1st Edition

The Principles of Pleasure Working with the Good Stuff as Sex Therapists and Educators

By Laura Rademacher, Lindsey Hoskins Copyright 2017
    196 Pages
    by Routledge

    196 Pages
    by Routledge

    There are tremendous benefits to discussing the subject of sexual and emotional pleasure with clients, and this book addresses the challenges and misconceptions of doing just that. Laura Rademacher and Lindsey Hoskins teach the skills necessary for mental health professionals and sex educators to build competence in this work with their clients. Readers get techniques to implement in therapeutic, clinical, and educational settings, and learn how to examine pleasure in ways that are currently lacking from academic work on sexual health. This book covers skills for working with populations of all orientations and gender expressions. Language and phrasing for addressing pleasure issues in a wide variety of educational or therapeutic settings is also provided. Information about sexual lubrication and sex toys that is rarely taught in professional training programs is included, as well as how to appropriately incorporate information about these important sexual tools into your work. Issues such as abstinence, sexual orientation, couple therapy, and sexual education will be discussed outside of the standard medical model of sex therapy. The Principles of Pleasure will help you feel relaxed and confident while moving clients and students closer to their pleasure goals, and provides the evidence to back up the importance of talking and teaching about pleasure, should you need to justify this work.

    Preface  I: The Principles of Pleasure  1. The Importance of Pleasure in the Work of Sex Therapists and Educators  2. Dangerous Pleasure: How The United States’ Fears Shape the Work of Sex Educators and Therapists  3. Pleasure for All People: How the Professional Focus on Reproductive Health Puts Everyone at a Disadvantage  4. Pleasure and Consent: How Teaching Pleasure Combats Rape Culture  II: Skills for Professional Practice  5. Talking Professionally About Pleasure  6. What’s Their Pleasure? Helping Clients Discover Their Ability to Feel Good  7. Guilty Pleasure: Helping Students and Clients Work Through Guilt and Shame  8.  Lube Changes Lives: What Every Sexual Health Professional Needs to Know about Lubrication  9. Toys as Tools: What Every Sexual Health Professional Needs to Know about Sex Toys  10. Sharing Pleasure: Consent and Communication for Couples  Epilogue: Creating A Pleasure Positive Culture in Your Office, Your Classroom, and the World


    Laura Rademacher, MA, LMFT, CST, has more than 12 years of experience working with pleasure issues in professional settings. While currently working as a Certified Sex Therapist in Minnesota, she also teaches and provides trainings nationally. Her workshop with Lindsey Hoskins, Teaching Pleasure: Best Practices, was awarded the 2014 Schiller Prize from AASECT (American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists).


    Lindsey Hoskins is a sex ed nerd devoted to helping people of all ages take pride in their sexuality and find pleasure in their bodies in the ways that are right for them. She is the Director of Health Education at Family Tree Clinic, an innovative sexual health care center in Minnesota. Lindsey is a tireless advocate for sex-positive sex education and believes that access to safe and shame-free sexuality is a lifelong human right.

    The Principles of Pleasure lays out an inclusive and evidence-based approach to sexual health that empowers both professionals and the clients, students, and patients they serve. For every professional –teacher, social worker, therapist, medical provider, legal professional—who has ever faced the overwhelming reproductive and sexual health difficulties in the U.S. and thought, there must be a better way, here it is. For every professional who has struggled to explain to their colleagues (or funders) why pleasure must be integrated into their practice, Laura Rademacher and Lindsey Hoskins have written a playbook. This book is essential reading for anyone who takes seriously the life-changing work of preventing sexually transmitted infections, unwanted pregnancy, sexual violence, and the sexual distress that can end marriages.”— Emily Nagoski, PhD, author, Come As You Are: the surprising new science that will transform your sex life

    “Laura Rademacher breaks the silence about promoting sexual pleasure as part of sexual education and therapy! While we focus so much on amelioration pain, disease, and dysfunction, pleasure is one of the most essential elements of sexual health. Yet is it the part that too many people are uncomfortable talking about. This book is an essential guide for mental health professionals and sexuality educators to put the P back into sex, sexuality and sexual health!”—Eli Coleman, PhD, professor and director, Academic Chair in Sexual Health, Program in Human Sexuality, University of Minnesota Medical School

    The Principles of Pleasure is an excellent, sex-positive, evidence-based guide for sexuality professionals who are invested in helping their clients explore and experience pleasurable aspects to their sexualities. Highly recommended!”—Debby Herbenick, PhD, associate professor, Indiana University; author, Because It Feels Good

    “Laura Rademacher and Lindsey Hoskins have put pleasure in its proper place—as one of the cornerstones to developing healthy sexuality. The Principles of Pleasure understands that pleasure is a creative and life affirming force, not a problematic or destructive one. This is a powerful and much-needed message!”—Al Vernacchio, MSEd, sexuality educator; author, For Goodness Sex: Changing the Way We Talk to Teens About Sexuality, Values, and Health.

    “I would like to give high praise to Rademacher and Hoskins for delivering a comprehensive menu of accessible sexual health treatment interventions. Packed full of information that can be easily integrated in to a variety of clinical settings. Research studies report clients and patients want their health providers to be comfortable in discussing the “taboo” topic of sexuality. This book provides clear instructions and accurate information to support the difficult and challenging topics related to sexuality. Principals of Pleasure is a reliable resource for both professional and personal development.”—Heather Raznick MSW, LCSW, AASECT certified sex therapist; clinical training and supervision by Dr. William Masters (Masters and Johnson Institute)