Sex Addiction in the Public Eye and Media

Recently, it seems that whenever you turn on the television, radio, or browse the internet, there is a news story about a public figure seeking treatment for sex addiction or being involved in a sex-related scandal.  Sex addiction is a disorder that is present in all walks of life, but when a person with celebrity stature is involved in such behaviors it raises questions and sparks public curiosity.

Sexual addiction, sexual compulsivity or “hypersexuality” is defined as a condition where a person has an unusually intense sex drive, uncontrollable sexual urges, behaviors, or thoughts, making it difficult to work or engage in healthy personal relationships.  Sex addicts often rationalize, justify, or deny their behaviors and do not believe there is a problem present. Many celebrities, such as comedian Russell Brand, actor Michael Douglas, and golfer Tiger Woods have been involved in sex scandals and openly admitted to having a problem and sought professional treatment.  However, others such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and recently New York State Representative Anthony Weiner have been involved in scandals and so far kept quiet on the subject.

With all of these stories on the news, people are often left wondering, what is the difference between just downright bad behavior and sex addiction?  Are these men just simply calling themselves “addicts” and seeking treatment as a ploy to buy time and sympathy?

Although the diagnosis of sexual addiction is controversial due to the fact that it is not recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, professionals in the addiction community do view it as a behavioral addiction with just as severe consequences as substance abuse disorders.  Individuals who have a true sexual addiction are often completely out of control and continue to engage in their behaviors despite obvious negative consequences (health, social, financial and emotional).  Generally, a person with a sex addiction gains little pleasure or satisfaction from their encounters and is unable to form any emotional bond with their partners.

Luckily, there is treatment available for this condition, which often consists of individual psychotherapy, marriage and family therapy, and various other treatment modalities at an inpatient rehab center like Passages Malibu.

Call Passages Addiction Treatment Centers today if you or a loved one is battling an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol. Our admissions department is available 24/7 and can be reached directly by calling our toll-free number at (888) 397-0112. We look forward to speaking with you soon.

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