top of page

What is sex addiction?

Sex addiction is a dysfunctional preoccupation with sex that continues for a period of at least six months, despite negative consequences and attempts to either quit or curtail the problem-causing behaviors. Or, stated more simply, sex addiction is an ongoing, out-of-control pattern of sexual fantasies and behaviors that causes problems in a person's life.

Three Primary Criteria:
Obsessive preoccupation 

Spending hours, sometimes days, fantasizing about, planning for, pursuing, and eventually engaging in sexual acts (with self or others). They often "lost time" when floating around in their sexual obsession.

Loss of control

Repeatedly attempt to quit or cut back on their sexual behaviors. Sometimes they succeed for a short while. But before they know it, they are back where they started, losing themselves in sexual obsession. 

Negative consequences

Typically experience the same basic consequences as other addicts - problems at work or in school, relationship woes, financial issues, declining physical and/or emotional health, loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities, isolation, arrest, etc. 

It's about numbing out and escaping from stress and other forms of emotional discomfort, such as depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, the pain of unresolved early-life trauma, etc. They are hooked not on the sex act, but on the emotional intensity and escape produced by their sexual fantasies and patterns of behavior. 

If this is you, there is help! 

bottom of page