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  1. John William Najarian
    July 31, 2014 @ 4:21 pm

    I think your ‘summary’ question is fair, but it must be hard to determine in different individuals, and how they ‘raise the bar’ on pain levels, degredation, etc..? I wonder what percentage of ‘addicts’ are more dependent on the imagined ‘affirmation’ that comes with sex. Please excuse the way i’ve expressed myself, I’m ignorant of, but extremely interested in this subject!

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    • drjenniferweeks
      July 31, 2014 @ 4:51 pm

      John
      This is a very valid question. The name Sex Addiction is a bit of a misnomer when you look at the root of addiction. In my opinion, Sex Addiction truly has nothing to do with sex. It is about a search for connection that often comes from ruptured attachments. One of the core beliefs about sex that many sex addicts have is that sex is love. Sex and love get fused somewhere along the line. Therefore, your thought about an addict becoming dependent on the affirmation from sex is dead on. A downward spiral often ensues. I need sex for validation/love but perhaps feel shameful about my sexual behavior. That fuels my negative self beliefs about being bad and unlovable. Those feelings are intolerable so I try to fill the emotional hole and use sex to do so. The spiral ensues. If I only feel validated or affirmed through sex but feel bad about my behavior, I am bound to escalate both the behaviors and bad feelings. Thanks for your comment. Jennifer

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  2. Donna
    August 22, 2021 @ 1:04 pm

    Your article was helpful to be able to ask questions that can assist with the client’s level of comfort, discomfort, or to evaluate if the client is ashamed of the behavior rather than be uncomfortable with it. Also if there are co occurring disorders such as bipolar, depression, Aspergers these I feel can complicate assessment. Thoughts?

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    • Dr. Jennifer Weeks
      August 29, 2021 @ 10:34 am

      I agree with your thought that co occurring issues can complicate assessment. Anytime we are dealing with sexuality it is a complex process of looking at underlying issues. Could be mental health, relational, societal, religious etc.

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  3. Kelly
    October 19, 2021 @ 11:17 pm

    My boyfriend and I broke up 3 weeks ago due to his fettish activity. He was engaging in online porn and chat rooms while I was away. He seems to have a duo personality and was very loving and caring on one hand, but needs genital mutilation and BDSM stimulation to enjoy sex. I have experimented with him when we first began dating and he could tell I was not that into it.

    I didn’t find out until 1 1/2 years into our relationship that his 17 year marriage was ruined by this behavior, not only from porn but reaching out to online prostitutes that he felt he had relationships with and flying to see them in person.

    He started reconnecting with one that was also a con artist. When I found out and confronted him, he yelled at me and left the relationship without any discussion. He was embarrassed to be caught in a lie and ashamed. We reconnected after a month apart. He promised he cut all contact with her. She ruined his life once and he would let it lose me too.

    2 years later, I started noticing some warning signs again- too much information on what he did in a day while I was traveling, getting his second nipple pierced, and sending selfies to someone else when we traveled together.

    I caught him in a tiny lie one evening that opened to more…again he yelled and me and deflected to make it my problem that I do not trust him. He ended our relationship immediately, again, without discussion.

    One of my points to him is that this prostitute (who is married) did not have a relationship with him and is using him for money. I felt he was reaching out to her again.

    One hand I feel relieved to be out, but I don’t understand the duo personality that is he is in denial over this behavior. He was a great partner to me to me most of the time, but was addicted to this behavior and had to get it from somewhere if I am not engaging.

    I guess my question is how to process this – sometimes I feel that I brought this on. I tried to open conversation about it on numerous occasions, but he would always shut down, maybe out of shame or embarrassment. Is this addictive behavior? …how can I encourage him to get help?

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    • Dr. Jennifer Weeks
      January 1, 2022 @ 3:55 pm

      Sorry for taking months to reply. The post was lost in mountains of spam. It is hard to tell without meeting someone if the behavior is addictive. Fair to say it is problematic as two relationships were lost due to it. He can find qualified help wither with http://www.iitap.com or http://www.sash.net. Both organizations certify therapists in this area. Always best to get assessed by a professional. And…not something you brought on.

      Reply

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