For some people a healthy sex life can turn into a sexual addiction without them even realizing it. And it’s not something to be taken lightly. Often, you hear people say jokingly that they are addicted to sex or a ‘sex addict,’ mostly because they want to boast about their sexual prowess, whether real or imaginary. But sexual addiction is a real thing just like drug addiction, and, in fact, the tell-tale signs are pretty much the same between the two. Below are 5 signs that you’re a sex addict.
5 Signs You’re a Sex Addict: Neglecting Relationships
A sex addict will gradually yet eventually replace time spent with friends and family with a continual pursuit of activities for their sexual gratification. Time with friends and family loses its appeal, as sex becomes the only thing that matters to a sex addict. That’s because, the sex addict can no longer take pleasure in time with friends and family and the shame and despair of those feelings creates a vicious cycle of addiction. Eventually most sex addicts will even give up sex with committed partners to pursue the types of sexual gratification that feed their addiction.
5 Signs You’re a Sex Addict: Increased Tolerance
Just as those addicted to substances build a tolerance to their drug of choice, a sex addict will experience a level of tolerance to the addictive behavior. This means it will require more and more frequent sexual gratification or adding more thrill-seeking sexual practices to maintain the level of pleasure gained from sex. The sex addict spends more time on seeking sexual pleasure than on their personal relationships, sacrificing those relationships and perpetuating the cycle of their sex addiction. Eventually tolerance can build to the point that the sexual addiction completely takes over an addict’s life.
5 Signs You’re a Sex Addict: Risking Finances
Sex addiction can even reach a point where the sex addict is taking too much time away from a job or they might get to the point of spending large amounts of money to support their sex addiction, which can result in destroying family finances, just like a drug addiction. Sexual addiction can take the form of internet porn, collecting pornographic materials, spending large amounts of time and money at strip clubs, or seeking out prostitutes. A sexual addiction can be costly to maintain and frequently sexual addicts eventually come to the point where they cannot feed their addiction and keep a job at the same time.
5 Signs You’re a Sex Addict: Risking Health and Safety
Another similarity between drug addiction and sex addiction is that the addict will engage in increasingly risky behaviors in order to fulfill their need for a fix. Risky behaviors related to sexual addiction include having multiple partners, unprotected sex, or sex with strangers as well as hooking up with anonymous people met online or at bars. This increases the risk of encountering physical danger as well as contracting a sexually transmitted disease and, because of the secretive nature of sex addiction, addicts can go on to infect their spouses or partners as well.
5 Signs You’re a Sex Addict: Compulsive Sex
Some sex addicts will come to realize that their sex lives are out of control and they may even want to stop but, the obsession and compulsion to get their next fix overpowers their good intentions and the cycle continues. This is the nature of addiction. Just like other addicts, most sex addicts cannot stop or control their behavior on their own. Recovery from sexual addiction is a lifelong struggle requiring professional help or long-term membership in a support group.
If you or a loved one is struggling with sex addiction, drug addiction, or substance abuse please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135