I believe it was the media frenzy surrounding the Tiger Woods’ scandal that made sex addiction ‘real’ to people. Ironically the poster boy for sex addiction, Tiger Woods, doesn’t have a sex addiction: massive ego and poor judgment certainly; a sex addiction, certainly not.
But what does a small matter like completely misdiagnosing a celebrity have to do when it gets in the way of selling headlines?
As a result we’ve readily taken this information as god-spell and sex addiction has become a ‘real’ condition. And what a dangerous predicament it has created for the average couple’s sexual health.
Let’s be clear, there are two camps when it comes to sex addiction: those who believe it is a real affliction; and those who don’t. I’m obviously in the ‘don’t’ camp.
Sexual addiction is, in my opinion, an easy and convenient label for a very complicated problem. As it stands there is a lack of empirical evidence and scientific agreement on whether such a condition even exists.
Dr. Marty Klein a leading expert in this field of psychotherapy gives the best explanation about sex addiction in this video.
You see, the trick to defining sex addiction is to determine ‘normal’ sexual pursuits. An exercise in subjectivity as every person has their own comfort level and preference: some people want sex three times a day (or more); some have exotic tastes; others favor vanilla sex.
Consequently, it’s extremely difficult to do any scientific study that can set guidelines to say what are acceptable ways to express sexuality.
That said, when you look at what sex addiction advocates have developed over the last 15 years, their standards are a moral judgment—rather than scientific conclusion—based around a heterosexual, monogamous, long term sex lifestyle. Any other forms of sexual expression outside these boundaries could be construed as a sex addiction.
Apparently a lot of people agree with this belief system as we see the term popping up all over the media. In fact, Oprah and Dr. Phil have christened it as a real condition. Dr. Drew Pinsky had an incredibly popular television show helping B-list celebrities.
And let’s face it: sex addiction does make fantastic reality TV viewing.
Why don’t you see if YOU are a sex addict: take the Carne’s on-line sex addiction test. Chances are if you’ve done anything outside the norm, you are indeed a sex addict.
But don’t worry if you are, you can self-cure. It’s usually involves twelve steps, a religious awakening and modifying your sexual behavior (not abstaining like a proper addiction would dictate).
Not surprisingly, all this media attention has filtered down to the average couple. Now looking at porn on your computer is the first step to becoming a sex addict—and every spouse needs to beware and worry about these destructive behaviors. Now there’s a recipe for disaster: Treating your guy like he’s a complete Neanderthal who is unable to control even the smallest of sexual urges.
When you self diagnose, it’s difficult to impartially gauge if the behavior is obsessive and harmful to you and your partner; or, more likely, you’re uncomfortable with the behavior and don’t know how to manage the circumstance.
For the record: I do believe there are people who are obsessive compulsive about sex and cause severe stress on family, friends, loved ones and their work environment. These people do need to seek out help. Yet, it’s been my experience this is the rare exception and not the norm.
So the next time you read that someone in the news has a sex addiction, please take it with a grain of salt. Most likely they don’t. It’s probably about feeding the insatiable public its next salacious headline and not about giving people a proper sex education.
Picture this: you're having a really (REALLY) stressful day. Work is crazy, kids are crazy, making supper is crazy, partner is crazy. You get the picture.
What can you do to calm down? Well, in the Victorian Era (the late 1800s), women would go to their doctor and get a 'genital massage.' Yes, you read that right. The doctors would get these women off to a point of orgasm to help with their hysteria.
It was believed the sexual release would treat emotional or mental problems.
And this is why vibrators were invented!
Due to overwhelming demand, doctors’ hands would often become tired as some women needed to be ‘calmed down’ two or three times a week!
The vibrator that you know and love today, was invented to aid doctors treat hysterical/ stressed out women.
And you know what? I think the Victorian's were on to something: having an orgasm for instant stress relief is really quite clever.
It's during the challenging part of our relationship that our will, want and desire to stay emotionally connected is put to the test.
Some of us want to go into a cave or shut down emotionally. Not to say zoning out in front of the TV or Facebook isn't warranted, yet our partnership still needs TLC.
Here's the easiest solution. Kiss. In fact, make it a ten-second kiss.
Joy Davidson, PhD believes kissing is a sensual meditation and that it “stops the buzz in your mind, it quells anxiety, and it heightens the experience of being present in the moment. It actually produces a lot of the physiological changes that meditation produces."
You may not feel like kissing. But you know what? Sometimes we need to do things we don't feel like. And you will never regret being nice to your partner.
So when things are getting hectic and you’re getting stressed say, “Ten-second kiss.”
Everything in the moment gets dropped and you and your partner kiss for, well, ten seconds. (This is not a good time to count, "One Mississippi, two Mississippi..." As best you can concentrate on what you're doing!)
It’s an easy way to create a couple connection.
More importantly, it will relieve stress and help shift your perspective to seeing each other in a fun and loving way.