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Sex Addiction: Hypersexuality
To Sex Addiction or hypersexuality terminology we prefer out of control sexual behaviour, sexual compulsivity or compulsive sexual behaviour.
Sexuality varies – some people have stronger sexual desires than others. A strong sexual desire does not imply that you are addicted to sex.
If your sexual behaviour becomes difficult to control or interferes with your health, relationships, job, school, and general well-being, sex may become an issue. Do not delay seeking help; sometimes it is hard to take a first step but there are professionally trained therapist that will be able to support and work with you towards recovery.
What is Hypersexuality?
Hypersexuality is a sexual behaviour that is difficult to control and causes stress and problems in all areas of a person’s life. It is also known as sex addiction, compulsive sexual behaviour disorder, or hypersexuality disorder.
If you are excessively preoccupied with sexual fantasies, behaviours, or impulses that are difficult to control, you may have a sex addiction.
Due to a lack of clinical evidence, hypersexuality is not officially recognised as a disorder by the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual. 5th Edition (DSM-5).
However, the World Health Organization (WHO) recognises compulsive sexual behaviour addiction as an official diagnosable condition.
How Does Sex Addiction Manifest Itself?
Hypersexuality is characterised by uncontrollable sexual preoccupation, urges, fantasies, and behaviours. Sex addiction typically manifests itself as:
- Watching or engaging in pornography
- Sexual acts
- Exhibition or voyeurism
- Multiple sexual partners
- Paying for sex
These behaviours may be considered sexual addiction when you have difficulty controlling them, or they become a major focus in your life, disrupting your health, relationships, and daily life.
Sex Addiction Symptoms
Some signs that you may be struggling with hypersexuality include:
- Obsession with pornography, exhibition, or voyeurism
- An excessive amount of time spent thinking about or engaging in sex
- Sexual fantasies, urge, and behaviours appear to be beyond your control.
- Difficulty establishing and maintaining healthy relationships
- Compulsive masturbation
- Mixed feelings of relief and guilt following the compulsive sexual behaviour
- Sexual habits are causing problems at school, work, and in social life
- Inability to control or reduce sexual fantasies, desires, and behaviour
- Using compulsive sexual behaviours to cope with mental health challenges and stress
- The failure to engage in sexual behaviour causes distress, anxiety, or irritability.
Do Hypersexual People Have More Sex Than Others?
Compulsive sexual behaviour can cause havoc in all areas of your life. People who believe they are addicted to sex have more sex than others. These people engage in intense, recurring sexual behaviours that frequently interfere with other activities and tasks.
What Causes Hypersexuality?
According to research, childhood experiences may contribute to beliefs about sex and sex addiction. People who consider themselves “addicted” to sex are often raised to believe that sexual thoughts, fantasies, and behaviours are wrong, shameful, or even evil.
Also, sex addiction is often caused by the need to “numb out” bad feelings caused by being ignored, hurt or abused as a child or teen.
In addition, some people develop sexual addiction as a stress-coping mechanism, using sexual behaviour to escape the pressures and pain in their lives. They eventually succumb to addiction as feel-good hormones cause sex cravings.
Sex Addiction Counselling
Psychosexual therapy focuses on the psychological, physical, emotional, and environmental factors that can lead to sexual problems.
During your intake therapy session, your therapist will ask you a lot of questions about yourself, your life, your main problems, and what you hope to get out of psychotherapy. This is because the first therapy session is all about getting to know you and figuring out what’s going on.
You can attend psychosexual treatment either alone or with your partner. Your therapist will assist you in identifying the circumstances that have led to sexual troubles, as well as working through the emotional distress and interpersonal challenges caused by your sex addiction.
Since emotional attachment is the main problem with sex addiction, sex addiction counselling aims to important to identify and address any attachment problems that started in your childhood.