Sex and Love: Addiction, Treatment, and Recovery

Sex and Love: Addiction, Treatment, and Recovery

Sex and Love: Addiction, Treatment, and Recovery

Sex and Love: Addiction, Treatment, and Recovery

Synopsis

The National Institute of Health has identified sexual addiction as a research priority. This volume provides a detailed definition of sex and love addiction as well as an explicit outline of treatment and recovery. It uniquely integrates sex and love in its formulation and presents a two level approach to recovery. This presentation provides in-depth examples and suggestions for change and supports the growing involvement of Twelve-Step programs in mental health. Professionals will find this volume an excellent resource in their clinical practice.

Excerpt

When I began my work in the addiction field almost 20 years ago, sex and love addiction was unknown. Even today, the concept that a person could be "hooked" on love or sex is unsettling to most people. Some professionals scoff at the idea outright. Most are skeptical. However, as more is written and taught about this painful illness, many, laypersons and professionals alike, are starting to open their eyes, and in fact to see the magnitude of the problem. The purpose of this book is twofold. It is directed at both professional and nonprofessional audiences. My intent is to help those in clinical practice identify and assist the sex and love addicts who make up their patient load and to provide hope and direction for those suffering from this long-ignored addiction.

Ever since Patrick Carnes's ground-breaking book, Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction, was published in 1983, there have been an increasing number of books and articles that address this topic. Robin Norwood 's 1985 book, Women Who Love Too Much, hit a popular chord for many, and sold millions of copies. These books taught us much about this new area of addictionology, but they still dealt with love and sex as separate problem areas. This is similar to the views of alcohol and drug addiction of two decades ago. Most clients and clinicians saw the addicts as different, but the differences tended to be age- and social group-related (drug addicts were more often young and street-wise). Today, most people see both drug and alcohol dependence as examples of chemical dependency. The same will be true eventually with love and sex addiction. Some individuals have already suggested that both are problems with intimacy. In any case, in this book . . .

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