Christian Counseling | Pasadena & Ventura - Awakenings Relational Counseling
Sex addiction treatment and porn addiction counseling, psychotherapy for trauma, relationship issues, and infidelity in Ventura, Pasadena, and Oxnard.
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Sex Addiction Counseling for Christians

 

Pasadena | Ventura

 

“For God, all things are possible.” (Mark 10:27)

An Attempt to Fill a God-Shaped Hole

 

GK Chesterton is often credited with saying, “Every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God.” Our deepest longing is to know God intimately, to deeply connect with God and others. So many of us, however, feel empty, lonely, unworthy, ashamed. Perhaps you’ve felt these feelings for a long time. Oftentimes, when we feel this emptiness or shame, we look to other things (money, sex, substances, food, relationships, pornography) to feel better, sometimes without even realizing it.

 

Especially as a Christian, you’ve felt profound shame about your sexual behaviors. If you’re like most, you’ve tried to quit many times before, but no matter how much you read Scripture, pray, or even get help from your pastor or an accountability partner, you always return to sexual behaviors that leave you feeling even more ashamed and isolated than before. You feel like you’re living a double life, pursuing your sexual behaviors in private while pretending that your spiritual life and your other relationships are okay.

 

Meanwhile, your shame eats at you. You’re acting in ways that contradict your Christian values, but you feel too ashamed to talk about it, maybe with anyone. You might even be wondering if you’re an addict.

 

What Is Sex Addiction?

 

Sex addiction is a pattern of compulsive sexual fantasy and behaviors that wreaks havoc on a person’s life. No matter how the addiction began, clients usually report an ever-increasing preoccupation with pornography, online affairs, strip clubs, prostitutes, massage parlors, unsafe sex, adult bookstores, and other sexually compulsive behaviors.

 

Sex addiction often progresses to the point where fantasizing, pursuing, and engaging in these behaviors takes over one’s life, frequently resulting in relationship problems, legal woes, trouble at work or in school, financial difficulties, decline in physical and/or emotional health, and more.

 

If you think you might be a sex addict, chances are you have struggled with one or more of the following behaviors:

  • Compulsive masturbation
  • Repeated and impulsive use of pornography
  • Sexting and cybersex activities (e.g., compulsive webcam sex, sexualized chat)
  • Anonymous or casual sex, often facilitated by apps or hookup websites
  • Unprotected sex
  • Prostitution or use of sensual massage
  • Engaging in prostitution (hiring or providing)
  • Pursuing sexual encounters without considering the consequences
  • Leading a “double life,” keeping your sexual behaviors secret
  • Numerous affairs or a pattern of one-night stands or brief “serial” relationships, usually facilitated by apps or dating websites
  • Frequenting strip clubs, adult bookstores, and other environments focused on sex, including online environments (e.g., virtual reality games and chat sites)

 

Sex Addiction Counseling for Christians

 

As a Christian, I believe that what is impossible for us to heal on our own is possible with God—even sex, porn, or love addiction. My faith informs how I understand the process of counseling and why relationship-based Christian counseling can bring meaningful, lasting change. In essence, therapy is a process of becoming more directly connected to each other and ourselves.

In Christian counseling, as we become more connected to each other, even and especially during healing, we may experience the presence of the Divine. This healing presence has the power to help you transform your sex addiction.

 

I pursued my graduate studies at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California because I am deeply committed to integrating Christian faith and psychotherapy. Perhaps you are wrestling with questions about your faith now or want help from a therapist who shares your most fundamental beliefs.

 

Whatever your circumstances, whatever your sexual behaviors might be, I’m not here to judge you. I strive to create a safe, non-judgmental environment in which you can freely talk about your concerns and achieve your goals in therapy.

 

You are a child of God. You are loved by God, and you deserve to heal. I believe that God will meet us in our work together: “When you search for me you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart . . .” (Jer 29:13).

 

Hope Is Possible

 

If you resonate with this, you are not alone. If you’re ready to change your life, if you’ve had enough of the deadening shame, the self-loathing, arrests, legal and financial troubles, spiritual emptiness, depression, anxiety, and shattered relationships, a way forward is possible. I specialize in helping clients recover from sex addiction and in supporting their betrayed partners. If you or a loved one are struggling with sex addiction in some way and are ready to re-engineer your life, I can help you.

 

Using focused, proven tools in a confidential environment, I can walk with you step by step toward your healing and recovery. I will collaborate with you in building the life that you want and help you restore balance to your life and trust in your relationships with your loved ones. Hope is possible when we’re not alone.

 

The Answer Is Connection

 

Sex addiction often has its roots in unresolved pain resulting from emotional, physical, or sexual trauma. Addicts’ pain is worsened by their shame as they often blame themselves for the emotional wounds that still fester inside them. As emotional intimacy involves feeling free to be oneself in the presence of another, addicts find it impossible to intimately connect with someone else. As a result, sex and emotional intimacy aren’t even in the same zip code. Instead, the addict learns to deal with unresolved pain by using sex and sexual behaviors in ways that have nothing to do with intimacy.

 

Recovery starts with stopping problematic sexual behaviors and finding ways to reduce the chaos that accompanies sex addiction. However, because sex addiction is fundamentally a problem with intimacy, long-term healing must include emotional transformation that makes being in open, genuine relationships possible. I have training in contemporary psychoanalysis that enables me to do the “depth work” of the emotional transformation that can occur, helping my clients connect and at last be their true selves with another person.

 

I Need Help—What Should I Do Now?

 

Starting sex addiction counseling can be tough because sex addiction is often embarrassing and difficult to talk about. Reaching out for help is nothing to be ashamed about and can lead to a lifetime of sexual and emotional health, and I applaud your courage in seeking the support you need. And trust me, I know how you’re feeling and can journey with you through the discomfort and awkwardness.

 

If you’re ready to begin, please call me at (805) 256-3497 or email me at jmast@awakeningsrelationalcounseling.com to schedule your initial session or a free 15-minute consultation, or write me a message using the form below. It would be my privilege to meet with you and for us to discuss how I can help you.

 

Sex Addiction Counseling That Works

 

I am a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist, which means that I have received specific training and supervision to help sex addicts and their partners discover healing and lasting change. Supported by a growing body of research and proven clinical tools, the CSAT training is quickly becoming the field’s standard for all therapists working with individuals who suffer from addictive and compulsive sexual behaviors.

 

I have also trained at the Institute for Contemporary Psychoanalysis in trauma, addiction, couple and family relationships, shame and other areas critical to long-term healing and change. After you have regained a sense of stability and control in your life, understanding unconscious patterns of being in relationship and managing your feelings are paramount; you will learn to relate to and manage your feelings without the use of compulsive sexual behaviors and fantasies that you may have used to “numb” yourself to overwhelming and painful feelings.

 

The time to get help is now. Take back your life by reaching out to me today. No matter what your circumstances may be, no matter how desperate your situation, change is possible.