Stefani Goerlich, LMSW-Clinical, LCSW, LISW, CST

Kink Aware Practice: What Your Clients Wish You Knew (But Are Afraid You’ll Ask)

Martin M. AntonyWebinar postponed

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Interactive Online Workshop

A recording of the workshop will be available for 90 days after the workshop.

Description of the Seminar

This full day workshop begins with a comprehensive 101-level overview of the BDSM community, its practices, nuances, and mental health needs. From there, the conversation will move into a discussion of the differences between Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and consensual kink, how to discern between the two, and barriers to prosecution that kinky survivors often encounter. Finally, we will explore how to conduct a kink-affirming risk assessment, including diagnostic criteria and exclusions, the impact of anti-kink bias on clinical assessments, and when and how to diagnose a paraphilic disorder. Through lecture, case study, and discussion, attendees will gain a working knowledge of how to provide affirming and inclusive mental health care to BDSM practitioners. This talk contains content that is not graphic, but which some folks may find uncomfortable.

    Workshop Objectives

    1. Explain what the acronym BDSM stands for and briefly define each of its component parts.
    2. Evaluate power exchange dynamics and differentiate between consensual kink and domestic violence
    3. Identify at least three barriers to prosecution experienced by kinky survivors of domestic violence/sexual assault.
    4. Describe at least three mental health concerns that impact kinky clients.
    5. Integrate at least three clinical best practices for working with kinky clients into their own therapeutic work.

    About the Speaker

    Award-winning author of The Leather Couch: Clinical Practice with Kinky Clients, Stefani is an expert in working with Gender, Relationship, and Sexuality Diversities as well as religious minority clients and has over 15 years experience in supporting survivors of domestic and sexual trauma.

    An AASECT-Certified Sex Therapist, Stefani has worked with high-risk young people, commercial sex workers, and survivors of human trafficking. She is currently the founder and Clinical Director of Bound Together Counseling, a private practice based in Metro Detroit, Michigan, where she offers Sex, Relationship and Mental Health therapy to members of the GSRD community, their partners, and their families.

    Stefani holds a Master’s in Social Work from Wayne State University, where she specialized in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and earned her Post-Graduate Certificate in Sex Therapy from the University of Michigan. She is a licensed Clinical Social Worker in Michigan, Ohio, and Arizona and is currently writing her next book and completing the dissertation for her PhD in Clinical Sexology.
    You can follow Stefani on Twitter at @Tzefira_Neviah or visit her website


    CCPA accreditation for MAGentix's workshops
    CCPA      Pending 6 CEU CACCF   Pending 6 CEU

    Participation in this workshop allows OAMHP members to apply Pending 6 hours (CECs) towards their required continuing education hours. OAMHP does not endorse this training or the training provider.


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    • To be eligible for group rate, all 3 registrations must be registered at the same time, and paid with one cheque or credit card number.
    • For student rate, a valid full-time student ID must be presented.
    • Above includes payment by credit card and cheque. Other payment methods.
    • Certificate of Participation will be given at the end of the workshop.

    Workshop Agenda

    Workshop Agenda

    I. Foundations

    • Introductions
    • Agreements
    • Operant Definitions
    • GSRD Carousel
    • Identity Spectrum

    II. BDSM Basics

      • BDSM Breakdown
      • Equality of Expectations
      • Community Key Facts
      • Morals, Values, & Ethics in Kink
      • Risk Frameworks
        • SSC
        • RACK
      • Engagement Spectrum
      • Why’s
        • Praxis
        • Catharsis
        • Fetish
        • Essence
      • Myths & Misconceptions
      • Common Clinical Concerns

    III. IPV vs. Kink

    • Cycle of Abuse vs. Cycle of Kink
    • Case Assessment (50 Shades)
    • Warning Signs
      • General
      • Power Exchange
    • Sexual Assault Case Study
    • Community vs. LAE Risk Assessment
    • Prosecution Statistics
    • Barriers to Successful Prosecution
    • Barriers to Community Intervention

    IV. Kink-Affirming Therapy

    • Impact of Clinician Bias
    • Kink-Affirming Assessment
    • Intervention Strategies
    • Case Assessment (M/s questions)
    • Best Practices
    • Question & Answer