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Applied Approaches and Advanced Issues in Sexuality

Available through the University of Guelph, or by topic area for your event

This online course is offered at limited times the University of Guelph's Open Ed department. It's designed for a wide range of professionals who offer direct services in health, outreach, education, interventions and related environments. If you know the basics and you're ready for advanced skills, then you'll want to check out this course. Topics include trauma informed approaches, LBGTQ+ skills, consensual non-monogamy, kink, chronic health and mobility complexities, anxiety and depression, decolonizing intimacy, and more. Enrolment is limited; register early.

This course is also available as individual topic areas for your events. Please inquire if interested.

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Applied Techniques for Working with Sex- and Gender-Queer Clients

available for your event

This 4 hour workshop can be tailored to longer or shorter time periods and includes theoretical, research-based, and applied content for introductory and intermediate audiences.

This intensive workshop will help mental health, outreach, and public health professionals provide the caring and informed services that our same-sex attracted and gender-diverse clients deserve. Designed for established professionals at both the beginning and intermediate levels of knowledge in this area, participants will be gently guided through basic and advanced vocabulary, concepts such as conditional outness and microaggressions (inside and outside the therapy room), and systemic implications for the context of outreach, therapy, and healthcare. By the time the training is complete you will have a better understanding of specialized language, including when and how to use it and when it is better to just listen. You’ll be able to recognize the impact of various systemic impacts, and have new tools for assisting clients struggling in these areas. You’ll be better able to adapt your intake paperwork, advertisements, and office to welcome diverse clients. And, you’ll have at least 4 applied techniques and activities that you can use with your clients right away, including an original arts-based relational activity created by Dr. Neustifter.

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Defining Sex–Positivity for Your Practice and Your Clients

available for your event

What does sex-positive mean, and how can it impact your practice as well as the intimacy of your clients? Participants will review current approaches, then be guided through the creation of two types of definitions of sex–positivity: one for professional use, and the other as a therapeutic activity for clients working on sexual concerns.

 

The term “sex–positivity” came into use decades ago, but has recently become popular among professionals and businesses working in various fields of sexual health, well-being, and pleasure. What does sex-positive mean, and how can sex–positivity impact your practice as well as your clients? This workshop will review several current, leading approaches to the concept and explore its importance. Participants will then critically examine two types of definitions of sex–positivity: one for professional use, and the other as a therapeutic activity for clients working on sexual concerns. The presenter will then guide participants in drafting their own professional definitions, based on an established framework. Finally, the participants will be shown how to use the activity with clients in order to develop therapeutic goals and enhance sexual connection and communication. Participants will receive worksheets for each of the two activities, as well as (free) access to digital copies of the forms to use in their own practices.

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Helping Clients Find Pleasure After Trauma

available for your event

We each deserve pleasure, regardless of our pasts. But how can we help our clients find their sensual and sexual selves after trauma? Dr. Ruthie Neustifter brings their extensive experience in helping others discover how to nurture the return of pleasure after pain. Attendees will gain new insight and tools for assisting their clients (individual, relational, and groups) with rediscovering joy and intimacy. The participants will learn about the systemic dimensions of healing from sexual trauma. This will include defining concepts as: agency, resistance, resilience, and power from perspectives that include relational thinking and awareness of larger systems within which clients live. This workshop will focus on survivors of intimate partner violence, sexual assault, medical trauma, childhood sex abuse, and other traumas. The session is based in trauma recovery and resilience theories with foci on mindfulness, grounding, restoring, and reclaiming of the self. We will explore various uses of techniques common in strengths-based social work, positive psychology, and the narrative approach along with systemic approaches. Participants will explore the impact of family and larger systems on survivors, and learn how to weave these diverse elements in their work using several featured applied techniques. Attendees will have the opportunity to try several activities themselves, process how it worked, and learn how to facilitate them in various contexts. Participants will not be asked to disclose the source of their traumas while experiencing the activities during the workshop. By the end of the workshop you will be able to invite your own clients to quietly reflect, draw, write, and share verbally within a space that is safe, comfortable, and honouring of their own contexts and histories. This workshop is designed for therapists of, and who work with, all sexualities, genders, and relationship structures. It will also emphasize the systemic nature of healing after the trauma. Long term healing is impacted by a great number of internal as well as systemic factors, the focus will be primarily on the latter and how strengths work can invite family and larger systems to co-create great experiences of resilience, healing, and pleasure. This workshop is best for participants who are working with clients that are no longer in a high-risk situation (i.e: no longer dating their abuser), with the exception of those who face ongoing medical interventions.

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Hot & Kinky, Anxious & Depressed

available for your event

Anxiety, depression, and similar experiences can make it hard to make time, space, and motivation for positive experiences of sex and kink. If clients relate to feeling anxious and/or depressed and find it hard to: connect in sexual ways, get around to having dates, feel motivated to engagement in intimacy, or you have mismatched levels of desire in either direction, then this workshop may be for you. Participants will learn and practice skills for staying grounded, enjoying dates, and exploring sex & kink while still being realistic about anxiety and depression.

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Polyamory 101: Helping Clients Navigate the Joys and Jealousies of Opening A Relationship

available for your event

What does it mean to open a relationship, and how do people navigate the hard parts in order to enjoy the pleasures of sharing our hearts and bodies with more than one? This workshop will help attendees understand some of the most common poly relationship structures and address many of the most frequent concerns and joys.  Polyamory 101 is designed for attendees with clients of all genders and sexualities who are new non-monogamy, or who are seeking foundational support, information, and tools for opening up more successfully.

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Sexy, Successful, Solo Poly

available for your event

Are your clients interested in connecting with delicious new partners, but not so wild about having a primary relationship? Or maybe they're a couple looking to find a free range unicorn? This workshop will help those who work with solo poly folks to help them gain skills consider and advocate for their needs with others and themselves. Existing relationships will benefit ideas for more successful, respectful dating with solo poly individuals. As with all workshops by Dr. Ruthie, all genders, sexualities, and relationship structures are covered.

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Speak Up! No Holds Barred Q&A

available for your event

Throw a truly unique training that your attendees will never forget by making Dr. Ruthie your very own sex educator for the night! Drop Dr. Ruthie a line to discuss how to tailor their visit to your event size, attendance, and theme. They can show up with gifts for attendees, a lovely anonymous question box, and they can even set up an anonymous survey in advance. No question on sex, sexuality, gender, dating, or relationships is too modest or taboo with Dr. Ruthie!

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What is BDSM and Can It Be Healthy?

available for your event

This workshop covers the basics of BDSM (Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, Masochism, Dominance, Submission) and kink at an introductory level, with plenty of opportunities for questions and explanations. Dr. Ruthie will review research and theory on BDSM, how it compares with intimate partner violence, and when and how it is both healthy and unhealthy. If your event likes, Dr. Ruthie can bring some examples of common BDSM and kink gear for participants to see and touch.

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© 2020 by Ruth Neustifter, Ph.D.