Psych Central


If you are not a sex addict, your mind may roam to a million different places during sex with a partner, including being completely “into” the experience of your partner.

You may be completely devoid of thoughts or fantasies during sex at some times but have wildly erotic images flashing through your head at other times.

This is what a colleague of mine refers to as the “fuel mix” in sexual arousal. For the non-addict this fuel mix can vary a great deal from time to time without being problematic in any way.

Sex addicts get hooked on particular sexual fantasies

For a sex addict, the sexual fantasies that lead to arousal and orgasm can be quite predictable and relate to the particular kind of sexually addictive behaviors that the addict most prefers.  It’s not necessarily that the fantasies are deviant but rather that they become rigid and predictable.

8 Comments to
Sexual Mindfulness: What Goes on in Your Head During Sex?

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  1. I am a 47yr old male with aspergers and porn is the closest i’ll ever get to sex in my life. I never had a relationship and womens expectations are to high let alone someone like me. I don’t get noticed and am invisible to women. I like younger women in there late twenties and early thirties and can’t help it. Hasn’t always been like this when I was that age and looking for someone of a similar age but they did not want me. I guess I will become a pensioner suicide statistic.

    • Robin,
      Your use of pornography may actually be worsening your symptoms of Asperger’s. The internal focus of pornography makes it increasingly difficult to make or maintain a relationship because you are not learning to relate to anyone other than yourself. As such, you make it impossible for people to please you as no one could please you as well as you please yourself.
      I suggest finding a good therapist who can assist in creating new patterns and developing strong, healthy friendships. You can have more than you are allowing yourself now.

  2. I hate to say it, but what you are writing about here sound positively Orwellian. Sex addicts can stop their acting out, but still be involved in “thought-crime?” You’re not satisfied that they’ve stopped their acting-out behaviors, but you also want them not to have particular arousal fantasies when they engage in non-acting-out sex or masturbation? Because these fantasies might trigger a relapse? Because addictive fantasies might, just might, turn into realities? (As if non-addictive fantasies don’t?)

    At some point, we could use some real research to support all this wild speculation. What’s the best research on the kinds of sexual fantasies held by non-addicts vs. addicts? Do you honestly believe that that non-addicts don’t have a template to which they tend to return in their fantasies? What about guys and women who like a certain “type?”

    I agree with what you wrote here:

    “Everyone has some set of sexual images or thoughts that are their own and for the average person these often private thoughts should be given the respect that they deserve. Everyone has a right to an interior life that they need not share with anyone.”

    I will add this: “Everyone” means EVERYONE. IT sounds like you’re saying that for the non-average person, those private thoughts should NOT be given respect. I hate to have to say it, but the world is full of non-average people.

    I don’t care what peoples’ fantasies are. I care about what they DO.

  3. I’m having a hard time dealing with the fact that my wife is a sex addict. She slept with all of my friends, my brother, my cousin that I detested and my best friend. She says she got no pleasure in any of it but I find that hard to believe. Surely she must have experienced some physical pleasure. Do sex addicts experience the physical pleasure of sex? Is that a driving force?

    • Thanks to everyone for the comments. I just read a blog on the Good Men Project web site that might interest all of you. http://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/my-struggle-with-sex-addiction/

      • Wow, that’s quite a story. I feel for that guy. He has many deep problems beyond his addiction. I would recommend him for multiple-times-a-week psychotherapy. That said, no one is doubting the profundity of his depths. What’s problematic in this blog post is the assertion that somehow sexual fantasy should no longer be private if a person who used to act out sexually in some way had it. Also, the unsupported assertion that sex addicts somehow have rigid fantasies in a way that non-sex addicts don’t. (You’re saying that non-sex addicts have fluid fantasies that change all the time, and often don’t have to do with their basic arousal templates, no? That when they are, or example, self-pleasuring, non-sex addicts do not return to a fantasy or image that tends to arouse them, but instead are fantasy omnivores, right?)

      • I’m having a hard time dealing with the fact that my wife is a sex addict. She slept with all of my friends, my brother, my cousin that I detested and my best friend. She says she got no pleasure in any of it but I find that hard to believe. Surely she must have experienced some physical pleasure. Do sex addicts experience the physical pleasure of sex? Is that a driving force?
        Left this and received no replies. Can you speak to this?

      • Hi Wayne- I left an answer to your other comment on the other web page. It might also help you to read some of the basic books about sex addiction like Patrick Carnes’ work.
        Very best,
        Linda

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