Maddie Sheffer, MMFT

Associate Marriage & Family Therapist


exuality is a really confusing topic. You wonder, you fear, and you ask yourself so many questions: Am I normal? Do other people feel the way I do?

Your concerns are very common, even though you feel your thoughts and desires are not. Sexuality is still taboo in America, and even in a city like Los Angeles, unique sexual identities and expressions can be stigmatized. You need to find the strength and comfort in your own desires, your own identity. You deserve to live your life without the inner critic that constantly worries about what others may think. Therapy can help unwind some of the narratives you tell yourself about your life, who you are, and it can definitely restore your self-worth. You don’t have to feel stressed and confused about sexuality; it doesn’t have to feel this way; there is hope!

Sexual Identity & Expression

The longest relationship you’ve ever had is the one you have with yourself. Understanding who you are to your core is life’s greatest adventure. Identity and expression of that identity is what makes you, YOU.

Many people have never had the chance to dissect their desires and learn about their authentic selves. You may not be happy with the way you feel about your body, your gender or identity expression, or maybe you feel inexperienced and nervous about the topic of sexuality; There is room for all of these feelings to be explored.

Sexuality is a spectrum, and all of the colors of the wheel are welcome and deserve therapy. What is between your legs is not determined by what is between your ears, nor does it determine who you choose to be in this world. Femininity and masculinity are separate scales which all people fall differently within or even outside of the scales. You do not need to be labeled in order to be valid, your experiences and who you evolve into are define you.

Therapy with me will address your sexuality, and work to identify and inspect the issues you face. We also will aim to find where the narratives you have been believing have come from. Once goals are found, therapy is about exploration and gives you permission to talk about what is usually not spoken about with others. This is hard vulnerable work, but we can get you feeling better than you have been, sooner than you think!

Sexuality within ALL Types of Couples & Relationships

Your relationship feels out of control and the fights are happening way too frequently. Whether you are dating, married, or somewhere in-between, couples therapy can be so healing. Your desires and fantasies are difficult to talk about with your partner and cause shame and hesitation, but this does not need to be the case. Couples therapy works by breaking down issues into smaller bite-sized pieces, by deconstructing the issues, goals and solutions can be found. Just like going to a doctor’s checkup when you are not sick, you do not need to be in conflict for couple’s therapy to begin. Sex, kink, polyamory, self-pleasure, fantasy, conflict, non-binary identities, LGBTQIA+ identities, low desire & conflicting desires and more can all be discussed in couple’s therapy.

Alternative Sexualities

You deserve a safe place to talk about desires or alternative sexuality without judgement. Kink, fantasy, desire, intimacy, fluidity, consensual non-monogamy, and many other facets of sexuality are the parts of your sexual self you may not feel like you can talk about, but therapy is a space where these topics are welcome. Therapy is a great place to explore the more intimate side of your life. Talk therapy can help you feel more comfortable in your own body and mind. You can have a space where you can freely talk about kink, fantasy, masturbation, embarrassment, pride, and anything else that doesn’t quite fix the box.

Sexual harm is traumatic and can feel confusing if it doesn’t look like the stereotype. Many people do not seek treatment for sexual assault, harassment, and abuse because those labels can be re-traumatizing or feel like too big or painful words to explain what happened. Sexual harm includes anything sexual that has caused you harm or made you feel bad in any way. Sometimes sexual harm looks like sharing your true sexual desires with others and getting judgemental and stigmatizing responses. It is traumatic to share such private information with others only to feel rejected and alone. Therapy gives you a place to talk about traumas in a non-judgmental environment, which is a healing experience that gives autonomy, respect, and confidence back to you after a difficult experience.

Depression & Anxiety around Sexuality

Depression and anxiety are so common in our world and can stem from many different places within yourself. Being at war with your sexuality is a recipe for shame, embarrassment, denial, apathy, and fear. Whether these feelings come from your relationship, a breakup, your sexual preferences, your identity, gender expression, or any uncovered places within yourself, there is hope to feel at peace with who you are in this world. Your sexual self deserves to have space to explore what you don’t allow yourself to contemplate.

Maddie Sheffer

Under the Clinical Supervision of Dr. Cayla Minaiy, PhD, LMFT: 131244


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