Evaluation Survey

DEAR MEMBERS

Please could you take a few minutes to complete this survey regarding your use of evaluation tools. As you may be aware, COSRT has as one of its strategic plans the development of such a tool specific to psychosexual practice.

Your responses would be very much appreciated and will be confidential.

Any queries please do contact Jo Coker psm@cosrt.org.uk

 

UK organisations unite against Conversion Therapy

Memorandum of Understanding Statement is published today

Major UK organisations have been working against Conversion Therapy for a number of years, publishing a Memorandum of Understanding against the practice (2015) and updating the document to warn against conversion therapy in relation to gender identity and sexual orientation (including asexuality).

Aware of concerns regarding the future of Conversion Therapy in the USA, and pleased that Malta has banned the practice and that Taiwan has drafted legislation to ban the practice, we are publicising the following statement in solidarity with like- minded healthcare organisations in the USA.

“We the undersigned UK organisations wish to state that the practice of conversion therapy has no place in the modern world.  It is unethical and harmful and not supported by evidence. 

Conversion Therapy is the term for therapy that assumes certain sexual orientations or gender identities are inferior to others, and seeks to change or suppress them on that basis.

Sexual orientations and gender identities are not mental health disorders, although exclusion, stigma and prejudice may precipitate mental health issues for any person subjected to these abuses. Anyone accessing therapeutic help should be able to do so without fear of judgement or the threat of being pressured to change a fundamental aspect of who they are.” 

Janet Weisz, Chair of the Memorandum of Understanding group, and Chief Executive of the UK Council for Psychotherapy, said:

“We have always been clear that sexual orientation and gender identities are not mental health disorders. Any therapy that claims to change these is not only unethical but it’s also potentially harmful.

“Therefore, this practice has no place in the modern psychotherapy profession. The public must know that they can access therapeutic help without fear of judgment.

“It is great to see so many parts of the psychological and medical profession both in the UK and abroad uniting on this key issue.”

Helen Morgan, Chair of the British Psychoanalytic Council, said:

“Forcing a particular view or prejudice upon a patient has no place in therapy and all competent therapists will implicitly understand and appreciate this.

“Psychotherapy aims to liberate people so they can live fuller, more meaningful and more satisfying lives – and patients meeting a psychotherapist should be able to assume that this is always the case in therapy.

“I am pleased to support moves against conversion therapy and I would urge professional colleagues – wherever they may be – to do the same.” 

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, said:

“The Royal College of General Practitioners is proud to support this statement. As medical professionals, we are highly trained to treat our patients regardless of their sexual orientation – not because of it.

“Being gay or trans is not a disease, it is not a mental illness and it doesn’t need a cure. Any proclamations to the contrary risk causing harm to our gay and trans patients’ physical and mental health and wellbeing, as well as perpetuating discrimination in society.”

Peter Kinderman, President of the British Psychological Society, said:

“The British Psychological Society is very proud to endorse, support, and stand by this statement. I am proud to live in a country that is able to celebrate the full range of loving human relationships and to offer each one of us equality under the law. Many of us have experienced a great deal of persecution and discrimination as a result of our sexual orientation, and our role must be to combat such prejudice, not to add to it. When people are distressed, for whatever reason, we have a duty to reach out and help. But that must not entail regarding our sexual orientation as any form of pathology. I am very happy to be a party to this statement, and I hope it goes some way to contribution to a more caring and equitable society.” 

Dr Andrew Reeves, Chair of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy, said:

“BACP strongly believes that anyone seeking therapeutic help, regardless of their gender and sexual diversity, should have access to unbiased and informed therapists who provide ethically skilled therapy. We agree that there is no place in our society for conversion therapy, which is unethical, harmful and not supported by evidence.”

Supported by the following organisations:

  • The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy
  • The British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies
  • The British Psychoanalytic Council
  • The British Psychological Society
  • The College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists
  • GLADD – The Association of LGBT Doctors and Dentists
  • The National Counselling Society
  • National Health Service Scotland
  • Pink Therapy
  • The Royal College of General Practitioners
  • The Scottish Government
  • Stonewall
  • The UK Council for Psychotherapy

For further details, please contact Peter Hudson, Policy and Public Affairs Officer at peter@bpc.org.uk or on (0044) 0207 561 9240.

Professor Dick Swaab MD PhD

We are very pleased to announce that Professor Dick Swaab has agreed to become a patron of COSRT.  We look forward to working with him.

Professor Dick Swaab MD PhD

Professor Swaab was Director of the Netherlands Institute for Brain Research from 1978 to 2005.  Since 1979 he is Professor of Neurobiology at the Medical Faculty, University of Amsterdam.  In 1985 he founded the Netherlands Brain Bank and was Director until 2005.  He is Leader Research team Neuropsychiatric Disorders, Neth. Inst for Neuroscience, an institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), and is appointed since 2011 Chao Kuang Piu Chair of Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, P.R. China.  His major research interests focus on sexual differentiation of the human brain in relation to gender identity and sexual orientation, aging of the brain and Alzheimer’s disease and the neurobiological basis of depression and suicide.  He has published over 570 papers in SCI journals, authored more than 200 chapters in books, and edited more than 60 books.  Professor Swaab mentored 84 PhD students from which 20 are now full professors.  He is author of the two volume monograph The Human Hypothalamus that appeared in the Handbook of Clinical Neurology series, Elsevier and of the Dutch best seller We are our Brains, that sold more than 450.000 copies in the Netherlands that is translated in 15 languages.  There is also a children’s version of the book (You are your brain) that is translated in Russian and Thai.  In September 2016 Professor Swaab published a second book for the general public Our Creative Brain, that also came in the bestseller list.  His H-factor is 80.

 

Congratulations to Muriel O’Driscoll on her British Empire Medal

We would like to congratulate Muriel O’Driscoll, one of our Members, who has been awarded the British Empire Medal for her services to Brook Clinics and adolescent psychosexual services.
A wonderful achievement in our field.

Ruth Hallam Jones is awarded Fellowship of COSRT at the Summer conference

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Ruth is seen here accepting her award from Trudy Hannington the outgoing Chair of COSRT and Peter Saddington the new Chair.

Ruth’s acceptance speech is printed below.

Dear Colleagues,

I wonder whether I could ask you firstly to stand if you are 40 years of age or more………now if you are under 40.

Now could you take two minutes of your time talking to one of your colleagues sitting next, choose the one who you know the least well. Could you discuss “What you think trainee sex therapists need to know that you think they are not being taught”. Thank you.

I now want to give you three requests

  1. Firstly COSRT needs to love students and trainees they need a voice at every level. For example maybe they should get a free entry into conferences.
  1. We need to ensure that both women and men are given an adequate physical as well as psychological and relational assessment. We can only do that change of emphasis via conferences.
  1. We need to ensue that new ideas and treatments are not just taught to students, but also to therapists, and in particular supervisors.

I have seen over the last 2 years the value of Surrogacy when used in the right way with the right clients, who are usually suffering from disabilities that nothing can treat. We need policies procedures and new ways of supervision that covers new areas. I have worked on them with therapists for the last years. Let us join up and think.

Don’t let us be so afraid of new ideas, that we do not really think about them carefully.

We were afraid of medicine taking away the need for sex therapy, but in approximately 99% of clients it has led to a greater awareness by the client  of the need for couple therapy.

Lastly we need to learn to sell ourselves as private practitioners more carefully, thoroughly and effectively. Let COSRT help us unite by producing the wording for a useful letter to send to all GP’s in our own areas to highlight the need for qualified experienced therapists.

Thank you very much for the honour of this award.

“Heath is not the absence of disease, but the ability to do what you can do.”

Love you, Love you all.

Ruth

 

COSRT Trustees say farewell to outgoing Chair Trudy Hannington

The COSRT Trustees and Staff say goodbye to Trudy Hannington as their Chair. Trudy has been one of the longest serving Trustees at COSRT and during her time as Chair has made a fantastic contribution to COSRT’s development. She is pictured with the Trustees and Staff.

Front row:  Corinna Furse (CEO), Peter Saddington (Newly elected Chair), Trudy Hannington (Outgoing Chair), Peter Bell (past Chair)

COSRT meeting

 

 

I have looked at life from both sides now…

Kirstie is an integrative therapist, a general member of the College Of Sex and Relationship Therapists (COSRT) and a registered member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). Having spent 25 years working in commerce and achieving Director level in a medium-sized architectural practice, I found I could no longer live the lie that I had for so many years. In January 2010, at age 55, I had sex reassignment surgery, after completing the required two years’ living in my acquired gender as a woman. My aim is to be a positive role model for the transgender community and to provide therapeutic help to others thinking about, travelling or having completed the transition journey. I work from premises located in Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.

Web: www.transgendercounselling.co.uk

I’ve looked at life from both sides now….

Perhaps a bit of a cliché but I was reminded of this when I recently attended a meeting for The College of Sex and Relationship Therapists (COSRT). The content of the meeting is not what is important here but rather the relationship between the twelve participants around the table, all of whom were female. I was one of those participants and, although I knew a few of the members, I was the new girl in respect of attending a formal meeting. It has been more than 8 years since I attended a similar meeting and back then it was under entirely different circumstances, as all participants had been male, including me!

I found myself reflecting, at this most recent meeting, on how the two meetings differed due to the genders of the participants. My earlier meetings were, more often than not, quite confrontational, dealing with progress on construction projects – someone had to take the blame!

The construction meetings which I attended always had the same format. They began with talk about sport over the pre-meeting coffee with perhaps a side chat about progress on site and who was in the firing line this week. As the client it was very rare for me to be the subject of the side negotiations but I was often involved in order that I was aware of what was going on. The topic of sport was never an interest and on that basis alone I was often the outsider and a bit different from the others. Part of my camouflage was to try to guess which match would be discussed and do a bit of homework. I was OK with it but never really felt a part of the ‘boys club’. The meetings could be heated and testosterone-induced aggression was often present particularly if a project was going badly and everyone was looking for someone else to blame. Even in calmer meetings there was often an air of one-upmanship, as participants tried to show just how good they and their companies were.

This most recent meeting was much calmer; it was a friendlier environment in which to work and certainly no rivalry was evident to me. Of course, it was not a commercial meeting but I somehow feel that, even had it been so, the whole ambience would have remained on a more feminine and friendlier basis. My one faux pas – when introduced to a new colleague I reached out and shook hands. She took it well but I suspect it is not a greeting she is used to. I was slightly worried by my return to a more masculine approach to the meeting environment but soon recovered and had a thoroughly enjoyable day – warmth, laughter and learning: quite a new experience after so long.

Of course there is also the interim period of transition when I became the only female within my usual male environment. I am not sure who was more ill at ease during the early encounters but my position as client certainly provided a great deal of protection. I was never openly challenged or ridiculed but of course I have no idea what was said about me in private. I had always been somewhat of an outsider and that isolation grew exponentially for the 12 months or so that I managed to stay the course. Eventually it became too much and I moved on. The experience however will always stay with me and I am sure colours my approach to meetings now that I approach them entirely as a woman. I will continue to learn but I certainly know which side of life I prefer.

Should you have concerns about your own gender awareness then it is recommended that you seek appropriate help from a professional such as a member of COSRT Information can be found at www.cosrt.org.uk

New – General Terms and Conditions of Membership and Supervisor Accreditation from 1st October 2014

This document is effective from October 1st 2014 for all Members

 

General Terms and Conditions of Membership and Supervisor Accreditation |01.10.14

New Conduct Procedure from 1st October 2014

Conduct Procedure 2014

Sex in Later Life: A COSRT media lunch

On 12th June COSRT held its first event tailored specifically for the media, exploring the issues relating to sex in later life. The lunch event was hosted by our Chair Trudy Hannington and attended by journalists from a range of major women’s magazines and national newspapers. Taking the form of a roundtable discussion, with contributions from our Chair Trudy Hannington, Professor Geoffrey Hackett and Dr Glynn Hudson Allez. The event was a great success and will further help us position COSRT as a leading source of comment and expertise in relation to sex and relationship issues, and pave the way for a greater media presence in the future. A follow up event is being planned with Professor Hackett and Trudy Hannington to further explore the physiological/medical and psychological issues in sexual difficulties along with a review of the latest medications. Keep checking the COSRT website for further information.