Sex addiction is not an excuse to have multiple partners or the engage in risky or destructive sexual behaviours. However, people with a sex addiction often engage in just these types of behaviours, despite understanding that it may cost them a job, a relationship, or even put their life at risk.
When people have a sex addiction, they act on a compulsion to engage in specific destructive behaviours. Addiction counselling in London with a therapist trained in sex addictions will allow the client to learn coping strategies to address the compulsion and make choices that are positive and beneficial in life.
The Common Signs
Just like any addiction, people with a sex addiction can be male or female, and they may escalate in the behaviours rapidly or more slowly. In general, the common signs of a sex addiction will include:
- Constantly thinking about sex during work, interactions with family and friends, and during their spare time. A sex addict may attempt to stop focusing on sex but this is unsuccessfully or unsustainable for more than a short period of time.
- Having sex with multiple partners even though they may be married or in a serious relationship.
- Placing ads or spending time online viewing potential or possible sexual partners.
- Watching pornography online at home or at work, even if they may have been caught in the activity before.
- Skipping events in life to engage in sex, think about sex, or view sex online.
- Finding relaxation, satisfaction or temporary gratification when engaged in sexual activities, and needing different levels or types of sex to obtain this feeling.
- Anger, frustration, denial and blame when confronted by a partner or loved one about the sex addiction.
- Visiting prostitutes or engaging in sex with random people with or without using protection.
- Increasingly risky sexual behaviours such as sex in public places or sex in the workplace.
- Engaging in sexual activities despite the knowledge that a partner or spouse suspects the behaviour and is threatening to leave the relationship.
There are several different options for addiction counselling in London to provide effective treatment for anyone with a sex addiction. This can include “talk therapy” and diagnosing concurrent mental health issues such as PTSD, depression, anxiety or stress that may be present.
It is important to realise that a therapist offering addiction counselling in London has to be trained in working with sex addicts. This is not an abstinence type of programme, rather the counsellor and the individual work to develop clear guidelines between health and addictive sexual behaviours. Not all general addiction counsellors will be a good match for an individual with a sex addiction, so talking to the counsellor and ensuring they have the required experience and training will be critical for effective treatment.
Through the counselling process the addict and his or her spouse or partner, will also typically require couples counselling. This will help to repair the relationship and set clear boundaries and guidelines for both of the people to use moving forward in the relationship.