If you or your partner struggles with an addiction to sex, finding help isn’t easy, but it is possible. Unlike people with drug or alcohol addiction, sex addicts are limited when it comes to treatment facilities. Part of the difficulty in finding treatment for sex addiction is the controversial nature of the disorder, also known as hypersexual disorder. Not all experts in mental health accept it as a true addiction or psychiatric disorder. In spite of this controversy, you know that your issues are real and that you need help. With a little extra effort, you can find it and you can get better.
Identifying as a Sex Addict
For anyone looking for help for sex addiction, the first roadblock is simply realizing there is a problem. It’s not easy to identify as a sex addict. You may question whether sex addiction is even real or if you are using it as an excuse for bad behaviors. If your sexual choices, whether they involve actual sex, masturbation, pornography use or something else, interfere with your life and cause negative consequences, you have a problem. Whether you call it sex addiction or not, sexual feelings and behaviors are running your life and you need professional help to regain control. Realizing this is your first step toward finding help.
Enlist an Ally
Your next step should be to share your concerns and your problems with someone you trust. This could be your partner, a friend or a close family member. Going it alone with any kind of addiction is never a good idea. As embarrassed as you might feel, open up to someone and ask for help. You may be surprised by how your loved one reacts. You will probably find that your friend is supportive and ready to be there for you. Together, you will have an easier job of finding the right professional help.
Find a Certified Therapist or Rehab
Having the support of a friend as you try to beat your sex addiction is wonderful, but it isn’t enough. Therapists and counselors certified in treating sex addiction are available and can provide you with the professional help that you really need. Check websites for professional therapy organizations to find listings of certified specialists. These listings can guide you to a counselor experienced in working with patients with sex addiction on an outpatient basis. If you feel like outpatient therapy won’t be enough to help you get better, you can find rehab facilities that treat sex addiction. There are far fewer of these than there are facilities for chemical addictions, but they’re out there. If you can afford to travel to a rehab for sex addiction and you are able to take the time away from work, this can be a great option. It will give you the chance to really focus on your issues and to get better in an intensive and supportive setting.
Find Support Group Meetings
Another option for learning to cope with your sex addiction is to join a support group. Similar to the traditional 12-step meetings for alcoholics, sex addiction support groups are anonymous gatherings of people all dealing with the same issue. A support group is a good way to maintain your sobriety after receiving specialist care. It’s also a good starting place if you’re not ready for therapy or if you can’t afford the cost or time to go to rehab. Getting help for your sex addiction is an important step. Once you have recognized that you have a problem, you are already on the path to getting better. Get out there and search for the professional help and the support you need to get into recovery from sex addiction.