What is a Sex Addiction or a Porn Addiction?
In its basic and natural form (if there has not been physical or emotional damage along the way) human sexual contact feels good. This is normal and wonderful. Your innate desire for sex and sexual pleasure is not an enemy.
But when that natural desire gets misdirected it can become addictive or compulsive. Instead of providing the feeling of closeness and intimacy, your natural sex drive causes suffering.
Do you have a problem? Ask yourself these questions:
- Are you preoccupied with sexual thoughts, impulses, or desires?
- Are your sexual behaviors getting in the way of having the intimate connection you want to have?
- Are your sexual behaviors getting in the way of work or causing financial problems?
If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, you might have a problem.
Why is Sex Addiction or Porn Addiction a Problem?
Is your sexual expression self-defeating? Is it preventing you from experiencing the intimacy you desire? When you are controlled by sexual addictions, the pleasure that is inherently present in orgasm or connection with another gets co-opted and is used as a balm, an escape, or a distraction, rather than being enjoyed for what it offers. The problem with using sexual behavior as a way to soothe yourself is that the soothing is momentary. You can’t get enough of what won’t satisfy you. An internal war is going on. Your life is not working.
Just because you like to masturbate or have sex doesn’t mean that you are a sex addict or that you have a problem. But if your sex life is keeping you from the connection you want to have, if you feel out of control in your sexual expression, then it may be time to reach out for some help. With help and support you can discover the natural pleasure and connection that sex offers.
Sexual Addictions: They’re not myths.
Some people have gotten this idea in their head that sexual addictions aren’t real, it’s a myth. Studies show that porn plays a major part in almost two-thirds of all U.S. divorces. Urologists in Italy recently proved that the desensitizing effect of porn is actually causing erectile dysfunction. And the physician group called the American Society for Addictive Medicine just declared that porn and sex addiction not only exist, but do in fact have a profound impact on the brain.
Sex addiction isn’t a myth, and neither is porn addiction. They are two word phrases that provides critical support to addicts and help them learn more about themselves, their behavior, and how to make better choices. For someone in the throes of any addiction, this is exactly what they want to hear, and sex addicts are no different. And instead of helping them, this assertion that sexual addiction is a myth hurts. And it drives them deeper into their own pain and addiction.
Types of Sex Addiction
When someone uses the term “sex addiction”, your immediate thought might be, “I’m not addicted to sex.” But sex addiction isn’t just the need to have sex all the time, it’s really defined as sexually compulsive behavior. It means you can’t stop. Sex addiction takes on a variety of different forms including:
- Porn addiction
- Masturbation addiction
- Strip clubs
- Massage parlors
- Anonymous sex
- Online hookups
- Chronic infidelity
Symptoms of Porn and Sex Addiction
All of these different types of sex addiction escalate from one to another. Your porn addiction might grow into online hookups, which turns into real women in your real life. You can’t keep a relationship and nothing really satisfies you. When you have a sex addiction like an addiction to pornography, you might begin to notice several side-effects in your daily life. These might include:
- Looking at explicit or extreme sites.
- Your sex addiction is taking the place of your social life.
- You experience sexual performance issues.
- You are unable to concentrate on tasks at work or at home because you’re thoughts are enamored with sexual images and feelings.
- You can’t keep a relationship.
- You are depressed and unhappy.
What if I don’t get help?
We talk to men every day who wish they had called sooner. So many men come to us after their wife or a family member discovers their secret. Or they get arrested for soliciting prostitutes and their wife left and took the kids. Or they lose their job.