Like other forms of compulsive behavioral disorders, a sexual addiction can lead to some very serious consequences. Too often people hear about a celebrity who proclaims to be a sex addict and it’s treated as a late night comic’s joke. The truth of the matter is that a sex addiction can be the cause of divorce, the demise of a family, the loss of a job and, in extreme cases, a prison sentence or sexually transmitted disease. A sex addiction problem might be hard to spot in someone else, but what about your own concerns? Are you worried you might be caught up in an addiction cycle? Take a honest appraisal of your own situation.
Spotting the Shame of Sex Addiction
As we’ve seen played out in many movies or televisions shows, guys and girls often like to boast and brag about their sexual conquests. This holds true in real life. You probably know somebody who relishes being the center of attention with their latest sexual exploits. It might seem like this person is having their own sex addiction problems, but the real indication is their attitude towards sex. If they can be open and honest about their relationships, they might just be expressing a healthy libido.
On the other hand, if you associate a level of shame or disgust with your own behavior then there might be a cause for concern. Usually these feelings crop up after the act when you are awash with a strong feeling of remorse for having gone through this activity in the first place. However, those feelings don’t last long when a compulsion takes over forcing you to act out again and again.
A specific warning sign could be the use of pornography for sexual gratification. It’s one thing if you are single, but if you are involved in an intimate relationship and would prefer to masturbate to porn, it might be an indicator of an addiction issue. At the very least, there are intimacy issues that should be looked into.
Sex Addiction and a Lack of Intimacy
Sexual relationships are absolutely about physical pleasure, but they are also about making an intimate connection. Again, this doesn’t have to be the case with every sexual encounter you engage in. However, you need to look for the patterns in your experiences. Do you see everything in your life in connection to sex? Does every commercial or magazine ad set your mind spinning about fantasies or when you might be able to hook up again? Are you hiding your impulses and behavior from your spouse or partner? In other words, can you say you are being completely honest about your own thoughts and feelings? Is sex just an act you need to be constantly engaged in?
Are You at Risk for Sex Addiction?
Looking for sex is like scoring a fix. It can take you down many dark roads. You know exactly when you are crossing the line between the healthy pursuit of an adult relationship as opposed to a random one-night stand or worse. If you feel the need to engage in an activity you know to be illegal or that puts your health at risk then you need to consider talking to a professional about these urges.
Calling the toll-free number on this page will connect you to counselor who can help point you in the right direction to help you cope with this issue.