7 Valuable Do's And Don'ts After Discovering Your Partner's Sex Addiction

November 5, 2021

When you find out about your partner's sex addiction, the dominant emotion you may feel is shock. Of course, you're also likely to experience confusion, sadness, fear, anger, and betrayal. Likewise, you may get stuck in a state of denial. In an instant, it may seem like your world flipped upside-down. Like many, you may be struggling to comprehend or accept the reality of your partner's sex addiction.

There are many ways to respond to your partner; some may be helpful, and some not so much. Ideally, the goal is to get through to your partner in an effective way. Likewise, you deserve to know you are not to blame for their choices. Sex addiction comes with a unique set of challenges that can be difficult to overcome.

Let's highlight 7 valuable do's and don'ts that you may find helpful after discovering your partner has a sex addiction.

What is Sex Addiction?

According to Webmd.com, sex addiction is the lack of control over sexual urges, thoughts, and impulses. Sex addiction also refers to excessive sexual behaviors that are negatively impacting a person's life. The problem, however, is that defining excessive can be subjective. At the same time, culture or societal norms may dictate acceptable behaviors. Therefore, there remains controversy surrounding the definition or diagnosis of sex addiction.

Another indicator of sex addiction is when the compulsion to respond to an impulse outweighs any risk or consequence. Often, a person with this addiction will try to stop but realize they cannot. Likewise, over time behaviors may become more frequent, intense, or risky as the body naturally builds up a tolerance to the stimulus.

7 Powerful Do's and Don'ts if Your Partner has a Sex Addiction

  1. Do set boundaries and hold them. A relationship with a partner who has a sex addiction comes with unique challenges. Therefore, it will be vital to determine boundaries and consequences, such as requiring your partner to attend therapy.
  2. Do follow through with consequences. When it comes to addiction, sometimes hitting rock bottom leads to recovery. Following through with consequences may serve as motivation to reach and maintain sobriety.
  3. Do seek support for yourself. Having a partner who has a sex addiction can feel lonely and isolating. Likewise, a solid support system may help you manage the emotional distress you're facing.
  4. Consider therapy. Seeing a professional sex therapist who works with addiction may be the best gift you can give yourself. Likewise, they can provide helpful tools, insight, and best practices to help you through this journey.
  5. Do consider getting tested for STDs. In addition to taking care of your mental health, your physical health is also crucial. Getting a screening is vital so that you know what you may be dealing with.
  6. Don't believe that sex will fix the problem. Offering more frequent or certain types of sex will not cure your partner's addiction. Likewise, remember neither you nor your actions are to blame for your partner's choices.
  7. Don't get caught in the spiral of "what if." The reality of addiction is it's not about you. Your partner makes choices based on satisfying their addiction. As a result, they'll engage in behaviors regardless of anything you may or may not do. Partners of sex addicts can easily fall into the vicious cycle of asking "What if" questions. So, try to avoid the trap of questions such as:

    • What if I would have
    • If only I looked
    • What if I'm more
    • What if I spent less time

Where can I find help for my partner's sex addiction?

At Paradise Creek Recovery Center, we specialize in sex addiction treatment. Likewise, we aim to include partners on the journey to recovery. You deserve help and support as you face the difficult journey that lies ahead.

Contact us today to learn more about the treatment plans we offer.

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