Calling herself ‘The Naked Therapist’, Sarah White believes arousal can aid people in taking control of their lives and that is why the attractive psychology student offers therapy sessions in which her clients discuss their problems while she strips off her clothes.
“The goal is to show patients I have nothing to hide, and to encourage them to be more honest,” explains White.
“For men in particular, seeing a naked woman can really help them focus, look deeply into themselves and speak their minds openly.”
Sessions begin with White fully clothed. As the hour proceeds, she asks if the patient (who are, unsurprisingly, mostly male) minds if she removes her shirt.
Then her skirt. Then her bra and underwear. The patient rarely minds.
One-hour sessions cost $150, and at first are conducted over webcam. Once a level of trust has been established, patients can book in-person sessions, though the price increases fivefold.
The decision to keep one’s own clothes on is entirely up to the patient.
So far, she has around 30 clients which are an eclectic mix of college students with sexual issues, middle-aged men with relationship problems and even some women who enjoy a chat with a nude peer.
Clients schedule appointments through her website, sarahwhitelive.com.
White conceded that naked therapy is not approved by any mental health association. And she is not a licensed therapist.
While Sarah’s boyfriend supports her new business, her parents are still in the dark.
She said: ‘I should probably tell them before they read it in the paper.’
Not surprisingly, professional psychologists are not sold on her idea.
Diana Kirschner, a New York-based clinical psychologist, told the Daily News: ‘She’s using the word therapy here, but I don’t consider this therapy. I consider this interactive soft-core Internet porn.’
Any sexual interaction between patient and therapist is considered highly unethical by the American Psychoanalytic Association, the largest and oldest such organization in the nation.
Even physical contact violates its code of professional conduct.
But there is no physical contact in naked therapy. And, as Miss White points out: ‘It’s not like I’m having relationships with any of my patients.’