Psychological Self-Help

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Treatment and Prevention, which has articles about sexual offenders,
women addicts, adolescent addicts, recovery for couples, etc. So, he is
a major contributor to this area. 
Patricia Fargason, board member of the National Council on Sexual
Addiction and Compulsion, says sexual addicts often come from
oversexualized homes where the adult's sexual interests intrude to
include the children in subtle ways. Or, sometimes, the addict-to-be
learns to soothe his/her childhood anxiety, fears, sexual urges, and
anger by masturbating and fantasizing; thus, creating a very strong
habit. Some psychoanalytic psychiatrists, like Goodman (1998),
explore the psychodynamic (and the cognitive-behavioral) aspects of
treatment while trying to integrate the currently popular biochemical
thinking as well. There is, of course, some reason to believe that
sexual activity is influenced by innate sexual drives but much stronger
evidence that our daily thoughts influence our sexual drives. The
sexual development area is one in which we know very little; for
instance, we know very little about the development of ordinary sexual
attractions to breasts or behinds or penises or hairy bodies or
pornography or promiscuous sex, etc., etc. The attraction to
As Stanton Peele points out, an obsessive over-emphasis on sex
can be seen in many teens, during early dating, when "feeling our
oats" after a divorce, when a "hunk" or a "hot number" comes into our
mundane lives (like Monica into Bill's) and so on. These are not purely
biological addictions or some sudden gush of neurotransmitters; they
are mental/psychological/emotional/physiological events in ordinary
lives, not all lives but some. We get over these sexual obsessions in
time and in natural ways. Our culture even idolizes some
romantic/sexual obsessions; they too can be nearly impossible to stop.
These normal sexual over-reactions must not blind us to the enormous
hurt involved in and caused by out-of-control sexual addictions
mentioned above in Carnes's levels. 
It is estimated that about 6% of the American population has a
problem of some kind with compulsive sex. The fastest growing group
is young professionals. Treatment programs are developing, costing
$800 to $1000 per day! There are also 12-Step programs available in
most major metropolitan areas. Besides Carnes and Goodman, Weiss
(1996) is another major player and has a Web site, Sex Addiction
Recovery Resources ( which advertises
several of his books, including Women Who Love Sex Addicts and 101
Practical Exercises for Sexual Addiction Recovery. The National
also provides articles, including an article on the "Consequences of Sex
Addiction and Compulsivity," and referrals to treatment (phone 770-
989-9754 or email ncsac@telesyscom/com). Other outstanding
authors are Kasl (1990), who writes about women coping with a sexual
addiction, and Anderson & Struckman-Johnson, who describe the life
and motives of sexually aggressive (not necessarily addicted) women. 
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