You may believe that people who have too much sex do not have an addiction. The truth is that sex addiction is just as serious as being addicted to drugs and alcohol. By understanding the true facts about sex addiction, you will have a clearer understanding of whether or not you should seek treatment.
Myth: Sex Addiction Is Not Real
Sex addiction happens to be as real as any other addiction, as it carries serious negative consequences. Individuals with a sex addiction want so badly to stop thinking of sex or seeking out sex, but they find it too difficult. There are counselors that receive specialized training for sex addiction to help those who need it. While sex addiction may not be treated as a disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, it is still recognized by other medical organizations worldwide. For example, sex addiction is recognized by the World Health Organization in its International Classification of Diseases.
Myth: People with Sex Addiction Are Always Having Sex
Sex addiction can actually unfold in many ways. While having a sex addiction means spending an unhealthy amount of time thinking about engaging in sexual behaviors, it does not necessarily mean sex itself. While there are those who will have intercourse with different people or sex workers, there are others who engage in sexual behaviors through porn or sexual fantasies. It is considered an addiction when your sexual thoughts are getting in the way of living your daily life.
Myth: People with Sex Addiction Are Unfaithful
While one characteristic of sex addiction is having multiple sex partners, it is not necessarily representative of every case. There are people with sex addiction who are still faithful to their partner. They can be either married or in a committed relationship and may put pressure on their partner to have a lot of sex or find other ways to fulfill their desires like porn or sexual fantasies. This can lead to problems in your relationship if your partner is not in the mood for sex but you keep guilting them into it.
Myth: Sex Addiction Is Only for Men
It is common to believe that men are the only ones dealing with sex addiction since men are known to have stronger sex drives or are more sexually aggressive. The truth is that both men and women can have sex addiction. Women often get scorned for having too much sex. They may be doing the same things that men with sex addiction do, but people often label them as a “slut” or a “whore” instead of thinking that they may actually have a mental issue.
Myth: Sex Addiction Treatment Cures You of Sexual Behaviors
Sex addiction treatment is not about judging or condemning you of your sexual behaviors. Treatment is all about addressing compulsive and out of control sexual behavior. Your therapist will not tell you that you need to give up sex forever or to just have a particular kind of sex. It is about trying to keep your sexual urges under control, learning about what it is that makes you have these strong urges, and about developing healthy habits.
Myth: Sex Addiction Therapists Know Nothing of Mental Illnesses
The truth is that sex addiction therapists are practicing clinicians before they begin their specialty of sex addiction. They have training in psycho-diagnostics and look at the signs and symptoms of other mental illnesses, as well as addictions. Having a sex addiction could be the result of using sex as a way to escape feelings of anxiety or depression. Therapists are aware of the number of factors that can lead to sex addiction and should have no problem addressing them.
Myth: Sex Addiction Treatment Is Anti-Sex
Going into treatment for sex addiction is not for the purpose of turning you against sex. It is about helping people enjoy sex in a healthy way. Many people develop a sex addiction as a means of escape or self-medicating the pain they are in. Sex addiction treatment will teach you how to have sex in a healthy way and slowly bring it back into your life.
Myth: Sex Addiction Is Loving Sex
People who have sex addiction feel shame and guilt after their hypersexual activity. They wish they were not this way, but they feel they cannot help it. They do not have to have a romantic attraction to whoever they are having sex with. It is possible for individuals to have too much sex because they are trying to escape negative feelings, only to discover those feelings are still there. They are hoping these feelings will disappear with more sex. In sex addiction therapy, you will learn about what you like and do not like about sex.
Myth: Sex Addiction Means Having Sex Issues
Having a sex addiction means you have an underlying mental health issue. You are using sex to cope, and it could be a symptom of trauma. If you have suffered from abuse as a child, it can affect the way you view sex, as well as leave you with challenging thoughts and feelings. It can also occur if you have been abused, neglected, manipulated, or did not get enough attachment growing up (resulting in a longing for feelings of love and affection). By getting help for your sex addiction, you can enjoy sexual intimacy and make healthier decisions.
Located on the shore of Southern New Jersey, Enlightened Solutions is a recovery center that uses evidence-based therapies and holistic healing to treat addiction and mental illness. With the opportunity to learn about therapies that are keyed in to healing the human spirit and learning about new stress-reducing techniques centered around a 12-step network, you will ensure a lasting recovery. For more information, please call us today at 833-801-LIVE. We are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.