Module 1: History

a connected approach to wellness

IMBT Surrogate Training: Syllabus

Module 1: History, Core Ideas, and Values

In this module, we look at the history of surrogacy, its ancient roots, and how it was brought into modern therapeutic work. We’ll look at a few key parts of surrogate therapy. We also consider our core values, why they are so critical, and the consequences for stepping outside of these.  We finish this work with a shared group conversation, reflecting on what we learned and any open questions.

Lecture Session 1: May 3rd, 7 pm to 8 pm (Central time)

  • Founders of surrogate therapy: Masters and Johnson
    • The Triadic model
    • Sensate Focus
  • The first surrogates
    • Sacred sexuality and sacred prostitutes
    • The Sacred Prostitute (please read the whole book – it’s short)
  • Sex work and “prostitution”: the stereotype in culture

Lecture Session 2: May 17, 7 pm to 8 pm (Central time)

  • Our Values – What our core values mean
    • The critical importance of client-centered practice
    • Ethics: violations and consequences.
    • Group Reflections (group Zoom call – required)

Review session: June 1, 7 pm to 8 pm (Central time)

Required Readings:

Qualls-Corbett, Nancy (1988). The Sacred Prostitute: Eternal Aspect of the Feminine. Inner City Books

Some things to consider…

  • As you read The Sacred Prostitute, how do you see the connection between the ancient idea of sex as sacred and sex today that is often hidden and criminalized?
  • Think about how the overarching cultural view, and common stereotypes of s*x work informs your own perception of values in this field. What explicit or implicit messages have you received about SW and SWers?
  • When we consider our shared values and ethics in this work, how does the process of self-inquiry function as practitioners? That is, what sort of questions might we ask ourselves to reflect on our own “stake” if we are trying to be sure that the work we are doing with a client is the best for the client?
  • Consider your own personal experiences as you think about both our values and ethics. Regardless of how long you have been in practice, ask yourself this question: what kind of actions or behaviors in a colleague would lead me to wonder whether or not that individual should continue to be working with clients?

Class documents


Class recordings

The class sessions are recorded and can be reviewed on Vimeo – you don’t need an account. These will be open from May 21st to May 31st.

Session 1: View it here.

Session 2: View it here.