Some people find that their sexual behaviors may become problematic. In particular, some people find themselves stuck in transactional sexual encounters where they may enjoy sex but find little intimacy and may avoid or fear building a more intimate emotional relationship. Some people struggle with what is sometimes called “sexual addiction,” having difficulty managing their compulsive tendencies to engage in sexual activities that they feel they cannot fully control. Such out-of-control sexual behavior is often more of a symptom of an underlying problem rather than the primary issue that the person faces. Out-of-control sexual behavior can serve to help people who feel isolated feel more connected and people who feel physically unsure of themselves with a ritual that temporarily alleviates their feelings of insecurity in their physicality.
Treatment for out-of-control sexual behavior, then, must focus on defining what problematic sexual behaviors are happening, in what context(s) they emerge, and exploring the individual’s sense of what meanings underlie such behavior. After learning what the problematic sexual behaviors are, and the meanings they hold, therapy may help the person to focus on what needs are being met by the out-of-control behaviors. Indeed, many out-of-control sexual behaviors are emotionally-driven to help the individual to meet legitimate needs that are out of the individual’s awareness. Once the fundamental needs are identified, then an exploration of finding alternative, healthier, or more fulfilling ways of getting such needs met can ensue.
Sexuality is a complex topic. Any sexual behavior may serve a multitude of potential possibilities in maintaining a person's mental equilibrium. This means that men with such sexual problems should seek the assistance of a competent therapist who understands sexuality well and is able to assist the patient in undergoing a process of self-discovery and disclosure. The process can be incredibly transformative and can lead the individual to a life that is not only free of such out-of-control sexual behavior, but that also opens new ways of relating to others that are ultimately more fulfilling than were previously imaginable.
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