Sexual addiction came under fire recently as a slew of VIPs, who are reportedly sexual offenders, checked themselves in inside expensive rehabilitation centers claiming they’re plagued by the sexual addiction to the outraged cry of the public. Even among doctors and therapists, the hotly debated question is – IS SEXUAL ADDICTION REAL? Or is it just an uncomplicated scapegoat for celebrities and other royalties, sexual offenders whose acts have been exposed?
Well, a man tells his side of this story.
At first glance, Philip is your typical metrosexual guy. He’s quite attractive with his lean build and easy smile. The way Philip carries himself gives off the impression that he’s successful and that, he is. Financially, he’s well-off. He has his advertising firm which he co-owns with a friend. With his looks and appeal, it isn’t hard for him to find a partner.
But this successful-looking guy has a secret, though. Philip sees himself as a sex addict.
“The symptoms are there,” he says. “Having sex for me is a vicious cycle. I badly want it. I don’t care who. I’d even do a random stranger as long as I get my fix. Then I feel like sh*t afterwards.”
He went off to recount how he had his first consensual sex at the age of 15. He’d be doing the act most of his weekends after that. Before his final high school exam, he went out seeking sex and had it with a stranger.
“That was the first time I did it with someone I didn’t know,” he says. “And somehow, my life turned down that path, having sex with individuals I know the names of but not much else. I don’t even care if the names they gave me were real or not.”
He admits to using sex as a way to escape his real emotions. But no matter how sex-filled his life is, an act many considers emotional, Philip finds it hard to emotionally connect with someone and went through a lot of toxic relationships.
“My relationships always ended in blowing dramas,” he says with a self-conscious chuckle.
Along with his unending appetite for sex, Philip also displayed personality and mood disorders. His feelings were like a roller coaster ride, up this time and down the next. Eventually, having sex didn’t make him feel as happy and satisfied as he wanted to be and he turned to drugs. It was one drug-induced night that he broke down and called his brother for help.
“I just couldn’t take it anymore,” he admits. “There was once when I was riding in an airplane, and I kept hoping it would crash so my life would end then and there.”
After telling him everything, his brother accompanied him to a private rehab center in the mountains. He initially enrolled himself in drug addiction. But after a few counseling and group sessions, he realized he was addicted to sex as well. When asked about what he thinks about the recent controversy regarding the condition, he answers: “It’s real. It’s made my life hell”.
His six-month stint in the rehab is almost done by the time of this interview. While the goal for drug addiction is total abstinence, it isn’t for sexual addiction.
“My counselor didn’t tell me exactly to abstain from sex. But he did encourage me and advised me to never have sex outside of a healthy relationship, and I will heed that,” Philip says.
Coming back to his old life means opening himself up again to its temptations. When told about this, Philip smiles.
“Yes, I know. But I’m hoping – really hoping – I’ll be able to shun all of them away. I don’t want to go back to my old life anymore. I want to move on forward.”
*Names changed for anonymity.