Glossary of Terms

Anger Management: A process for understanding the reasons behind one’s feelings of anger, the different styles of anger, and strategies for coping with anger in more productive ways.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: CBT focuses on modifying cognitions, assumptions, beliefs and behaviors, with the aim of influencing disturbed emotions. The objective is often to identify irrational thoughts and beliefs that are related to debilitating negative emotions that produces maladaptive behaviors and replace them with more realistic and self-helping alternatives.

Cross Dressing: A desire to wear clothing of a gender different from one’s own. Cross dressing is not connected to one’s sexual orientation and is sometimes engaged in by gay, bisexual and heterosexual men and women.

Demythologizing Masculinity: There are many stereotypes and definitions of what “being a man” means in our culture. At The Men’s Center, we examine these myths to help men identify a more authentic personal definition of masculinity.

Dyspareunia is the term used to describe pain during intercourse. Symptoms range from mild, intermittent, to very severe, making intercourse impossible.

EMDR: EMDR stands for “Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing” and is a comprehensive method of psychotherapy designed to treat trauma and anxiety-related disorders. EMDR combines well-established therapeutic methods, including imaginable exposure, cognitive restructuring and self-control techniques into specific structured protocols, which are modified to meet the unique needs of each person.

Erectile Dysfunction (ED): Formerly called “impotence”, ED affects the lives of many middle-aged men and their partners to one degree or another. The term “Erectile Dysfunction” covers a range of disorders, but usually refers to the inability to obtain an adequate erection for satisfactory sexual activity.

Family Therapy: Family Therapy involves a family working with a therapist to create positive changes in group dynamics within families of any type of configuration, including single parent families, blended families and more traditional families.

Fibromyalgia: A common syndrome of chronic widespread soft-tissue pain accompanied by weakness, fatigue and sleep disturbances; the cause is unknown.

Interstitial Cystitis (IC): A condition that results in recurring discomfort or pain in the bladder and the surrounding pelvic region. Symptoms may include: persistent, urgent need to urinate; pain in pelvis or between vagina and anus; and pelvic pain during sexual intercourse.

Individual Therapy: Individual Therapy involves working on a one-to-one basis with a therapist to prepare a plan to create positive changes in one’s life.

Inhibited or Retarded Ejaculation: This is when ejaculation is slow to occur.

Inhibited Sexual Desire: Inhibited desire, or loss of libido, refers to a decrease in desire for, or interest in sexual activity. Reduced libido can result from physical or psychological factors. It has been associated with low levels of the hormone testosterone. It also may be caused by psychological problems, such as anxiety and depression; medical illnesses, such as diabetes and high blood pressure; certain medications, including some anti-depressants; and relationship difficulties.

Lichen Sclerosis/Lichenoid Vulvitis
Lichen sclerosis is an unusual dermatologic condition of the vulva. It may cause the vulvar tissue to appear whitish or become thin in appearance. This skin disease is similar to other conditions, such as psoriasis. It is a chronic skin condition that can come and go for years and can cause pain in the vulvar area and unusual discharge.

Premature Ejaculation: This refers to ejaculation that occurs before or soon after penetration.

Psychiatrist: A psychiatrist is a doctor of medicine who specializes in psychiatry / mental health. They focus on the biomedical approach to mental disorders by prescribing psychiatric medication and conducting physical examinations, as well as ordering and interpreting laboratory tests. They rarely do psychotherapy.

PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder): Re-experiencing a traumatic event as though it were just happening, but occurring 6 months or more after the actual event. Fear, flashbacks, physiological responses, are all common.

Retrograde Ejaculation: This occurs when, at orgasm, the ejaculate is forced back into the bladder rather than through the urethra and out the end of the penis.

Sexual Addiction: Any sexually related behavior that disrupts your life and causes severe stress on family, friends and/or one’s work environment. Often, someone with a sexual addiction places a priority on sexual activities over other aspects of life and to the extent that it dominates their life.

Sexual Anorexia: An obsession with avoiding sexual activity. Similar to other compulsive or addictive behaviors, avoiding sex can give a person a feeling of power or the belief that they can avoid feeling vulnerable or hurt.

Sexual Problems: Sexual problems include issues of sexual identify, sexual functioning, dysfunction, such as erectile dysfunction, impotence, sexual anorexia, differing frequency or desire, painful intercourse, inability to reach orgasm, premature or delayed ejaculation and difficulty with penetration.

Survivor: A survivor is someone who has experienced sexual abuse and/or another type of trauma. It is a paradigm shift in the healing process from moving from a victim mentality in which one feels a lack of control and a diminished sense of self. A survivor understands that he is not responsible for the trauma and becomes aware of his resiliency.

Transsexualism: A desire to change one’s biological sex. Often referred to as “gender identity disorder” or “gender dysphoria”, the condition involves one feeling that the gender assigned at birth is inappropriate or wrong.

Vaginismus is a continuous prolonged spasm of the pelvic floor muscles that contract in orgasm. A continuous spasm of these muscles can lead to severe pain and make penetration or intercourse impossible. Vaginismus may be a result of various conditions that cause vulvar pain or irritation. It can also be a result of the anticipation of pain or a recollection of a negative sexual experience.

Vulvar Vestibulitis
Vulvar vestibulitis is a syndrome/disease caused by severe irritation of the vestibular glands of the vulva. When the glands are inflamed, there may be severe pain with intercourse or itching, burning or a prickling sensation.

Vulvodynia is the medical term for a burning or chronically irritated/itching vulva.

Learn More

The Men’s Center welcomes people of all backgrounds. If you have questions or comments about our services, or if you want to learn more about how The Men’s Center can help you or someone close to you, please contact us.

Please note that the links to outside resources are for information only. The Men’s Center has not prepared or authored the items referenced in those, and takes no responsibilities for the content thereof.

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