say is kept confidential. If I know two people from the same community or workplace are seeing me, I try to schedule their appointments so they will not be back to back.

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Can I bring my children to a session or do I need to get a babysitter?
It is best to get a babysitter so you can get the most out of the time you spend in counseling. It is usually not a problem to bring an infant to a counseling session. Toddlers are busy during the session and may prevent you from being able to focus and get the most out of your counseling session. Older children sometimes wait in the waiting room but it is often a distraction for the parent if they wander or make too much noise.

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Mary M Buxton LCSW, Inc. - Sex & Couple Therapy - Licensed Clinical Social Worker  #LCS 7780
15951 Los Gatos Blvd., #14, Los Gatos CA 95032 -  Phone: 408. 371.4847 -  Email Mary

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