What is Sex Addiction?

Sex addiction is a very real problem for many people. It could best be described as out of control sexual behavior. People with this problem might lose time with their families, risk losing their jobs, or put themselves in high risk situations. This can include pornography addiction, where a person may spend several hours at a time watching pornography to numb from stress, emotions, and even family.

Sex addiction can be difficult to identify, because it is often kept in secrecy. Many people who are seeking help for this problem seek it out because they are caught stepping outside of the sexual boundaries of the relationship. This can include cheating, pornography viewing, and chatting. However, there are several who also seek out help because they are tired of the secrecy, lies, and self deprecation from this addiction.

There is intense shame that comes with sexual addictions. People who are sex addicts often struggle with confidence in quality of who they are as people. They can see the hurt that they have caused, or that they could cause, and struggle to recognize that there is any other possibility of change. This can create problems with volatile interactions, lying, and further acting out.

How Can You Tell If You Are A Sex Addict?

There is not only one type of sex addiction. Some people struggle with compulsive pornography use, while others struggle with cheating and having multiple affairs. There is one element that all sex and pornography addicts deal with, and this is secrecy. Although everyone has a private element to their sexuality, sex addicts withhold this information, and often deceive their partners about their sexual behavior. This can become part of the compulsive nature of this problem.

Sex addicts can deal with compulsive sexual behavior in any of these areas of sexuality:

  • Pornography
  • Isolated Fantasizing
  • Anonymous Sex
  • Compulsive Fetish Behavior
  • Online Chatting
  • Phone Sex

Isolation is also common for those who are dealing with sex addiction. This isolation can be from family and friends. Many times this isolation is shame based. Other common descriptions that many sex addictions will use are “detached” and “disconnected”. Although, this is often described when there is increased self-awareness.

Identifying if you’re dealing with a sex addiction can be difficult. One common tool to help you determine if you might be dealing with a problem is the Sex Addiction Screening Tool (SAST). This can be used to determine if you should set up an appointment with a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT). It’s not meant to diagnose you as a sex addict on its own, but to further assess whether further screening is needed.

However, if you have a concern, you more than likely could benefit from sex addiction screening. It could be possible that some elements are problematic in your sexual relationship, and therapy can help with this regardless.

Common things to look for that could be a part of a sexual addiction include:

  • Sexual secrets that have a lot of power or control over you.
  • Participating in sexual activity that you don’t want to participate in.
  • Repeatedly engaging in sexual activity that steps outside of your boundary system.
  • Replacing work and family responsibilities.

Other common, yet secondary symptoms that many sex addicts live with :

  • Losing of friendships.
  • Increased isolation.
  • Blaming of partner for sexual dissatisfaction.
  • Never feeling satisfied.

Sex Addiction Often Occurs With Other Addictions

Many sex addicts are dealing with co-occurring addictions. There can be attempts at intensifying the triggered brain response. Sex addicts can use their sexual activity for numbing or stimulation. They can use substances, work, spending, shopping, and even gambling to trigger similar responses. Therefore, many sex addicts have co-addictions that need to be treated.

Vantage Point Counseling offers various treatment options for different addictions and mental illnesses. With their help, thousands of people have been able to find healing and help for various mental health issues that may be fighting. They can’t wait to help you too. Visit them at their main site to learn more.

 

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