How Do I Accept My Sex Addiction?

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For most sex addicts and those struggling with unwanted obsessive compulsive sexual behaviors, the hardest part of overcoming sex addiction is coming to grips with this one fact: Once you get into recovery, once you’re abstinent and sober and have some “clean” time and have the addiction under control, keeping it that way is now a part of life.

Many sex addicts don’t want to hear this. They want the cure, the fix and to move on with a “normal” life. Unfortunately, for most sex addicts the thought and hope that the daily struggle, the cravings and urges will never end becomes very discouraging and depressing. In early recovery, addicts held on to the belief that someday the struggle would be over. Someday they wouldn’t wake up a sex addict.

The disease of sex addiction is just that, a disease and it can’t simply be shrugged off. Like many diseases, acceptance of its long term nature is not as bad as it sounds.

“Acceptance of one’s life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes and injustices.” – Paul Tournier, Swiss physician and author.

During his medical career, Dr. Tournier studied the relationships between physical medicine, counseling, and spirituality. His above quote on acceptance can be taken to mean, essentially, life is supposed to and will come with some difficulty, and how we as human beings handle those difficulties is simply part of living.

This is not to diminish the disease of sex addiction or make it sound like something trivial. It’s a serious issue that deserves a little more than a “suck it up and deal with it,” philosophy, however, once a sex addict accepts it’s something he or she will have to manage for a long time, possibly life, that person does, in essence, suck it up and deal with it.

The crushing feeling a sex addict has when first contemplating the long term reality comes from rejecting the idea that sex addiction may be around for years to come. The addict tries to rationalize a way out of it or possibly contemplates going back to the addiction cycle, but the irony here is accepting the burden makes it lighter. Saying “Okay, this is a part of my life now,” frees those recovering from sex addiction up so they can focus on what needs to be done on a daily basis to maintain sexual sobriety, whether it be avoiding triggers or making sure their lives do not become chaotic and overwhelming and prone to relapse.



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