Sex Therapy Might Not Be As Sexy As You Think

Photographed by Natalia Mantini.
On an episode of Broad City from last season, Ilana visits a sex therapist for a very understandable reason: She hasn't been able to orgasm since Trump was elected. During her session, Ilana frustratedly uses a vibrator as her sex therapist watches and shines a flashlight on her genitals. After some time, the very woke sex therapist helps Ilana rise above the trauma that "a sexual assault-bragging steak salesman has become our president," and eventually, Ilana orgasms.
It's pretty progressive to show both masturbation and therapy (at the same time!) on TV, but Broad City doesn't paint the most realistic picture of what actually goes down in sex therapy. So, what is sex therapy, anyway? Simply put, sex therapy is therapy that focuses on your sex life, which can include sexual orientation, sexual function, arousal, kink, sexual health, relationships — and everything in between. Sex therapy sessions are different for everyone, because sex is different for everyone. And while some people do go to sex therapy for reasons like Ilana's, her experience is just one person's.
Given that, we asked real sex therapists to share the biggest misconceptions people have about sex therapy, and what really goes down in a session.