You’ve become burdened by the emotional and mental toll of your sex addiction. The lies, sneaking around, and sexual health risks have buried you in shame and regret.
You feel like a slave to your addiction, but feel that recovery is out-of-reach.
What’s worse is the fear of being consumed by the despair, isolation, and pain of your mood disorder if you didn’t have sex to relieve these symptoms.
The effects of sex addiction exhaust both the sufferer’s mental health and interpersonal relationships. However, sex addiction is rarely seen without an underlying mood issue to accompany it.
What does sex offer to someone suffering from the pains of a mood disorder? Answering this question serves as a vital step towards taking back control of your life and finding real connections once again.
Sex and Self-Soothing
To tackle sex addiction, you must first understand how it might be functioning in the sufferer’s life. Just as some use drugs and alcohol as a form of escape, sex can become a way of self-medication for someone battling their mood issues.
Often linked to sex addiction, two very common mood issues are Depression and Bipolar Disorder. For these individuals, sex serves as a strategy to relieve the feelings that overwhelm the person’s life.
A person who is depressed might consider sex as a way of seeking out a human connection when their depression has isolated them for a long time. Sex can be a side-effect of mania in which their inhibitions are low and confidence is high.
For many of us, sex is a part of how we form deeper connections with others. Even a person suffering from mood issues can benefit from a healthy sex life.
However, when a person with mood issues relies too heavily on sex to provide temporary relief from their mood issue symptoms, they risk driving themselves deeper into suffering.
Adding Fuel to the Flame
Many people who battle with a mood disorder believe or experience a sense of control as a result of their sex addiction.
Because this type of sex is typically occurring outside of a stable and healthy relationship, sufferers find that they can monitor their level of vulnerability and emotional labor with the other person. Yet, this control is really nothing more than a trick.
Likewise, the protection that the sufferer may think they are giving themselves is often fueling deeper isolation, feelings of shame, and abandonment of personal values and beliefs.
A healthy sex life provides real comfort and connection that help relieve emotional and mental stress.
Sex addiction robs the person of this opportunity and instead feeds negative feelings and self-belief. These negative feelings worsen the sufferer’s mood disorder, creating a destructive cycle.
When treating sex addiction, it is important to also treat the underlying mood issues.
Talk with your mental health provider about creating a full-bodied approach to addressing both of your needs.
Your therapist might prescribe a treatment that teaches you how to better differentiate between healthy and destructive habits. They might also suggest medication to help.
You might also find additional support through group therapies. There you can safely begin practicing healthy interpersonal relationships and feel less alone in your recovery. These spaces allow for moments of connection and vulnerability that you can later take into your next relationship.
Finding the right therapy treatment for you takes time and patience. However, the rewards of better connections and inner peace are incalculable and worth the work. Please contact me soon to determine how we can work productively as a team.
Get the help you need today and live a fuller life tomorrow!