Sexual Addiction Treatment in Austin, TX
What is Sexual Addiction?
Sexual addiction is defined as a lack of control over sexual thoughts, urges, and impulses. Sexual impulses are natural, but sex addiction is the same behavior done to excess and causes a significant negative impact on one’s life.
Sexual addiction is missing from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), but research has shown that it develops much in the same way a chemical addiction does.
When a person is consumed with sexual addiction the need to be sexuallly stimulated is compulsive. It takes over everything and interferes with their ability to lead a normal daily life. There are many forms of sexual addiction:
What Causes Sexual Addiction?
There are so many factors and experiences that may lead to sexual addiction or other sex disorders. Symptoms for sexual addiction tend not to fit into one single mental condition and this makes any sort of diagnosis very challenging.
It can be difficult to figure out where the symptoms come from. The root causes of compulsive sexual behavior are not well understood.
Potential causes and contributing factors for sexual addiction include:
- medication side effects – some medications can trigger compulsive sexual behaviors
- unable to regulate emotions – difficulty regulating emotions has been linked to compulsive behaviors, including sexual
- childhood abuse – there have been multiple studies that show a connection between childhood sexual abuse and sexual addiction
- parental relationships – severe family dysfunction may contribute to symptoms of compulsive sexual behavior
While sexual addiction is not a formal diagnosis, a pattern of intrusive and repetitive sexual behaviors and urges should be treated. The sooner treatment is begun, the faster life can return to normal.
Symptoms of Sexual Addiction
Are you concerned that you, or someone you know, is suffering from sexual addiction? The indications that you, or a friend, may be struggling with compulsive sexual behavior include:
- You have intense and recurrent sexual fantasies and urges that you feel are beyond your control.
- You’ve tried to control your sexual fantasies or urges and are unsuccessful
- Your compulsive sexual behavior is an escape from your other problems, like depression, anxiety, or stress.
- You have trouble establishing and maintaining healthy relationships.
- You feel compelled to perform certain sexual behaviors and have severe remorse or guilt afterwards.
If you feel you’ve lost control of your sexual behavior, especially if it causes problems in your life or in others.
Sexual addiction tends to escalate over time, so it is imperative to get help as soon as you recognize there may be a problem.
Sexual Addiction Treatment
- Individual/Couples Counseling – Through an emphasis on the addict’s neural pathway restructuring therapy, we explore the shame base of their addiction, childhood attachment issues, and overcoming the entitlement, lack of empathy, and selfishness that has defined their lives for years. Our goal is to instill hope, in the partner of the addict, and help alleviate the trauma, understand the nature of the addiction, and help them understand that this was not their fault.
For couples, a time comes in the healing process of recovery for the couple to examine their relationship and heal the wounds of relational trauma. This is a vital step in the restoration process.
- Group Counseling – Group therapy is our primary means of sexual addiction therapy. It is used to guide clients through the process of gaining insight about themselves and the origins of their sexually compulsive behavior.
The moment when a partner becomes aware of the addict’s behavior is nothing short of traumatic. Yet because of the shameful nature of sex addiction, finding support often does not seem a realistic possibility for the partner.
Many partners suffer the trauma of betrayal that is not tied specifically to sexual infidelity. Alcoholism, drug abuse, verbal and emotional abuse can have s similar impact.
Once a parent catches a child viewing porn multiple times, they become very concerned that something may be wrong. With the average age of first exposure now 7 -10 years old, many times, by the time they become teens, something is very wrong.
- High Profile Clients – Some people who are struggling with the consequences of compulsive sexual behavior have a high profile with the media or within their community. This fact, often times, makes the decision to seek help even more difficult. We seek to minimize the risk of exposure by providing more highly confidential intensive experience. We will meet with the client off campus and we can even keep the client’s actual name out of our system and their face out of our waiting room. The intensive is provided at a local luxury boutique hotel with extensive experience in dealing with high profile clients. Handling treatment in this way assures the client that confidentiality can be more easily maintained.
- Intensive Outpatient Program – The only one of it’s kind in Central Texas, this 6 week (54 hour) Sexual Addiction Intensive Outpatient Program (SA IOP) offers a more rigorous, concentrated start to the recovery process. Understanding the root causes of sexual addiction, emotional regulation, shame reduction, relapse prevention, and the influence of past trauma are all explored during this in depth therapy experience. We have seen this 6 week program “jump start” the healing process, and clients have stated that, “It gave me a 6 month head start in my recovery.”
The Timothy Center is Here to Help
No one is safe from sexual addiction, it can affect all people, no matter what class or race. If you have any further questions about sexual addiction we urge you to contact us. Just having a quick talk with one of the mental health professionals at one of our treatment centers can help answer any remaining questions you have.
We can help come up with a plan to help combat the intrusive, compulsive sexual urges. The Timothy Center can help you get on the path back to a healthy, normal life. Contact us today for your confidential assessment.
Get the help you need and get back on track.