If sexual compulsivity is affecting you or someone you know and their health, relationships, work, finances or other life situations, please contact us for support.
What is it?
Sexual compulsivity (also known as hypersexuality or sexual addiction) is an excessive preoccupation with sexual fantasies, urges or behaviours that is difficult to control. It may cause you distress, negatively affect your health, and disrupt relationships in your life.
When sexual behaviors become a major focus in your life, are difficult to control, and are disruptive or harmful to you or others, they may be considered compulsive sexual behaviour.
- You have recurrent and intense sexual fantasies, urges and behaviors that take up a lot of your time and feel as if they're beyond your control.
- You feel driven to do certain sexual behaviors, feel a release of the tension afterward, but also feel guilt or remorse.
- You've tried unsuccessfully to reduce or control your sexual fantasies, urges or behavior.
- You use compulsive sexual behavior as an escape from other problems, such as loneliness, depression, anxiety or stress.
- You continue to engage in sexual behaviors that have serious consequences, such as the potential for getting or giving someone else a sexually transmitted infection, the loss of important relationships, trouble at work, financial strain, or legal problems.
- You have trouble establishing and maintaining healthy and stable relationships.
Seeking help for compulsive sexual behavior can be difficult because it's such a deeply personal matter. Try to:
- Set aside any shame or embarrassment and focus on the benefits of getting treatment.
- Remember that you're not alone — many people struggle with compulsive sexual behavior.
- Keep in mind what you say to a doctor or mental health professional is kept confidential, except in cases where you report that you're going to hurt yourself or someone else, you report sexual abuse of a child, or you report abuse or neglect of someone in a vulnerable population.