Take back control of your body after sexual trauma.​

Therapy for sexual trauma in Mt. Pleasant, Charleston, and South Carolina

It is possible to heal from sexual abuse and to enjoy sex.

Have you ever been exposed to something of a sexual nature that didn’t feel good? This can range from seeing our parents have sex as a small child, exposure to extreme porn, unwanted touching, or having your physical boundaries violently violated. Violent, scary, or unwanted exposure to sex can leave a lasting impression on our mind that can impact us for decades.

Sometimes bad experiences continue to affect your sex life in ways that you don’t fully recognize.

In addition to memories of the experience, you can feel guilt or shame and blame yourself for the incident. You may have told yourself, “I shouldn’t have been there in the first place.” 

Or maybe you felt slightly aroused even though you didn’t want to and feel shame around that.
When you tell yourself anything like this, your body automatically goes into a fight/flight/freeze mode.

You may be in the middle of sex and suddenly lose an erection, or your body tightens and you begin to feel pain.

Other times you may not have control over your body, or feel like you have control over what’s about to happen, and your body totally shuts down before you can even begin sex. Even when you experience some pulling back or shutting down around sex, it is possible to settle your mind and body, and to re-engage to have a pleasurable experience.



Trust is at the heart of any sexual concern within a couple.

While you can learn to feel pleasure during physical stimulation alone or as a single person, your partner often plays an important role in this process.

You and your partner are a team — and, addressing any difficulties in any area, including sexually, requires a team approach.

Together, you learn how to help each other through the healing process. Doing so makes your bond even stronger and more intimate sex is a natural outcome of stronger bonds.

Try this "touch and release" exercise with your partner:

  • Wear loose fitting clothes and create a relaxing environment free of interruptions (turn off your phones).
  • Tell your partner a non sexual place on your body, clothed or unclothed, where you are comfortable with your partner touching you.
  • Tell your partner how you want to be touched such as keep your hand there lightly, or gently stroke or tickle me, or massage firmly, etc. Focus on receiving the physical pleasure your partner is giving.
  • Any time you feel your body slightly tenses, tell your partner to stop. Your partner can also stop if they see you tense or holding your breath.
  • Take deep breaths and wait for your body to relax and come back to the here and now. Once your system has returned to a relaxed state, begin the touch again.
  • Repeat this process 3 – 5 times and keep practicing this throughout the week until your body stays present and open to the touch.
  • Gradually move to more triggering areas and repeat the process.

Healing from abuse isn’t all on you.

Reaching out to us for help is hard but rewarding.

You probably aren’t excited to call us up and tell us what’s happening, let alone be with a total stranger and tell us about your experience. We know this and are here to go at your pace and to make sure you feel seen, heard, and safe throughout the healing process.

Meet our team of couples counselors and relationship therapists with experience treating sexual trauma