Eating Disorders, Sexuality Psychodynamic Therapy

Eating Disorders, Sexuality

Eating disorders comprise a range of attitudes and behaviors relating to food and body-image. The three main eating disorders are Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia, and ED NOS (eating disorder not otherwise specified). These conditions manifest to different degrees in different people and can sometimes be mistakenly judged as poor eating habits, or a lack of willpower.

People with eating disorders don't eat in harmony with their bodies' needs, instead, people with Anorexia Nervosa eat much less than they need, while Bulimia sufferers binge and then induce vomiting. They may also do other things to compensate for overeating, including exercising or fasting. ED NOS combines any combination of the other two conditions.

Apart from the physical symptoms and behaviors above, someone with an eating disorder will generally also have poor self-esteem and obsessively research or talk about food, dieting or exercise. Poor body image will cause them to either wear clothes that cover up every inch of their bodies, or flaunt  in order to attract attention. They will find it hard to accept criticism and compliments.

Therapy for eating disorders depend on the patient. While some people respond well to short term outpatient treatment, others respond better to long-term inpatient treatment. Cognitive behavioral therapy and family therapy are long term treatments that have been proven to be effective, while group therapy, psychodynamic psychotherapies and feminist therapies work for people who will respond well to short term therapy.

Family therapy is often advised for children and adolescents who are experiencing eating disorders. Research has also shown dialectical behavioral therapy to be effective.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who addresses eating disorders, you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Sexuality is an important part of society and relationships in particular. Issues with sexuality are usually an indication of more serious relationship problems. Sex should be a natural and healthy part of a committed relationship, but problems can crop up at any time.

One partner might use the frequency of sex as an indication of their value in the relationship and a measurement as to how much he or she is loved, while the other person values intimacy. Unsatisfactory sex might reveal the partners' deeper levels of control, love and trust, and highlight issues that need further exploration.

Many issues can cause unnecessary stress in a relationship, such as negative childhood attitudes to sexuality. Cultural pressures can also place undue demands on a couple. Traumatic sexual experiences can also emerge at any time.

A therapist can help a couple deal with sexuality issues, helping them to make their own rules regarding sex. They can explore issues with sexuality, such as cultural taboos and family myths,  in a safe environment that is free from judgment.

Relationship counselling can help sexuality issues by helping the couple explore physical communication and allowing both partners to understand the meaning of sex within the bounds of the relationships. Power and control are two of the biggest issues with sexuality in a relationship, while sexual withdrawal is a way for one partner to express disappointment and anger, which are forbidden outside the bedroom.

These are just some of the myriad sexuality related issues that may cause problems in relationships, with which therapists could assist. Sexual dysfunction can be assisted through psychosexual therapy.

If you are looking for a counsellor or psychologist who offers sexual counselling and other sexuality issues you may want to search the directory to find a professional whose approach will suit you best.

Psychodynamic Therapy

Psychodynamic Therapy can help clients to become aware of feelings of vulnerability that have been repressed from their conscious awareness. This approach is based on the theory that every person has an unconscious which stores vulnerable and painful emotions that are too deep to handle on a conscious level.

Psychodynamic Therapy addresses the defense mechanisms that  have been developed. Defense mechanisms can sometimes do more harm than good. By resolving vulnerabilities such as repression and denial, painful emotions and memories can be processed in order for the defense mechanisms to be resolved, or reduced.

Therapists use a range of core principles in Psychodynamic Therapy, based on the client's needs. It will help the client to gain perspective while recognizing behaviours, actions, responses and character traits that can be transformed.

If you are looking for a therapist who offers Psychodynamic Therapy, please browse our list of practitioners below..

Susan Blake

Ph.D., R.Psych
Dr. Susan Blake, Registered Psychologist, provides individual and group psychotherapy with adults, working within a contemporary psychodynamic approach.Together we explore the experiences and relationships that have... Read more