Blog

Healthy Relationship is the Antidote to Addiction

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Any addiction (alcohol, drug, food, sex, or gambling) involves the hijacking of the brain’s natural orientation to relationships as its source for optimal health. The brain “is wired” for healthy relationships. An addiction “short-circuits” the healthy brain creating disorder and disaster.

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To Tell the Children

Treatment

Ugh! What do we tell the children? Sexual addiction is a complex disease with consequences that extend far beyond the person struggling with the addiction. It involves spouses, of course. It also involves children. How, when, and why to disclose sexual addiction to children is a difficult question. We have found that long-time treatment professional Claudia Black provides insight important to share.

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Sex Addiction is Not a Myth: Article Not to Miss

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In a previous post we noted that the Nov/Dec issue of The Therapist Magazine (California Marriage and Family Therapist publication), a group of therapists wrote an article discrediting the work of sex addiction therapists. Jan Beauregard, Candice Christensen, and Alexandra Katehakis have published a response that sets the record straight. Here is the “take away” for those too busy to read the entire article:

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Increase Your Vocabulary, Expand Your Emotional Reach

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If you limit your emotional language to “feel good” and “feel bad”, you may be missing out on the wonderful breadth of human experience. It may limit your capacity for healthy intimacy as well. A British researcher finds that our emotional experience is limited by the vocabulary we have available to identify and name our emotional experience.

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Controversy: Sexual Addiction

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A person who struggles with sexual addiction lives a double life. They don’t know themselves as whole people with healthy Mind/Body integration. They struggle to enter into healthy relationships with others – relationships that include healthy sexual expression characterized by mutuality and respect. They are one person presenting two faces to the world. They identify one personae as good and acceptable, the other is bad and needing to be hidden away. They present the good to family and friends while the bad lives a secret life. Shame grounds their basic belief about themselves. They truly believe they simply are not worthy. Their double life is an expression of self-loathing.

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The Teen Years

Addiction

As a powerful human drive, Sex is right up there after the basic needs of survival are met. What is human sexuality if not survival of the species? Puberty comes with changes in a young person’s body and signals a new reality. What was once easily overlooked and gratefully avoided becomes the almost constant focus of the teenage imagination. The excitement of growing up in the teenage years involves learning what to do with this unfamiliar but ever so persistent motive that rises up even in one’s dreams.

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Where Addiction Starts?

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How is it that so many people are falling every day into the trap of addiction? The introduction of the internet into daily life certainly plays a role. Here’s how.

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Attachment and Addiction

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John Bowlby pioneered understand of the way human being “attach” in his study of children and their caregivers. His fundamental insight is that the shape of our emotional response to the people closest to us has been informed by very early childhood experiences. Therapists use the basic insights of Attachment Theory and and their understanding of Attachment Styles in treating sexual addiction.

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