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Is Jesse James a Sex Addict?

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Seems like most celeb cheaters go to "rehab" once they're caught. But is sex addiction for real ... or just a cop-out?

Jesse James

Dr. Cara Gardenswartz: Though the DSM-IV-TR (the "Bible" of mental disorders for the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association) does not formally recognize sexual addiction as a mental illness, most psychologists and trained therapists believe that sexual addiction is real, just as they consider gambling addiction to be real.

In the 1980s, the 12-step movement popularized the idea that behaviors could be as addictive as substances such as cocaine or alcohol. They founded 12-step programs for compulsive shoppers, gamblers, "sexaholics" and so on.

Sexual addiction is a preoccupation with sexual behavior (which can include masturbation, prostitution, anonymous sex, casual sex, going to strip clubs, bathhouses, etc.). Most often it involves many sexual encounters and reckless behavior. Sex is a way some people cope with life stressors and intense emotions. Individuals often find themselves escaping from life circumstances and pain through addiction. With sexual addiction as well as with infidelity, lies and denial become necessary to keep the behavior active.

Addiction has become an increasingly popular explanation for people in the public eye such as Bill ClintonTiger Woods and actor David Duchovny, who plays a sex addict in the show "Californication," entered rehab in order to treat their own sex addictions, just as people with substance addictions or eating disorders go to rehab facilities. Many people with sexual addictions also have other addictions, such as substance abuse.

People with substance abuse have some of the following symptoms:

• Failure to fulfill major obligations
• Recurrent social or interpersonal problems
• Tolerance (need for more of the "drug" to get the same "high")
• Withdrawal
• Large amounts over a long period
• Unsuccessful efforts to cut down
• Time spent in obtaining the substance replaces social, occupational or recreational activities
• Continued use despite negative consequences

People with sexual addiction may also exhibit the following symptoms:

• Lying to family, friends and coworkers
• Unable to complete tasks due to excessive preoccupation with sex
• Spending 2-4 hours cruising the Internet, parks or streets
• Downloading porn at work
• Masturbating or having sex in public
• Feeling exhausted, shame or guilt after acting out sexually
• Sexualizing conversations

Do you believe sexual addiction is "real"? And do you think Jesse James has a sexual addiction?

next: Florida Woman Reportedly Robs Bank, Citing Her 'Bucket List'
130 comments so far | Post a comment now
renee March 31, 2010, 6:29 PM

its crap,people go into sex rehab cuz they got caught and its their way to act innocent when they are gulity of cheating

Anonymous March 31, 2010, 10:17 PM

Sexual addiction can be a real problem, but 99% of the people who claim to have it (high profile cheaters) are just making excuses for their behavior. They’re just entitled a-holes.

Monica April 1, 2010, 9:56 PM

I think many a medical term for mental disorders are a cop-out for the fact that people lack self control. i’m not saying that no one has real mental issues. But not everyone falls into the category of having a mental issue. Some people make excuses for lack of judgement and self control. Rehab is a joke these days!

SesshoumarusGirl April 3, 2010, 1:44 PM

Oh please, this is such a cop out. And the list of “symptoms” is very subjective.

I’m getting really sick of people passing their lack of control off as an “addiction” and then go to “rehab” (five star resort) Its just crap.

Barbara Reeds September 14, 2010, 6:35 PM

I believe its a cop-out.. Stand up and take it like man, you cheat you lose it all; me the kids and the dog!

Themes for Vista October 18, 2010, 1:18 PM

@Markus I get your drift on where you were going there. I often think of my past and use it as a means to analyze where I am and where I want to get to. Where I struggel is balancing it all out. How do you guys balance things out?

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