Transforming sexual and mental health conversations, one session at a time.
Madeline Cooper, LCSW, CST
Like so many of my peers and colleagues, discussing sexuality and healthy relationships was taboo when I was growing up. Other sources, from middle school gossip and tenth grade health class, informed my basic understanding of these issues, and they often left me more confused. I was taught that sex was only for people “in love,” or married, that orgasms always happened like they do in movies, and that masturbation was “kind of weird.” These misconceptions made navigating the social landscape of young adulthood that much harder. I sought out better information where I could find it; Planned Parenthood’s website became my beginner’s guide to birth control.
When I entered college and ultimately graduate school, I began to learn about the many misconceptions about sexuality and what is perceived as “normal” versus “abnormal” – and how many of these I believed for most of my life. Many of us are unprepared for healthy, loving, romantic relationships and as a society, continue to adopt puritan, outdated notions surrounding sexuality. I became a psychotherapist and sex therapist to help people learn about and challenge these misconceptions. My work revolves around creating a space for clients where sexual health and mental health are just as important as one’s physical wellbeing.
I received my B.S. at Cornell University and my M.S.W. at Columbia University. I am a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW), an AASECT certified sex therapist and am a graduate of the University of Michigan’s Sexual Health Sex Therapy Certificate Program. I have also completed Levels 1 and 2 of EMDRIA-approved EMDR training through the Personal Transformation Institute. I am a member of the Society for Sex Therapy and Research (SSTAR), the Clinician's Collective of New York City, and the Women's Mental Health Consortium. I have guest lectured at academic institutions, non-profit organizations, and independent wellness retreats.
Opening up and going to therapy can be a scary experience, but I strive to make it a safe and worthwhile experience for everyone who comes to see me. I work with individuals and often their partner or partners to set goals that will work best within their lives. I challenge my clients but also support them in living their most authentic lives, and always provide a non-judgmental, listening ear.
With years of experience working in an outpatient mental health clinic and in school settings, I am well versed in different therapeutic approaches and have worked with individuals with a wide range of mental health diagnoses. Rather than using one method with all clients, I am integrative in my approach with each client depending on their specific needs.
These approaches include but are not limited to:
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT)
I am able to provide lectures and lead discussions in schools, non-profits, workplaces, and other institutions that would like further consent education, anti-harassment education, social justice education, and of course, sexuality education. Please feel free to reach out to me for further details and I am happy to give examples of lectures given in the past.
Let’s start with what sex therapy is NOT. Sex therapy is not sex work or sex surrogacy. There is no having sex or engaging in sexual activity in my office. While I support the work of sex workers and sex surrogates, this is not what I do.
Sex therapy is talk therapy, otherwise known as psychotherapy. While sexuality, intimacy and relationship dynamics play a key role in our lives, so many people are afraid and hesitant to talk about these topics. As a psychotherapist and sex therapist, I am here to help you give you a safe space to talk about your sexual and mental health and develop coping skills to handle issues you want to address.
My areas of specialty include helping:
Individuals struggling with desire, arousal, orgasm, and painful sex issues
Couples suffering from a breakdown in communication
Individuals and couples navigating non-monogamy
Individuals whose negative body images are impacting their sexual and mental health
Individuals with Out of Control Sexual Behaviors ("sex addiction," "porn addiction")
Women having difficulty with sexuality pre and postpartum
Individuals, couples, and partners challenged by kink interests
Survivors recovering from sexual trauma
Couples coping with Infidelity
Individuals needing LGBTQ-affirmative therapy
What makes you qualified to be my therapist?
I’m so glad you asked! I received my B.S. at Cornell University and my M.S.W. at Columbia University. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW); in order to become an LCSW, I had to conduct 2,000 hours of psychotherapy and diagnosis and a minimum of 100 hours of clinical supervision over the span of 3 years. However, I have many more hours than this under my belt!
I am also an AASECT certified sex therapist. This means I have taken over 150 hours of sexual health education courses and have completed more than two years of supervision while providing many hours of sex therapy.
Are you willing to see both my partner(s) and me?
Yes! I welcome all individuals and their partner or partners to therapy.
Are my sessions confidential?
Everything you say during therapy is confidential and kept within our space. The two exceptions to this rule are if you are a danger to yourself or a danger to others. As a social worker, I am also a mandated reporter and am required by law to report suspected abuse or neglect of a child.
How much do you charge per session?
I charge $200 for an individual 45-minute therapy session and $250 for an hour with couples. I have some sliding scale availability in my schedule for individuals and couples who cannot afford this fee.
Do you take insurance?
I do not take insurance. However, I can help you with any out of network benefits you may have and will help you work with your insurance company to receive any reimbursement they provide for the services.
Where do you work?
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I am providing therapy online at this time. I conduct teletherapy, which means we meet on a secure video platform online so we can still see each other during sessions. I am licensed to work individuals throughout New York and New Jersey. You can also check with your state's licensing board to see if they are making any exceptions for COVID-19 and licensure if you are out of these two states.
How can I contact you?
Please feel free to call me at 917-719-4761 or fill out the contact page below. We will have a 15-minute free phone consultation before getting started.
-- Madeline featured in "A Case for Fingering Yourself Instead of Using a Vibrator"
-- Madeline featured in "22 Signs You're Falling in Love, According to Therapists"
-- Madeline featured in "Why a Sex Journal Might Be Right for You -- And How to Do It"
-- Madeline featured in "30 Ideas to Spice Up Sexual Foreplay, from Erotic to Romantic"
-- Madeline featured in "Masturbating Can Help You Cope with Anxiety -- Seriously"
-- Madeline featured in "How to Orgasm Faster: 21 Techniques for Women to Try"
- Madeline featured in "5 Things Couples With Healthy Sex Lives Do, According to a Sex Therapist"
- Madeline featured in "Why You're Self Sabotaging Your Relationship & 4 Ways to Stop"
- Madeline featured in "The Best Sex Toys for Couples, According to Sex Therapists and Relationship Experts"
- Madeline featured in "How to Safely Pull Hair During Sex"
Please feel free to fill out the contact sheet below or call 917-719-4761. We can have a 15-minute free phone consultation before we get started. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I am only conducting teletherapy sessions at this time.