What is sex addiction? It’s an easily misunderstood word, and often used by people who disapprove of certain unusual sex practices and fetishes. There are even those who think that sex before marriage is wrong. However, most experts agree that sex addiction refers to any persistent and compulsive sexual behavior that has a severely negative effect on a person’s life.
For the most part, a sex addict doesn’t really know how to forge real intimacy. That’s why they tend to form very little attachment to their various sexual partners. Having lots of sex is one thing. It’s a different matter altogether when the goal of having sex becomes a higher priority than supporting a family, maintaining a career, or even keeping safe. When the sex becomes compulsive and destructive, family members can stage an intervention to help curb this problem.
Sex addiction interventions can be a prickly affair. That’s because sex is an intensely private matter, and it’s easy enough for a supposed addict to argue that it’s nobody else’s business.
The first thing that must happen is that a group of close family and friends are convinced that it is sex addiction that they’re dealing with. Then an expert opinion should be obtained to confirm the diagnosis.
During the intervention, it helps if the focus isn’t on the “wrongness” of the sexual acts. The focus should be on how concerned family members feel, and how these compulsive behaviors are harming relationships and work. There may even be legal issues.
It’s important that only the closest persons to the addicted loved one are involved in the intervention. The addicted person may just feel too embarrassed or angry to realize that their private sex life is being aired among people they’re not close too. Children shouldn’t be involved either. This must be a purely adult event.
It’s best if only affected close family members are involved. The spouse or partner should be one of them, and a family mediator can certainly help.
The Need for Intervention Experts
As you can imagine, a sex addiction intervention can be terribly embarrassing for all involved. It’s hard to find the right words to say. An expert can help create a proper environment for the intervention, and people can express their testimonials and views in a manner that’s both caring and supportive.
Sex addiction is like any other addiction, in that it can be treated and overcome. What’s crucial here is the willing cooperation of the addicted loved one. The main assumption here is that an addict doesn’t necessarily want to remain one. An addiction to sex can be a substitute for something missing in their life, or perhaps to cover up their inability to cope with crises or life challenges.
Interventions aren’t really about disapproval and judgments. It’s about caring for one another, and helping loved ones overcome an addiction. It helps an addict to realize that they’re not being condemned, but they’re being helped by loved ones who care about them. It’s that feeling of not being alone is the first step to recovery.