Sex/Pornography Addiction Treatment:
Sex Addiction: Signs of Sexual Addiction (from Carnes, 1991):
- A pattern of out-of control sexual behavior
- Severe consequences due to sexual behavior
- Inability to stop despite adverse consequences
- Persistent pursuit of self destructive or high risk behavior
- Ongoing desire or effort to limit sexual behavior
- Sexual obsession and fantasy as a primary coping strategy
- Increasing amounts of sexual experience because the current level of activity is no longer sufficient.
- Severe mood changes around sexual activity.
- Inordinate amounts of time spent in obtaining sex, being sexual, or recovering from sexual experience
- Neglect of important social, occupational, or recreational activities because of sexual behavior.
Here are some questions to help you determine if your pornography viewing is a problem necessitating treatment (from Maltz, 2009):
Learn more about Cyber-Sex Pornography Addiction
- Is pornography increasing or decreasing your self-esteem?
- Is it upsetting or alienating your intimate partner (or harming your future chances of being in a healthy relationship).
- Have you become preoccupied, out-of-control, dependent on, or compulsively engaged with pornography?
- Has pornography shaping your sexual thoughts, desires, and/or behaviors?
- What negative consequences could occur if you continue to use porn?
TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR SEX/PORNOGRAPHY ADDICTION:
One on one individual therapy to address family of origin issues, shame, and present sexual and life dysfunction. Treatment could include the teaching of Insight or Mindfulness Meditation to help calm the mind and to develop awareness.
Consultation with an expert on medications might be recommended. Medication has been shown to be helpful in treating mood and behavioral relevant to sexual acting out.
Group therapy is acknowledged as the most effective form of treatment for sex addicts. Group focuses on shame reduction, maintaining sexual sobriety through accountability (to other group members), development of values of honesty and self-expression of emotions and learning social skills and assertiveness.
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Relationships are typically extremely threatened and "on the brink" following the discovery or sex addictive behaviors. Involvement of the partner in the treatment is highly desirable and can be the best immunity to relapse.
12 Step Programs (Sex and Love Addiction Anonymous - SLAA):
The 12 steps of alcoholic anonymous have been adapted for use in programs for sex addicts and are very effective in maintenance of sexual sobriety. These groups meet at regular times throughout the Boston area.