When a client comes in to see me with a sex addiction problem, I often take an extensive family and sexual history. I will curiously ask questions about his parent’s relationship, relationship questions about siblings, how each family member connected and who did he turn to the most for help.
My goal is to form a picture and story about my client’s relationship history to better understand what the sex addiction replaced or what I term as a “counterfeit relationship”.
Sexual & Relationship History
I am also looking at his sexual and romantic relationship history: such as first sexual experience, history of pornography, girl/boy friends, breakups, prostitutes, massage parlors, etc. I am again forming a picture and story about the sexual and relational messages that my client heard.
Flawed View of Self
The man struggling with sexual addiction often has a very dim view of relationships and especially in turning to others to meet his needs. He often views himself as flawed and lacking and views others as not wanting to meet his needs. Most men that struggle with sexual addiction do not develop adequate social skills, never learn to share emotions honestly, and are unable share with others on more than a superficial level.
Examine Personal History
For many of my clients, sharing their personal histories provides them the first opportunity to examine himself more closely and objectively. It takes their focus off of the shame and allows for a deeper understanding of the underlying hurts, wounds, trauma, and loneliness. I assert that the client is not a bad person but rather a hurting person.
Breaking Denial Is First Step of Recovery
For men struggling with sexual addiction, examining their past is particularly a difficult task because it forces them not only to recall the past but also to own their unmanageable behaviors. Many of my clients are extremely fearful at the prospect of being honest and truthful about the reality of their past. Breaking denial about the damage and pain that the addiction caused and covered up, is the first step toward recovery.
Start Sex Addiction Counseling Today
If you are struggling with sexual addiction behaviors, please don’t wait another moment to get help! Call me today to setup an appointment to start working recovery and finding freedom!