Psychosexual Therapy Wheel of Context

Effective clinicians are usually the ones that are well versed in not only knowledge and practical skills but also in adapting a role of a researcher (with great curiosity and insightful questions).

The Wheel of Context for Psychosexual Therapy was adapted from the original idea of Dr. Pejman Azarmina “Wheel of Context” with the purpose of providing a practical framework to ensure integrity and a level of thoroughness for our work with clients from diverse backgrounds.

We can have all the knowledge in the world but without considering the context, we are forced to operate from our place of ignorance as prisoners of our individual silos. This talk is going to focus on the contextual factors that contribute to the predisposing, precipitating, maintaining and perpetuating sexual issues in our clients. It will elaborate on the PLISSIT model with an added element of R (referral), how this could be navigated, by whom and for whom.

The main concepts that will be looked at in details are: psychosexual therapy, its approach and techniques, Cultural Camouflages (when clients might use culture to hinder therapy), Sociopolitical factors surrounding one’s presenting issue and the Sexual Culture framework. Three couples, with similar presenting issues will be presented to shed light on the content and process that helped the therapist to move beyond them.

Genital Practices Around the World: Implications for Assessment, Diagnosis and Treatment

Presented at the 23rd World Association for Sexual Health Congress (WAS) 28-31 May, 2017, Prague, Czech Republic 

Mental health practitioners are sometimes at a disadvantage when it comes to addressing sexual issues of their clients due to not being able to clinically examine their genitalia. This talk aims to bring an overview about genital practices and rituals around the world and its impact on assessment, diagnosis and treatment of sexual complains by clients. It focuses on the contextual influences that inform cultural norms as well as popular trends and cosmetic surgeries. Vulva-vaginal practices range from labioplasty to genital cutting in all its forms and penile practices range from scrotal stretching and circumcision to genital ribs and penis enlargement surgeries.  The implication of these practices in clients’ everyday life, their intimate relationships and their compliance with the practitioners will be discussed. Material for this talk has been gathered over the past three years through published and  gray literature including interviews with regional representatives of the UN agencies, gynecologists, national representatives of Family Planning Associations, the World  Population Foundation country officers as well as individuals.

Emergent and Submerged Models of Love

Presented at World Sexual Health Day, North America, September 29, 2017 at Stanford University, USA

In today’s culture, love is seen as the prize, the catalyst, the glue, the fire and the force that can conquer all. Love is viewed as something that happens to us and it is followed by an everlasting romantic relationship. Over the years I observed the intense pain that comes with having this mentality and unsatisfying relationships that are the outcomes of it. Principles of systems thinking and years of working with couples across 37 countries are summarized in this model to invite the audience to view the whole topic through a different lens. The Emergent Relationship Model strives to help individuals find meaningful connections and grow over time into shaping satisfying relationships. The walk through the Emergent Relationship Model will be a thought provoking exploration of love, marriage, intimacy and cultural expectations.