Meet our Team

Dr Allyson Waite

Dr Ally Waite is our Regional Director and One of Our Auckland Therapists

As regional director, I am responsible for all clinical practice in the central and North  Auckland area and in Northland. It is my job to direct you to the therapist who is most suitable for your needs. We have several excellent therapists operating in central Auckland. 

I am in private practice on the North Shore and in Parnell offering therapy for emotional and sexual intimacy difficulties . I completed Advanced Sex Therapy training when I first arrived in New Zealand and I now teach the courses which are now available through the Goodfellow Unit at Auckland University.

I trained in the UK in Cognitive Analytic Therapy, a relational model of therapy and my  practice is strongly informed by models of lifespan development and attachment. I am registered with ACC to provide Psychological Services and have a particular interest in working with people with trauma. I also offer 
general psychological assessment and treatment, supervision and training. 

I enjoy working with older people and issues of later life, indeed my background is in working with adults and older people presenting with severe and enduring mental health difficulties.

Regional Director
Auckland
North Shore
Parnell
D. Clin.Psy, B.Sc (Hons), C.Psyc. PG Dip. CAT, MNZCCP, MNZPsS

Helen Mounsey

Helen Mounsey is our South Island Regional Director and one of our Christchurch therapists

As regional director, it is my job to direct you to the therapist who is most suitable for your needs. We have three therapists operating in the South Island region.  All reside in Christchurch but for those who live further afield we are available for Skype sessions.

I have a private practice in the suburb of Spreydon, Christchurch. Both the location and parking are easy to find, and appointments are available on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

I have particular training and interest in individuals and couples who come with emotional and sexual intimacy concerns including the wish to repair from infidelity, compulsive sexual behaviors, surgery and trauma related matters. I have been involved in sex therapy for over 12 years and completed the Advanced Sex Therapy training in 2006. I work with relationships issues in general and have done so for over 20 years.

I believe most people want to work out practical solutions which they can sustain in their often busy lives.  Confidentiality is always paramount. I am accountable to the Code of Ethics of NZAC and ACC. I use a range of approaches, including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Narrative therapy and Attachment theory.

I also provide consultancy for a range of issues which include depression, stress, anxiety,  grief and loss and major life changes.  I worked for a number of years in high schools with adolescents before establishing my own clinical practice and so have a strong interest in parenting and families.

Regional Director
Christchurch
Spreydon
M.Ed (Cert. in Counselling), B.A, Dip Teaching (Secondary), NZAC

Mary Hodson

Mary Hodson is our Central and Lower North Island Regional Director and One of Our Bay of PlentyTherapists

As regional director and media spokesperson, it is my job to direct you to the therapist who is most suitable for your needs or best able to fulfil your media request. We have seven excellent therapists operating in the central and lower North Island region including me. 4 of those are in Wellington, 2 in Hamilton and 1 fully trained therapist and 1 intern in Tauranga.  5 women and 2 men. 

I am the senior consultant for Tauranga/ Mount Maunganui and I have been working with people with all kinds sexuality concerns since 2005 when I completed advanced sex therapy training. I specialise in working with couples with emotional and sexual intimacy difficulties and couples where one or both partners have a sexual addiction (now known as 'Out of Control sexual Behaviour' or OCSB). I am registered as a  sensitive claims provider with ACC. 

I am a member of both the New Zealand Association of Counsellors and the World Association of Sexologists (Asia-Pacific region) and I am registered with the NZ Council for Educational Research.  

I worked in health and disability related fields since I registered as an occupational therapist in 1983. My early work was with families that were struggling to cope with either alcohol abuse and its’ attendant problems or serious physical disability, I also taught community based counselling courses in the Far North community. Later, I taught clinical sciences and clinical practice at the school of Occupational Therapy in Wellington and the National Certificate in Human Services at Bay of Plenty Polytechnic.

Regional Director
Bay of Plenty
BA (Ed), Dip Occupational Therapy (Distinction), TTC, NZCER (CSp), MNZAC.

Mary Hodson

Mary Hodson is our Central and Lower North Island Regional Director and one of our senior consultants in Wellington

As regional director and media spokesperson, it is my job to direct you to the therapist who is most suitable for your needs. We have seven excellent therapists operating in the central and lower North Island region including me - 4 women and 2 men.

I have been working with people with all kinds of sexuality concerns since 2005 when I completed advanced sex therapy training. I specialise in working with couples with emotional and sexual intimacy difficulties and couples where one or both partners have a sexual addiction (now known as 'Out of Control sexual Behaviour' or OCSB). I am registered as a  sensitive claims provider with ACC. 

I am a member of both the New Zealand Association of Counsellors and the World Association of Sexologists (Asia-Pacific region) and I am registered with the NZ Council for Educational Research.  

I worked in health and disability related fields since I registered as an occupational therapist in 1983. My early work was with families that were struggling to cope with either alcohol abuse and its' attendant problems or serious physical disability, I also taught community based counselling courses in the Far North community.  Later, I taught clinical sciences and clinical practice at the school of Occupational Therapy in Wellington and the National Certificate in Human Services at Bay of Plenty Polytechnic.

Regional Director
Wellington
Terrace
Te Aro
BA (Ed), Dip Occupational Therapy (Distinction), TTC, NZCER (CSp), MNZAC.

Paula Dennan

Paula Dennan is our Central and South Auckland Regional Director and Therapist

As regional director I coordinate referrals within the Auckland Region liaising with the therapist who is most suitable for your needs. We have a team of eight excellent therapists operating in the Auckland Region including Central, North, South and East Auckland areas.    

I work in Central Auckland in Parnell.  I have over 25 years of clinical experience, having completed Advanced Sex Therapy training in 2005. I have a special interest in working with couples with emotional and sexual relationship/ intimacy issues.  I believe each person has a unique history of experiences and skills which influence their thinking, feelings and behaviour. I enjoy working collaboratively to develop the goals for therapy and developing new possibilities towards these goals.

I also provide consultancy for a range of personal and clinical issues (e.g. mood disorders - anxiety and depression, grief, emotional and/or sexual trauma which can also impact healthy sexual functioning).

I am also involved in training and supervising therapists in sex therapy and relationship therapy skills which enables me the opportunity to support our therapist and allied professional community.

Regional Director
Auckland
Parnell
Master Social Science (Hons), Dip of Psychology (Clinical); MNZPS, MSESNZ NZ Registered Clinical Psychologist

Debbie Penlington

Debbie Penlington is one of our consultants in Tauranga

I have almost completed formal training in advanced sex therapy through the University of  Auckland. I particularly enjoy working with individuals or couples who are experiencing sexual, emotional or intimacy issues, supporting them to make their relationship and sex lives as fulfilling and enjoyable as possible.

Common issues include  lack of closeness and connection; desire differences; self acceptance and body image; difficulty talking about sexual needs and preferences; sexual pain; performance anxiety; confusion over sexual orientation; affairs; erectile dysfunction and pornography. I find the combination of my nursing and counselling experience also enables me to work  effectively with clients where health issues / illness is impacting on their ability to maintain a satisfying close, intimate or sexual relationship.

I believe that every couple's relationship is special and different from all other relationships. Over time, cycles or patterns can develop in a relationship which make it difficult for partners to hear each other, neither partner is right or wrong - both just see the same situation from different perspectives. With my support each partner can better understand what is happening for them in the relationship, how this may be influenced by their previous experiences and how they impact on their partner.

My approach is strongly influenced by the work of Dr Sue Johnson who developed Emotionally Focussed Therapy (EFT) in the 1980's. EFT is one of the very few approaches to relationship issues that has had research on its effectiveness carried out. Compared to other approaches findings have been very positive showing that relationships of 80-90% of couples receiving EFT improved and 60% of these maintained their improvements or continued to improve. I work from rooms in the Tauranga CBD.

Mary Hodson is the regional director for central and lower North Island. To contact her click here

Bay of Plenty
MCouns, NZRN, MNZAC

Dennis Mills

Dennis Mills is one of our Christchurch therapists

The aim of my work as a sex therapist is to encourage optimal personal satisfaction and intimacy for individuals and couples in a respectful and safe atmosphere free of judgement.

I specialise in working with people who are stuck in damaging habits of interpersonal conflict, with Out of Control Sexual Behaviour (sexual addiction) and I have particular interest in exploring blocks to sexual desire in men and women and in the part that play and humour has in the maintenance of a fully alive relationship. 

I also work with clients who are seeking strategies to recover from an affair and others who wish to end a relationship with integrity. Increasingly I am meeting clients who are wondering about the absolute nature of lifelong monogamy.

I am in private practice in Merivale, Christchurch. I completed advanced sex therapy training in 2005 but have worked as a relationship counsellor for twenty years in New Zealand and in the UK. 

I also work at the University of Canterbury Health Centre and have skills and experience with issues including depression and stress and anxiety and I encourage the maintenance of physical and mental well-being. 

Before moving to New Zealand I was a social worker in child protection and spent several years working with men in violent relationships.

Christchurch
Merivale
Dip.Psychotherapy & Counselling, Cert Social Work, Dip. Community Development, MNZAC.

Gabriela Mercado

Gabriela Mercado is one of our Auckland therapists

My work has a special focus in relationship issues, emotional and sexual intimacy, gender identity conflicts and sex addiction. Through my professional and personal experience, I have found psychotherapy to be the most powerful tool to work out the emotional and psychological pain that prevents a person to live a fulfilling life.

I completed advanced training in sex therapy through the Goodfellow Unit, Auckland University in 2012. 

I have worked as a senior psychotherapist at the New Zealand Aids Foundation- Burnett Centre for seven years. I also work with migration and refugee issues. I am fluent in English and Spanish. My private practice is located in Ponsonby, Auckland.

Auckland
Ponsonby
Registered Psychotherapist, PBANZ; MHSc (Hons) Dip Psych MNZAP

Hilary Gerrard

Hilary Gerrard is one of our East Auckland therapists

I particularly enjoy navigating the difficulties clients have with sexual intimacy, sexual functioning, sexual and gender identity and sexuality related to illness and ageing.

I work from an eclectic mix of therapeutic modalities and try and tailor fit them to my individual client(s).  But, above all I believe in the client(s)/therapist relationship being central to the therapeutic work.

I competed advanced sex therapy training through the University of Auckland in 2012 and the P.G. Diploma in Counselling in 2010, but my interest in sex therapy began over 10 years ago. At the time I worked as a Clinical Nurse Specialist with HIV positive patients and listened to their individual struggles to have fulfilling intimate sexual relationships since their diagnosis.  I wanted to have the skills required to help them have a better understanding of their issues.

Auckland
P.G. Diploma in Counselling (Auckland) NZRN; MNZAC.

Karen Macpherson

Karen Macpherson is one of our senior consultants in Wellington

I work with emotional and sexual intimacy issues and use attachment, C.B.T and art therapy modalities, where appropriate. I acknowledge and respect the uniqueness of each person. I am attentive to individual needs and mindful of culture. My passion is to see people living the life they want, being all that they want to be. I work from rooms in Whitby and offer some evening and weekend appointments.

I completed Advanced Sex Therapy training through the University of Auckland in 2012 but I have 10 years’ experience as a qualified counsellor and my early clinical work with children and families in a Family Counselling Practice means that my practice is underpinned by the knowledge that an individual is a part of a system. 

Mary Hodson.is the regional director for Wellington. To contact her click here

Wellington
CBD
Whitby
Dip. Counselling; Post Grad Cert Health Science;NZAC

Kathryn Barriball

Kathryn Barriball is one of our Waikato Therapists

I work in private practice in Hamilton, where I provide short and long term psychotherapy and counseling for individuals and couples with emotional and sexual intimacy difficulties. I am committed to helping people meet their challenges and to triumph in a way that enhances the quality of their relationships with others, their personal enjoyment and their satisfaction in life.

My practice is also systemically informed, i.e. individuals are embedded within families, communities and societies which all impact on each other. To quote Robyn Salisbury, 'Strong sexual relationships make strong families and strong families make strong communities'. 

I completed the Advanced Sex therapy training in 2005 and also have nearly 20 years' experience as a qualified psychotherapist. 

Waikato
New Zealand Registered Psychotherapist

Lisa Phelan

Lisa Phelan is One of Our Sex Therapists

I completed advanced sex therapy training in 2015 and I am an approved provider for ACC for sensitive claims. I have worked extensively with with couples for the last 10 years. I have a particular interest in desire issues. I also have experience working with out of control sexual behaviour commonly called sexual addiction and gender identity issues.

I see my role as a sex therapist as working collaboratively alongside people in order to support them to develop or increase intimacy in order to experience a full and satisfying and authentic life. I respect that this can be a sensitive topic for many people and I work at the client's pace and tailor therapy according to the needs of the couple or individual. Confidentiality is of utmost importance and as a member of NZAC I adhere to their ethical guidelines.

I work in Private practice in Riccarton and am happy to see both couples and individuals. Although I endeavour to work from a person – centred and relational framework, I also use bio-psycho-social approach and other models such as Acceptance and Commitment and Solution Focused therapy.

My past counselling experience includes many other issues such as grief, depression, stress, anxiety, eating issues, post-traumatic stress and communication issues. 

Christchurch
Riccartan
M(Ed) Certificate in Counselling, BSc (Hons) Psychology with Philosophy; MNZAC

Margo Regan

Margo Regan is one of our Auckland therapists

After completing post-graduate studies in Counselling at the University of Auckland, I undertook specialized training in Family Therapy, Gottman Couples Therapy, Imago Couples Therapy, and Clinical Hypnotherapy. As well as specializing in couples therapy, I have worked in addictions, gaining experience in both residential inpatient and community outpatient programmes. I have also studied various Tantra and Taoist practices.

I particularily enjoy working with couples and individuals who are experiencing sexual dysfunction, addiction, communication, emotional and intimacy issues such as conflict, communication shut-down, lack of trust, sex addiction, pornography addiction, premature/delayed ejaculation, orgasm difficulties, and mismatched libido. I believe our romantic partnerships are the most precious relationships we have and deserve regular nourishment, care, and attention. I love helping couples transform negative, unhealthy patterns of relating into passionate, positive, connected experiences and assisting individuals overcome sexual dysfunctions that result in living a more joyous, meaningful, and fulfilling life.

My approach is to empower individuals and couples to gain insight, tools, and techniques to ensure they are connecting passionately with themselves and others. My approach is tailored to the individual and the issue that I am working with and can include mindfulness, psychotherapeutic techniques exploring originating cause or DBT/CBT addiction clinical treatment plans or techniques from Tantra/Taoist practices to enhance lovemaking.

Auckland
BBS, BSc, P.G. Dip Counselling, NZCC, Provisional Member Registered with NZAC

Robyn Salisbury

Robyn Salisbury is one of our therapists in Palmerston North

We regret to inform you that Robyn is unable to take any new clients and doesn't wish to have a waiting list at the moment. All referrals and self-referrals will be passed to Sid in Palmerston North who was trained by Robyn and has worked as part of the Sex Therapy New Zealand team in Palmerston North for the last 7 years. 

Robyn has written a strong endorsement of Sid and his work-:

Sid is my much valued colleague; a skilled and passionate clinical psychologist and sex therapist. He combines deep caring with a great sense of humour, he's very easy to be yourself with and has a breadth and depth of knowledge about human sexuality and 'beingness' that is up with the best of our team.

Sex Therapy New Zealand, which was founded by me in 2004 and was restructured in 2010; the restructure saw 4 of the existing team become shareholding directors. I retain a fond interest in the company and support the team of directors in every way that I can.
Manawatu
Heretaunga Street
MA (Hons); Diploma of Clinical Psychology; NZAP; NZPS; American Association of Sex Educators, Counsellors and Therapists

Seng Poh Lee

Seng Poh Lee is one of our Auckland therapists

Before becoming a full-time private practitioner, I have worked as a psychotherapist at the Burnett Centre (New Zealand Aids Foundation) and have experience in offering therapy for sexual identity/orientation, emotional and sexual relationship/intimacy difficulties.

My therapeutic style incorporates expert listening, constructive discussion and creating a supportive environment where my clients feel comfortable to talk about their most personal thoughts and feelings.  I work relationally and collaboratively with my clients to build a trusting relationship where they are able to explore, develop deeper self-awareness and work through issues that are causing distress.

My real world experience also draws from living in New Zealand for over thirty years and the understanding of work stressors of professionals in large organisations of different industries, before becoming a psychotherapist.  Having also lived in Asia for a significant part of my life, I am familiar with Asian culture and have experience in working with clients presenting with identity, cultural and migration issues. I am fully fluent in English but can also speak and address some concerns in Chinese if that is more convenient. 

My therapy room is currently in Three Lamps Ponsonby, Auckland. 

Auckland
Master of Psychotherapy (Hons) PBANZ; MNZAP; IARPP

Sid Naidu

Sid Naidu is one of our Palmerston North Therapists

I am a registered Clinical Psychologist trained in New Zealand and I completed Advanced Sex Therapy training with Robyn Salisbury. I have been providing a sex therapy service in

Palmerston North, alongside Robyn, for the last 7 years. She has made a strong endorsement of me and my work -:

Sid is my much valued colleague; a skilled and passionate clinical psychologist and sex therapist. He combines deep caring with a great sense of humour, he's very easy to be yourself with and has a breadth and depth of knowledge about human sexuality and 'beingness' that is up with the best of our team.

Apart from sexual, emotional and relationship concerns faced by heterosexual individuals and couples, I also specialise in issues faced by gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender sexual orientation. 

Clients can expect to receive a culturally-attuned service, and to be treated non-judgmentally, and with professionalism, respect, empathy, and positive regard.

My previous work experience in Alcohol & Drug Services, Pain and Rehabilitation Services and Elder Health continues to influence my practice in sex therapy.

Manawatu
CBD
MA (Hons), Post Grad Dip Clin Psy(Massey) MNZPsS MICP MNZPS MACBS MIAAP Registered Clinical Psychologist

Sid Naidu

Sid Naidu is one of our senior consultants in Wellington

I am a registered Clinical Psychologist trained in New Zealand. I offer sex therapy, marital and relationship therapy. Apart from sexual concerns faced by heterosexual individuals and couples, I also specialise in issues faced by older adults and gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender sexual orientation. I am able to take appointments Mondays and Fridays during normal office hours. 

Clients can expect to receive a culturally-attuned service, and to be treated non-judgmentally, and with professionalism, respect, empathy, and positive regard.

My previous work experience was in Alcohol & Drug Services, pain and   rehabilitation services. 

Mary Hodson.is the regional director for Wellington. To contact her click here

Wellington
CBD
Kapiti Coast
MA (Hons); Post Grad Dip. Clin Psy (Massey); MNZPsS MICP MNZPS MACBS MIAAP Registered Clinical Psychologist

Vicki Murray

Vicki Murray is our Gisborne Therapist

I am a sex therapist and relationship counsellor, working in private practice in Gisborne and Napier. I work in a respectful and non-judgmental way, and have a friendly, down-to-earth approach.  I provide a safe and supportive space to discuss sexual problems and I combine my professional counselling skills with an understanding of current international research to provide appropriate information and fresh ideas as we work together to find a way forward.

Whilst I mainly work with couples and individuals, I can, where required and appropriate, work with whanau, within a kaupapa Maori framework.

My aim is always to help people have positive and fulfilling sexual experiences, which in turn enhances physical and emotional well-being. There is research that demonstrates that a healthy sex life makes for a stronger, more enduring and more enjoyable relationship.

Gisborne
MCouns, BA, Provisional Member Registered with NZAC

Vicki Murray

Vicki Murray is one of our Hawke's Bay Therapists

I am a sex therapist and relationship counsellor, working in private practice in Gisborne and Napier. I work in a respectful and non-judgmental way, and have a friendly, down-to-earth approach.  I provide a safe and supportive space to discuss sexual problems and I combine my professional counselling skills with an understanding of current international research to provide appropriate information and fresh ideas as we work together to find a way forward.

Whilst I mainly work with couples and individuals, I can, where required and appropriate, work with whanau, within a kaupapa Maori framework.

My aim is always to help people have positive and fulfilling sexual experiences, which in turn enhances physical and emotional well-being. There is research that demonstrates that a healthy sex life makes for a stronger, more enduring and more enjoyable relationship.

Hawke's Bay
M. Couns; B. A; RPMNZAC