HEY BESTIE: I’m in a new relationship, and the sex is amazing. We make love every day – sometimes more than once a day. But I’m starting to get concerned that I might be addicted to sex. How do I know if I am?
So glad to hear that the sex is amazing!
I hope you continue enjoying each other and the sex between you.
Enjoying and having sex regularly (or more often than not) vastly differs from sex addiction. So let me first and foremost get clear on what constitutes an addiction to sex.
Although Sex Addiction is technically not classified in the most used diagnostic manual for therapists, it’s necessary to perform sexual acts to achieve the ‘fix’ that a person with alcohol use disorder would get from drinking, for example.
It will be considered an addiction if sexual behavior negatively impacts your physical and mental health, personal relationships, quality of life, and safety.
Here are some signs of being aware:
Lying to cover the sexual behaviourInability to stop or control the behaviourFeeling remorse or guilt after the behaviourChronic or obsessive thoughts about the behavior
So let me break it down. Suppose you are thinking of or participating in your desired sexual activity more than you are going to work or taking care of yourself or others, and it’s impacting your ability to function, then yes. In that case, you probably need to talk to a health professional about this.
If you are, however, genuinely enjoying your new partner, sex on a very regular basis, and still able to function within society, then enjoy the moment as long as you can: this is not a sex addiction by definition.
Sex addiction has real consequences, including negative impacts on your well-being and relationships.
For years, sex has been taboo, and a topic people avoid discussing. If you feel that you are in control of your behavior rather than your behavior being in control of you – then that’s a good indicator that you are likely OK.
Sex addiction requires professional intervention by a health provider experienced in this area.
Treatment can vary, and it’s not likely to be a one-off session. Many support groups are available for people learning to manage problematic sexual behavior.
If ever you are genuinely concerned about your sexual behavior, take the time to reach out and speak to a health professional.
There are plenty of people specifically trained in sex therapy that can help you explore healthy sexual relationships with yourself and others.
Because, after all, everyone deserves a healthy and active sex life.
Amanda Lambros is a sexologist and relationship coach with almost two decades of experience who takes pride in her “no b-s” approach to solving your problems. She is also a certified speaking professional and has written several books on relationships, health, and business, selling over 150,000 copies.
Do you have a question for Amanda? Email [email protected] (don’t worry, we won’t publish your name!)