COUNSELING FOR PARTNERS OF SEX ADDICTS
Learning that your partner has betrayed you with sex addiction or pornography addiction is devastating and confusing. Perhaps finding out about your partner’s out-of-control behaviors confirms suspicions that you’ve had for some time that something isn’t right, or perhaps your partner was so adept at keeping his secret life hidden from you that you’re learning about his behaviors for the first time. Either way, you’re likely to feel rage, anger, sadness, confusion, and alone.
That’s because discovering that your partner or spouse has had a secret sexual life is traumatic. It’s a trauma—an emotional injury—so hurtful that you probably feel like you’re going crazy. Partners often say things like:
When the person you loved and trusted most in the world deceives you by engaging in sexual and emotional behaviors outside of the relationship, only one word can summarize the depth of the resultant emotional pain: trauma. Your partner’s betrayal has changed everything; nothing in your world will ever be the same.
After finding out about the level of deception your partner has inflicted upon you, it’s completely understandable that you would feel symptoms associated with trauma, including:
Everyone reacts to trauma differently, and this is but a sample of many of reactions you may be experiencing. You’ve been hurt so deeply, and at this point you’re understandably trying to gain some control over what’s happening to keep yourself as safe as possible.
Sex addiction and infidelity both involve betrayal but aren’t the same thing. Sex addiction progresses, gets out of control, becomes a pervasive pattern of compulsive sexual behaviors, and takes over the addict’s life.
Sex addicts continue to engage in sexual behaviors despite adverse consequences, including behaviors such as:
After what you’ve learned, some may be telling you to leave. Others may be minimizing your pain, like your partner probably is. Perhaps, like so many partners, you haven’t told anyone anything because you’re so overwhelmed and confused about what to do.
Whatever your partner’s behaviors are, and however you’re reacting to the pain of your partner’s deception, I’m not here to tell you what to do. My first priority is helping you understand what’s going on and how you’re feeling, to find ways that you can feel safe again, and to offer hope that healing is possible.
Whatever you eventually decide to do in your relationship, you deserve to have your pain understood and validated. I understand your pain from the perspective of relational trauma, because to call the injury you’ve experienced anything else would be to devalue your pain. It’s my goal to help you understand, accept, and validate the trauma so that you can begin your important journey toward healing.
You don’t have to go through this alone. Being able to speak with someone knowledgable about sex addiction and partner trauma about your experiences is important to your healing.
Using focused, proven tools in a confidential environment, I can walk with you step by step toward your healing. I will collaborate with you in building the life that you want and help you explore your pain and restore balance to your life. Hope is possible when we’re not alone.
As you establish a foundation to your healing and begin to feel more grounded, together we can explore the depths of your pain. With the right kind of help, your emotional pain can be acknowledged and validated—something partners often desperately need as they frequently feel like they’re losing their minds.
In a therapeutic relationship in which you feel understood, your emotional pain can be transformed and you can begin to feel like yourself again. Together, with the support of proven tools and resources, I can help you understand how this happened to you and how to live in the light of profound, newfound awareness and skills.
As the partner of a sex addict, starting counseling can be tough because you may feel embarrassed, humiliated, and unsure of where to turn. Reaching out for help is nothing to be ashamed about and can lead to a lifetime of emotional health, and I applaud your courage in seeking the support you need. Change isn’t easy, but it is possible.
If you’re ready to begin, please call me at (805) 256-3497 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your initial session or a free 15-minute consultation. It would be my privilege to meet with you and for us to discuss how I can help you.
I am a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT), 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 differently so that you can find healing that lasts.
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. You deserve to heal!