CLEO Singapore
Sex Addiction Relationship Romance Love Image Credit: CLEO Singapore
Sex Addiction Relationship Romance Love Image Credit: CLEO Singapore

When Sex Becomes An Addiction

Think of a sex addict and you’ll probably picture someone who masturbates or has sex a lot. But what does “a lot” mean, exactly? At what point does just being really horny become a problem?


According to Varian Monteiro, a counselling consultant at The Relational Counselling, a person is considered a sex addict when they find it difficult to control their behaviour. “The strongest indicator of an existing addiction is when there is loss of control, be it real or perceived, and an inability to stop the behaviour,” he says. “An addiction is classified as a compulsion to engage in a behaviour despite adverse present or future consequences. Sex is simply the tool these addicts use to get their relief or pleasure. It’s what we call ‘acting out’.”

They are also considered sex addicts when their compulsions disrupt their life. “Sex addicts can spend an inordinate amount of time preoccupying themselves with preparatory activities or behaviours leading up to ‘acting out’,” he explains. “Family and work commitments take a backseat as ‘acting out’ becomes a priority.”

At worst, addicts may also find that the behaviour not only harms themselves, but those around them, physically and/or emotionally.


Since there are different types of sexual behaviours, it probably isn’t surprising that there are also different types of sex addiction. Varian says that while the more common ones include an addiction to masturbation or pornography, there are also addictions to transactiona

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