Sexual addiction is often caused by a hungry heart that yearns for closeness. A person only utilizes sex as a means of receiving care and approval. The exact mechanism of action is at play in addictions to alcohol, drugs, and other substances.
Both males and females can develop sex addiction; however, female addicts encounter more difficulties. A deeper understanding of sex addiction, in general, will be beneficial as a foundation for comprehending the particular plight of female sex addicts.
Knowing about sex addiction
It is challenging to say with certainty that one gender experiences sex addiction at a more significant rate than the other because research on the subject varies. Three to ten percent of the random population is thought to be sexually addicted, according to estimates. According to Dr. Patrick Carnes’ research, women make up about 20% of people who seek treatment for sex addiction. This male-to-female ratio is comparable to that of sober alcoholics.
One of the driving forces behind sex addiction is the drive to numb emotional discomfort or flee an unpleasant circumstance, as well as the impulsive or even compulsive search for emotional gratification. In conclusion, it is appropriate to consider sex addiction as an intimacy or attachment issue.
Sexually addicted people, regardless of gender, are prone to many addictions and frequently originate from dysfunctional backgrounds. But this isn’t always the case. Most often, at least one other family member also struggles with addiction. When a person has at least one other habit in addition to sex, they have multiple addictions. Eating disorders, drug dependency, and compulsions for work, spending, and gambling are all widespread in females.
Studies on addiction and health continue to underrepresent women. Many believe sex addiction solely affects guys, whether they are experts. According to research, most abuse survivors are women, making them more prone to addiction. Unfortunately, many females will go untreated, and treatment for past sex abuse is frequently insufficient to stop future sex addiction. Counselors may not understand the feminine subtleties that often distinguish female sex addiction, even if they know that females might be sexually addicted.
The consequences of child sexual assault
Childhood abuse and adult sex addiction have a strong association. Verbal, emotional, physical, sexual, and spiritual abuse are all different types of abuse. Each of these forms of abuse may be overt or covert. For instance, overuse of words, tone, and volume constitutes evident verbal abuse. The refusal to reinforce someone with terms of love and support is a covert kind of verbal abuse. In most cases, two or more forms of abuse have taken place during the history of sex addiction. It’s simple to understand how abuse of any kind weakens this fundamental desire and harms one’s capacity to promote healthy attachment to others when one considers the need for closeness to be the primary motivation of a human being.
The conflicted urge for relationships that women have
In general, women are more nurturing and relational than men. Their responsibilities evolve from doll play and babysitting to having and raising their children. Most women continue to offer most of the nurturing in family life, even as wives and adult daughters. When practiced in a healthy, balanced manner, this feminine offering of self is a heavenly quality. However, if the female has experienced one or more forms of abuse that have betrayed her trust in others, the increased reception to connection could be both a blessing and a curse. The desire to connect persists but is now accompanied by suspicion and fear. The female may unintentionally try to defend herself from other exploitation while developing a false self. An exploited woman may attempt to protect herself psychologically by using a variety of defenses and manipulations, both sexual and non-sexual, if left to her depraved human nature. It’s simple to comprehend why a sexually injured woman would wish to reclaim the innocence that was taken from her when she was most vulnerable.
Without care and a secure road to recovery, a woman who has been sexually exploited could unintentionally use her sexuality to harm men or herself. Sadly, the untreated sex abuse survivor frequently believes that she and the abuser are equally responsible for the assault. By seducing men, the charming survivor can be inspired to avenge herself. A woman who is a secret sex addict who suffers from shame and self-disgust may punish herself by prioritizing private, compulsive sex over investing in a deep connection with her husband. She might also starve herself sexually. Whether overt or covert, the behavior is still just “the top of the iceberg” regarding the addict’s underlying motives, which are frequently tinged with rage.
It is significant to emphasize that, while all traumatic events harm us, those involving abuse as children have a particularly profound impact on how we negotiate life as adults. Please consider obtaining the expert care of a certified Christian counselor specializing in this topic if you have ever experienced abuse. You might first be reluctant to seek out such assistance due to a fear of reopening old wounds. Recognize, however, that overcoming your past hurts will allow you to live a healthier, happier life and go a significant way toward securing the transmission of these damaged feelings and behaviors to your offspring.
specific difficulties faced by female sex addicts at Gateways
Our culture has promoted heightened sexuality for the past 50 years, hyper-eroticizing kids—especially girls—with enticing clothes made for adults. Particularly revealing clothes, or clothing made to draw attention to the body in an unwarranted way affects how young girls see themselves and display themselves to others. In turn, her sense of style affects how other people view her. The magazines at grocery checkout lines, which represent the culture’s reliance on seductive media and casual sex, might act as entry points for sex addiction.
Parents must recognize this cultural trap, but it can be challenging to mount a successful defense against the barrage of sexualized media messages. The best reason starts in early life when parents engage their children in a continuing conversation about the benefits and obligations of sexuality. Children are spiritually and emotionally empowered to make better decisions as teens and adults when parents relationally handle this subject from the early stages of child development.
Compared to male addicts, female addicts frequently experience higher social stigma and internal guilt. The assumption that “boys will be boys” and “nice girls don’t” are true is promoted by society, even as it trains women to play the demure seductress. Women who struggle with addiction may separate their sexually dependent selves from their wives, mothers, and Sunday school teachers. Given the secrecy of a second existence, this kind of denial, double-dealing, or splitting apart reinforces the addiction.
Because “there is neither…male nor female” (Galatians 3:28) before God, Christians understand that God does not have any regard for gender distinctions. God, who is incredibly compassionate, despises sin (not the sinner) and the trauma it causes in His children. The road to equality and respect will be paved by encouraging godly living for both men and women.
considerations specific to female sex addicts
Looking at the relationship between the body, mind, and spirit may be the best way to describe the intricacies of female sex addiction.
Its Body Males and females are physically and biologically different from one another. A woman’s intrinsic desire to seem pretty and her more complex sexual arousal and release are two less evident aspects of her physiology. The balance of the inner woman is upset when the body is given an excessive amount of importance due to culture, exploitation, or addiction.
The Brain Females are often aroused differently than males, both mentally and emotionally. Women typically maintain relationships, even when attracted to and produced, in contrast to males, who are more visually inclined and show more interest in a woman’s body or, regrettably, only certain aspects of it. For instance, the atmosphere or environmental backdrop, the man’s personality features, and how he appears to nurture her with attention are frequently gateways for feminine arousal. Soap operas, romance novels, and other materials primarily geared at women often use these factors.
The Holy fall of humanity caused spiritual harm to both sexes, but the effects on men and women are distinct. The woman’s “desire will be for (her) hubby” is one effect of women (Genesis 3:10). This could explain why women are more vulnerable. Perhaps more than men’s hearts are toward women, and their hearts are more inclined toward their male counterparts. Although this openness is not necessarily insufficient, it might encourage a stronger desire for masculine acceptance.
The aim of recovery
In the end, a female sex addict’s recovery aim is similar to that of a male addict, but her journey is different from men’s. She has to develop the ability to unite her body, mind, and soul in a way that honors God’s creation. She is distinctive in her feminine character, and God’s artistry can be seen in her unique personality. She will get support through personal responsibility, expert counseling, involvement in the faith community, and, if available, participation in rehabilitation groups. Like the male addict, the female addict must address her flawed thinking, hurt feelings, and broken spirit.