There’s a lot of talk these days about sex and porn addiction as well as lot of information online, which can be confusing and unfortunately not always accurate.
Compulsive sexual behaviour is the official term for what some people are experiencing, as defined by the World Health Organisation. There has been a considerable amount of research carried out in this area, indicating little evidence that porn or sex can be addictive. However, people who use sex and porn compulsively likely find themselves
- Using sex or porn to manage difficult feelings or emotions. However, some people are so used to doing this that they no longer recognise that they feel bad.
- Repeating sexual behaviours that can lead to negative consequences, making sexual activity feel compulsive and out of control
- Becoming increasingly isolated and would rather watch porn than socialise
- Making excuses to be away from home so they can “act out”
Most sex therapists in the UK who work with compulsive sexual behaviour come from a perspective of what we call sex positive, meaning that we do not judge people for what they are doing sexually. Equally, we do not try to eradicate fetishes or tell you what kind of sex you should be having. Instead, we look at what behaviours are possibly being used as strategies to manage difficult situations and help people to cope better with emotions and feelings. We help people to look at their sexual behaviour and explore what is authentic for that individual and help people to stop the behaviours that are causing them problems.
Not everyone who is concerned about their sexual behaviour will fit the criteria for having compulsive sexual behaviour disorder. In fact, very few people fulfil every part of the criteria that set out by the World Health Organisation. However, if you are feeling concerned about what you are doing or your life is being affected in any way, sex therapy will likely help you.