“Everyone goes through life trying to figure out when and how they can have sex, don’t they?”
“Why should I be ashamed of a desire that is so natural?”
“Shouldn’t I try to do more of what makes me happy?”
“I am probably more consumed with sex than most people, but that doesn’t mean I have a problem. Addiction is too strong of a word.”
Perhaps you find that you are increasingly justifying your behavior to yourself or others using these lines. After all, if sex wasn’t supposed to be a part of life, why would it exist? The thing is, everyone, DOESN”T go through life planning out their next sexual encounter.
The American Society of Addiction Medicine defines “addiction” as “a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory, and related circuitry.” If you have ever been compelled to feed your sexual desires to reward yourself or seeking relief from something in your life, this compulsion is an addictive behavior. This method of seeking pleasure and avoiding pain is not healthy or beneficial to your wellbeing, but know that you don’t have to live this way. The World Health Organization recently announced that it is including compulsive sexual behavior disorder in ICD-11. This is the list used by the world to identify and study health problems. They define sex addiction as a “persistent pattern of failure to control intense, repetitive sexual impulses or urges resulting in repetitive sexual behavior.”
Here are 4 signs that you may have a sex addiction treatment long beach:
1. Your relationships are always in crisis.
Since it is unlikely that one sexual partner is able to fulfill your sexual desires, you have probably turned to additional sexual partners and/or pornography to fill the void. This is inevitably going to lead to issues because infidelity takes you down the road of betrayal, jealousy, upheaval, and extreme anger.
Maybe you are married or in a long-term relationship, but you are willing to forgo the consequences of cheating just so you can get what you need. This disregard for the results of your actions is a huge red flag and indicates a more significant problem.
2. You are living a double-life.
You feel the need to hide your erratic sexual behavior from your family and friends so that you can seem to have a normal put-together life. You are very careful never to allow the two worlds to collide, but it becomes more difficult as time goes by. You dig deeper and try harder at work and at home to keep up appearances, but this additional stress makes your sexual appetite even stronger, and you’re finding yourself spinning out of control.
3. Your desire for sex is uncontrollable, and you have made several attempts to stop or control your sexual behavior.
Perhaps you start skipping family and work obligations so you can have one more sexual encounter, or you volunteer for the last-minute work trip because of the opportunity it presents to be on the road and away from “your world.” You might even view porn on your work computer or take a long lunch to go to a strip club. You have made several promises to yourself that this is to stop your behavior, but you always find that you end up back in the same situation. When your sexual appetite is controlling your daily life, this indicates a definite problem.
4. You hate yourself for what you are doing but continue despite the harmful consequences.
You know that what you are doing is wrong. You are ashamed and embarrassed, in disbelief of how far you have gone down this road. But you just cannot stop because of the strength of your compulsions towards sexual behavior. You never thought you would cheat on your spouse or have multiple sexual partners or engage in online sex. But you can’t help it! Your self-loathing makes everything worse and makes the desires stronger or maybe even drives you to another type of unhealthy coping or substance use.
What you need to know:
You are not alone in this struggle. There is hope, and you can get help. Be honest with your loved ones about your addiction and reach out to a therapist in your area. You are worthy of recovery.
At Novus Mindful Life Institute, we believe that everyone deserves to live a healthy and fulfilling life. We are dedicated to helping one person, depression therapists long beach, one couple, one family at a time heal from the impact of addiction. We are located in Long Beach, CA, but we also have a wealth of online resources, and we host The Addicted Mind podcast with many guests that are well-known in the industry.