Joanne Brodie Dispels Four Sex Addiction Myths in an Extract from People Who Are Addicted to Sex
Penguin Books South Africa has shared an extract from People Who Are Addicted to Sex by Joanne Brodie.
In the excerpt, Brodie discusses the “holy grail” of psychiatry and psychology, The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, as well as the The International Classification of Diseases, which is published by the World Health Organisation, neither of which mention sex addiction.
In addition, Brodie lists four of the most common sex addiction myths, in the hopes of dispelling them:
1. ‘Sex addiction cannot be an addiction because nothing is ingested.’ Sex addiction is a process addiction, in which the person becomes dependent on sex or activities around sex. This causes the brain to release neurotransmitters, which are chemical messengers and make one ‘feel good’.
2. ‘Sex addicts have a higher libido than other people and have to have sex all the time.’ Sex addicts usually have a sexual behaviour pattern that is totally outof control – it has nothing to do with libido.
3. ‘Women cannot be sex addicts.’ Even though this has improved over the years that I have been in practice, there is still resistance to seeing women as sex addicts.
Women are more easily seen as love addicts and relationship addicts, but sex addicts? Much harder! It is because of this denial that there are many female sex addicts who struggle to access the right kind of assistance and treatment.
4. ‘All sex addicts are paedophiles and sex offenders.’ Most sex addicts are not paedophiles. Some may be sex offenders;some are not. And some paedophiles may be sex addicts. It is really 5 difficult to find figures in this regard because offenders do not necessarily seek help. The first time they usually enter the system, so to
speak, is when they get caught by the police.