Educational Scholarships for Men & Women in Recovery From Sex Addiction

On August 15th, ten Hope & Freedom Educational Scholarships will be award.  Each year ten $500 scholarships are available for men and women who are in recovery from sexual addiction.

The purpose of the scholarships is to encourage men and women in recovery from sex addiction to enter college or to continue their education.

Scholarships may be used to pursue education for any undergraduate or graduate degree program at any accredited college or university (including seminary, medical school, or other institution of higher learning).

Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity!

If you or someone you know is struggling with sex addiction in Los Angeles, contact us — we’re here to help.

More specific information can be found on www.EndShame.com.

Is Sex Addict the New Slut?

Sex addiction has become a commonly used phrase in popular culture. Tiger Woods, Eliot Spitzer, Anthony Weiner, and countless other men of means and power have put faces and identities to problematic and destructive sexual behaviors. For eons, people have labeled heavy drinkers as “alcoholics,” those who can’t leave the office until 10:00pm as “workaholics,” and now the term “sex addict” seems to have reached that level of fancy name-calling aimed at those who exhibit promiscuous behaviors. But is sex addiction merely a high level of promiscuity? Sex addiction and high levels of sexual activity are not one in the same, and blurring of the two within pop culture is misleading and dangerous. The problem associated with labeling sex addicts as the “new sluts” is clear to me, especially given that sex addiction actually has little to do with the act of sex, and much more to do with the underlying negative core beliefs that lead the addict down this self-destructive path in the first place.

Many argue that mental health clinicians are trying to create a disease out of an innate biological function that is fundamentally unlike ingesting a chemical into the body. It is likely the debate around the origins of sexual compulsivity will continue on, but all seem to agree that effects of it can prove devastating. Ruined relationships, lost jobs, sexually transmitted diseases, and isolation are just a few of the byproducts of a sexually compulsive way of life. So then, what is the difference between promiscuous behavior and sex addiction? Patrick Carnes, a leader in the field of sex addiction, addresses this in his book Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction, Generally, addicts do not perceive themselves as worthwhile persons. Nor do they believe that other people would care for them or meet their needs if everything was known about them, including the addiction. Finally, they believe that sex is their most important need. Sex is what makes isolation bearable. If you do not trust people, one thing that is true about sex (and alcohol, food, gambling, and risk) is that it always does what it promises, for the moment.” When viewed through the Carnes lense, and given the intense pain endured by the addict, it is clear that sex addiction and promiscuity are very different matters. Having multiple sexual partners and avoiding “settling down” does not necessarily mean one is engaging in compulsive, or addictive, behaviors. For example, many who engage in polyamory believe their connections are based on trust, and experienced as intimate and fulfilling. There are no hints of worthlessness or isolation, the cornerstones of Carnes’s description of the sexually addicted and compulsive. The relationship a sex addict has with the compulsive behavior is akin to the relationship alcoholics and drug addicts develop with their drugs of choice. It becomes a maladaptive means to cope with the shame and anxiety that always accompany the worthlessness and isolation. The rush of dopamine and adrenaline provide a temporary reprieve from this pain, just like alcohol and drugs. So, if we all agree the “fix” provided by various chemicals can be addictive, destructive, and thus potentially life threatening, why would this “fix” be any different? I believe this type of addiction can ultimately be far more difficult to conquer. It’s very important that sex addiction is viewed as a serious problem that warrants treatment and deep healing, not just brushed aside as the rich and powerful behaving badly.

DSM-V to consider Hypersexual Disorder

Here is the latest on whether or not Hypersexual Disorder (formerly sex addiction) will be considered as a bona fide category in the manual for mental illness.  Take a look at the LA Times article and let us know what you think:

http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-psychiatry-roundup-20110523,0,4198997.story

Scientists discover new stress neuropathway

Everyone experiences some kind of stress in their lives but traumatic stress impacts some people more than others. It seems that some people are more susceptible to the impact of stress on the brain, creating anxiety or depressive disorders.  Sex addicts, and sometimes their partners, can suffer from both anxiety or depression or both due to childhood trauma.

Here is an excerpt from the study:

“The study found that the emotional centre of the brain – the amygdala – reacts to stress by increasing production of a protein called neuropsin. This triggers a series of chemical events which in turn cause the amygdala to increase its activity. As a consequence, a gene is turned on that determines the stress response at a cellular level.”

To read the article, go to:

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/222991.php#bXpulseX

TIME Magazine questions sex addiction as a bona fide problem

The battle continues on whether sex addiction is really a problem of addiction or bad behavior.  I contend that what we call “sex addiction” is really a problem of unresolved childhood trauma that leads to repetitive, often destructive behaviors.

Take a look at this article and let us know what you think by clicking the comment button below.

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2050027,00.html

Females can be sex addicts too!

A recent article in Marie Claire Magazine talks about how sex addiction affects females.  I believe women get caught in a neuro-hormonal roller coaster where they chase sex for love hoping to meet “the one.” Take a look at this well-written article. Female sex Addiction Treatment Los Angeles

http://www.marieclaire.com/sex-love/relationship-issues/articles/women-sex-addicts


Female sex and love addiction

Women have a lot of difficulty getting the courage to reach out and get the help they need when it comes to problematic sexual behaviors.  A the Center for Healthy Sex, we’re committed to helping women talk about and heal from these issues without shame.

To learn more about this problem, take a look at this article I co-wrote with Caroline Frost of CHS

recoveryview.com/2010/09/understanding-female-sex-addiction/

Let us know what you think by clicking the comment button below.

What do you do when you’re divorcing a sex addict?

Virginia Gilbert, MFT intern and writer asked me this question. Partner of a sex addict. Follow this link to read our conversation:

www.examiner.com/divorce-parenting-in-los-angeles/when-your-ex-is-a-sex-addict-helping-your-kids-and-healing-yourself?sms_ss=aolmail

Erotic Intelligence Workshop for Couples

The Center for Healthy Sex presents a weekend workshop for couples in recovery from sexual addiction.  Based on my book, “Erotic Intelligence: Igniting Hot, Healthy Sex While in Recovery From Sex Addiction” this weekend workshop will focus on intimacy building skills toward the goal of creating sexual desire. Sex Therapy Los Angeles

Workshop dates are Friday, September 17 – Sunday, September 19

For more details go to www.thecenterforhealthysex.com or call 310-335-0997


Intensive Out-Patient Treatment for Sex Addiction

Did you just figure out that you’re a sex addict?  Have you been in sexual recovery for a while and continue to struggle with staying sexually sober on a plan?  Do you think your partner is a sex addict and think he/she needs help?

At the Center for Healthy Sex we offer a low cost, highly effective alternative to long-term, more expensive in-patient hospital care.  For over ten years, the team at CHS has been providing intensive out-patient sex addiction treatment program for those in need.

Our IOPs are usually scheduled for the middle two weeks of every month.  To learn more about our 11-day program call 310-843-9902 or visit out site at www.thecenterforhealthysex.com

At CHS we’re devoted to assisting you in restoring your sexual health!