Dear Abby | Twelve-step programs offer healing for sexual addiction
Dear Abby: After reading the letter from “Dumbstruck in Chicago” (April 24), who’s dating a recently divorced man who was unfaithful to his ex-wife through multiple affairs and one-night stands with prostitutes, I cannot stay silent. That man screams of being a sex addict. He needs the help of a certified sex addiction therapist before he wrecks another woman’s life.
“Dumbstruck” should RUN – not walk – to the nearest S-Anon meeting. It’s a 12-step program for people who have been affected by another person’s sexual behavior. These behaviors include infidelity by emotional or physical affairs, one-night stands with prostitutes, hanging out in strip clubs and porn addiction.
S-Anon saved my sanity and gave me the courage to offer my husband of 30 years a choice – recovery or divorce. Because he knew I was serious, he reluctantly went into Sexaholics Anonymous (SA) as well as therapy with a certified sex addiction therapist (CSAT) and has been sexually sober for five years. Our marriage is better today than I ever dreamed it would be.
Sex addiction is a disease and needs to be recognized as the cause of ruining many marriages and tearing families apart. Please, Abby, suggest SA and S-Anon when you reply to people who write you about these issues. – Anonymous in Kentucky
Dear Anonymous: Thank you for writing. I have recommended the resources you mentioned in my column in the past. Sexaholics Anonymous and S-Anon have been in existence for more than 35 years and have helped many individuals stop unhealthy, destructive cycles of behavior. There are chapters nationwide. Readers, to find a meeting near you, visit sa.org or sanon.org.
Dear Abby: I was raped by a man I thought was a friend. Since then, I don’t accept men’s opinions, including those I work for. When they try to give me constructive criticism, I shut down.
I know I need therapy. How do I get past this thing and become a productive employee? I no longer want to be just another number and/or statistic. – Getting Past This
Dear Getting Past: You know you need therapy, so why not contact a rape treatment center and ask for help now? If you do, it will help you in many areas of your life, in addition to your work environment.