Omar Minwalla, PsyD

Omar Minwalla, PsyD


Dr. Omar Minwalla is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Sexologist and the Director of The Institute for Sexual Health in Beverly Hills, California.

Dr. Minwalla is the founder of the Sex Addiction-Induced Trauma Model, which recognizes the traumatic impacts on others of sexual acting out disorders.

Since 2006, Dr. Minwalla has articulated the alarming lack of recognition and treatment of trauma among partners and spouses of sex addicts. He has challenged the “traditional sex addiction model” as patriarchal, narcissistic in scope, a form of victim-blaming, and in desperate need of revision. The Institute for Sexual Health remains one of the only treatment facilities that utilizes a sex addiction-induced trauma model to treat those impacted and victimized by sexual acting out disorders.

The Quote

Blame rapists for rape.

What Led to the Specialization of Trauma?

Omar talks about what led him to become a clinical sexologist, as well as his interest in exploring human sexuality and working with individuals who have been victimized.

A Crucial Early Mistake

Omar shares an early experience he had which involved a lack of sensitivity on his part to the spouses or partners he’d been seeing. This process, the disclosure process, involves the perpetrator disclosing to the partner what has occurred or what has been going on (sometimes for many years), and which can in and of itself be extremely traumatic for the spouse.

Omar’s Why

Why do I do this? Because it’s a human rights issue!

Omar’s advice

  • Challenge yourself to think outside the box and challenge the ideas of what you’re being taught.
  • Find the balance between taking care of yourself and taking care of others.
  • Get training on the difference between PTSD and Complex PTSD.
  • Understand how the patterns of victimization, perpetration and abuse contribute to PTSD.

Omar’s go-to books

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  1. Jane Baldinger Reply

    Thank you for you audio interview

    As a betrayed spouse for almost 2 decades I can attest to Minwalla’s brave and bold work. He is the only one seeing this as a Human Rights issue. (For the most part I view this as, the “Men’s club Mentality,’ however women are rapidly catching up in this cowards – race. There is (a vast Sea of betrayed partners men and women ) conveniently socially made “Invisible.” I see an undeniable Darker Side to Human Sexual Deceit which is willfully ignored. This fueled by individuals narcissism, sense of sexual privilege and entitlement, which justify making unilateral decisions for unaware partners. And a perverse and pathological need to hold their partners/spouses as victims – betrayed partners held hostage? Why? New Rule of the land is “I can do onto you what you can not do unto me.” “I’m having my cake and stealing yours too, and the children’s also if there are any.”

    We all believe that as fee people we should have wonderful sex with who ever we want – Agreed! What is this land of secrecy and sexual deceit and far reaching cowardice?

    It is not fear of sex or talking about it – because sex is everywhere
    It’s human narcissism for the select and sexually privileged

    What is an entire population/ industry doing “Under the Sheets?” while “Proudly,” holding unaware victims hostage to their sexual deceits?

    Believing we (ALL) take our sexual secrets to our graves (like Cosby’s Ghosts) and that Bourgeois hubris supports seeking ‘release’ through casual vice and infidelity. And the “Conspiracy of Silence that all of us participate in when it comes to our erotic Antics. ” (Rophie/Wurtzel)

    What have we become and who are we really?

    Jane Baldinger

  2. Jane Baldinger Reply

    As Rabbi Hillel said so wisely:

    “That which is hateful to you do not do to another. This is the whole Law. The rest is commentary. “

  3. Mary Singh Reply

    Thank you for reaching out and interviewing this practitioner on your amazing site. There are as the other comment stated, many people affected by this trauma which has been further deepened by treatment induced trauma. Some of those people though are finding a way through this and finding transformation of their trauma through modalities such as somatic experiencing where the nervous system is allowed to come back into balance and moments of joy and peace can be found in their worlds again. The Association of Partners of Sex Addicts Trauma Specialists are teaching many about what happens to spouses and families when sexual addiction is discovered and the climate is changing quickly. Read Barbara Steffens and Marsha Means book – Your sexually addicted spouse – How you can Heal. It will completely transform the way the impact of this is viewed and inevitably the way we all help people with their suffering. Growth and resilience are inevitable from this model and empowerment can transform.

    • Hi Mary,
      Thank you so much for your comment, your kind words, and your support. And, you are welcome! Omar was a great guest. And I have to admit, prior to speaking with him I knew very little about this particular subject. The interview was enlightening, to say the least.

  4. Divorce Minister Reply

    I am a Board Certified Chaplain, ordained minister, and blogger who approaches this subject from a spiritual professional and personal experience perspective. You see, I am also a survivor of my first wife’s infidelity. So, my blogging and pastoral care is from someone who can relate to the pain many faithful spouses experience. Thank you for doing this interview and sharing it! I am encouraged to find a psychologist brave enough to stand up on these matters in protecting and providing copentent care for vulnerable faithful spouses. (As a side note, it is interesting how this topic connects with my own stance and teaching from the spiritual principles found in the Bible that adultery is soul rape.) I have decided to share this as a resource to my own community (see post here: Thanks, again!

  5. Karolina Reply

    Thank you, Guy. I was psychology, emotionally, and sexually abused by my husband who was a sex addict and had lived a double life for 10 years.

    Under the traditional Patrick Carnes model that Omar Minwalla refers to in this excellent interview, not only is psychological and emotional abuse never acknowledged or recognized as domestic violence, but also the sexual abuse perpetrated by the sex addict — including intimate partner rape — routinely is ignored, never named as abuse, invalidated, hidden under the rug, and the trauma never addressed. It’s alarming, disturbing, and severely harmful to experience as a spouse seeking help.

  6. Megan Reply

    Omar Minwalla is a genius. His trauma model for partners has saved my sense of self worth and sanity. When I encountered the co-dependancy model, I recoiled and when I read what Omar had to say about the trauma partners suffer, I cried, because I knew it was spot on. I got myself from the East coast to the West coast ASAP to benefit from Omar’s work.

  7. gail roman Reply

    I just wish we had a Dr Minwalla in South Africa. I have heard so much about him from women all over the world, except south africa. my journey and marriage with a sex addict was extremely rough and now follows the rough part of trying to divorce and just finding out from the worker who cared for my kids and cleaned my house over the years that he had taken advantage of her. He did some terrible things to her and also would be naked in the house and then call her into my bedroom. oh dear

  8. Makemyburdenlight Reply

    I have a question. Omar states the “crucial mistake” is the disclosure process. But WHAT about the disclosure process is a mistake?

    Can anyone explain?

    • Rebecca Reply

      There isn’t a clinical process that addresses the wife/victim’s emotional, physical, etc. fall out from the disclosure. I can tell you from personal experience that it is debilitating. And, when a clinician subscribes to the co-addict model, they are committing trauma on top of trauma—the model simply does not address that the victim is going to ego-fragment learning that everything she thought was true and real was really just a mirage perpetrated by the one closest to her. Omar states that there needs to be more done upfront to the prepare the spouse and a complete plan after for self-care and help. This isn’t ever done and the spouse is left to sway in the wind. Omar is on the forefront of this and is the only one who really gets it. I want his message shouted from the rooftops. Sexual compulsivity and sexual acting out disorder is going to rise to epidemic proportions and therapists are ill-equipped to handle the emotional, physical, mental, financial, spiritual damage this causes a spouse.

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