How To Know When Sex Becomes An Addiction

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The average individual possesses a natural and inherent need for regular intimacy and sexual stimulation. The proliferation of sexual imagery in advertising and via nearly every form of media, however, has served to hyper-sexualize children and adults alike, creating generations of people who often think about sex on a near constant basis. Sex is at the heart of nearly all marketing endeavors and it is what keeps theater seats packed and high-priced fashion items rolling off the shelves. The less than conscious awareness that many people maintain of both the subtle and not-so subtle imagery that is a constant part of living in the modern world can make it difficult to discern when sexual attractions, attentions and actions become problematic. Learning how to identify and address sexual addiction, however, is vital for maintaining a whole and healthy existence in a world filled with sexual distraction.

Damaging Personal Relationships With Impulse Decisions

Acting on sexual impulses is perhaps the defining characteristic of sexual disorder, as this usually means that an individual loses all inhibitions when erotically or otherwise sexually motivated. Acting on impulses of this nature becomes especially dangerous when people feel motivated to harm themselves or harm others in a sexual fashion such as through the pursuit of non-consensual sex acts or the performance of demeaning acts on a known partner whose measure of consent is at best, dubious. These impulses are the basis of many sex crimes and the resulting criminal charges and sentences. When the need to act on harmful impulses overcomes the individual’s self-will, there can be a total lack of control. Each indulgence of this type can result in an even lesser ability to control one’s impulse actions in the future and may ultimately create a need for more aggressive behavior and an increased need for increasingly taboo stimuli.

The Consequences Of Making Sexual Decisions That Are Not In Line With Your Values

Self-preservation is another key consideration that those with sexual addictions must make. Consistently acting on desires or urges that are potentially harmful to self is another sure sign of addictive behavior. Sexually transmitted disease and the likelihood for unwanted pregnancies can both have a very detrimental impact on males and females alike. When impulse actions include the practice of unprotected sex, the risk associated with the and individual’s life choices increases significantly. The harmful effects can be exponential when there are multiple partners involved in the equation, or monogamous relationship commitments that are broken. Thus, partners of sexual addicts will have a much increased likelihood of contracting reproductive diseases, even when they remain personally dedicated to lifestyles of monogamy. While few couples aggressively address individual sexual impulses or addictions until the consequences of these are too glaring to ignore, the potential for contracting disease makes these conversations both urgent and necessary.

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