In society today, one’s sexuality can have far-reaching consequences. Sexuality may influence our choices in the work we do, where we live, how we worship, and other intimate areas of life. Sexuality is often associated with one’s identity and what it means to be an individual. With all of the meaning that is carried with sexuality, there is the potential for an individual to question their own feelings. It is far from the case that all people simply know their sexuality or can identify with a particular group. Although many people do not express any confusion or concern regarding their sexuality, this is not the case for a great number of individuals who find that their questions regarding their sexuality are not so easily answered.
Sexuality is not defined by one behaviour or one feeling, or even by one experience. It is a highly complex human response that can be influenced by a variety of factors in its expression. What does seem to be clear that sexual preference is not a choice. One cannot control or determine who they are attracted to – whatever their sexuality. While many people have clear preferences, it is largely outside their ability to change that attraction, or lack thereof. Read More »
Sexual abuse is one of the most difficult experiences an individual may ever face. It is also incredibly common. While damage inflicted on the body may heal, sexual abuse leaves emotional scars that can be just as troubling as physical ones, and in some cases they can be even worse. Although the immediate pain and trauma subside, the truth is that there can be long-term consequences for the victims of sexual abuse. That being said, the process of healing might be centered on the body, not in the mind.
Victims of abuse often respond with a physical reaction known as the “fight or flight” response. The body learns to release adrenaline in situations that recreate the feelings of terror and pain, and as a result, this can become a pattern that the victim experiences again and again. Read More »
Constant social interaction and intense media conditioning can intensify the effects of social pressures on a person. An increase in societal expectations, or what are perceived to be so, can be overwhelming for some people and lead to anxiety, stress and withdrawal. One’s sense of self worth should not be based on conforming to social norms. For instance, there is absolutely nothing wrong with choosing to remain a virgin after 20, without succumbing to social pressures. However, if one has issues such as low self confidence, which are affecting their life and stopping them from achieving fully, it is important to address these issues. A therapist or counsellor can help to overcome feelings of low self worth and to live life to the fullest.
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The Madonna Whore Complex is a psychoanalytical term, coined by Sigmund Freud to describe a male psychological dichotomy in the perception of women – either as saint or sinner. The complex was termed as such by Sigmund Freud, but this dichotomy seems to have existed since time immemorial. Some men experience the inability to view a woman as a whole, but can only view her through the perception of either saint or sinner. The cultural portrayal of men and women as adhering to fixed gender roles also does not help in overcoming this flawed perception of women. Needless to say, this can take a serious toll on personal relationships and many of those who are impacted seek the help of a counsellor to deal with the problem.
According to the Madonna Whore Complex, men either view a woman as a sexually restrained and well behaved ‘Madonna’, or as a sexually free ‘whore’ who must be punished by the man. Read More »
Studies have shown that constant connectivity on social networking sites and a constant exposure to media are strongly linked with people feeling inadequate, insecure and anxious. Having to compare yourself to others and being bombarded with public broadcasts of other peoples’ ‘ideal’ lives can cause feelings of inadequacy, insecurity and low self confidence; and for people who are prone to anxiety, this can sometimes even lead to severe low self esteem, depression, and other mental issues to a point where it becomes necessary to seek help from a therapist. Read More »