Because we live in a society where sex is advertised, accepted and encouraged, it may be hard to distinguish between healthy sexuality and a sex addiction. Sexual addiction can be compulsive masturbation, excessive use of pornography, paying for sexual experiences, infidelity, and in extreme cases, criminal activities involving sex. You may feel that you have no control over your sexual urges and that your actions are making your life difficult. You may feel embarrassed and ashamed of yourself, but you feel that you can’t stop.
In some cases, sex addiction may not be about sex itself, but pleasure in general. People get addicted to activities because of the euphoria they get from it. Addicts may seek pleasure through sex to avoid stressors and other issues. Similar to drugs like tobacco, sex triggers pathways in the brain that cause craving, leading addicts back for more to feel satisfied. Addicts may use sex as a way to escape feelings of anxiety, depression, anger, loneliness, and self-hatred.
If your relationship with sex seems unhealthy, it’s time to make a change. The right therapy can help you feel in control again, and help you regain your integrity. You are not alone, so you don’t have to be ashamed of seeking help. Approximately 30 million Americans suffer from sexual addiction and sex is the number 1 searched topic on the internet. Sexual urges are powerful and dangerous, and you are doing the right thing by seeking help to put an end to it.