View all:  Voices of Recovery

March 9

“In our addiction, we experienced sex as compulsive. We felt driven, as if by an irresistible force to engage in sexual behavior rather than freely choosing to be sexual.”

Sex Addicts Anonymous, page 70

An issue that eventually comes up for most addicts is that working an SAA program differs from some other Twelve-Step programs in the fact that we don’t want to abstain from sex entirely (unlike drinking in AA). What we are striving to break free from is compulsive, unhealthy, or dangerous sexual behavior.

In my own recovery, I found that sex and love had somehow become separated from each other. This resulted in the odd reality that, because I loved my husband, I didn’t want to have sex with him. My husband couldn’t grasp the idea, though my brothers and sisters in recovery understood perfectly.

Ultimately, what I’d lost was intimacy. I had lost the ability to connect deeply with anyone—not necessarily in a sexual way, but in a way that I could see another’s inner being—who they really were. And, of equal importance, I was unable to let them see the real me.

Finding intimacy again was the key—the intimacy that has nothing to do with sex, the intimacy that allows me to connect deeply with another. Once I discovered that, my sexuality began to look healthy for the very first time. This was not an overnight process but it was worth working for, worth crying for.

I finally understand what real intimacy is and, for me, it has nothing to do with sex.