Board of Examiners in Sex Therapy & Counselling in Ontario

Upcoming events

    • 27 Oct 2022
    • 8:30 AM
    • 28 Oct 2022
    • 4:30 PM
    • Online

    Welcome to the BESTCO Fall Meeting Registration

    After successfully registering and sending payment to: you will receive a zoom link for the meeting on Oct 26th 2022.  Michelle McKitrick will be sending out the zoom link.

    Thursday October 27th, 2022
    Education Module Agenda

    8:30- 9:00 Mix and Mingle

    9:00- 9:05 Welcome  Anna Toth, MSc, RP, Incoming Chair, BESTCO Programming Committee

    9:05 - 10:30 Gender Affirming Sex Therapy  David Nylund, PhD

    To date, models and interventions utilized in sex therapy are based on binary, heterosexual, and cisgender norms—leaving those in same sex relationships, those with different abilities, those with multiple partners, and those with various gender and sexual identities, excluded from the conversation. This workshop will unpack taken for granted assumptions about gender, sexuality and sex practices. A model of sex therapy that is affirming of diverse gender identities and sexualities will be highlighted.

    10:30 -10:45 Break

    10:45 - 12:00 Gender Affirming Sex Therapy (continued)

    12:00 -1:00 Lunch

    1:00 - 4:00  Gender Affirming Surgeries: What is Helpful for Sex Therapists to                                Know  Women’s College Hospital Transition-Related Surgery (TRS)                             Program

    The afternoon session will focus on gender affirming surgical options and medical care for trans people and their families, presented by members of the Women’s College Hospital Transition Related Surgery Program, the only program of its kind in Ontario. Participants will have the opportunity to understand the needs and experiences of those accessing medical and surgical options, and how to support clients as they navigate the medical system. We will explore how to have medically informed conversations that are affirming of clients’ identities and choices.

    4:30-5:00 Group General Discussion & Debrief of the Day

    Friday October 28th, 2022 

    BESTCO Business Meeting, Case Consultations and Presentations

    8:00 - 8:30     Meet and Mingle

    8:30                Welcome

    8:45 - 10:15 BESTCO Business meeting (BESTCO members only)

    10:15-10:25 Break

    10:25 -10:30 Welcome guests

    10:30-11:30 Case Consultations- brief presentations of interesting or challenging cases with questions for group discussion

    Recommend a brief 3-5 minute outline of the issue(s) with discussion (10-12 minutes total). All are invited to participate. Associate Members are especially welcomed to present a quandary for the group to mull over. Given the day’s topic, questions around sexual compulsivity are encouraged, though all challenges will broaden our conversation. The aim is to use the collective wisdom of our membership to help solve problems and to help connect everyone within BESTCO

    11:30 -12:30 Case Presentation: “The Anxious Performer”  Kat Kova MSc, RP

    12:30 - 1:30 Lunch

    1:30-3:20 Perimenopause, Menopause and Post Menopause: An Introduction Nicole Schroeder MSW, RSW

    Despite the universal nature of menopause for half the planet’s population, few of us are fully in- formed about the symptoms, physical changes, medical concerns or treatment options. This webinar provides an overview into the nature of menopause symptoms, physical changes, medical concerns, treatment options as well as food for thought regarding frequently asked questions.

    There will be 30 minutes for questions from the audience following the presentation.

    3:30 -4:30 Case Presentation: "It's not all in your head! A biopsychosocial approach to treating pelvic pain and sexual aversion" Diana Melnick MA, RP

    4:30  Closing remarks

    Presenter Bios

    David Nylund is a Professor of Social Work at California State University Sacramento, Clinical Director/ Supervisor of the Gender Health Centre an agency serving the trans community, and long-time Vancou- ver School for Narrative Therapy faculty member. He has written three books: Narrative Therapies with Children and Adolescents (1997); Treating Huckleberry Finn: A New Narrative Approach to Working with Kids Diagnosed ADD/ADHD (2000); and Beer Babes and Balls: Sports Talk Radio and Masculinity (2007) along with publishing 55 articles on a wide range of narrative therapy theory, queer theory, and cultural studies topics. His newest book on Trans-affirmative therapy for working with transgender and non-binary people: A queer-informed narrative therapy approach will be out in 2022-2023. He conducts ongoing narrative therapy workshops for mental health professionals worldwide.

    Kat Kova is an Associate Member of BESTCO (Board of Examiners of Sex Therapy and Counselling in Ontario) and is currently a PhD student of the Social and Personality Psychology Program at York Univer- sity. She is interested in researching how relationship partners successfully integrate their sexual interests and preferences within their romantic relationships. She holds a Masters of Science Degree in Couple & Family Therapy Program from the University of Guelph, an Honours BA Degree in Psychology from York University and a Certificate in Sexuality Studies from York University. She has presented her research at the International Association for Relationship Research conference, the Canadian Psychological Associa- tion annual convention, the annual meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality and SEX- posium.

    Kat practices as a sex and relationship therapist at her practice Kat Kova Therapy in Toronto, which is home to a growing team of therapists, student-therapists and coaches. She is trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Emotionally-Focused Therapy (EFT), Solution-Focused Therapy (SFT), Narrative Therapy and mindfulness approaches and is also trained in embodied experien- tial dreamwork practices. Kat is also an avid lucid dreamer who spends her nights flying around and visit- ing different lands, which has been a helpful replacement for travel during the pandemic.

    Nicole Schroeder is a Registered Social Worker with the College of Social Workers in Ontario (OC- SWSSW). She obtained her Bachelor of Social Work from University of Victoria, and her Masters of So- cial Work from University of Toronto. She has also completed post-graduate training in couple and indi- vidual therapy in emotion focused therapy and sex therapy. She is a certified member of BESTCO (Board of Examiners in Sex Therapy and Counselling in Ontario). She currently works in an outpatient gynaecol- ogy clinic at a downtown Toronto hospital and in private practice, with a focus on individual, relationship, and sex therapy. She also facilitates virtual groups on menopause and sexuality at Bria, a virtual mental health clinic.

    Diana Melnick is a Registered Psychotherapist and clinical director of Toronto Intimacy Counselling, a multidisciplinary clinic specializing in treating sexual function in a religously and culturally sensitive man- ner. Diana is an Emotionally Focused therapist, combining EFT and CBT to successfully treat a range of sexual issues including pain, desire discrepency, inabilty to orgasm, erectile dysfunction, and aversion/fear of intimacy. She always uses a trauma-informed lens, creating a safe, non-judgmental, and inclusive space for her diverse clientele.

    Over the past decade, she has presented a variety of seminars and workshops to clinicians, therapists, educators, clergy members, and international audiences on an array of topics covering sexual health and sexual function throughout various life stages: puberty, pre-marital, unconsummated marriage/partner- ship, perinatal period, menopause, and seniors/aging. Prior to Covid she was an executive member of the Sexuall Health Network of Ontario, a government organization that brought together service providers working in and around sexual health for networking and education.

    A passionate advocate of marginalized women's rights, she has spent many years within her own Ortho- dox Jewish community liaising with community members, clergy, and health professionals to create awareness and change within the broader international Orthodox Jewish community with regard to mental health, sexual education, abuse awareness, LGBTQ+ inclusivity, and access to medical and mental health resources. She is actively involved with community organizations that help support couples who are struggling with fertility and dealing with pregnancy/infant loss. She is currently a board member of Core, an international Jewish women's advocacy organization active in 12 countries across the globe, which strengthens and empowers women to advocate for change in their own communities.

    Diana lives in Toronto with her husband and five children.

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