Sex Addiction is something that is unfortunately becoming more and more common in our society and that we are working with more regularly in our practice. The problem is someone hears the phrase, "Sex Addict", and jumps to conclusions because of what they think it means. Reality is that there are several different types of sex addicts and Imagine Hope is sharing them with you this week! Tamara and Teri attended a conference in Chicago in October where they heard Maureen Canning, a leading expert in the sex addiction treatment field, talk about this. All of our information this week is taken from her presentation. Socially Forgivable Sexual Addict Behaviors
- Fantasy Sex- This is when someone has sexually charges fantasies, relationships, and situations. The danger of this is that they can become highly dissociative and compartmentalize things easily. This can create cutoff in relationships and a secret world in their minds which is highly addictive. This can include pornography use as a part of it.
- Seductive Role Sex- Men and women do this differently. Men take on a seductive role to entice their partners by being a caretaker and rescuer. They seek out needy partners. Women take on the seductive role of being flirty and needy. They become an object rather than a person. The way a woman dresses and uses her body plays into this. When they make themselves an object, their body gets used to gain power and as a tool. This includes the way a woman chooses to dress. This addict behavior is too easily accepted in our society.
- Paying for sex- This includes: prostitutes, hookers, escorts, massage parlors, international prostitution, and internet sites. This type of addict is trying to avoid the rejection that could come from sex, so they script the interaction to include no possibility for rejection. It is common for a person who is feeling strongly abandoned in their relationship to act out in this way to give them power over that pain.
This sure is an interesting topic with lots to cover. Keep reading this week as we enter into less understood sex addiction behaviors.
Teri Claassen MSW, LCSW is a licensed therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Teri enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, couples and relationship counseling. Teri also does family counseling, child counseling, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville, and Westfield.