There is nothing wrong with having lots of sex. I repeat, there is nothing wrong with having lots of sex. If you want to do it all day long with your partner, or masturbate until the cows come home, then please feel free. But it is important to know that a super high sex drive can be unhealthy, especially for those who have a sex addiction.
When your desire to have sex crosses into this realm, you might notice all sorts of unwanted side effects — problems at work, relationship issues, etc. There's also the fact sex is often used as a way to deal with uncomfortable emotions, which is of course not a sustainable or healthy way to live.
So, how do you know if your high sex drive has become an issue? "In general, if something is overwhelmingly intrusive in one's life and prevents him/her from achieving goals or living a healthy lifestyle on an ongoing basis, it can be considered to be a problem," says NYC-based sexologist and relationship therapist Laurel Steinberg, Ph.D, in an email to Bustle. If you skip work to have sex, use sex to mask negative emotions, or if thoughts of getting laid swirl around in your head to a distracting degree, it may be time to seek help. Below are some telltale signs your sex drive has officially become unhealthy.
1. You Always Choose Sex Over Seeing Your Friends
If your high sex drive has become a problem, it might start taking precedence over everything else in your life. As Alexandra Katehakis, Ph.D., the clinical director of Center for Healthy Sex tells me, you might feel preoccupied, miss out on fun plans with friends, or keep your calendar open with the hope of hooking up. While it's obviously OK to do this occasionally, getting laid shouldn't be your one and only goal.
2. You Want To Stop Thinking About Sex But Can't
When things get out of control, you might start thinking things like "I'm not hurting anyone" or "girls just want to have fun!" While you never have to make excuses for yourself, constantly justifying your actions may be a sign your sex drive is too high, Katehakis says.
3. Your Responsibilities Are Falling By The Wayside
Have you gotten fired because you left work to hook up? Or did you forget to walk your neighbor's dog because you were scrolling through Tinder? As Steinberg says, "Signs that a high drive for [sex] may not be healthy are if it prevents [you] from fulfilling all of [your[ various roles and responsibilities."
4. You Use Sex To Deal With Depression
If you use sex as a way to numb your pain or feel validated and loved, watch out. As Katehakis tells me, sex can make you feel better in the moment, but it isn't a healthy way to deal with your problems in the long run.
5. You Use It To Cope With Anxiety
As with depression, take note if you think you're having tons of sex as a way to cope with anxiety. As Katehakis says, "The end game can also be about numbing out completely for life." Again, it's not a great way to deal with unwanted or painful feelings.
6. You Don't Let Feelings Get Involved
Sex doesn't always have to be about love and/or feelings. If you enjoy going out and hooking up with cute strangers, then keep doing your thing. (As long as you're safe.) It may be time to rethink your ways, however, if that's the only kind of sex you ever have. As Katehakis tells me, it's a sign of sex addiction if you have lots of sex without concern for whether or not the other people care about you.
7. It's Causing Stress In Your Relationship
While you can hope for a partner with an equally high sex drive, it's not guaranteed your desires will match up perfectly with those of your SO. When they don't, Steinberg tells me it can cause stress and arguments in your relationship. (Keep in mind, however, that the mismatch might also have to do with your partner's low libido and not necessarily your "addiction.")
8. It's All You Can Think About
If you zone out at work or constantly need to sneak off to the bathroom for some "alone time," it may be you've crossed the line into addiction zone. "If [you're] addicted to [sex], [you] may constantly have it on [your] mind," Steinberg says. Daydreams and fantasies are one thing, but you should be able to think about others things, too.
9. It's All You Ever Talk About
While every friend group needs their "Samantha," take note if everything you say is about sex, sex, sex. As Steinberg tells me, it can be a sign of sex addiction if you catch yourself talking about it "incessantly." While you should feel free to be sexual and have fun, it's not healthy to be obsessed.
10. You're Constantly Scheming About Your Next Hook Up
It's certainly fun to plan hooks up and get excited for a hot date. But it may be cause for concern if it's the only thing you do with your spare time. "[You] may be overly-focused on scheming to achieve it, all the time, every day — and this often includes intercourse with several partners," Steinberg says. If it's negatively impacting your or if you want to stop but can't, consider it officially unhealthy.
11. You're Always Caught Up In A Web Of Lies
If you need to lie to yourself or others in order to feed your sex drive, consider it a problem. As Dr. Cristina Bosch and Dr. John Robinson of The Hormone Zone say, "If a woman is going out of her way to lie to herself and others in order to fulfill the need for sex, or spends so much time on it that it interferes with other aspects of [her] life, then there may be an addiction."
Remember, your sexuality isn't anything to be ashamed about. You can have sex all day long. You can hook up and have multiple partners. And you can spend hours fantasizing and checking dating apps. . It's only time to worry when it feels like an obsession, or if it starts to negatively impact your life. If that feels like the case, don't be afraid to talk with a therapist.
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