Q: How do you recognize sexual addiction?

A: Sex becomes an addiction when people lose control over their ability to choose to have sex. They become obsessed with it and will go through any extremes to have sex and the pleasurable feelings associated with it.

Also, sex addiction by definition is not limited to physical acts with a partner. It may involve masturbation, pornography and even repetitive thoughts. The message sent to a sex addict’s brain is that sex or sexual imagery is more important than food, family, relationships and money.

While it is natural to crave sex and sexual contact on a daily basis, it is not healthy when sex causes the following:

  • You are repeatedly late to work because of sexual practices.
  • You spend large sums of money on pornography and/or sexual stimulation but neglect paying important bills.
  • You have sex anywhere and with almost anyone you meet.
  • You want to masturbate and/or watch pornography instead of having sex with your partner.

Like any addicted person, sex addicts find their lives spiraling out of control and usually need help in order to recover. If you or someone you love has a sexual addiction, contact Sex Addicts Anonymous at saa-recovery.org or call 800-477-8191.