About Dr. Rhoda Lipscomb
The Journey Towards Discovery
People often ask me how I became a sex therapist and especially how I ended up specializing in alternative means of sexual expression. After all, it is not a typical college major. Usually I smile and tell them that it has been a journey.
Like many people in my profession, I started out working in clinics that provided contraception, testing, and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, and abortion services. Many of the women and men I saw were scared, nervous, embarrassed to be there and, as I discovered, sadly undereducated about how the sexual aspects of their life worked. Often I was not only educating them about how to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancy and sexual infections, I was also helping them to better understand their sexual lives, desires, and behaviors. I realized that there was a need for more than the short-term, one-visit approach they were receiving in meeting a mostly physical-only need.
In studying sex therapy, I found the old wisdom of psychology was still considering “out-of-the-norm” sexual expression as pathological in nature- something to be corrected. However, in my professional work, I didn’t see that as true in the people I was working with day in and day out. Instead of judging the things I didn’t initially understand, I explored deeper and discovered there was far more to understand than to judge.
Sexuality Is Part Of Our Humanity
In our Western culture, we are still finding simple conversations about sex to be taboo or at best in poor taste. Yet our sexuality starts at birth and doesn’t end until our lives do. It is an innate part of our humanity. And, if “normal” sex is taboo, how much more difficult is it to breach the subject of alternative sex and sexuality? For those who are considered different in their sexual expression and desires, there is even a greater fear resulting in them hiding who they are, denying what they want and questioning themselves, even resorting to calling themselves a freak.
Not knowing who or where to turn to with the questions in their heads, they often feel depressed, unfulfilled and questioning what is wrong with them. I seek to change that by sharing new understandings, science, beliefs and resources to bring each person into their happy, healthy, sexuality.