Committing to long-term change: Where to start?

As you or a loved one begins to think about long-term recovery from sexual addiction or pornography addiction, there will be a lot to consider. While things such as reading articles and researching the addiction are great steps, it is important to keep the momentum going. Committing to change may be difficult, so, like many things in life, laying a solid foundation is important for success.

Many times, one of the first questions newcomers to sex addiction recovery ask is, “Am I every going to be able to have a healthy, regular sex life, or do I have to give up sex forever?”

Unlike sobriety from alcohol or drug addiction, sexual sobriety is not defined by continued sex abstinence. Instead, sexual addicts can often learn to engage in non-problematic activities, while learning how to have a healthy, regular sex life.

However, before getting to that, it is important to build a solid foundation, whether with a “time out” from all sexual activity or by setting a sexual sobriety plan.

Going “cold turkey”

Abstinence is not the long-term goal, but sometimes, it can be helpful to hit the reset button, especially early in the healing process. A short period of sexual abstinence may be helpful or recommended. Talk with your therapist or accountability partner about the idea of a brief “time out.”

A sexual sobriety plan

If sexual sobriety doesn’t mean total abstinence, what does it mean? That may vary from person to person, but generally, it is abstaining from behaviors that do not compromise or destroy values, life circumstances or relationships. Work with your therapist to come up with written sexual sobriety contract to decide on sexual behaviors that are safe, healthy and appropriate.

Are you interested in working out a recovery plan that best suites your needs? Talk with a sexual addiction counselor today to get started.