The Meadows Blog

Sexual Addiction

Sexual Addiction (35)

Discovery to Recovery Part 2: Emotional Impact and Emotional Restitution

Couples who have struggled with the enormity of damage caused by sexual addiction often feel hopeless and helpless. When they think of the long road from discovery of the problem to recovery and reconnection, it can seem daunting and endless. However, many couples do find help and they find recovery and they reconnect in ways that are beyond what they ever allowed themselves to believe possible.

Alexandra Katehakis, a Senior Fellow at The Meadows, recently talked with Tami Simon of Sounds True’s Insights at the Edge podcast on a wide range of topics, including…

  • the roots of sexual dysfunction,
  • "grownup sex,” (i.e. sexuality based in honest communication of needs, preferences, and desires for novelty),
  • asexuality,
  • sexuality without intimacy, and
  • why orgasms are overrated.
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 15:32

Is My Porn Use Normal?

The question of whether any amount of porn use is acceptable is a divisive topic in our culture. It’s difficult to answer with any level of certainty. How much porn use is “safe” or “healthy” depends largely on a person’s individual circumstances, beliefs, and choices.

Wednesday, 08 March 2017 11:30

The Unconscious and Sexual Acting Out

The Use of Psychodrama in Treating Sexual Addiction

By Tian Dayton Ph.D., TEP

Note: This article originally appeared on The Huffington Post.

It is the body’s natural mandate to act; we are beings designed for movement and expression. It’s how we get around the world, communicate our feelings and thoughts, eat, sleep, cry, wail, kiss, dance and sing! We are conceived, carried, born and die all through our bodies. We feel our emotions physically; feeling, in fact, comes first. Before words enter the picture we are engaged in what Stanley Greenspan refers to as a “rich tapestry of gestures” and expressions that communicate our desires and feelings to others. Hopefully, there is a reciprocal response from another caring person so that we feel seen, heard and responded to. This is what lays down the fabric neurologically, emotionally and psychologically that maps our inner world and our capacity for intimacy, communication and connection.

By Jerry Law D.Min, MDAAC, CIP, Program Director of Family Education and Leadership Training for Meadows Behavioral Healthcare

Dave and Sue were immediately hit with that sinking feeling in the gut having received a call that their son was arrested for solicitation of a sex worker.

Dr. Georgia Fourlas, LCSW, LISAC, CSAT
Clinical Director of Rio Retreat Center Workshops at The Meadows

“Are my sexual behaviors really a problem?”

Some people clearly know the answer to that question, even if they refuse to admit it. Other people are not so sure.

Dr. Stefanie Carnes, PhD, CSAT-S, Senior Fellow at The Meadows

Women who seek treatment related to their out of control romantic and/or sexual behaviors are sometimes unsure about how to label their issue. They ask, “Am I a love addict, a relationship addict, or a sex addict?” Generally, their confusion stems from the fact that love, relationship, and sex addictions manifest in similar and sometimes interrelated ways, making it difficult to distinguish one from another. That said, there are some subtle differences that can usually be identified.

We are proud to announce the addition of Stefanie Carnes, Ph.D., to our team of Senior Fellows. Dr. Carnes will serve as the clinical architect for Willow House at The Meadows, a new program for women struggling with sex, love, and intimacy disorders that is set to open in March of 2017.

By Dr. Georgia Fourlas, LCSW, LISAC, CSAT, Rio Retreat Center Lead Therapist

There is an indescribable beauty in watching participants move into a deeper level of intimacy after struggling through the destruction of sexual addiction.

Congratulations to Patrick Carnes, PhD, Senior Fellow and clinical architect at Gentle Path at The Meadows. He has received the prestigious 2016-2017 Fulbright - Canada - Palix Foundation award in Brain Science with additional support from The American Foundation For Addiction Research (AFAR).

Dr. Carnes now joins the ranks of the many Nobel Prize winners and Pulitzer Prize winners and other distinguished scholars who have received this award. He will also serve as a Distinguished Visiting Chair at the University of Alberta in 2017.

He will use his award to conduct a groundbreaking and unprecedented research study into the genetic factors associated with sexual addiction. More than 1,000 people (500 sex addicts and 500 non-addicts) from various centers across the U.S. and Canada will take part in the study. The study seeks to answer the following questions:

  • What genes are linked to sexual addiction?
  • How do these genes compare to the genes linked to alcoholism and drug addiction?
  • Are there specific clusters of genes that predispose sexual addicts to behave in certain ways? In other words, can we predict whether an addict will become compulsive about adultery or pornography or voyeurism, etc.?
  • What psychological disorders are linked to the different types of sexual addiction? For example, if a person is anti-social, is he more likely to compulsively pay for sex, engage in voyeurism, or pursue anonymous sex?

A full-genome genetic analysis of all participants will be conducted via saliva specimens. Advanced statistical techniques will be used to identify the genes that are linked to various types of sexual addiction, and to link genetic patterns to psychopathology and sexual addiction type.

This study could lead to many exciting developments that would vastly improve treatment and access to treatment for those who struggle with sex addiction. It could, for example:

  • Lead to a screening tool for those with a sexual addiction, much like those available for alcoholism.
  • Show definitively that sex addiction involves the same brain pathways as other addictions.
  • Facilitate coverage of sex addiction and reimbursement or treatment by health insurance companies
  • Reduce stigma and lead to more prompt and effective treatments for those who are struggling with the disorder.

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Carnes and in supporting his efforts to lead us to a greater understanding of sex addiction and an improved ability to offer effective treatments for those whose lives have been shattered by the disorder.

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