Thursday, April 21, 2016

Self Assessment for Sexual Addiction

It can often be difficult to distinguish between a healthy sexual appetite, and sexual addiction. Here are some questions to ask yourself if you think you are struggling with sexual addiction

  1. Do you keep secrets about your sexual behaviors from the people around you?
  2. Do you require a greater variety, increased frequency, or more extreme sexual activities in order to achieve the same level of excitement?
  3. Do you view pornography for extensive amounts of time and/or does your pornography use interfere with relationships or employment?
  4. Do you feel remorse, shame, or guilt after having sex with someone?
  5. Do your sexual activities involve coercion, violence, or the threat of disease?
  6. Has your sexual behavior ever left you feeling hopeless, shameful, or alienated from others?
  7. Do you have trouble stopping your sexual behavior when you know it is inappropriate and/or dangerous?
  8. Have you made promises to yourself or someone else to change some form of your sexual activity only to break them later?
  9. Have your sexual activities interfered with some aspect of your professional or personal life (problems at work, loss of relationship, etc.)?
  10. Did your parents have ongoing sexual or romantic problems?

If you answered "yes" to one or more of these questions, it may be time to seek help. Fortunately, L.I.F.E. Recovery International offers resources such as support groups, and our seven principles of L.I.F.E. to help you on your journey to recovery!


Monday, April 18, 2016

4 Health Benefits of Sex

This blog mostly focuses on the negative aspects of sexual addiction. However, sex is an important aspect of our lives, and actually has many positive health benefits!

  1. Improved Heart Health: Research has shown that sex is good for the heart. It is essentially an exercise, that raises your heart rate and stimulates blood flow. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health found that engaging in sex at least twice a week reduced the risk of heart attack by half!

  1. Better Night's Sleep: Many people report getting a deeper, more restful sleep after having sex. This could be due to the hormone prolactin, which is released during orgasm. Prolactin levels are higher when we are asleep, so the release of the hormone right before bed could lull us into a restful state.

  1. Minimized Pain: Sex can also be a mild pain reliever. The hormones and endorphins that are released during orgasm closely resemble morphine, and they can effectively relieve pain. Several studies have also found that women can get some relief from menstrual cramps after having an orgasm.

  1. Glowing Skin: Having sex regularly promotes the release of testosterone and estrogen for men and women respectively, along with other hormones that can keep skin looking young and vital. Estrogen also promotes softer skin, and shiner hair. In a study conducted at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital in Scotland, participants who were engaging in regular sexual intercourse were perceived to be seven to twelve years younger than their actual age!

This is only a small list of the numerous benefits sex can have on your health. This is why positive, healthy sexual behaviors are encouraged by L.I.F.E. Recovery International. It is important to remember, however, that too much of a good thing can turn bad. Remember to engage in healthy sexual activities, and if your sexual habits are starting to become addictive, seek help!

Reference: "The Hidden Health Benefits of Sex" by Cari Wira Dineen

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Confronting a Spouse with Sex Addiction

You have noticed that your partner has been engaging in unhealthy sexual behaviors, and suspect they are a sex addict. You think they should get help, or at least admit their issue so it can be addressed - ignoring the problem will not make it go away. Here are some things to keep in mind if and when you choose to confront your spouse about their addiction.

Confronting the sexual addict should be done in a deliberate, mindful, and careful way. Do not approach them with anger or accusations, as it can elicit a defensive response instead of a productive one. In order to make your partner feel less attacked or cornered, try to use "I" statements, instead of "you" statements. This emphasizes your own feelings and needs, and shows the impact that their addiction has had on you as their partner.

Try to remember that even though their addiction has hurt you, they are still a person who you love and have a deep relationship with. You have the right to feel angry and hurt, but try to express these feelings with compassion. Let them know that you love them and only want the best for them. Offer help, and encourage them to seek counseling or group therapy so they can better themselves and help your relationship.


"Constructively Confronting a Sex Addict" by Kay Jones