Sexual Addiction Profiles

According to Patrick Carnes, there are 11 sexual addiction behavior types. This information is important when when working with sexually addictive or codependents or co-addicts of sex addicts. As you will see, sex addiction comes in many forms and types. Anything from the lone web surfer who spends 5 hours a night looking at pornography, to the patron of a prostitute, to the exhibitionist (man in the raincoat), the voyeur, and others.

Sexual Addiction Behavioral Types

1. Fantasy Sex – Sexually charged fantasies, relationships, and situations

o “Sex in the head” – arousal depends on sexual possibility
o The fantasy is preferred over sex
o Fantasies can be all-consuming
o Rarely is sex the goal (unless it’s necessary to control an outcome)

2. Seductive Role Sex- Seduction of partners

o Being sexual without being truthful about intentions
o Arousal is based on conquest
o Arousal diminishes after initial contact
o Seduction equals power and control
o Can results in multiple relationships, affairs and/or serial relationships

3. Anonymous Sex — High-risk sex with unknown persons

o Arousal involves no seduction or costs and is immediate
o Cruising, one-night stands, public baths, peep shows, Craigslist ads, etc.
o No emotional connection

4. Paying for Sex – Purchasing of sexual services

o Arousal is connected to payment of sex
o With time, the arousal is connected to money itself
o Prostitution, phone sex, sexual massages

5. Trading for Sex – Selling or bartering sex for power

o Arousal is based on gaining control of others by using sex as leverage
o Receiving money or drugs for sex * Making explicit movies/videos, stripping, pimping, and/or drugs for sex

6. Voyeuristic Sex – Visual Arousal

o The use of visual stimulation to escape into an obsessive trance
o Secretive looking or “peeping” to obtain sexual gratification
o Use of pornographic photos, magazines, computer and/or videos to obtain a fix

7. Exhibitionistic Sex – Attracting attention to the body or sexual parts of the body

o Sexual arousal stems from the viewer’s reaction, whether it is shock or interest
o Exposing oneself to obtain sexual gratification and/or power
o Exposing oneself in public places, at home, in a car
o Wearing clothes designed to expose and titillate

8. Intrusive Sex – Boundary violations without discovery

o “Stealing sex” without the possibility of getting caught
o Sexually touching people in crowds
o Surprising unsuspecting individuals with sexual comments, jokes, and/or observations

9. Pain Exchange – Being humiliated or hurt as a part of the sexual arousal

o Aroused by sadistic activities, hurting or degrading another sexually
o Or both * Bondage sex or “S & M” (Sadomasochism)

10. Object Sex – Masturbating with objects

o Cross-dressing
o Uncontrolled use of masturbatory objects: blow-up dolls, latex vaginas, dildos
o Fetishisms

11. Exploitive Sex — Exploitation of the vulnerable

o Arousal patterns are based on target “types” of vulnerability
o Force, intimidation, or manipulation may be used


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Sun Feb 6 , 2011
Any definition, discussion or exploration of compulsive sexuality begins thusly: “Sex addiction is an intimacy disorder characterized by” blah, blah, blah. Then it goes on to name the symptoms: pre-occupation with thoughts sexual; persistent, unrelenting urges to sexually act out; continued use despite adverse consequences, loss of control and so […]

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