There is a fine line between acceptable sexual behavior and what is considered sexually addictive, especially among women. Our culture often discourages women from being assertive in expressing their sexual needs, which can often lead to feelings of frustration and discontent. Some women are unsatisfied with these culturally-sanctioned norms, and therefore find other means of sexual fulfillment. Pornography and internet/cybersex, to name just a few. Women struggle with pornography at ever-increasing rates, so if you find yourself going back to porn time and time again, the sex and love addiction specialists at Sano Center for Recovery want you to know that you are not alone in your struggle.
When many people think of pornography, they put it directly in the realm of men. Not so long ago, access to pornography was limited to movie rentals and magazine subscriptions, so most women suppressed their urges to protect their reputations. Now, the Internet makes it easy to search for and download almost anything in relative anonymity, so more and more women are growing comfortable using pornography. Recent studies show that:
1 in 3 visitors to adult web sites are women
17% of women struggle with porn addiction
Women favor chat rooms twice as much as men
Women tend to find more pleasure through online relationships and oriented sexual chat rooms than videos and graphic images, but 70% of women still feel the need to keep their cyber activities a secret. Women are also far more likely to take their porn addiction offline, acting out their behaviors in real life, by having multiple partners, casual sex, or affairs.
While there is no concrete reason why women develop a sexual addiction, there are several common theories.
When the brain experiences sexual release, it triggers the production of endorphins to create a sense of euphoria and heightened pleasure. This natural response to stimulation often uses the same neuro-pathways to the brain’s reward center that are triggered by drug and alcohol abuse. If you suffer from porn addiction, your body will start to make the chemicals you would otherwise need to take to become addicted, craving more intense exposure to pornography to illicit the desired response.
Though sexual addiction is often associated with a variety of disorders (OCD, bipolar disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, etc.), many women use pornography as a way to deal with stress, anxiety, and loneliness. A porn addiction can impede a woman’s ability to experience sexual pleasure in face-to-face interactions or make real, lasting connections with their sexual partners.
Women’s porn addiction can be the result of childhood sexual abuse or early exposure to sex from their family or friends. Women suffering from this addiction often have low self-worth and difficulty coping with painful emotions. Unlike men who are more open with their use of pornography, porn addiction in women is more likely to earn them derogatory nicknames.
The first step in working through women’s porn addiction is admitting you need help. At the Sano Center for Recovery, our compassionate team has watched many women flourish through porn addiction counseling and therapy. We provide a safe, non-biased forum for you to address your porn addiction by offering a variety of different treatment programs and support groups tailored just for women. Our main goal is to help you deal with your underlying feelings and integrate healthy sexual behavior back into your life.
Join the numerous women who have flourished in our porn addiction therapy and call (562) 356-9835 today!
Reach out for help today and one of our therapists will return to you.