Talks and Presentations

Over the years, I have created and presented numerous clinical discussions, any and all of which can be adapted for a wide variety of purposes, including in-service training for existing clinical teams, community outreach, generalized trainings for clinicians, education for the general public, and more.

These presentations can be altered to fit your specific requirements, lasting as little as an hour or as long as several days, depending on circumstances. AV needs, costs, length of talk, and other factors are negotiable and can be discussed when organizing the date.

Prodependence: Moving Beyond Codependency

Since Codependent No More was published nearly 40 years ago, we’ve seen a seemingly endless torrent of books, articles, workshops, and even whole therapy centers centered around codependence as a therapy concept. But codependency has never been formalized as a diagnosis in the DSM or the ICD. Hmmm. Perhaps the codependency model should be reviewed and either updated or tossed out in favor of a better approach. That approach is prodependence. This talk introduces that new approach – prodependence – a strength-based, attachment-focused model for working with this generally misunderstood population.

Generation Porn: Sex and Intimacy Disorders in a Digital Era

Since the early 1990s, we’ve heard warnings about a tsunami of porn-related problems in children, teens, and young adults. Much of the conversation is based in moral, ethical, feminist, religious, and cultural beliefs and opinions. This clinical conversation focuses on how, why, and in what ways exposure to porn impacts both young people and adults.

Sexual Addiction vs. Sexual Offending: Assessment, Diagnosis, and Treatment Planning

This talk offers research-based clinical insight into the problems of sexual addiction and sexual offending. The discussion provides extensive insight into sexual addiction, viewing it as the adult expression of early complex trauma and attachment loss. The talk also looks at what defines sexual offending and how that differs from sexual addiction, and how treatment goals and planning for the two issues differ (and sometimes overlap).

Tech and Sex: How We Got from Spin-the-Bottle to Sexting in a Single Generation

Our need to mate has not changed much since the dawn of time. However, the process through which this occurs has changed radically in a single generation. This talk provides a broad overview of where we’ve been and, perhaps more importantly, where we are going in the world of dating and developing relationship intimacy.

Family Therapy Updated for the Digital Age: Understanding the Role of Social Media and Digital Technology in the Lives of Our Clients

While much fear and hype has been created in the past decade by well-meaning clinicians and the media, the actual role and effect of digital media on American family life has yet to be fully understood and researched. So what can a caring counselor or therapist offer to families struggling with digital boundaries, cyberbullying, tech stressors, online gaming/gambling, and digital sexuality? This timely, engaging talk gives participants a chance to revisit, reshape, and challenge their beliefs about how digital technology is affecting family life, relationships, school, and the workplace.

Kids, Sex, and the Internet: What Clinicians Need to Know

In today’s increasingly digital world, kids of all ages have internet access, and many of them are using that as a form of sex education. In some ways, this is a good thing. However, the internet also provides access to an endless amount of pornography of every ilk imaginable, plus webcams and sexualized conversations with a wide variety of individuals. What does this mean to today’s young people? This talk presents both useful information and a SWOT analysis.

Closer Together, Further Apart: The Effects of Technology on Relationships and Sexuality

As digital technology continues its rapid evolution, men and women of all ages are all drawn to the immediately accessible content and interconnectivity it provides. While many aspects of digital technology are both useful and even essential for business, educational, political, and social interaction, increasing numbers of people are now seeking treatment for Internet-related addictive sexual and romantic behavior patterns (along with Internet gambling, spending, and video gaming addictions).

Behavioral Addictions as Tools to Emotional Survival

Process (behavioral) addictions, such as compulsive gambling, compulsive eating, compulsive spending, sex addiction, and the like, are often misunderstood and misdiagnosed. This presentation provides clinicians with an understanding of these addictions as maladaptive coping mechanisms used to deal with life stressors, emotional discomfort, and underlying psychological disorders such as depression, anxiety, attachment deficits, unresolved trauma, and the like.

Understanding Sexual Addiction in the Digital Age

This presentation on tech-driven sexual addiction offers an overview of the questions and concerns most often asked by sex addicts and their spouses/partners. The discussion covers the diagnosis of sexual addiction, common behaviors exhibited by sex addicts, common negative consequences experienced by sex addicts, the all-too-common relationship between early-life trauma and sex addiction, the influence of digital technology on sex addiction, and methodologies for eliminating problem sexual behaviors.

Sexual Offending: Facts and Myths

Sexual offending is rarely discussed and often misunderstood by both the general population and much of the therapeutic community. This presentation offers an overview of sexual offending – what it is (and isn’t), who perpetrates it, its long-term effects on victims, why some victims grow into offenders, and information about the effective therapeutic treatment of sex offenders.

Out of the Doghouse: Healing Relationships Fractured by Multiple Infidelities and Sexual Addiction

Men and women who repeatedly engage in sexual/romantic infidelity are, by definition, challenged by intimacy and empathy. As such, these individuals typically lack the skills needed to revitalize a broken relationship – especially when anger rules the roost, as it so often does after discovery. This discussion offers concrete direction for helping sex and love addicts (and others who engage in serial infidelity) rebuild relationship trust and heal damaged relationships.

Betrayal Trauma: Helping Spouses and Partners Grow Beyond the Trauma of Infidelity

Spouses and partners of cheaters and sex addicts typically struggle with both grief and trauma. Many display symptoms of PTSD. They typically enter therapy feeling unsafe, insecure, rageful, hurt, and uncertain as to their next best steps. Sadly, they have long been considered a clinically “difficult” population due to the immediacy of their emotional pain, their frequent wish to avoid treatment, and their often chaotic emotional state. This discussion offers a useful action plan for helping these individuals heal and move forward after betrayal.

Understanding and Working with the Dynamics of Sexuality in Residential Treatment Settings

Clinicians and managers in residential treatment settings (and aftercare placements) frequently must struggle with clients acting out sexually and romantically. Unfortunately, client sex and romance in treatment settings are setups for program liability, client splitting, pregnancy, affairs, and other bad outcomes. This talk – focused on the treatment professional – examines the individual and group dynamics that tend to encourage and discourage sexual and romantic acting out in a residential treatment setting.