Is there such a thing as too much sex? As in a sexual addiction. If so, what does it look like? I love fucking and have a high libido. My boyfriend is 15 years my junior. I liked him because he can keep up with me. Before we got together, he used to have several girls on a quick dial and constantly organize, and concerns himself with opportunities to have more booty, and was sexting. Once with me, he claimed to be blissfully satisfied. We had fun, creativity, novelty, and frequency (2-3 times per night and then again in the morning.) Sex kept getting better. And yet, I found out he was creating opportunities to have sex with others behind my back. I am not opposed to having other sexual partners, but very opposed to secrecy. He knew that since we had discussed it. I also wanted everyone to be on the same page, so no misunderstandings, complications, and drama occur.
It's become obvious to me that most of his time is spent in sexual fantasies, watching extreme porn, jerking off even after a full night of what he calls "the best sex ever." He's distracted, restless, and can't figure out what he wants to do with his life. He has surrounded himself only with friends who are similar to him and around whom the predominate conversation is sex. Sex conversations seem to be mostly what excites him. His creativity is spent in thinking up things he can do sexually. If I don't tell him to focus on what he's doing, he'd be distracting himself constantly with sexting, chatting, and frolicking around. He considers himself poly. But he complains that he has never found an emotionally fulfilling relationship, except for me. Yet, despite all the freedom I give him, he is still willing to through that away and is unable to control his desires just long enough to be considerate towards me. What is going on?
Asking Dan, Do I Challenge This?
Your boyfriend isn't a sex addict, ADDICT, but he sure sounds like an inconsiderate, selfish loser—reason enough to DTMFA. But before we get into why this guy's a DTMFA-worthy dud, ADDICT, I wanna have a quick chat with you about sex addiction. Or, better yet, I'm gonna quickly pull up a couple of quotes about sex addiction because these guys are the experts and I'm lazy amateur.
Substantial research has demonstrated that as many as 30-70% of alleged sex addicts may have a diagnosable personality disorder such as Narcissistic PD, Antisocial, or Borderline. You can imagine how such problems could have a sexual component, in a variety of ways. It raises the very real problem of diagnosing/treating sexuality as the problem, when the reality is, the problem is the person themselves. These people don’t behave selfishly just in sex. They have lots of other problems. Diagnosing sex addiction in such cases is the equivalent of diagnosing “sneezing disorder” in someone who has a cold. It’s dangerous, and distracting, and reflects our society’s fear and mistrust and obsession with sex.
And here's something Dr. Marty Klein had to say about sex addiction in the July/August 2012 issue of the Humanist:
In thirty-one years as a sex therapist, marriage counselor, and psychotherapist, I’ve never seen sex addiction. I’ve heard about virtually every sexual variation, obsession, fantasy, trauma, and involvement with sex workers, but I’ve never seen sex addiction.... Perhaps the most interesting thing about the sex addiction movement—and certainly the most telling—is that it did not arise from the field of sex therapy or any other sexuality-related field. Rather, it was started in 1983 by Patrick Carnes, whose background is in counselor education and organizational development. He claims no training in human sexuality. “Sex addiction” has been adopted enthusiastically by the addiction community, and to a lesser extent by the marriage and family profession.... Almost thirty years after its invention by Carnes, “sex addiction” is still not a popular concept in the fields of sex therapy, sex education, or sex research. Of course, the media loves it, decency groups love it, and those who identify as some other kind of addict (alcohol, food, drugs) love it, especially if they’re fans of the Twelve Steps.
So in answer to your question: No, ADDICT, I don't think sex addiction is a thing. And if it is real, then most of us have it. Almost everyone who takes the Sexual Addiction Screening Test (SAST), which you can find at sexhelp.com (click the “Am I a sex addict?” link), qualifies as a sex addict. And if that fact doesn't call the whole lucrative "sex addict"
racket con enterprise into question, I don't know what would...
The nonexistence of sex addiction, however, doesn't mean a person's compulsive, self-destructive impulses can't be expressed sexually. There are lots of ways for a self-destructive person to harm themselves and self-destructive people can and do weaponize sex, turning that weapon on themselves, their partners, and their families. People can quite literally fuck their lives up. But sex isn't a chemical substance, it's not a drug, and sex addiction is not a thing. It's a symptom, like Ley points out, it's not the disease itself. And while sex in moderation is great and moderation is subjective (one person's moderation is another person's enough with this shit already), someone who thinks and talks about nothing but sex, and someone who isn't interested in doing anything other than sex, is a huge fucking bore.
You have a high libido, ADDICT, so you'll have to settle for less sex than you want/need from a partner who has a lower libido (a partner who might be tempted to slap the "sex addict" label on you), find yourself a partner who isn't hung up on monogamy (so you can get your needs met elsewhere, openly, honestly, and ethically), or find yourself someone whose libido matches your own. (Recognizing, of course, that libidos can wax and wane and wax over the years.) You found the latter in this young man, ADDICT, but—sad trombone—this guy, as it turns, is an untrustworthy, deceitful, single-minded, compulsive, self-destructive BORE. Add distracted, restless, and directionless to the package, ADDICT, and I'm wondering why this guy is still your boyfriend. The sex can't be that good, can it?