Tiger Woods and Anthony Weiner’s public disclosures of treatment for sex addiction may do for sex addiction awareness what OJ Simpson did for awareness of domestic violence. Many men are lost in the cyclone of sex addiction. Sex addiction is insidious and progressive. It is a toxin to the soul and fabric of individuals, relationships, and our communities. Although these men may present as good athletes, employees, fathers, friends or husbands, they need help. Their giant problem will eventually awaken the people around them to the true reality of their lives.
It is my hope that these developing stories of Tiger Woods and Anthony Weiner will help individuals and communities deal more effectively with sex addiction. Our understanding and acceptance of sex addiction is decades behind alcohol addiction. Men and women can stand up and tell communities they have an alcohol addiction without necessarily experiencing rejection or ex-communication. On the contrary, sex addiction is often met with disgust, misunderstanding, and rejection. This cultivates the very isolation that makes the addiction grow. Addiction is like fungus; it grows in the dark, and dies in the light. The more individuals come out and talk about sex addiction, hopefully, the more communities will understand and work with the addicts. Insofar as alcoholics need accountability and support to recover, sex addicts do as well.
Treatment for sex addiction is a journey in recovery; a life-long process. Recovery begins with personal accountability and self-management. It expands to character and emotional development, relationship healing, and increased intimacy. It is my earnest hope that Tiger Woods and Anthony Weiner experience the aforementioned journey and that their stature and visibility will empower individuals to get help, and communities to work with recovering addicts.
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