Archives for Hypersexual Disorders

Hypersexual Disorders

Recognizing the Consequences of Sexual Addiction

Assessment Questions

It’s not exactly a clinical secret that most of the sex addicts who enter therapy do so in response to their addiction’s related symptoms—disintegrating relationships, depression, severe anxiety, inability to focus at work or in school, social isolation, and the like. Rarely do these individuals walk in the door say, “You know, I think maybe I’m a sex addict, and that’s probably the first thing I need to deal with.” Instead, sex addicts will tell you that they’re unhappy, and that they’re having a variety of life and relationship problems. In my previous blog I discussed the fact that therapists should always ask at least a few specific but non-graphic questions about sexual activity during assessment in an effort to unearth sex-related issues. These questions may include the following:

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Hypersexual Disorders

Decoding Ariel Castro’s “Cold Blooded Sex Addict” Statement

My last three blogs have been about sexual offending. Frankly, after completing the series I’d hoped to move on to lighter topics. Unfortunately, the recent situation in Ohio - Ariel Castro allegedly kidnapping and repeatedly raping and torturing three young women for more than a decade - requires comment, particularly in light of Castro’s statement to police that he is a “cold blooded sex addict,” along with his reference to sexual addiction in an attempted suicide note.
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Hypersexual Disorders

Hypersexual Disorder/Sexual Addiction: Useful Diagnosis or Judgment?

When All You Know How to Use Are Hammers, Doesn’t Everything Resemble a Nail?
Over the past several months I have been writing blogs for Psych Central that extensively explain the DSM-5 Hypersexuality Diagnosis and the concept of sexual addiction. I have written about the basics of what it means to be a sex addict, how sex addicts can (like someone with an eating disorder) achieve “sobriety,” and the great effect technology is having on those with impulsive and compulsive sexual problems. These blogs have generated a great deal of discussion among clinicians in the multiple forums and groups where they have been posted around the globe. One of the more emphatic threads of comment I often receive is a judgment of sorts—that those who recognize sexual addiction as a treatable disorder must somehow be “sex negative,” that those who acknowledge and treat sexual addiction somehow believe that anyone who engages in ego-dystonic sexual behavior or enjoys sexual proclivities that do not mirror the larger culture’s values is a sex addict. This is not the case. In fact, nearly all sexual addiction specialists readily acknowledge that most of the vast range of human sexual behavior is neither problematic nor evidence of an addiction.
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