Halloween will be here quickly, so it seems fitting to talk about some of the spooky myths of sexual addiction. For example, one of the myths we'll tackle is that women do not face sex addiction. While it's predominantly a male issue, women can definitely develop a sexual addiction.
Another myth we'll discuss is that sexual addiction is just a term people use to describe those who crave sex. Although it's not in the DSM, research seems to be gaining momentum. Studies indicate sexual addiction activates the reward system in the brain the same way many other addictions do. Thus, showing the process is similar to that of other addictions. Likewise, we know the effects of sex addiction can be as devastating as other addictions.
Let's talk a little bit more about some of the myths of sexual addiction.
One myth is that sexual addiction is simply a way for people to say they love and crave sex. However, this isn't true. Sexual addiction often forms, like other addictions, around emotions. It can creep into your life and take control long before you realize it's happening.
Often, addiction stems from an emotional imbalance and a desire to satisfy it. Examples can include boredom, depression, anxiety, stress, fear, or feelings of inadequacy or lack of love or acceptance. Regarding sexual addiction, the need is fulfilled by a sexual act of some sort. Then, when the need arises again, it's easy for the brain to crave the same sexual behavior to fulfill it. Over time, these behaviors become more compulsive as the addiction takes form.
Now that we know women develop sexual addictions, let's address a few more of these myths regarding women. First is the myth that sex addiction is all about being sexually intimate. In reality, the issues revolve around emotions. For men and women alike, it's common for the addiction to start to form by viewing pornography. It can lead to infidelity and then to riskier behaviors to fulfill compulsive needs.
Common reasons women develop sex addiction include a desperate need for love, affection, and acceptance. For many, being sought after or wanted for sexual behaviors can drown out feelings of abandonment. Hence, risky sexual compulsions meet and fulfill emotional needs.
For more information regarding women and sex addiction, you can read our blog post here.
Another myth is that sex addiction, and porn addiction are the same thing. Although they have many similarities, the specific addictive behaviors are what make them different.
If you are living with sexual addiction, the scariest thing may be your reality that you can't stop. However, if you're ready to get help, there are options available.
At Paradise Creek Recovery Center, we work with clients who live with sex and porn addictions every day. We would love to work with you and help you recover for life. Call us today.