Do I really want to recover from Sex Addiction?

Do I really want to recover from Sex Addiction: Do you find that you have conflicting feelings about giving up your sex addiction?  Your sexual desires and addiction behaviors have likely been a source of comfort, relief from boredom, relief from stress and/or just a major source of excitement in your life.  It has been a quick fix and a sure thing for getting your immediate needs met.   Most individuals reach a point where they realize that their sex addiction has caused much more pain than pleasure in their lives and led to isolation, loneliness, legal problems, and financial problems.  Yet to totally give it up and try to recover from sexual addiction?   What if you need it?

At Sex Therapy in Philadelphia/Center for Growth, we believe that full recovery from sex addiction requires a commitment.  You can’t keep your addiction behaviors in your back pocket for the future if things get bad, or even for a bad day or week.  Try the exercise below to explore these conflicting feelings.

Read the following list of qualities to help you determine if you really want to recover from sex addiction:

Qualities of a good sex addict

    • Think about sex all of the time.
    • Engage in your chosen sexual behavior as often as possible.  Try a new exciting sexual behavior if the excitement of your chosen behavior wears off.
    • Put your compulsive sexual behavior first behind your family, friends, your job/school, your other interests, and your health.
    • Tell no one about your behavior.  Go to great lengths to hide it.
  1. Take out a piece of paper and make a list of all the advantages and disadvantages of living in the above lifestyle.
  2. Read the following list of qualities.

Qualities of being fully committed to recover from sexual addiction

    • Make your recovery from your sexual addiction your number one priority.
    • Stop all forms of sexually compulsive behavior and remove all obvious temptations (close chatroom and email accounts used for sex, throw out your pornography DV’s and magazines, etc.)
    • Tell at least one person about your problem with sexually compulsive behavior and ask for his or her support.  Telling one person is the beginning of building a support network for yourself.  Also, consider seeing a therapist who is trained to treat sexual addiction to be in your support network.
    • Do some reading about sexual addiction.  See recommended books on our website.
    • Begin rebuilding connections with family, friends, and your hobbies/interests.
    • Develop good sleeping habits to get plenty of rest.
    • Consider beginning an exercise program.
    • Find ways to lower stress in your life and make your life more manageable.
  1. Take out another piece of paper and make a list of all the advantages and disadvantages of living in the above lifestyle.
  2. Compare both of the lists side by side.  Which has the most advantages?  Which has the most disadvantages?  Which lifestyle allows you to live the type of life that you would like to live?  Which lifestyle do you find the most fulfilling?

The choice as to whether or not you really want to recover from sex addiction is yours to make.   All choices in life have pros and cons and many important choices in life have some challenges that we have to overcome.  Don’t let challenges stop you from living the type of life that will be the most fulfilling and enjoyable for you.  With support and persistence, challenges can be met.  If  you are feeling stuck in your decision and/or want to begin recovery, consulting with a sex therapist can be a very good start.