Expert: Does Sex Addiction Really Exist?

couple in bed

There are two camps when it comes to sex addiction: those who believe it is a real affliction; and those who don't.

I'm in the "don't" camp. Sexual addiction is, in my opinion, an easy and convenient label for a very complicated problem. As it stands, there is a lack of empirical evidence and scientific agreement on whether such a condition exists.

You see, the trick to what makes up a sex addiction is defining what are "normal" sexual pursuits. An exercise in subjectivity as every person has their own comfort level and preference: some people want sex three times a day (or more); some have exotic tastes; others favor vanilla sex.

Consequently, it's extremely difficult to do any scientific study that can set guidelines to say what is an acceptable way to express sexuality.

That said, when you look at what sex addiction advocates have developed over the last 15 years, their standards are a moral judgment—rather than scientific conclusion—based around a heterosexual, monogamous, long term sex lifestyle. Other forms of sexual expression outside these boundaries could be construed as a sex addiction.

Apparently a lot of people agree with this belief system as over the last few years we see the term sex addiction popping up all over the media. In fact, Oprah and Dr. Phil have christened it as a real condition. Dr. Drew Pinsky has an incredibly popular television show helping B-list celebrities.