Kink-Aware refers to a practitioner who has specific knowledge of kink concepts and lifestyles and who has researched and educated themselves in kink. These practitioners may have some previous experience providing professional services to individuals with these interests.
Poly-Aware refers to a practitioner who has specific knowledge of ethical non-monogamy concepts and lifestyles and who has researched and educated themselves in ethical non-monogamy. These practitioners may have some previous experience providing professional services to individuals with these interests.
How does this show up in my practice?
I understand that being kinky or non-monogamous is part of your identity and what makes you uniquely you. I believe these are aspects of individuals that should be celebrated, discussed, and approached with open curiosity – and are not things that need to be treated or “cured”.
I understand the role consent plays in both kink and ethical non-monogamy. I understand that when negotiated power exchanges, play, and kink dynamics are not abusive. I understand that ethical non-monogamy including polyamory, swinging, and open relationships are not cheating or fear of commitment.
I understand that your issues are not caused by or related to your kink or non-monogamous orientation. I understand that shame and distress regarding your kink or non-monogamous identity may be your internalized cultural bias against your sexual/relationship orientation, and is not evidence of a disorder. I understand that the cultural bias against your sexual/relationship orientation affects your work, social, and family relationships.
If you have experienced abuse or breaches of consent in your kink or non-monogamous relationships, I can help you process and understand that. These events can sometimes be difficult to discuss, especially if you are afraid of being judged or shamed for your identity.
I will continue to consult and educate myself regarding kink and non-monogamous identities and orientations. If you have issues that are outside my knowledge base or competence I will suggest referral options. I will be aware of how my own issues and how they may enter therapy.