Counseling Affiliates Logo If You Are a Spouse or Partner of a Sex Addict
lCorner bottom rCorner

If You Are a Spouse or Partner of a Sex Addict


What the Partner Experiences.

For the partner of a sexual addict, it can be a painful process experiencing the powerlessness of the addict's out of control behavior. Whether the partner is male or female or the relationship is heterosexual, gay or lesbian, the dynamics are the same. That is, the partner may not know what the addict is involved in, but she does know something is amiss. (For simplicity, "he" will be used in referring to the sexual addict and "she" when referring to the partner.) If the partner tries to discuss her feelings of uncertainty and confusion with the addict, he will probably steadfastly deny that anything is happening. Often the addict will tell his partner that she's imagining things, that everything's all right or find some way to explain it all away. The primary dynamic here is a denial of her feelings.

If, on the other hand, she has through one means or another found out that the addict is acting out sexually and confronts him, the addict may attack and blame his partner, telling her that if she was not so…demanding, withholding, unattractive, old fashioned, there would be no problem. The primary dynamic here is that she's somehow responsible for his behavior. Either way, nothing changes. Most partners describe these processes as "making me feel crazy."