My name is Dr. Silvina Belmonte, and I am a Licensed Psychoanalytic Psychotherapist and Diplomate Clinical Sexologist in Miami Beach. I have 14 years of clinical training, both here in the United States, and in my native Argentina, as well. I have been in practice for 25 years, and have had my own television show on Telemundo.
I have known Dr Norman Goldwasser, and have worked collaboratively with him, for over 20 years. We have worked together with many clients, some who I have sent to him for EMDR trauma therapy, and others who he has sent to me for sex therapy. I feel that I am in a very good position to discuss Dr. Goldwasser‘s level of clinical competence, professionalism, and ethical practice.
Without exception, every patient who I have sent to him has reported back to me that their experience with him was positive, appropriate, and respectful. Above all, however, they have all experienced Dr. Goldwasser as unusually effective in resolving severe trauma in a rapid and highly therapeutic way. Many have been amazed at the results of their work with him through EMDR to resolve severe trauma that would otherwise have taken perhaps years to clear, and not as thoroughly or efficiently. His many years of practicing this highly effective treatment modality clearly is demonstrated by his consistently positive treatment outcomes. That is why I do not hesitate to refer people to him for adjunct therapy to support the clinical work that I do with them.
I would also like to weigh in on the controversy revolving his treatment of individuals with unwanted same-sex attraction. Because we have worked collaboratively and dealing with many of his patients over the years, I can tell you without any doubt whatsoever that the way he has been characterized by extreme, radical activists, is completely distorted and misrepresents the truth. I can tell you for a fact that he does not pressure or try to influence anyone to want to change. He is a highly ethical and client-centered therapist, who works exclusively towards only the goals of the client, not any personal or political agenda. If someone wants to work on the goal of being able to let go of unwanted attractions of any nature, he is going to go to that goal. At the same time, if somebody comes in to his office as a self-identified homosexual who has come to terms with his orientation and needs help in dealing with a family that is having difficulties accepting it, his goal is the client’s goal, as can be said about me as well. He will work with the family to not only accept, but embrace him or her. I have seen that personally on more than one occasion, where he has worked with a family to heal and come together to support a gay child or sibling, after they tried to force them to change, or reject them.
Furthermore, I strongly object to the radical, and irrational conclusion that gay activists try to promote, which is that sexuality is strictly biological, and everyone is “born that way”. Sexuality is highly complex, and very much affected by early childhood experiences, and more specifically trauma and sexual abuse. To state otherwise just flies in the face of reality. To try to convince people that change is impossible and that there is no hope to try to live the way they choose, is irresponsible and very harmful. Dr. Goldwasser only offers hope that people can heal trauma and expand their sexual arousal template. He does not practice what is commonly referred to as “conversion“ or “reparative“ therapy, which is highly controversial. I know for a fact that the approach that he uses is strictly trauma-oriented, using EMDR to heal traumas, desensitize unwanted attractions of any nature, and to build up new neural pathways and arousal templates that fit the client’s goals. The bottom line is is that we, as clinicians, need to work on the client’s goals, and not some ideological or politically motivated attempt to push an agenda, at the expense of the client’s freedom to choose and an individual’s civil rights to decide how they wish to live.
I highly recommend Dr. Goldwasser as a sensitive, caring, and highly effective clinician who has proven to be a psychologist who has transformed the lives of countless patients in the many years that he has been in practice. Do not allow yourself to believe what has been written by unscrupulous, and agenda – driven individuals who have been trying to defame him and to destroy him for years, only because he happens to be highly effective and credible as an accomplished clinician whose philosophy of hope for change flies in the face of their radical political agendas.
Silvina Belmonte, Ph.D, LMHC