Love, lust and trauma - What is healthy sexuality?


Lecture in Oslo Concert Hall, March 27, 2020



Everything you need to know for your own trauma healing is within you. You can access it when you are ready to take the risk.

- Prof. Dr. Franz Ruppert -


Lecture with Prof. Dr. Franz Ruppert in Oslo


From the preface of Ruppert’s new book:

What is sexuality? What good and bad qualities does it have? When is sexuality enjoyable and satisfying for those who participate? Why can it become a stressor in our lives? Why can it make people addicted? What can make sexuality an experience that destroys a person’s entire life? Why do some people feel that they are in the wrong body and would rather have a different gender?

Sexuality has many biological, psychological, sociological and political dimensions. Sexuality is not only hugely important to the individual and to our intimate relationships. The relationship between the sexes and how we reproduce is important to how we organize society. Ultimately, sexuality is crucial to world politics.

I have written this book because I very often encounter sexual psycho trauma in my psychotherapeutic practice. This is a taboo and shameful area where many people are desperately looking for solutions. Gradually, I have developed theoretical background knowledge and a practical method that will enable me to help.

My appeal to the public is that the phenomenon of sexual psycho trauma must be taken seriously. I think it is not useful if we continue to operate with obscure categories such as “abuse” or “sexual violence”. Our everyday understanding causes us to grope in the blind and to moralize too much. We continue to tire of the symptoms that are constantly accumulating, instead of seeing the underlying cause. This does not benefit the trauma victims, and it does not help us understand the trauma abusers so that we can make them stop.

We must understand the complex perpetrator-victim-dynamics of our own psyche, or else we are still helpless and completely at their bay. Only in this way can we take the step out of a society that constantly traumatizes its members and develop constructive ways of living together (Ruppert 2018). Our sexuality has a tremendous creative potential that we can use to give each other lots of desire and joy. But then we have to start living it out without being heavily burdened with psycho trauma.

I never became a father. In the early twenties it was because I was tired of diaper changing, bottle feeding, potty training and rolling the stroller through the village. I got enough of that with my four siblings. As the oldest, I had to help my overloaded mother because she had to take up paid work. When I had moved away from home, I would not sacrifice my hard-fought independence for family and children. This life course, as I had seen it with my parents and relatives, was not something I wanted to pursue.

At the end of my twenties, my critical consciousness grew stronger. Then I would not put children into a world I considered extremely threatening. After stabilizing myself on the personal plane and developing further, I was in my forties. Then I tried several times, also with the help of artificial insemination, to become a father anyway. But then it was too late. Recognizing it was a painful process.

Today I know that my fear of my own children had deep roots in the fact that it was only luck that got me through my first year of life. I was not welcomed by my parents and could only survive the time in my mother’s stomach by splitting myself. I almost died in a traumatizing birth process. My infant screams were suppressed with violence. I was almost starving to death because I was weaned too soon. When I was a toddler, isolation, loneliness, and the lack of love from my parents made me almost give up. Therefore, ultimately, it was not possible for me to develop my sexuality within the context of a healthy identity.

I am a man and know only this one gender fully. That means I can’t claim to have a neutral attitude to sexuality in this book, or to present it in an objective way. Still, I look at myself as a scientist. I am critical of ideologies and believe that facts weigh more than pure opinions and doctrines. I hope that I am at least characterized by a scientific basis. I often reject wrong assumptions in the light of new knowledge, and I am convinced by others if they tell something that gives me a new understanding.

Psychology is a subject science created by psychologists. Each subject has its own blind zones. As a practicing psychotherapist, I can at least refer to a significant number of empirical case studies involving sexually traumatized people. Still, it’s clear to me that I can’t see my own blind zones when it comes to sexuality. I have to mirror myself in my fellow human beings, I need critical discourse, and I need competent psychotherapy. That is why I do an intentional work every month to find out more about my identity. My goal is to be able to live out my sexuality in a way that enables myself and others to build constructive relationships.

When I use the grammatical male gender form in this text, I always refer to both men and women where I have not stated otherwise. I also refer to people who do not feel belonging to one sex or the other.

Munich, May 2019
Franz Ruppert

Time: March 27, 2020

Friday 27: 7 PM- 8.30 PM

Price: NOK 250,- ( ca euro 25,-)

Place: Oslo Concert Hall

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Prof. Dr. Franz Ruppert in Oslo, Lecture March 27, 2020

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