From sexual trauma to loving touch: reclaiming intimacy after abuse

Couples may suffer from sexual difficulties that result from one (or both) of the partner’s past history of abuse. Abuse affects the ability to engage in healthy intimacy.  Abuse negatively affects how one develops and views one’s self, and without a strong sense of self, individuals lack feelings of autonomy and control, and the ability to verbalize their boundaries, their feelings, and their needs. People who have been abused may not be able to enjoy the sensations associated with sex, due to conflicted feelings of guilt and shame, or, they may disconnect or disassociate during sex, by engaging in the act but not really staying present.

While individual therapy is an important part of the healing process, couples and sex therapy is often necessary to create real intimacy, which requires vulnerability, trust safety, but also the ability to embrace passion and eros with appreciation and confidence.

As a couples and sex therapist who has been privileged to accompany couples through this journey, I have found the work of Wendy Maltz to be of great value.

Wendy Maltz s an internationally recognized author, speaker, and sex therapist. Her books include The Porn TrapThe Sexual Healing JourneyPrivate ThoughtsPassionate HeartsIntimate Kisses, and Incest & Sexuality.

My review of “The Sexual Healing Journey” is available here.

I am also happy to share Wendy’s videos, which she has now made available on her website.

Re-learning Touch: Healing Techniques for Couples

Partners in Healing: Couples Overcoming the Sexual Repercussions of Incest

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