Sex addiction is one of those things we suspect is common but we’re reluctant to talk about. However, it’s a real problem, and recognizing the signs of sex addict symptoms in yourself or others can be instrumental in starting the path to recovery.
Is there someone you care about engaging in sexual activities outside of a committed relationship, such as cheating? If so, this can lead to addiction as the user becomes dependent on deregulated sexual functionality.
Sound familiar? Keep reading to find out several of the top signs that someone in your life might be suffering from sex addiction.
How to Recognize the Signs of Sex Addiction
There are four primary warning signs of sex addiction. If you are noticing any of these signs in yourself or a loved one, it’s important to reach out for help.
1. Preoccupation with Sex
One of the top warning signs of sex addiction is a preoccupation with sex. This can manifest in many different ways but typically includes excessive thinking or fantasizing about sex, spending an excessive amount of time viewing pornography, or engaging in compulsive sexual behavior.
Sex becomes all-consuming. Thoughts about sex intrude during the day and interfere with work, school, or relationships.
2. Acting Out Sexually
Acting out sexually can manifest as frequently engaging in risky or unprotected sex, pursuing multiple sexual partners, or engaging in sex work. Feeling shame or guilt after sexual activity may lead the individual to avoid talking about sex or to actively hide their sexual activity from others.
Withdrawing from non-sexual activities to focus on sexual activity can look like canceling plans with friends or family to have more time for sex, or giving up hobbies or interests that don’t involve sex.
3. Lying and Secrecy
A sex addict will often lie about their behaviors and activities. They may have multiple sexual partners and keep them secret from their primary partner. If your partner is suddenly secretive about their whereabouts or who they’re talking to, it may be a sign that they’re engaging in risky behavior.
If you notice your partner is lying to you about their whereabouts or who they’re talking to, it’s important to have a conversation about what’s going on. They may be just trying to protect you from their addiction, but it’s also possible they’re hiding something more sinister. If your partner is engaging in secretive or risky behavior, it’s important to get help from a professional to address the underlying issues.
4. Neglecting Important Obligations
One of the top warning signs that a person is addicted to sex is neglecting important obligations. Such as work, school, or family responsibilities. A person with a sex addiction may lose interest in activities that they once enjoyed. Other people’s marriage effected by sex addiction ends up separating and may start to withdraw from friends and family.
A sex addict may neglect work, school, or family obligations to engage in sexual activity. They may also spend excessive time viewing.
The Road to Recovery
If you or a loved one is exhibiting any of these warning signs, it may be time to seek help from a certified sex addiction treatment program. With the proper care and support, those struggling with sex addiction can learn to overcome their disorder and lead healthy, fulfilling lives.
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