Sex Addiction Therapy
Are you struggling with porn, sex, or chem/sex addiction and telling yourself you can stop whenever you want to?
- Would you rather spend time on your device than be with friends, family, and loved ones?
- Have you tried to stop but become overwhelmed with anxiety or other negative emotions?
- Are you tired of suffering and wondering when things will change?
- Are you using pornography/sex/substances to cope?
- Are you ready to start healing and feel more comfortable in your skin?
There Is Help.
Sex addiction is a dysfunctional preoccupation with sex that continues for at least six months, despite negative/harmful consequences and attempts to either quit or curtail the problem-causing behaviors. Or simply put, sex addiction is an ongoing, out-of-control pattern of sexual fantasies and behaviors that causes problems in a person’s life. What we do know is that sex addiction usually changes over time.
Sex addiction is diagnosed based on three primary criteria
- Preoccupation to the point of obsession. Sex addicts spend hours, sometimes even days, fantasizing about, planning for, pursuing, and eventually engaging in sexual acts (with self or others). They often “lose time” when floating around in their sexual obsession.
- Loss of control. Most individuals with a sex addiction repeatedly try to quit or cut back on their sexual behaviors, and sometimes they even succeed for a short while. But before they know it, they are back to where they started, losing themselves in sexual obsession.
- Harmful consequences. Most sex addicts commonly experience fundamental consequences —issues at work or school, relationship difficulties, financial problems, declining physical and emotional health, loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities, isolation, arrest, etc.
If you identify with these three criteria, you may have sexual compulsions. If so, potentially, you are compulsively engaging in one or more of the following behaviors:
- Multiple hours of porn and/or webcam use, with or without masturbation.
- Losing oneself in hookup apps and similar technologies— video chat, dating sites, sexting, etc.
- Continually pursuing sex—cruising in the car for sex partners, surfing online for sex partners, hanging out in the steam room at the gym, etc.
- A persistent pattern of intense and highly sexualized affairs or brief “serial” relationships.
- Consistently having casual and/or anonymous sex with people met online or in person.
- Consistently visiting strip clubs, adult bookstores/theaters, and other sex-driven environments.
- Paying for (or being paid for) sex, sensual massage, eroticized domination, etc.
- A pattern of unsafe sex— sex with strangers, unprotected sex, sex in public, etc.
- Consistently seeking sex without concern for consequences—damaged relationships, financial issues, arrest, etc.
- This listing of typical sexually compulsive behaviors is significantly incomplete. That said, at least one or two of the above activities are nearly always among the behaviors that any person who is sexually dependent and compulsive struggles with.
Sex Addiction is Not About Sex. There is help for you with sex addiction therapy!
Interestingly, sex addiction is not about sex. It’s about “numbing out” and escaping from stress and other forms of emotional discomfort, such as anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, the pain of unresolved early-life trauma, etc. Those with sex addict tendencies are hooked not on the sex act but on the emotional intensity and escape produced by their sexual fantasies and patterns of behavior, including the endless search for the perfect video, the perfect sex partner, the perfect sexual encounter, etc.
Often, sex addicts spend many hours, sometimes even days, in this elevated state—high on the goal/idea of having sex—without ever engaging in any concrete sexual act. They even have a name for this escapist, dissociated condition, referring to it as either “the bubble” or “the trance.”
We view sex addiction as an intimacy disorder involving attachment issues and past traumas. Through therapy for sex addiction, we identify the core cause and begin to heal the shame that addicts struggle to overcome.
Through multiple therapeutic avenues, including working through a detailed curriculum and trauma-focused therapies such as EMDR, we can help to lift shame and breakthrough core issues that drive problematic behaviors. You can begin to enjoy a life free of sex addiction and attain lasting recovery. Contact Relucent today for a free phone consultation. No commitment required.