Instead of seeing transparency as a punishment or a hindrance, the addict must come to view it as rock-solid security measure again potential relapse, where relapse would eliminate all chances at personal happiness.
The realm of healthy dating may seem strange for other reasons as well.
Likewise for the woman who always seems to get involved with unavailable, married men, a truly present, drama-free suitor can be deemed ‘boring.’ These unique challenges can be overcome, of course, but the sex addict will have their work cut out for them. The sex addict is used to instant gratification, and may not have the patience to invest in a long term relationship that builds gradually through shared interests and time spent getting to know one another.
This impossible ‘slowness’ that intimacy requires may frustrate and confuse the addict, who no doubt is in a rush to form a relationship after so many months spent healing in celibacy.
Regardless of the particular brand of sex addiction, this stage of reentry into the dating pool is critical for every sex addict.
It cannot be rushed, underestimated or faced alone anymore than the early emergency stages of recovery could be when the addict was hitting bottom.
This syndrome is a complex mixture of biological, psychological, cultural, and family-of-origin issues, the combination of which creates impulses and urges that are virtually impossible to resist.
Despite the fact that acting them out produces considerable long-term negative consequences, the addict simply cannot resist his impulses.
More importantly, people who love and cherish their partners can still be enslaved by these irresistible urges.
Distress, shame and guilt about the behaviors erode the addict’s already weak self-esteem.
Sexual addiction can be conceptualized as an intimacy disorder manifested as a compulsive cycle of preoccupation, ritualization, sexual behavior, and despair.
Central to the disorder is the inability of the individual to adequately bond and attach in intimate relationships.
The syndrome is rooted in early attachment failure with primary caregivers.