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Dr. Michael
Dr. Michael, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2177
Experience:  Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
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When a sex addict/sexual compulsive (who fulfills their compulsion

Customer Question

When a sex addict/sexual compulsive (who fulfills their compulsion outside of a relationship) gets the urge do need to get sex ASAP in whatever way is available or would they be prepared to wait and arrange something days in advance? I've read that Sex Addicts cannot form emotional attachment with their many random partners (outside of their relationship), this being the case would they form friendships with these people, would they have sex with some of them many times over years? Would a sex addict be able to tell their close friends that they are willfully having sex outside of their relationship and that they enjoy it and look forward to it, whilst saying their partner isn't good in bed.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  DrThomasMD replied 2 years ago.
Hello
What is the specific situation here that you are asking about?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
How sex addicts/sexual compulsive's behavior works - how they would act on their urges to have sex with other people
Expert:  DrThomasMD replied 2 years ago.
OK
all of the above descriptions are possible.
Any addiction can have a fairly functional personality or dysfunctional
Sex addicts can look like anyone else, have friends, even have families.
And not act out at all.
Or they can have problems that aggravate the condition and have dysfunctional personalities, and behave as you describe.

Let me know if you have further questions, details or need clarification, just use reply.......

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
Very general and did not really answer the question
Expert:  DrThomasMD replied 2 years ago.
I don't see a specific question here
CAn you narrow it down?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
Question is clear. Expert says he cant see the question
Expert:  DrThomasMD replied 2 years ago.
OK...would they what or would the urge be so strong they can not wait...both
Can not form emotional attachments..not true..they might have an attachment that is strong and still act out the addiction elsewhere..or, if they have an additional personality disorder, might not form emotional attachments...they might or might not have friendships with lovers.
They might have sex with someone once or have a part time partner over many years.
Would they tell their friends about they addiction and partners..sometimes yes...some would be secretive.
Anyone might tell their friends their partner is not good in bed.


Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
Please stop this Dr bothering me. I really want someone with psychology expertise even if not deep in the area of sex addiction
Expert:  DrThomasMD replied 2 years ago.
I will opt out
This will alert all experts to your question
In fact I am trained in psychology , have a degree, and work with sex addicts of all sorts..you can not fit a scenario as you describe to the label of sex addiction.....It could represent an adulterous husband, for example, that has no addiction at all.

But there might be an expert that has a better answer for you..so hang on...don't post..or it will lock back to me.

good luck
Expert:  Camille-Mod replied 2 years ago.

Hi, I’m a moderator for this topic. Your Expert has opted out and I wonder whether you’re still waiting for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will do my best to find another Expert to assist you right away. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you. Thank you!

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi

Please can you help find someone else. I didn't like the last ones approach from the beginning.

Thanks

David
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 2 years ago.
What is interesting is that many men who are labeled as sex addicts are married or have a permanent partner and yet, they still persist in pursuing new sexual contacts. They may believe they have an close relationship with their spouse or partner but in fact, there is something significant 'missing' in term so of genuine intimacy, complete trust in that relationship. Most guys who jump from one sexual encounter to the next have a sense that they have trouble with truly trusting and being emotionally intimate and fully vulnerable in a relations. Now, it is quite typical that they do not become very intimate with the many sexual partners they have because they cannot typically take the time to really get to know any of them very well. A main core belief that many 'sex addicts' have is that the sex they are receiving represents true love in the moment, but in fact, it is actually superficial sex and an issue for many is that they really don't have a clear sense what true love and intimacy really is. It would not be surprising for a sex addict to complain that their spouse isn't good in bed or doesn't understand them---in fact, as I said, there is normally a lack of true intimacy in their primary relationship. Also, the individual heavily rationalizes or makes excuses for the lack of 'love' in his life, so he can justify cheating on his spouse or partner repeatedly i.e., his story line of not having a loving, understanding or sexually satisfying partner allows him to escape feelings of guilt about his behavior ("I would not need to seek out sex regularly but my wife is no good at it and doesn't really love and understand me, so I'm justified in trying to get it elsewhere") Most men who engage in multiple sex partners and impulsive sex do try to keep the behavior a secret because it is generally embarrassing for them if business partners and close friends know they are cheating left and right on their spouse or partner. It doesn't reflect well on their character or moral standing. And, of course, sex addicts can take advantage of sudden, impulsive sexual opportunities, or take the time to plan them out. The main thing is that they can continue to have sex in the 'here and now', but the EXPECTATION of having sex as well. Expectancies about sex can be nearly as exciting for them and can also serve to dampen sexual cravings for a time---much the same way an addict in withdrawals can suddenly feel better if he/she knows that they will have a drug supply in several hours.

Now another type of sexual addict is simply a somewhat sociopathic man who has superficial relationships with everyone, and who exploits nearly anyone close to them; they tend to lack a conscience, lack empathy for others etc. I do not get the sense that you are this second 'type'.

Now I am going on and on here so I need to pause and check out your reaction to this post thus far. You need to let me know if I'm addressing your question adequately. I may be off of this computer for a couple of hours so take your time thinking about, and responding. Our time zones are very different of course, so I will thank you in advance for your patience.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
This is all very interesting. It is actually my partner who claims to be a sex addict after I had discovered he'd been sleeping around...a lot for many years. When confronted he denied it and only after a mutual friend put a lot of pressure on did he admit and then told me some more (which I didn't know) and was adamant that long list was all (35+ men, many of those many times in the last 4.5 years...I don't want to think about the 7.5 years before that). However I know for a fact its a lot more and he is even lying still about the last time he saw some of them that he was having sex with for months and years. He became friends with a fair number and socialized with them for years - he claims after they stopped having sex. Would a sex addict behave in this way? Or is he just a compulsive liar and cheat? It had crossed my mind that he might be a sociopath as he does seem unable to empathize - I've had a few life threatening surgeries in the time we have been together and in finding out about the sex I also found that he was telling his fiends that looking after me was a chore, a burden etc.

When I asked him why he never sought help, he said he didn't know what sex addiction was and was to embarrassed to admit to himself let alone a friend that he was cheating on me in this way. I subsequently found out that not only had he told a friend, he had told a number of them and had also demonized me to them, so rather than challenge his behavior they encouraged it and found it funny that I was blind to it.

The other part of my question was whether a sex addict addicted to sex with other people would need to do it as soon as they got the urge or would they be able to plan sex days in advance?

The other thing to mention is that when I told him I'd had sex with someone else a few days ago, having ended the relationship a few weeks ago, he became very jealous.

Thanks for your help here.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 2 years ago.
Unfortunately, my best hypothesis, based on limited information (of course) about your story is that more than sexual addiction, this man does have features of a personality disorder. Speculating, this would be a 'mixed' personality disorder (which are far more common in the population than the pure types or single diagnoses presented in the psychiatric classification system). You may wish to Google the following topics and see if your partner has a mixture of some of the criteria for each of these: DSM Narcissistic Personality; and then, DSM Antisocial Personality. A third options would be DSM Borderline Personality Disorder here. You can read the criteria and then browse some of the other sites that pop up from the search. The diagnostic criteria for personality disorders actually overlap a lot so again, you'd be looking for a cluster of a few characteristics from each disorder. The issues here would be someone who is selfish, has some difficulties with deep, meaningful empathy for others; who externalizes blame for relationship conflicts far too often; who is manipulative and a bit 'two-faced' in their relationships with people they are supposedly close to or love; who always seem to put themselves 'first' when faced with the conflict of giving versus taking in decisions within a relations. They tend to be emotionally volatile and unpredictable; are easily bored, tend to use alcohol to excess when drinking and may be more prone than most people to do stupid impulsive things e.g., spending money. They borrow money they never pay back. And, one key issue that cuts across many personality disorders is a history of unstable relationships---they have trouble either forming or maintaining relationships (and sometime both).

I think I addressed the one question you had: "whether a sex addict addicted to sex with other people would need to do it as soon as they got the urge or would they be able to plan sex days in advance? " Sex addicts' impulsive 'need' or an immediate craving for sex can be satisfied either by having sex immediately with someone, or having a solid EXPECTATION that they will be able to have sex in a day or two; the excitement of the anticipation, the 'chase', is in itself, gratifying and can allay the sexual impulse for a time---a few days. But the person would definitely become distressed and start cruising for a contact if he/she had no prospects.

Let me know if I can be of further help. Also, let me know if I have overlooked any aspect of your original question. Please hit the green Accept button at the bottom of the screen. THANKS.
Dr. Michael, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2177
Experience: Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
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