Most people know that sexual performance is often mind over matter. Emotional problems seem to be weighing heavily on relationships in all age groups, strongly influenced by the pressures of today's world. Without sex - most relationships will end at some point when one partner can break free.
We exist in a world, in case you hadn't noticed, where we have all become therapists trying to analyze and fix our own issues and those of the people we love and interact with.
Rule #2: No one heals unless ready - then they do it themselves by attracting what is needed, which may not be you. I wish the healers understood that.
So what prompts this blog? Female clients come to me with tales about the men they love, physically healthy, don't drink, yet don't want sex at all anymore. These men are not cheating, not gay, and still maintain that they love the women they're with.
So what's wrong? The obvious ... if its not physical, it's emotional. That wasn't 'hard' to figure out. I say it all goes to control issues.
Last week I read a woman (40's and gorgeous) who has lived with a man for the past 5 years (also 40's handsome and healthy). They started with a health sex life and all seemed well in the world. Then the pressures of every day life began to mount and he felt loss of control after which he lost all interest in sex. Recently she watched a TV show about something called Sexual Anorexia, which described him perfectly. When she told him about it, and discussed how similar his symptom were, he refused to listen, stating that he no longer has sexual interest.
There are few men these days who have given up on sex. There are just too many options out there when there is a physical problem. In the case of my client, she has a troubled male who won't get professional help and uses sex as a control tool ... yes ladies ... men can play that game too ... and you know what's going to happen. She is leaving him, especially as she is totally into self-help and the healing arts and he is into frustration which always leads to verbal abuse.
Sexual Anorexia is defined by a set of characteristics:
2. Continuing that pattern of avoidance, even though they may know itÕs self-destructive (ie: harm a marriage, prevent relationships)
3. Going to great lengths to avoid sexual contact or attention
4. Rigid or judgmental attitudes toward sexuality - their own, and others
5. Resistance and avoidance of deeper, more painful life issues
6. Extreme shame and self-loathing about their bodies, sexual attributes and experiences
7. Obsessing about sex and how to avoid it, to a point where it interferes with normal living
8. Possible episodes of sexual bingeing or periods of sexual compulsivity
9. Desire to control oneÕs body, sexuality and environments
10. Terror and high anxiety of being sexual or appearing sexual in any way
11. Anger and self-hatred that goes back to childhood and their relationship with one or more parents or other influences in the home.
Sexual Anorexia Wikipedia
Other practitioners have applied the term in their own way. In the view of some practitioners, corroborating the seminal work of Patrick Carnes, there are people who appear to have a sexual addiction which is expressed through a variety of behaviors such as the compulsive use of strip clubs, prostitutes, cyberporn sites, etc. but more accurately fit the definition of sexual anorexic in that they seem to lack the ability to have a relationship of a sexual nature beyond a paid-for or anonymous experience. The person does not have an aversion to sex but to intimacy.
A sex addict is more likely to be capable of being in a more intimate relationship and is often married or in a committed relationship when deciding to get treatment for his or her addiction. A sexual anorexic may have a social phobia or be so fragile emotionally that the risk of rejection or criticism is far more frightening than being isolated. Narcissistic traits are often seen in both sexual anorexics and sex addicts, but in the sexual anorexic, the traits are considered far more "brittle" and the pain of rejection and criticism is far more excruciating than for the sex addict.
Treatment is aimed at helping the person see where his/her fears really are and to see the world in less black and white terms. The patient is encouraged to take calculated risks with social activities and distorted thinking is gently challenged with facts and reality.
The goals for both sex addicts and sexual anorexics is to learn to have healthy sex and get emotional needs met in direct ways, and to set healthy boundaries. This is an issue that requires ongoing treatment in planned stages with the end goal of autonomy, independence, and improved social relationships.
Sexual or Intimacy Anorexia YouTube
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