The Alcoholics Anonymous or Twelve-Step Program/ Twelve-Step model is one of the largest and most pervasive models of addiction recovery today. The development of this model and the associated 12 Steps themselves dates from the 1930's when two struggling addicts, Bill W. and Dr. Bob formed a support program to help each other get free of alcohol addiction. It is worth noting that the two founders of this program, while they both successfully ceased consuming alcohol, both ended their lives in ongoing addiction to other behaviours or substances. While the Alcoholics Anonymous treatment model has been thoroughly and rigorously discredited by modern psychological research and we do NOT utilize it in our addictions counselling, we still post it for historical interest and because the search engines of this world expect it to be on any site offering credible psychological addiction treatment in Calgary. Please see the links page below for more psychologically proven addiction group therapy Calgary has to offer.
Healing sexual addictions and anorexia:
Sex Addiction FAQ's
Do you feel like you've lost the ability to control your sexual behavior (e.g., crossed lines you didn't think you would cross, set limits that you have failed to meet, made promises to stop a behavior and then continued it)?
Do you experience consequences because of your sexual behavior (e.g., miss work or call in late because of acting out, risk your relationships, loss of spirituality, legal consequences)?
Are you constantly thinking about sexual activity even when you don't want to (e.g., spend hours cruising for sexual experiences, dream about sexual behavior regularly, spend time preparing for sexual behaviors, dwell on sexual experiences long after they are over)?
If so, help is available both through Henze & Associates as well as through the resources below:
Frequently asked questions on sexual addictions.
The term, "Sexual Addiction," itself is actually psychologically incorrect. As of 2017, a clinical diagnosis of sexual addiction is not found in either the DSM or ICD medical classifications of diseases and medical disorders. However, at least in popular media, the term, "Sexual Addiction," is still the go-to description of the disorder, though more precise definitions of the same thoughts, feelings and sexual behaviours are increasingly being used. For example, the Mayo Clinic has much more correctly defined sexual addiction as a form of obsessive compulsive disorder. They currently refer to it as sexual compulsivity and use terms such as hypersexuality, hypersexual disorder and nymphomania to describe the intensity of the sexual struggle and emotional distress that impacts the lives and marriages of so many here in Calgary.
If you really want to swing or have an open marriage.
One of the least well-known facts about Calgary is the scale of the, "Lifestyle," or swinging community right here in hyper-conservative Calgary. Some have suggested that the popularity of this alternative lifestyle choice may, in part, be driven by the depths of homophobia often seen in the Southern Alberta Region - which may cause those seeking same-sex sexual contact to seek the cover of a more hetro-normative behaviour. Others have suggested that our harsh climate simply leaves us Calgarians bored and seeking indoor amusements. Whatever the reason, it's huge here. But, just because everyone is doing something still doesn't necessarily make it a good idea. And, just because you have tried something, that doesn't mean you are marked for life and need to continue to settle for less than what you were truly created for in the future...
More questions and answers on sexual addiction.
Sexual addiction counselling Calgary, sexual compulsivity treatment, hypersexual disorder, nymphomania or hypersexuality are all terms no one ever thinks to search for - until they are in crisis. It's only in those moments of soul-wrenching pain and relational betrayal that most people ever start typing those terms into their search bar and, when you finally do, you need answers, and you need them fast. Click the above link for a quick guide to the basic facts you need to know. Then reach out and book your first sexual addiction counselling session with us today! We offer help for those struggling with sexual addiction in Calgary, those who love them and for couple relationships and marriages afflicted by sexual addictions.
Information and resources on sexual anorexia.
Whether the byproduct of a highly religious or sexually repressive upbringing, body dysmorphia, long-term childhood exposure to obscene or pornographic materials or outright sexual abuse, sexual anorexia is the compulsive and persistent aversion towards and avoidance of sexual intimacy and/or relationship. The sexual anorexic's views of sexuality tend to be cold, mechanical, lacking in response flexibility and highly moralistic while his or her self-concept tends to be awash in shame, guilt and fear. While not clinically defined and certainly quite counter-intuitive, a sexual bulimia of sorts also exists where some sexual anorexia sufferers may intermittently engage in detatched one-night-stands while remaining highly avoidant of committed intimate relationship. It's very possible to recover from sexual anorexia, but not without knowledge and psychological help!
Links to sexual recovery resources on and off this site.
Like every addiction, sexual addiction has, at its core, a world of pain - usually inflicted in childhood. Addiction is a desperate response to that pain. It is neither a choice nor a disease, it's a response to trauma having shifted the person's perception of their world, themselves and their own ability to respond to others. That shifted perception results in the experience of nearly constant distress on mental, emotional and physiological levels and sexual addiction is simply a maladaptive attempt to regulate the addict's intensely dysregulated autonomic nervous system. While most of our society seeks to control addiction through shaming, guilting and punishing the addict, we understand that those tactics are actually the root of the problem.
It really is possible to recover from sexual addiction, but that's just not going to happen unless you decide to radically change tactics. The majority of the treatment programs available both in Calgary and online are focused on the behaviors of sexual addiction instead of changing and healing the heart of sexual addiction. They focus on attending meetings, working programs, having safety plans, calling support systems and elaborate systems of confession and accountability.
While there's nothing wrong with any of those things, they leave you hanging on for dear life with white knuckles trembling as you desperately try to avoid acting out - this time. That's not real healing - it's more properly termed a barely tolerable recovery, and it usually doesn't last for long.
To be fair to those programs, there are issues of compulsivity that do need to be managed as a result of impulse control never having been learned and the Orbital Frontal Complex of the brain remaining in an underdeveloped state. But, that pales in significance when compared to the core issues of addiction:
- Reducing emotional pain
- Simulating relational connection (Feels like a warm, soft hug.)
- Stress reduction - actually an attempt to re-regulate a life-long dysregulated autonomic nervous system
To quote the adage: "Addiction is not a question of a free will, it's a function of a free won't."
And, it's not your sexuality that needs healing anyway, it's your sense of self and the shame and guilt that has kept you cut off from such for years. Thus, the programs we link to here are as free of judgment and condemnation as possible. Click the above link to discover both residential and outpatient treatment options available to recover from sexual addiction, Calgary and beyond!