Sex And Dating Anxiety And What To Do About It With David Khalili
David Khalili is a sex and relationship therapist, a board-certified sexologist, and the founder of Rouse Relational Wellness, a group practice focusing on anxiety about sex and dating. David focuses on working with men, couples, and multi-ethnic individuals. Additionally, David hosts online continuing education workshops for therapists focusing on sex and anxiety.
Anxiety causes a lot of stress and can even hinder couples from intimacy or individuals from getting into the dating scene.
Like many mental health issues, anxiety stems from perceptions developed by life experiences or one’s own environment. It affects relationships and downgrades confidence. Some cases may vary, but one can overcome anxiety with the help of an expert.
As a sex and relationship therapist, David Khalili introduces ways to treat and cope with the kind of anxiety that many people rarely talk about. David founded the Rouse Relational Wellness, a group practice where he works with men, couples, and multi-ethnic individuals to acknowledge and validate their feelings. By helping them identify sources of their anxiety, he empowers them with ways to act on it.
With his online educational workshops, David shares how important proper education on sex and dating-related anxiety can help debunk stigma.
01:25 Introducing David Khalili
03:06 What are the common issues among David’s clients?
05:22 How do anxieties in sex and dating form?
08:00 It’s important to validate how they feel.
9:30 Do men and women have different ways of thinking?
13:43 Anxiety in sex and dating does not only stem from trauma.
18:23 What is the common thought among men and women during initial therapy?
22:26 What is the best advice for married couples?
25:46 What is the best self-care advice?
Learn more about relationship wellness at Rouse Therapy: https://www.rousetherapy.com/
Visit David Khalili’s Rouse Academy: https://www.rouseacademy.com/
Rate the show:If you enjoyed this episode, please consider providing an honest rating of the show here www.mentalhealthtodayshow.com/reviews/new . Your review will really help the show reach more people - thank you!
Learn more about John Cordray at www.johncordray.com
Disclaimer:The Mental Health Today Show is for educational purposes only and should not be interpreted as therapy. If you are seeking therapy, please contact a licensed therapist for help.
[00:00:00] John Cordray: Today, our topic is going to be a topic that's so needed in our society these days. And yet, so often we don't talk about it. We are either embarrassed about it, or we just feel like we're the only ones that has this type of anxiety. And so this episode I'm really excited about, and I have a special guest with me and we're gonna talk about sex and dating anxiety.
[00:00:25] That is a huge topic. And so we're gonna talk about that. Do a deep dive and, and what to do about it. So sex and dating anxiety and what to do about it with David Khali coming right up.
[00:00:39] Welcome back to The Mental Health Today Show.
[00:00:40] Show my name is John Cordray. I am a licensed therapist in the host of this show and I am so glad that you're back. If you're new. Welcome. Glad to have you to the show. If you've been around for a while, I'm always glad to have you. If you get a minute and you're able to, I would love for you to go and subscribe to the show and maybe even [00:01:00] give a rating in a review that really helps the show.
[00:01:03] And more people are able to see it. Well, I am really excited about this. I want to talk to you about my special guest. We are gonna be talking about sex and dating anxiety. And so I wanna talk to all your parents. This is not a rate at X or even a rate at R, but we are going to talk about sex. that's gonna be part of what we talk about.
[00:01:25] And so if you have a child, if you you're in a car and you have children, just so you know, wanna give you a little heads up on that, but it's gonna be a good. For sure. So let me just kind of talk to you about my guest. David is a sex and relationship therapist. He's also a board certified sexologist in the founder of Rouse.
[00:01:48] I hope I pronounce that. Right. Relational wellness, a group practice, focusing on anxiety to sex and dating. David focuses on working with. Couples and [00:02:00] multiethnic individuals. And he also hosts an online continuing education workshops for therapists, focusing on sex and email@example.com. Now, if I got that wrong, David, you let me know.
[00:02:17] So welcome to the show. So glad that you're here. Appreciate you taking some.
[00:02:22] David Khalili: Thank you so much, John. Yeah. It's great to be here. Yeah, that it's ROS. Yeah. No, it's good. It's, it's good feedback. But it's like arou you know either be aroused or aroused awake. Yes. Makes
[00:02:34] John Cordray: total sense.
[00:02:36] David Khalili: But I love being here.
[00:02:37] Thank you for that intro. Yeah. You're, you're
[00:02:39] John Cordray: very welcome. You're very welcome. And, and like you said, this topic is a really important one and one that I think probably isn't talked a whole lot. No. So tell me a little bit about your practice in, let me know what you have found when you work with your clients.
[00:02:56] David Khalili: Great. Yeah. So I've been in practice for a little over 10 years and [00:03:00] I've been in sexual wellness for about 20 years. I worked at sex shops or as they like to call adult boutiques in Texas and California, and kind of got some information there working with customers. And also I was a, a book buyer, so I was.
[00:03:12] Kinda selecting the books that we would be presenting there and then went into academia, left academia and now I'm you know, trained as a therapist. And so I opened up ROS relational wellness this year, actually in, in the Castro district in San Francisco, but we also do online therapy in California.
[00:03:28] We work with individuals relationships. Of all structures and groups, I run men's group for sex and dating anxiety. And we'll be having groups later on this year for survivors of intimate partner violence. Oh, that's great. Yeah. We just had a workshop, our clinician, Marjorie BOS Vasquez did a wonderful workshop on sex and intimacy for survivors, which will be on RAs academy later on, actually.
[00:03:53] So yeah, that's our, like our main focus. We. Be the place that people can trust and go to for [00:04:00] tackling or understanding how anxiety, trauma, things like that have affected their relationship to sex and gender. We really just want people to feel less shame and less anxiety about who they are and how they are and what they like and really address what they need.
[00:04:15] I think, you know, we can easily fall into a trap of, you know, what we should be or feeling like we're too much or not enough. And so we want to offer different avenues of treating that anxiety to, to build up the confidence, to build up the knowledge of who they are as people in, you know, how they wanna operate their relationships or what values they wanna work.
[00:04:36] Or identify. Yeah. And so, yeah, we have a couple of different approaches. One is, you know, kind of solution focused. And another one is, you know, looking at kind of the background, their, your, your relationship history, your childhood history, seeing how things have been kind of impacted in your present day.
[00:04:56] Well, I think
[00:04:56] John Cordray: that's awesome. Just fantastic. And you, [00:05:00] you mentioned it a little bit ago about how a lot of the sex and dating anxiety forms from history, whether it's trauma or violence or some other history in someone's life. And can you, can you tell me a little bit about that and how does someone's past history affect.
[00:05:23] The anxiety around sex and dating.
[00:05:26] David Khalili: Yeah, that's a great question. So, you know, one thing that I really like to tell people is the more that I learn about our nervous systems and how they develop over time, how they react to trauma, how they react to safety or to threats and how our nervous systems then kind of keep hold of.
[00:05:46] The more, I have respect for people that are actively trying to work on their nervous systems and actively trying to work on their trauma and their anxiety and their sense of safety. Cause it's a lot of work. It's, you're, you're contending with a, another part of yourself that you [00:06:00] kind of have communication with and you need to develop a more robust communication style or a healthier relationship.
[00:06:06] I like to say, like, I want to build help you build a relationship with yourself, with your sexuality, with your nervous. so people with the trauma history, I guess, to put it from like a, a nervous system point of focus is, and a relational attachment based focus is their, their attachment style, their nervous system, their psychology as they develop, as they get older, they're learning, you know, who to trust, how to trust who's safe and when they're safe and if they're getting experiences.
[00:06:34] Things aren't safe or it's only safe under certain circumstances or what have you then, you know, their body, their, their mind, their ways of relating to people adapt to that so that they can actually get safe, that they can be protected. And that can lead to some, you know, relationship issues sometimes, or that can lead to just not getting needs met because people end up going into the shutdown mode because they've been really erratic environments or [00:07:00] childhoods, or, you know, been traumatized quite a bit, or have C PTSD.
[00:07:04] And so our, our work is then to help them identify like how it shows up in the here and now and, and say like, it totally makes sense. Why you, why that was an adaptive strategy. That makes sense. Why you had it. So we're not shaming. We're not, you know, judging. We're not saying like, look what you've done.
[00:07:19] Obviously that would be a really shitty therapist thing to do. Mm. Or bad therapist thing to do, but we're saying, okay, that's why you had it. And let's see what are some strategies that we can put into play using, you know, mindfulness or act therapy, you know, to make some changes in your life that would be for your betterment.
[00:07:37] John Cordray: Oh, that's great. Yeah. So validate how they feel. So we're not invalidating him because they're already embarrassed. Aren't they, when they, when they, by the time someone comes to you and they admit that they have some anxiety around sex. Yeah. There's a lot of shame already there. Yeah. And to validate that that is, you know, it makes sense that you feel that way, but you don't [00:08:00] have to feel that way.
[00:08:01] David Khalili: Right. Yeah, you don't have to feel embarrassed about your desires. You know, we can look at how they may show up or, you know, I think there's a great, there's a great book called tell me what you want by Justin lay Miller. He's a, a researcher and psychologist at the Kinsey Institute in Indiana university.
[00:08:18] And it was the largest study. Since the Kinsey study, there was about 3000 people and they studied people's fantasies. And it's a great book to just show the normalization of fantasies and the different fantasies that people have. And a lot of those fantasies, people think, you know, they're weird for having them mm-hmm and then they end up getting some shame or anxiety around it, and then they don't share it with people or their partners, and then they don't get their needs met.
[00:08:42] And what I really like about the book is that. These fantasies are totally normal and actually more often than not people have them. And just because people have fantasies doesn't mean that they want to act down on them. And so just to kind of like that type of education also, and de shaming can go a long way.
[00:08:58] John Cordray: Well, that is [00:09:00] that, that is a great thing because there is a lot of shame yeah. In, in, around this. So would you say David, that men and women have different ways of thinking and, and maybe the anxiety might be from different points of view when it comes to sex and dating?
[00:09:19] David Khalili: Yeah. I mean, I think that there's a way in which there's a socialization that happens that puts.
[00:09:25] Expectations some more realistic than others on men and women in how they see themselves, how they present themselves, how they should center their needs or decenter their needs, you know, all kinds of folks have anxiety, but you know, they show up differently for men, women in non-binary folks. And, you know, anxiety has gone through the roof since COVID, that's no surprise there.
[00:09:51] Mm-hmm. And now we're seeing, you know, with whatever's happening with the reintroduction or reopening, pandemic's not [00:10:00] over, but you know, people are going out more and the anxiety's. Anxiety's up, right? Cuz they're like, okay, I've been internet dating or I've been isolated or I've just been talking with my partner or whatnot.
[00:10:11] And now I'm dating again. I work with poly folks too. So there becomes an anxiety of, you know, how should I look? How should, what, what gender roles should I meet? What what are the expectations? And so, you know, for women, oftentimes the anxiety shows up in terms of, you know, Like an expectation to perform in a way that's different than men's expectation to perform.
[00:10:34] You know, it does show up differently for, for men and women and non-binary folks in terms of what their expectations are, what they believe their expectations are of them. You know, anxiety is a way of assessing danger or assessing threat, but it's also a part of people's like perfectionistic tendencies or relational ways of seeking safety or seeking belonging.
[00:10:55] And so a lot of it is a strategy to stay connected or to be safe. Right. [00:11:00] And so. For men, there's, there's an expectation to, to perform in a certain way that they've either learned through, through porn or through mainstream media or through, you know, kind of the stories shared amongst men and those stories don't entail, you know, ups and downs as it were of, of sex and, you know, having different desires, having desires outside of your genitalia, you know, being okay with.
[00:11:27] You know, they're being focused outside of just, you know, getting hard and having sex mm-hmm and, and women, the, especially for straight women, they're told that, you know, they should decenter their pleasure and put it on for men. And then, you know, kind of create this. Performance or this dynamic where it's centering the man's pleasure, you know, lately on, on social media, I've been kind of on this kick of when you're having sex.
[00:11:52] Are you trying to prove something or are you trying to connect? Mm. And. Both can be wonderful and fun, but I think it's just good to know [00:12:00] when both are all people involved or on the same page, you know? Cause if one person's trying to prove something they're not connected to that partner. Mm-hmm and like, who are you trying to prove it to?
[00:12:10] And what for, and so. I've also found that anxiety can lead to, to harm, you know, because the, you know, for the men I work with, you know, they, they can be kind of stuck in their head, in their own anxiety and they're not really related to the person they're not connected to the person or attuned to the person and they're just focused on, okay, I gotta just stay hard or I gotta reach my orgasm or whatever it might be.
[00:12:32] Mm-hmm and they're not. Checking in on their partner. They're not even asking if their partner, you know, they're not doing the call and response sort of thing that can, that happened in a lovely sexual experience. It's more of just, can I show that I've got what it takes or mm-hmm can I reach that orgasm and that can lead to boundary violations.
[00:12:51] It can lead to just, you know, an uncomfortable or traumatized time. Yeah.
[00:12:58] John Cordray: And, and [00:13:00] when that happens, then, like you said, it, there is. no healthy communication going on. Mm-hmm and then it becomes self gratification. Mm-hmm and I want it for myself. And that is probably reenacting if you will, the, the trauma that they may have gone through.
[00:13:17] Yeah. And sometimes it's not just trauma, though. Correct? With the, the anxiety around sex and dating, it could be upbringing. And a, a philosophy or religion or a way of thinking about sex and dating and some, a lot of times parents, well, they don't talk about it because it's taboo. Totally. And so what would you tell someone that maybe listening to this that maybe their parents didn't really talk to them when they were young about sex dating and maybe they've learned it from other sources?
[00:13:52] David Khalili: Yeah, I mean, I. Remind them that. So one, one part of my work with people is asking them, like, what do they [00:14:00] know about sex and how, how do they, how do they define successful sex? How do they define, like, what do they know about their as Emily Naski says and come as you are, you know, your accelerator in breaks.
[00:14:11] Your turn ons and turn offs. And so I'm getting an idea of what their ma internal map is of sex and sexuality. And then I stay curious, I'm like, oh, okay. Interesting. Where where'd you come across that piece of information? Or where did you. And then what I do is I offer lots of resources. I'm a big bibliotherapy fan, I'm reading or listening to books and podcasts all the time.
[00:14:35] And so in between our time together, it's not like a homework assignment, but if you wanna learn more about this, check out this book, tell me what you want that book or the multi Amory podcast, let's say. And so we are, you know, Giving them the resources to educate themselves from, from others, because sometimes, you know, you can get good information from peers, but other times it can be through that lens of either, [00:15:00] you know, toxic masculinity or through some sort of moral lens or through religion or conservative background or whatnot.
[00:15:08] And. The point of all of that is to say, okay, well, here's, here's the information on sex and sexuality. Here's what these groups of folks or these cultures or these religions say about sex and sexuality. What is it that you want? What do you want in your life? What is it that you want in, in sex and intimacy in touch, in relationships, in safety and security, you get to decide that you're a whole human being.
[00:15:34] You've gotta. Beautiful body. Let's learn about it. Let's learn about, you know, what you're interested in and then help you define, you know, your boundaries and then how to talk about that with your partner and how to talk about it in a way where, you know, it's not pressuring, obviously it's not putting any expectations on, it's just kind of naming that.
[00:15:53] And it, you know, I have one of my workshops that I did, it was, wasn't a plan of mine, but just through my workshops on sex and [00:16:00] anxiety, I kept getting people reaching out to me saying. This is really helpful. I'm understanding how anxiety impacts sex and sexuality getting some like mindfulness strategies.
[00:16:08] But how do I talk to my partner about this? How do I. Open up to my partner about my anxiety or how do I open up to my partner about, you know, what it is I need to help me with my anxiety. And so I have a workshop called talking about performance anxiety on ROS academy. And it's just a way to kind of use some dialectical behavioral therapy techniques to ground yourself to identify your values and, you know, your.
[00:16:30] Mission, let's say in that conversation and then to say it in this really, you know, nonviolent communication sort of way of just kind of naming the facts of how anxiety shows up for you and where it comes from. And so it's, you know, people talk about therapy being reparenting quite a bit. And like, this is, I guess one part of parenting is teaching about sex and helping them find stuff, find information on their own because in some ways we can be a parent to them and they don't really want to.
[00:16:56] Share too much with us, you know, it is still a [00:17:00] privacy thing. And I guess one last thing is I totally normalize, you know, I've, I can talk openly and easily about sex all day and night. And I, I do, but you may not have that same comfort. And so I totally understand that we're just meeting while I may be ready to hear everything.
[00:17:15] You may not be ready to open up a much to me. And so I recommend that, you know, you tune in with yourself and see what feels good enough to share with me right now. And then we can always work. Hmm.
[00:17:25] John Cordray: I, I really like that. It's, it's the, it sounds like you encourage people to normalize it. It's okay to feel the way you do, but we also want to communicate and open up about it and validate one another mm-hmm and it's, it's kind of like um, it is a relationship, but it's, it's almost like a dance in a way.
[00:17:45] Yeah. Right. And, and you have to open up and communicate with one another in order to. And this is very, very similar to that. What would you say David would be a common thought? So when you have a [00:18:00] client that comes to you, maybe for the first time, maybe for the first session, what would you say has been a common thought either from men or women, or maybe it's common with both when they first come in and they talk to you about this?
[00:18:15] Cuz I would imagine they come in to see you with a lot of shame and guilt.
[00:18:19] David Khalili: Yeah. I mean, it's of so much as the am I normal and yes, the answer is yes. You know, it's very, I think that's like the more, it's the common thing, the normal thing is to worry that you're not normal and we've just, it's such an inside job that we've been, you know, we've internalized these, the moral messages that.
[00:18:40] Sex is bad. Pleasure is bad, all within consent. And I think that's the thing is I think some of the messaging that was intended to protect people around consent and all that, some people have internalized it to then just be like, all sex is bad, you know, or all sex side marriage is bad. And so, yeah, I mean, you know, this is kind of a slight tangent, [00:19:00] but you know, one principle that I work from is.
[00:19:03] This sexuality, psychologist and researcher, Gail Rubin from the eighties, she wrote an article called the charmed circle, where she talks about how the, you know how sex and sexuality is made into a hierarchy. And so people that are in the charm circle are the people that are seen as like the quote unquote normal.
[00:19:22] People, the people that meet the mainstream standards that meet the, the moral expectations of, you know, heterosexual don't have sex for money only have sex for procreation. Don't engage in, you know, oral or anal sex, those kind of things. And then anyone outside of that is the, you know, the outer limits.
[00:19:38] And, you know, my work is to tell people that are in the outer limits, that as long as consent is involved and you're aware of why you're doing it and what you're doing it for, then. Have at it, man, you're have a good time. You know, and this is, this is access that we can have to ourselves. And I think that's the other thing is a lot of men, we are socialized to have a limited.[00:20:00]
[00:20:00] Expression of our emotions and like bell hooks talks about this wonderfully in the will to change. I think that's like anyone that has ever met a man should read that book and she just does a wonderful job better than I could ever do in encapsulating. Just how, you know, toxic masculinity. And as she puts the dominator culture has really shifted relationships into power struggles rather than into relationships of connecting.
[00:20:27] Mm. That might be on a tangent a bit, but to answer your question. Yeah, that's the, the common question is, am I normal? And sometimes people will wait many sessions to reveal the, the secret that they have or the thing that they feel really ashamed about. And I, you know, I, I appreciate them opening up to me and, and some ways I say, you know, I totally understand why you're holding the shame and lots of other people experience this, but I guess people can feel.
[00:20:56] My experience is that if you go right to normalizing and validating, [00:21:00] it can actually feel minimizing of their shame and of their anxiety. If that makes sense. Mm-hmm
[00:21:06] John Cordray: absolutely. Well, that makes a lot of sense. Am I normal? Is there something wrong with me? That it makes a lot of sense that people would have that because if they're carrying a lot of shame and guilt, that those thoughts tend to be prevalent.
[00:21:21] Yeah. Right. With someone. So I, I know we're ending near our time here, but I'm, I'm really in interested in this question as well with when it comes to married couples. And I've had many clients that talk about a sexless marriage or maybe one or the other partner, not engaging in sex for some reason, but there's a lot of, lot of guilt and shame around that too.
[00:21:47] And so they don't really talk about it. They don't communicate it. Mm-hmm what would, what would you encourage or say to a couple that's experiencing the lack of sex in
[00:21:59] David Khalili: their marriage? [00:22:00] Yeah, I would. It's encouraging them to, you know, it's asking lots of questions and encouraging them to really get down to the root of what is going on for.
[00:22:08] For them, for each person individually and them as a couple, like helping and then helping them define for themselves what they like about sex and sexuality. What do they like about sexual performance, you know, and what they don't like, but there can be so much involved with long term relationship and sex going down.
[00:22:27] You know, there can be hormonal changes. There can be trauma, there can be anxiety. There can be stress, you know, during COVID pen, you know lockdown. I had some clients that were saying that I never wanna have sex. Again, another client saying that they, I can only think about sex and it's just, people's different reactions to anxiety and, and stress.
[00:22:44] And so I, I wanna look at, you know, for the therapist out there, it's like the bio psychosocial approach, you know, what is the medical stuff that's going on? What's the internal, psychological, you know, thoughts or moods or emotions that are going on for you. And then what's going on in your environment.
[00:22:59] That's [00:23:00] impacting this, really breaking it down and getting as specific as possible is what. Falling into line. And I think that. We were all raised to view sex in a really linear way. Martha KPE, who's a wonderful sex therapist in Wisconsin talks about the circular model of sex, where, you know, traditionally we think of sex as this like series of acts that they all lead from one to another.
[00:23:24] It's a linear model, right? You make eyes, you touch, you kiss so on and so forth until orgasm and, and then you take a nap or whatever. But, and the problem with that is that if any, one of those. Points there's an issue or it doesn't go right. Then it feels like, well, we're not having sex anymore. And then it goes out the window.
[00:23:44] And then the more you repeat that experience, the more frustrated you are and the more that's associated with sex. But if you can develop a, a relationship, if you can develop a strategy of like, Just because we do one type of sex act doesn't mean that it has to lead to orgasm or doesn't mean that it has to [00:24:00] lead to the other type of sex act that we're normally used to.
[00:24:03] We can kind of bounce around and it's this wonderful circle of options. And you get to be in the middle of that circle and you get to kind of pick and choose like a little Schorge sport and have fun that way. And it kind of takes away the pressure to perform. It takes away the pressure to, to get to the next.
[00:24:20] John Cordray: Yeah, that, and I think that's so important. It goes right back to communication and communicating expectations. Mm-hmm yep. And, and communi communicating fears too, with one another, which is, was so important when it comes to, to the, the sex and dating. So excellent. Excellent advice and tips. I really appreciate you coming in David.
[00:24:42] Oh, thank you, John. Yeah, I appreci. You're welcome. And just kind of telling us about your expertise. This is an issue, and I would imagine that you, of all people know that this is a, a very big issue in, in our society. And the one that's not really talked about as much. [00:25:00] And so I'm really glad that you were able to, to come and talk to us today.
[00:25:04] David Khalili: Thank you for your time. And thank you for having this podcast. It's it's a really great one.
[00:25:08] John Cordray: Yeah. Well, thank you so much. And before I let you go, though, one of the questions I like to ask, all of my guests is about self care. I talk a lot about self-care where, where the, the helpers helping other people, and yet we need to help ourselves as well.
[00:25:24] So what, what, what are some things that you do for self.
[00:25:29] David Khalili: Yeah, I need more of it, but it's I have a very cute kiddo. Who's pretty new and I, I play with him a lot and he helps me be, be present and. Playful and full of joy and also reminds me to be patient . Yes . And I also think that having a theoretical framework is self-care like having mm-hmm, having a, a way, you know, and I have kind of an eclectic framework, but just having that modality is a really good boundary.
[00:25:57] It's a really good way of taking care of yourself [00:26:00] because it's, it gives you a path. It gives you some guidance and doesn't feel like it's all on you to take care of the client or patient. I love. That's
[00:26:10] John Cordray: a great question. Yeah. Thank you. Yeah, no, you're, you're welcome because that's even as therapist, we've gotta practice
[00:26:15] David Khalili: what we preach.
[00:26:16] Oh boy. Yeah. right. I'm guilty, man. Yeah, yeah. Yep. Yep. We
[00:26:21] John Cordray: we're so focused on helping others. So sometimes we overlook helping ourselves. Yep. So, well again, David, thank you for that. I think, appreciate you telling us a little bit about what you do for self-care. That is important. We all need to work on it.
[00:26:34] Even therapists, we need to work on self-care yeah. We need to talk about it. So that's really all for this episode. Thank you so much for listening. If you wanna find out more about what David offers go to Roe academy.com and that's Roe academy.com. It will all the information will be in the show notes.
[00:26:55] So you can go check that out and again, make sure that you [00:27:00] subscribe to the show, give, leave a rating. It'll be great. Appreciate you all take care of yourself and, and just want to remind you that we champion your mental health since 2015.
Founder & Therapist
David Khalili is a sex and relationship therapist, board-certified sexologist, and founder of Rouse Relational Wellness, a group practice focusing on anxiety to sex and dating. David focuses on working with men, couples, and multi-ethnic individuals. Additionally, David hosts online continuing education workshops for therapists focusing on sex and anxiety at rouseacademy.com