Episode 38: Treating Out of Control Sexual Behavior - Part 1


Natasha Helfer Parker interviews Doug Braun-Harvey and Michael Vigorito, authors of the book titled Treating Out of Control Sexual Behavior: Rethinking Sex Addiction. With so much media and public emphasis on looking at any sexual behavioral problem through an addictions lens, Doug and Michael have developed a sexual health assessment and treatment protocol for people who present to a therapy office with sexual behaviors that feel out of control to them. This can be the case for a variety of reasons that need to be adequately assessed. Both Doug and Michael do a wonderful job of explaining the limitations of sex addiction treatment as well as an overview as to what they have found to be a useful approach towards helping men, in particular, embrace a model of sexuality that is based on healthy values and principles. 


Douglas Braun-Harvey is a sexual health author, trainer and psychotherapist. Doug is a co-founder of the The Harvey Institute, an international education, training, consulting and supervision service for Improving health care through integration of sexual health. He teaches and trains nationally and internationally linking sexual health principles within drug and alcohol treatment, group psychotherapy, HIV prevention and treatment, and child maltreatment. Previous publications include “Sexual Health in Recovery: Professional Counselor’s Manual” (2011) and “Sexual Health in Drug and Alcohol Treatment: Group Facilitator’s Manual” (2009). Doug is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Certified Group Psychotherapist and Certified Sex Therapist. He currently serves as Treasurer of AASECT and, as an alumni of the University of Minnesota, to join their Advisory Board for the Program in Human Sexuality in which he is a founding donor of the Doug Braun-Harvey Fellowship in Compulsive Sexual Behavior. He has been providing individual and group therapy in his San Diego private practice since 1987.


Michael Vigorito is a sexual health psychotherapist, author and consultant.  As a psychotherapist, he provides individual, couples and group psychotherapy for a range of behavioral health concerns.  He works with clients concerned about consensual sexual behavior problems, relationship and sexual dissatisfaction, sexual disorders, unconventional erotic interests and sex-drug linked behaviors. Michael has specialized psychotherapy training treating co-occurring disorders, domestic violence, mindfulness and clients living with HIV/AIDS. Michael also offers local and national workshops for mental health providers and consumers on various sexual health topics, including out of control sexual behavior assessment and treatment, psychotherapy with lesbian, gay and bisexual clients and integrating sexual health into psychotherapy. Michael is a member of the American Group Psychotherapy Association, the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality,  the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors and Therapists and the American Association of Marriage & Family Therapists.


Things that were mentioned during the podcast:

Work of Eli Coleman

Work of John Bancroft

Kinsey Institute

Richard Siegel

David Ley


Thank you to Jeff Meyers for the intro and Peter & Mary Danzig of Otter Creek Duo for the concluding bumper music. 


Natasha Helfer Parker runs a private practice in Wichita, KS and writes at The Mormon Therapist for Patheos: Hosting the Conversation of Faith. She also hosts the popular podcast, Mormon Mental Health.  


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