Unfortunately there can be alot of confusion surrounding sex addiction in today's society and culture. We hope our blog this week helps clarify and explain the different types of sexual addicts and sexual addictive behaviors. Yesterday Teri discussed sexual addictive behaviors that are more "socially forgivable". Today we're entering into the area of behaviors that are less understood. This information is taken from a conference Teri and Tamara attended on sexual addiction by Maureen Canning. The Less Understood Behaviors:
Exhibitionistic Sex-This is when a person flashes sexual body parts in public, generally by wearing clothes that are designed to expose. This can also include posing for pornographic pictures or movies, walking around nude or having sex when you know people can see. This particular addiction does not allow a genuine love connection because the excitement for this addict comes from the reaction from others (shock or disapproval) rather than from the sexual contact with a partner.
Anonymous Sex- This is exactly what it sounds like....sex with people who have never met before. Sex with strangers who meet in various places: bars, conferences, hotels, planes, anywhere. These types of addicts generally do not realize the danger or risk involved in their behavior; the risk for disease, pregnancy, getting caught, or arrested. The arousal for the addict is sex with a stranger, therefore making it impossible to develop genuine feelings of love.
Exploitive Sex- This is exploitation of the vulnerable. With this addiction form, the addict forces a person to have sexual contact with them. This can include rape and molestation, or demanding sex in exchange for services. For example, a landlord giving a tenant a "break" in the rent the tenant can't pay if they agree to sexual contact with the landlord. Again, there is no possibility for genuine love to be created because someone is being violated.
As you can start to see with sexual addiction, it is hard to create real genuine love when "acting out" in the addiction. Each of these different types of sexual addictions make it impossible to connect with someone. Please keep reading as Natalie and Joleen will discuss more types of sexual addictions, and at the end of the week, Joleen will share several recovery resources and books.
Written by: Tamara Portee MA, LMHC
*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.