All of us attract people and circumstances into our lives that reflect our internal beliefs. However, those struggling with sex addiction and codependency often carry a negative set of beliefs about themselves, and their sex lives reflect this. A codependent sex addict… endured childhood trauma during which a form of detachment or self-medication was needed to cope.
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Codependency emerged to be defined first narrowly, as a condition in which a person was manipulated or controlled by someone with a pathological condition. The codependent person is fixated on another person for approval, sustenance, and so on. The codependent has been harmed by the addicts behavior.
The addict and the codependent are attracted to each other, as two halves forming an illusory whole. At first they merge together and feel afraid of being apart. Eventually the closeness becomes suffocating and someone wants breathing space.
Love avoidance is the refusal to show love for someone out of fear of being hurt. Individuals who turned to love avoidance carefully guard themselves when in relationships. These individuals avoid intimacy to protect themselves from rejection, loss, and the types of pain that accompany an intimate relationship.
Whether your obsession about someone is a sign of love or addiction? Initial attraction stirs up neurotransmitters and hormones that create the excitement of infatuation and a strong desire to be close and sexual with the person. These chemicals and our emotional and psychological make-up can cause us to obfuscate reality and idealize the object of our attraction.
In my 27 years working with addicts and codependents, I rarely have come across a completely healthy partner of an addict. Addiction psychotherapists all have experienced how both the addict and his or her partner participate, either actively or passively, in their dysfunctional relationship. This is not a new idea, as for over 40 years, the pioneers of Family Systems and Adult Child of Alcoholics ACOA theories have espoused the various relational systems at play in an addictive relationship or family.
Using post-induction therapy coupled with other individualized treatment methods, Core Recovery clinicians facilitate the process of healing wounds from past trauma and learning how to have functional adult relationships. Love addicts are searching for something outside of themselves — a person, relationship, or experience — to provide them with the emotional and life stability they lack. In other words, love addicts use their intensely stimulating romantic experiences to temporarily fix themselves and feel emotionally stable. Happily, in a similar fashion to sex addicts — and, in fact, in many of the same treatment and self-help venues — love addicts can find the help they need.
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Sex and love addiction develops when normal intimate relationships gradually becoming destructive, leading to unhealthy patterns of relating to others. Sex and love are integral parts of what it means to be human, but when normal levels of intimacy malfunction, it can cause a range of emotional and psychological problems. Sex and love addiction is typically characterised by:. Whilst sex and love are normal aspects of relationships, in sex and love addiction, these behaviours and emotions become damaging and dysfunctional, having an adverse impact on your quality of life, performance at work and, not to mention, your relationships with others.