Text Size
Smaller
Bigger

Sexual Addiction is an Obsessional Compulsive Disorder

answered 09:18 AM EST, Thu June 07, 2012
anonymous anonymous
My boyfriend says he is a sex addict. From what I understand there is no real proof that such a thing really exists or not. Is sex addiction a real thing? Are there research studies that prove that it really exists or is it just something that cheaters can use as a convenient excuse for dog like behavior?

Dr. Shirley Schaye Says...

Yes, sex addiction does exist. That doesn't mean that it should excuse his cheating behaviour. It does mean that he needs help with this sexual addiction.

Sexual addiction means "Compulsive sexual behavior." Compulsive sexual behavior may include acceptable sexual acts. These behaviors become problems when they become "an obsession" that's disruptive or harmful to you or others.

Some signs that he may be struggling with compulsive sexual behaviour include:

  • His sexual impulses are intense and feel as if they're beyond his control.
  • He uses compulsive sexual behavior as an escape from other problems, such as loneliness, depression, anxiety or stress.
  • He continues to do risky sexual behaviours despite serious consequences, such as the potential for getting or giving someone else a sexually transmitted infection, the loss of important relationships, trouble at work, or legal problems.
  • He has trouble establishing and maintaining emotional closeness, even if he is  in a committed relationship.

He may need to get help if he feels like he's lost control of his sexual behaviour, especially if he can't stop it now.
Compulsive sexual behavior may become more intense and difficult to control over time, 

He should ask himself if he does decide whether to seek professional help:

  • Can I control my sexual impulses?
  • Is my sexual behaviour hurting my relationship, affecting my work or resulting in negative consequences, such as getting arrested?
  • Is sex constantly on my mind, even when I don't want to think about it?
  • Do I try to hide my sexual behaviour?

He should get help from a psychologist/psychotherapist or both of you see a couples therapist. 

If you still love him, you may give him another chance to fix his problem and work through this with you via psychotherapy.

Please let me know if you have more questions.

You may want to look at these links:

Dr. Shirley Schaye

 

Email It Send this page Print It Print friendly page Subscribe Subscribe to this topic category

Page last updated Jun 07, 2012

Join Thousands of Readers

who receive our weekly recovery newsletter.

Sex Addiction: Featured Experts
All Experts

This website is certified by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information:
verify here.