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What advice do you offer about sex and dating after a spinal cord injury?

What advice do you offer about sex and dating after a spinal cord injury?

Heather Taylor, PhD

Psychologist/Director of Spinal Cord Injury and Disability Services, TIRR Memorial Hermann - Houston

Read Bio More Videos by Heather Taylor
Transcript
When individuals come to me asking about sex and dating, I’m actually very thrilled. We’re moving to a point where they recognize-you know, individuals with spinal cord injury date, they have sex, they definitely want to be involved in th... Show More

When individuals come to me asking about sex and dating, I’m actually very thrilled. We’re moving to a point where they recognize-you know, individuals with spinal cord injury date, they have sex, they definitely want to be involved in that. For women they need to know, “Yes, I can get pregnant”; that certainly was a misconception for many years that women thought they couldn’t get pregnant, but they definitely can and will. So it’s very exciting to talk about dating and what that means, and to be involved with others to encourage them to reach out to other people with spinal cord injury as well to talk about dating and any barriers to that. One thing that’s really important for men and women is what we call “sexual self-esteem.” It’s key for people without disabilities, without spinal cord injuries, for everyone, their sexual-self esteem-what we think of ourselves sexually, what we think of our bodies, that still is there. For someone with a spinal cord injury, you definitely have that coming forward, so now your body’s changed, and now you’re different, and what does that mean–“Do I still see myself as a sexual being?” Do I still feel sexy? Do I feel still loveable?” And yes, you are and how do we recognize that in that process. And some people embrace it much more quickly, and have a rich sex life and a very rich dating life, and others struggle more. It’s a lot of our own self-esteem that plays into that.

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What advice do you offer about sex and dating after a spinal cord injury?

Heather Taylor, PhD

Psychologist/Director of Spinal Cord Injury and Disability Services, TIRR Memorial Hermann - Houston

More Videos by Heather Taylor
Transcriptadd

When individuals come to me asking about sex and dating, I’m actually very thrilled. We’re moving to a point where they recognize-you know, individuals with spinal cord injury date, they have sex, they definitely want to be involved in that. For women they need to know, “Yes, I can get pregnant”; that certainly was a misconception for many years that women thought they couldn’t get pregnant, but they definitely can and will. So it’s very exciting to talk about dating and what that means, and to be involved with others to encourage them to reach out to other people with spinal cord injury as well to talk about dating and any barriers to that. One thing that’s really important for men and women is what we call “sexual self-esteem.” It’s key for people without disabilities, without spinal cord injuries, for everyone, their sexual-self esteem-what we think of ourselves sexually, what we think of our bodies, that still is there. For someone with a spinal cord injury, you definitely have that coming forward, so now your body’s changed, and now you’re different, and what does that mean–“Do I still see myself as a sexual being?” Do I still feel sexy? Do I feel still loveable?” And yes, you are and how do we recognize that in that process. And some people embrace it much more quickly, and have a rich sex life and a very rich dating life, and others struggle more. It’s a lot of our own self-esteem that plays into that.

What advice do you offer about sex and dating after a spinal cord injury?
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