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The Sex Dictionary
The Letter I
How To Have Good Sex, Inc.

Iatrogenic: generated or induced by the physician; pertaining to physical or mentyal aliments or disease due to the actions of the physician, as in iatrogenic disease, the result of exposure to patogens, toxins or injurious treatment or procedures by the physician, or from alarming or traumatizing diagnosis.

ICSH: interstitial cell stimulating hormone; LH (luteninizing hormone).

Ictal (adjective): pertaining to the period when an epileptic seizure or seizure-like attack takes place.

Ideation: in mental life, the collective representation of thoughts and ideas presently recognized, recalled from memory, or projected into the future, singly or in combination.

Identification: the process of becoming like someone as a sequel to assimilating or copying that person's activities, behavior, and reactions. The term is applied especially to the differentiation of G-I/R (gender identity/role). See also complementation. the process of becoming like someone else secondary to copying and imitation.

Ideogogic (noun, ideogogy): in sex therapy, treatment that involves discussion of ideas and the meaning of one's behavior to other people who are affected by it; see also somesthetic.

Idiographic: specific to the self and unique to one's own biography.

Ideological norm: the standard of what is normal as defined by those who, even though in a minority, exercise their authority to impose their own ideology and values on others whom they overpower.

Ideology (adjective ideological): a set of ideas, beliefs, or principles to which a person or group adheres, lives by, and possibly dies for.

Idiopathic: of unexplained origin, as in the development of a symptom or syndrome that is apparently spontaneously generated.

Imagery: in mental life, the collective representation of mental images or depictions of anything either perceived (perceptual imagery) or, if not actually present as a sensory stimulus, recognized in memory (memory imagery), or in dream, confabulation, or fantasy (fictive imagery).

Immutable: long-lasting and unchangeable.

Imperative: the converse of adventive, in the sense of being obligatory in the development of all members of a species; see also adventive.

Impersonator: an actor or person who assumes the personality and plays the role of being somebody else.

Impetigo: a streptococcal or staphylococcal infection that erodes the skin and dries to form a yellow-crusted sore.

Impotence: a hypophilic condition or syndrome, of variable etiology, in which erection of the penis is lacking or defective under normally conducive conditions. Recurrent premature loss of erection of the penis, or its failure to become erect, during the acceptive phase of and erotic/sexual episode.

Impregnation: the process of being rendered pregnant by the intromission of sperm into the uterus and the union of egg and sperm.

Imprimatur: sanction; approval.

Imprinting: developmental learning of a type first brought to scientific attention in studies of animal behavior by ethologists. Imprinting takes place in a given species when behavior phyletically programed into the nervous system of that species requires a matching socioenvironmental stimulus to release it, when the matching must take place during a critical or sensitive developmental period (not before or after), and when, having occurred, the resultant behavior pattern is unusually resistant to extinction. In human beings, native language learning is a manifestation of imprinting. See also critical period.

Incest: sexual contact customarily or legally forbidden on the criterion of the close kinship of the two people, variably defined on the basis of genealogical or totemic descent, or by reason of marriage or adoption [from Latin, incestus, unchaste]. Sexual intercourse between persons to whom it is locally forbidden by law or custom because of their relatedness as kinsfolk to totemic clanfolk. The degree of relatedness varies among societies, and the relationship need not be genealogical.

Inclusion paraphilia: one of the paraphilias in which an extraneous element becomes developmentally incorporated into the lovemap, thus changing it from normophilic to paraphilic.

Incubus (plural, incubi): an evil spirit or demon that assumes the form of a male and is supposed to lie upon sleeping people, chiefly women, and to have sexual intercourse with them; a nightmare. See also succubus.

Indolamine: one of a subgroup of biogenic amines; it functiones as one of the brain's neurotransmitters. Serotonin is the best know idolamine. See also biogenic amine; catecholamine; serotonin.

Inertia: in erotic/sexual usage inertia is apathy or lack of responsiveness or arousal at the proceptive phase. It typically involves also the acceptive phase. It is experienced subjectively as lack of desire or drive. Antonym, ultraertia.

Infancy: babyhood; the period of development between birth and the beginning of early childhood between the ages of two and three years.

Infantilism, paraphilic: the paraphilia of impersonating an infant and being treated as one by the partner--one of the stigmatic/eligibilic paraphilias. Synonym, autonepiophilia. See also adolescentilism; gerontalism; juvenilism; nepiophilia.

Infatuation: foolish and extravagant passion, especially as applied to a love affair that does not meet with family or local community or religious approval, and does not conform to customary criteria of a well arranged marriage. See also limerance.

Inframasculinize: to masculinize insufficiently. Synonym, hypomasculinize. Antonym, supramasculinize. inguinal: pertaining to the inguen or groin, the region or crease between the abdomen and the thigh.

Inguinal hernia: a hernia into the inguinal canal, as for example when an undescended testis protrudes into the canal but fails to reach the scrotum.

Interaxillary: in the armpit, or between the upper arm and lateral chest.

Intercourse: connection or interaction between people. In sexual intercourse, the connection is usually defined as being between two people. It is erroneously restricted to putting the penis into the vagina (or anus) or the vagina (or anus) onto the penis (penovaginal or penoanal intercourse, respectively). The entire sexual interaction between the partners constitutes sexual intercourse. 2. Connection or interaction between people. In sexual intercourse, the connection is usually defined as being between two people. It is erroneously defined as putting the penis into the vagina (penovaginal intercourse), for the entire sexual interaction between the partners constitutes sexual intercourse. See also coitus; copulate; mount.

Interfemoral: between the thighs.

Interictal (adjective): pertaining to the interval between epileptic seizures and seizure-like attacks.

Intermammary: between the breasts.

Intersexuality: an alternative term for hermaphroditism. In past usage, a genetic etiology was sometimes assumed for intersexuality, and a hormonal etiology for hermaphroditism, but the distinction is now known to be untenable. See also hermaphroditism.

Intimacy-aviodancy: a socially dictated constraint on personal disclosure to specified individuals or groups, or on a specified topic. It affects erotic/sexual behavior and communication. It may affect anly intimate communication, but not behavior with one's sexual partner; see also age avoidancy and allosex-aviodancy.

Introceptive: pertaining to a sensory organ that registers information from within the body. Antonym, exteroceptive.

Intromission: the insertion of one part into another; in sexual intercourse, the insertion of the penis into the vagina.

Inviolacy: the right to be free from being harmed, harassed, or encroached upon.

In vitro fertilization: the combining of an egg and a sperm into a fertile cell (zygote) in a glass dish; used especially when the normal process of fertilization within the body fails [from Latin, in vitro, in glass].

Irrumatio: actively thrusting of the penis into the mouth; as contrasted to fellatio, which finds the mouth and tongue actively stimulating the penis through sucking and licking. See also fellatio; blow-job.


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The Founder: "Alex" Caroline Robboy, LCSW, QSW, CAS

Ms. Robboy is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Center for Growth Inc and How To Have Good Sex Inc.  Alex practices marriage and family therapy and sex therapy, and also conducts periodic seminars about human sexuality throughout the northeastern United States.

Ms. Robboy graduated from the University of Pennsylvania where she earned a Masters degree in Social Work, a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Human Sexuality Education and a Post-Masters Certificate in Marriage Counseling & Sex Therapy. Through the American Board of Sexology, she is a board certified sexologist and through the American Association of Sex Educators Counselors and Therapists a certified sex therapist.  Additionally, she is a licensed clinical social worker and a member of the American Board of Marriage and Family Therapy.


  Our Philosophy sex is like dancing, it changes every time. It depends on culture, atmosphere and mood. Sometimes it is done alone, with a partner or in a group. It can be fast and hard or slow and soft. Sex is a combination of non-verbal negotiation and verbal cues: a scream, a twitch of the toes, or a flush of the face. There is no one 'right' way to move, only what feels good to all those involved. 
     The purpose of this site is to share information. Thus, if you have any ideas, thoughts or information that you believe others might benefit from, please e-mail your tip to and I  will be sure to include it on either our weekly newsletter or here on the actual website. 

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