Can You Have Too Much Sex?
While most of us shudder at the thought of being addicted to something like heroin, the thought of being addicted to sex is downright appealing.
If the government supplies methadone to help heroin addicts kick the habit, surely it would be helpful for them to throw some shiny new sex toys our way, or at least grant 'sex days' instead of 'sick days'? Sigh.
But how much is too much and who would qualify? I counselled a couple on a programme I did (Hotter Sex) who claimed they had intercourse around seven times a day, every day.
He was home on disability leave (a back problem which, strangely, prevented him from working in an office but didn't seem to bother him while performing position No 358 from the Kama Sutra). She was a stay-at-home mum, who quickly assured me all the activity happened while the kids were at school.
Lots of couples diddle the figures when asked how often they have sex but I believed this pair. They were so damn happy, it had to be true!
But would I consider them addicted to sex? No. It was enhancing, rather than interfering with their lives and causing no-one any problems (except a spot of jealousy from me and the envious crew).
Sex addiction - like all other addictions - puts a destructive twist on an everyday, normal enjoyable activity. Addicts lack the ability to control or postpone sexual feelings and actions.
Spending an entire meeting dreaming of getting fellatio from the pretty colleague sitting next to you is not sex addiction. Popping out to make a quick call to a sex worker and arranging for them to service you in the toilets during a coffee break is. Sex addicts get to the point where they're willing to risk their relationships, career and even their personal health and safety to satisfy an insatiable urge.
How do people become sex addicts? Many report abuse or neglect as children or have parents who were also sex addicts. Treatment often includes following a simple change model like the one adopted by AA. If you think you or your partner might have a problem with sex addiction, Sex Addicts Anonymous can help (www.saa-recovery.org).