Sex Addiction: Why is it So Difficult to Call When I’m Struggling?

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Ask many recovering sex addicts the most difficult part of recovery and you’ll hear from most: “When I’m feeling and want to act out, I can’t pick up the phone and call someone and ask for help”

Having people to call when you need support during recovery from sex addiction can mean the difference between staying sober and acting out.

A lot of things change when you enter into recovery from sex addiction. You may need to make a new circle of friends or learn new and safe ways to have fun. You may find that you are suddenly expected to be more open and vulnerable about your day-to-day struggles and the problems that you’re facing. You may have a lot of questions in the beginning. You may feel alone.

Fortunately, if you’ve found a support group that you like, or you have begun to attend regular twelve-step meetings, you are well on your way to building an important network of support and information that can help you as you move toward healthy sexuality and away from sex addiction.

Many addicts find that the telephone is central to their recovery. Carrying a list of phone numbers with you in your wallet or purse can prove beneficial in numerous situations if you find yourself in an unexpectedly challenging situation, for example. At times you may find that you need to reach out to an understanding ear just to get started successfully on your day. Early on in your recovery from sex addiction, you may find that you need to check in with a more experienced person in recovery to talk about your current thoughts and behaviors.

There are some who suggest that you incorporate the habit of calling three people every day into your recovery program. This will allow you to build and maintain a strong support system, which is an invaluable tool in being successful in recovery. The practice of making phone calls like this, even if just to check in and say “Hello”, will make it easier to dial the phone when you are genuinely in need of support.

The phone can also be useful as a tool of service. If you’re having a difficult day, you can reach out to newer members of the group or those that you know are having a hard time maintaining sexual sobriety. Using the phone in this way can do wonders for your mood and in sustaining your own recovery from sex addiction.

Many 12 step recovery groups will pass a phone list during the meeting where you can put your phone number and get other numbers of fellow recovering addicts.  If you hear a story that you particularly relate to, or if you find yourself in a helpful conversation with another group member, you should ask for that person’s phone number. Some people might decline to share this information for a variety of personal reasons. Don’t become discouraged. The more you try, the more likely you are to successfully build a support network and overcome sex addiction.

When you are gathering phone numbers, it is important to remember not to ask for the number of anyone that you find yourself sexually attracted to. That person will not prove to be a good resource for you, and may in fact lead to your relapse.

Finally, when you are given a phone number for your list remember to ask if you may leave a message for the person you will be calling. Not all people in recovery from sex addiction have revealed their disease to the rest of their household.

Beginning a program of recovery from sex addiction can be a difficult and daunting task, but remember, you don’t have to do it alone.

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