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  Fall 2005
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Origins of Sex Addiction

Addiction is present when one is psychologically or physiologically dependent on a certain behavior, which causes them to become an addict. Sexual addiction is like that. The addict is in denial, and the addiction continues to increase instead of decrease.

You may wonder…What makes sexual addiction so different from any other addiction? Well, according to Dorothy C. Hayden, CSW, and author of Therapy for Sexual Addiction…A Depth-Psychology Approach, sex addiction sets itself apart “from other addictions because the subject of sex touches on our innermost unconscious wishes and fears, our sense of self, our very identity.”

Who would have guessed that about 6 percent of the population is sexually addicted? Sounds strange? Well, as unusual as it may sound, it’s true. People actually are addicted to sex.

Although sex is essential to the life of humans and animals, it can in fact become addictive. Sexual addiction begins in an individual as early as childhood and it often happens when children are abused in a sexual manner. Some examples of child sexual abuse include:

  • Forcing a child to kiss or hug
  • Forcing a child to experience sexual practices
  • Forcing a child to keep secrets about inappropriate sexual activity
  • Being critical of the child’s sexuality

As a result of these forms of abuse, about 80 percent of sexual addicts say they experienced some type of sexual abuse as a child. Childhood sexual abuse has been a problem in society for nearly two decades, according to the 2004 book “From Child Sexual Abuse to Adult Sexual Risk: Trauma, Revictimization, and Intervention”.

Research indicates that adults who have experienced sexual abuse in childhood are not only likely to suffer from sexual addiction, but also:  

  • Depression
  • Guilt
  • Negative Perceptions of others and of self
  • Bulimia
  • Anorexia
  • Migraine Headaches
  • Substance Abuse

If there is a period of withdrawal, the addict will most likely suffer from lack of sleep, high levels of anxiety, irritability, roller coaster emotions and substance abuse.

Sexual Addiction Quiz | Origins of Sex Addiction | Treatment for Sexual Addiction | Self Help
Sexual Addiction Cover | BNW cover

Brave News World magazine is produced for the Web by students in the course Online Journalism JRN 410 led by Professor Anthony Curtis, Department of Mass Communications, University of North Carolina at Pembroke. The issue theme, cover, sections and pages were designed by students in the course and article topics were chosen and reported by the individual students who wrote them. The students hold the copyright for their individual creations of articles and images. We are grateful to those agencies and institutions that have graciously provided other images for this edition. Views expressed by individual writers in this magazine are not endorsed by the professor, the department, the university, or possibly anyone else. Your comments are welcomed by the professor who may be contacted via e-mail at acurtis@uncp.edu or by phone at (910) 521-6616.