Sex addiction is an intimacy disorder that causes its sufferers to experience powerful sexual compulsions. People with this disorder may feel an uncontrollable need to perform sex acts ranging from masturbation to extreme promiscuity, and even illegal acts like exhibitionism, obscene phone calls, or worse. While it’s normal to have a libido and most healthy people do feel sexual urges that can sometimes be very strong, people with sex addiction feel they must have a sexual outlet no matter what the cost. Often, the cost is an inability to have healthy romantic relationships.
Luckily, help is available. If you feel powerless to control your sexual compulsions, your life is in a constant state of crisis due to your sexual behavior, or you are unable to maintain a relationship because of your out-of-control sexual behavior, you may need treatment for sex addiction. People suffering from sex addiction pursue their compulsions with zero regard for possible consequences, and may habitually exploit others in order to get their own sexual needs met.
1. You Feel Powerless Over Your Sexual Compulsions and Urges
Just as those addicted to alcohol or drugs feel powerless to control their substance abuse, people who are addicted to sex feel powerless in the face of their overwhelming sexual compulsions and urges. When you try to exert control over your sexual behavior, you fail. Even as your life begins to fall apart due to the consequences of your extreme sexual behavior, you remain unable to stop acting on your compulsions until you have lost relationships, friendships, and more.
2. You’re Always Dealing With Drama
Another sign that you may need to see a Dallas sex therapist about your sexual behavior is that your life is in constant, unremitting crisis due to your sexual exploits. When finding a sexual outlet is your overriding priority, other areas of your life tend to fall into chaos. Your career may suffer due to excessive affairs at work, for example, or your romantic life may exist in a state of constant upheaval.
No matter how many sexual conquests you amass, you’re never satisfied, and it’s not uncommon for sex addicts to struggle to hold down a job because of the ramifications of their behavior — maybe you got fired for masturbating to porn at the office, or maybe you had an affair with your boss and then spurned him. Even if your behavior doesn’t cause the loss of your job, it can get expensive juggling multiple girl or boyfriends and hiding these extramarital activities from your spouse.
3. You Can’t Maintain a Healthy Relationship
If you’ve failed to keep a relationship or marriage together because of your out-of-control sexual behavior, that’s a sign you’re suffering from sex addiction. Your sexual compulsions don’t have anything to do with whether or not you love your spouse or partner; many sex addicts love their partners deeply, but nevertheless, they’re unable to stop acting on their sexual compulsions. Of course, not all cheaters are sex addicts and an isolated incident of cheating doesn’t mean you’re addicted to sex. But if your relationships have developed a pattern of collapsing due to your cheating, that’s a sign you have a problem with sex.
4. You Exploit Others to Meet Your Sexual Needs
Most sex addicts aren’t sociopaths who are incapable of feeling remorse or empathy. But while you may be perfectly capable of being considerate of others’ feelings, when it comes to sex, all that goes out the window. You might be a kind, sensitive person who rescues animals and helps old ladies cross the street, but when sex enters the picture, your partners lose their human qualities. Suddenly, they are just playthings that help you meet your needs. You lose the ability to empathize with their feelings and if that means manipulating and exploiting them to get your sexual needs met, you’ll happily do so. Over time, this behavior can really make you hate yourself.
5. You Don’t Care About Consequences
If you’re suffering from sex addiction, consequences pale in the face of getting your needs met. That means you sleep around with your brother-in-law while your husband is upstairs, or have sex with the nanny on the kitchen table when your wife is due home any minute. You’ll blow your rent money on sex workers, or max out your credit card on live webcam shows. You do these things knowing they’re going to come back to haunt you, but you do them anyway because you can’t help yourself.
If you think you’re suffering from sex addiction, there’s hope. With help, you can overcome sex addiction, repair your relationships, and get your life back. Don’t continue to let your sexual compulsions rule your life. Take back the reins today.