Dr. Laurie Betito is a clinical psychologist who specializes in sex therapy. Besides her busy private practice in Montreal, Quebec, Laurie hosts a nightly radio show, Passion, on CJAD 800. With over 27 years in radio and several books published, she’s the most well known sex therapist in Montreal. In this interview Laurie talks about starting out as a therapist, the kinds of clients she sees, and how both have changed since she started.
[2:08] Laurie Betito talks about how she became a sex therapist. She began in psychology and social wok, where she got her doctorate. She did a two-year intensive sex therapy training in between degrees. Then she went into media, to reach the general public.
[3:50] Laurie explains why she chose sex therapy. She was the person in high school everyone went to for relationship information (she got hers from Cosmopolitan magazine). Sex therapy was a natural fit for her.
[5:32] As the oldest of four kids, Laurie babysat a lot, and she took care of her grandmother. She knew she’d end up in the helping profession.
[6:06] Laurie talks about her practice. She has two offices in Montreal, and specializes in marriage counseling. Every evening from 10-11pm Eastern time she hosts a radio show on sexuality, now in its 17th year. She’s been in radio for 27 years.
[8:22] Laurie explains more about her show. She puts together returning monthly panels of guests and experts. She invites gynecologists, teachers, a urologist—a wide range of professionals. Listeners call in and text in questions.
[10:54] Laurie’s had authors, porn stars, all sorts of people on her show. She has 50,000 listeners a night. Every show is streamable from the website cjad.com, and some are live streamed on Facebook. You can also download the shows from Itunes, where the podcast is called Passion.
[13:30] Laurie speaks about her private practice. She sees a maximum of 25 patients a week.
[13:54] Laurie discusses her book, The Sex Bible for People Over 50, which came out two years ago. She was on a short deadline, and she’s proud of it. It’s a how-to book with pictures.
[15:45] Laurie sees people with low libido, sex addictions, erectile dysfunction, painful intercourse, performance anxiety, infertility issues, and infidelity.
[17:20] Laurie speaks on how she works with couples after infidelity.
[18:39] Laurie talks about the changes in sexual issues she’s worked with over the course of her career.
[20:45] Turning to porn for sex education has created a lot of performance anxiety in young men, who come to Laurie with erectile dysfunction.
[21:34] Laurie sees more clients with more extreme fetishes now, the ones that cause marital distress, as opposed to people with foot fetishes, which are well supported on the Internet.
[22:55] Laurie talks about polyamory, which has been around secretly for a long time. Now three-way couples are out in public. When she started, gay marriage was not legal.
[25:44] Laurie speaks to curiosity that keeps people listening to her show.
[26:12] Laurie talks about her start in private practice. She rented an hourly space. Eventually, she was able to rent an office with another professional.
[29:00] After 27 years on the air in Montreal, Laurie’s the go-to sex therapist in Montreal. She doesn’t have to advertise, but she does remind listeners to call for a consultation.
[31:24] Laurie has a lot of patient turnover, which is part of being a sex therapist.
[31:45] Laurie talks about the many support groups she has run over the years. Now she’s running workshops for mental health professionals sex therapy.
[33:12] Laurie discusses giving talks at nonprofits and other organizations. She does a lot of speaking. When she’s not working at her practice or radio show, she writes and blogs. She does legal expertise work too.
[35:05] Laurie talks a little about her non-work activities.
[35:43] Laurie offers advice for new therapists: specialize. If you can find one area that fascinates you and you can specialize in, get known in that area. Make your name come up first.
Bio –Dr. Laurie Betito – Psychologist, Montreal, Quebec
Dr. Laurie Betito is a clinical psychologist in Montreal, Canada with a specialty in sex therapy, and has been a practicing psychotherapist for the last 27 years. For the last 24 years she has been doing radio and television, dispensing sex and relationship advice. She is a regular contributor to various magazines, newspapers and television shows. She is presently heard nightly in Montreal on CJAD 800—her show Passion has been on the air for over 16 years and has always been number one in its time slot.
Dr. Laurie is also President of the Sexual Health Network of Quebec (formerly Planned Parenthood), and past president of the Canadian Sex Research Forum. You can find out more about Laurie at her website: http://drlaurie.com
Dr. Laurie is the author of The Sex Bible for People Over 50
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