Overview of SMART Recovery to Rid Sexual Addiction

SMART Recovery to Rid Sexual Addiction

Sexual addiction is defined as being a progressive intimacy disorder that is made up of relentless sexual thoughts and sexual acts. The individual’s sexual behavior may create physical, legal, relationship, and/or emotional consequences. Despite the consequences, the individual continues their sexual acts. As the addiction progresses, the addict needs to increase the frequency of their actions in order to achieve the desired effect. These sexual behaviors begin to take up all of the addict’s time and energy, which makes the addict neglect important areas of their life. They are unable to keep commitments and promises to themselves and others about ending their sexual behavior. These addicts report having feelings of incredible intensity when fantasizing about sexually acting out. Sometimes these fantasies are more powerful than engaging in the sex act itself.

Sexual Addiction Behaviors

There are many signs to look for in someone exhibiting an addiction to sex. These behaviors include:

  • Watching internet porn (masturbation may or may not be included)
  • Online and cell phone hook-ups
  • Casual sex encounters
  • Frequent sexual encounters with prostitutes
  • Frequenting escort services
  • Voyeurism
  • Compulsive masturbation

Sexual addicts use fantasy, flirting, and sex in order to deal with stress, difficult feelings, and inner conflicts. They use sex as a means of support and intimacy, rather than seeking out meaningful relationships with others.

Individuals can overcome their addiction by checking into sexual addiction recovery. In recovery, individuals will be able to abstain from their addictive behaviors and learn coping skills. Abstaining from sex, or entering sexual sobriety, is not about completely staying away from sex. It can be about the individual taking a period of time off in order to address their issues of addiction. It is about abstaining from sexual activities that cause the individual to experience shame.

SMART Recovery

SMART Recovery is a program that provides individuals with coping skills that they can use to recover from sexual addiction. This specific sexual addiction recovery program uses 4 points to help individuals overcome an addiction to sex.

  1. Building/maintaining recovery motivation: Individuals will be able to identify and maintain their reasons for changing for the better. They will continue to answer questions, like: “Why do you want to change?” “What will keep you focused on your goals?”
  2. Dealing with urges: Being faced with urges is all a part of recovery. SMART will arm addicts with tools to help them cope with their urges and cravings for sex.
  3. Controlling thoughts, behaviors, and feelings: Individuals will learn problem-solving skills to assist individuals in managing challenges that everyday life has to offer.
  4. Learning how to live a balanced life: We all know that addiction can turn an individual’s world upside down. SMART will help individuals build skills to help balance their goals and needs.

SMART recovery can help an individual in their sexual addiction recovery by providing the above points, and continuing to empower them to live a more balanced and healthy life.

SMART has an online support group that can help individuals that are dealing with sexual addiction.

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