Partners of Sex Addicts, Porn Addicts, Couples

7 Warning Signs That Your Partner is Addicted to Sex

There are warning signs or behavioral “red flags” you might see if your partner is having a problem with sexually compulsive behavior:

  1. He may spend a lot of “private” time on his computer, his phone, or at work. Working long hours could be a cover for compulsive viewing of Internet porn. When you notice your partner is on the computer, he may turn it off or flip to another page. He may set up secret or hidden email accounts. He may hide his cell phone to avoid your detection of his phone calls or text messages.
  2. In general, his demeanor may change. You may notice that he’s acting differently. He may become more secretive, private, unreliable, critical, or irritable. He might not be as social as he used to be. There may be unexplained absences. You may feel like you just don’t get straight answers anymore.
  3. You may experience a lack of connection and intimacy. Your partner may not seem available to you. You may feel he’s avoiding you. He may seem “tuned out” or lost.
  4. Your sexual interactions with your partner may change. Your partner may become uncharacteristically demanding or rough sexually. He may require more and more stimulation. Or he may become unresponsive sexually and cease initiating sex. He may develop a preference for masturbation.
  5. His relationship to his body may change. He may become overly concerned with his penis — with caring for, touching, adjusting his pants, or exposing his anatomy.
  6. Money might become an issue in your relationship. If he is spending money on porn, prostitutes, or other illicit sexual activities there may be a lack of funds or unexplained expenses.
  7. He may be sexually unfaithful. Not every sexual betrayal is a sign of sexual addiction. However if your partner is engaging sexually with another or others and is not stopping, even if he says he wants to, he probably has an issue with sexual compulsivity.

Unfortunately, there is no magically revealing or definitive list that will let you know without question that your partner has an issue with sex addiction. You may see all of these signs, other signs, or none of them. These behaviors could point to other addictions or other issues or they could point to an affair.

However, it is true that, if your partner’s sexual behaviors are causing stress to your relationship, to his connection to friends and loved ones, or to his work then sexual addiction could be a problem. If his instinctive desire for sexual activity is overriding his capacity to regulate those impulses in a way that is preventing connection and intimacy, then there is a problem.

The difficulty with any addictive behavior is that ultimately it does not provide the desired relief or reward. The addiction creates an internal war. Life does not work. Ultimately you can never get enough of what won’t satisfy you.

If you suspect (or know) that your partner has turned attention from you to porn, sexual addiction, or any sort of acting out sexually, we care about what this is doing to you. You may be facing heartbreak, fear, and/or anxiety. We get it. You don’t have to go through this time alone. We will work with you collaboratively establishing a close personal bond to support you through this time.

We are here to help… call us at 925-932-0201

All Contacts Are Completely Confidential

7 Reassurances For The Partner Of A Sex Or Porn Addict– You Didn’t Cause This, You Can’t Cure It. It’s Not About You”

  1. Your partner’s sexually addictive actions are not an indication that he does not love you.
  2. There is hope. Your relationship isn’t necessarily doomed because your partner has an issue with sexual compulsion.
  3. You don’t have to decide on the future of your relationship right now.
  4. You are not weak or damaged because you want to stay with your partner and rebuild your relationship.
  5. On the other hand, you’re also not weak, damaged, or mean because you want to leave your relationship right now.
  6. You don’t have to force yourself to trust your partner right now. It is normal to feel angry, upset, and mistrusting.
  7. You don’t need to go through this time alone. Reach out to friends, family, and other support systems.

Some Basic Facts About Sexual Addiction

Sex addiction is a compulsive urge to engage in sexual activities, thoughts, or fantasies in a way that is detrimental to the individual, his family, his friends, and/or his work. It blocks the development of true intimacy in relationship.

For someone caught by sexual compulsion, sex has become something other than an intimate expression of loving connectedness. The pleasure that is inherently present in orgasm or connection with another has been altered and is being used as a balm, an escape, or a distraction, rather than being enjoyed for what it does offer.

The sexually compulsive individual may know that his secret sex life is keeping him from the connection he wants to have. He just doesn’t know how to limit (and stop) the sexual behaviors that are getting in the way of intimacy with his partner.

The natural urge for sex, the way sex is used for marketing purposes, and the explosion of porn on the Internet have created a “perfect storm” of conditions that lead to sex addiction.

To understand how sex addiction can become a problem, it helps to understand the impulses and motivations that drive the behavior. Gaining understanding about these influences, it is possible to work with the urges and impulses as they arise.

Is This You?

Most women, when they discover that their partner has been acting out sexually, feel betrayed. Many say they feel as if they have run with full force into a brick wall. A period of shock often follows. Certainly not every betrayal is due to sexual compulsivity or addiction, but a pattern of betrayal may include sex addiction as a factor.

While some people become aware of the problem in one horrible instant of discovery, often the understanding can creep up in a series of small awakenings. The betrayed partner may have voiced suspicions that were repeatedly denied, but which, over time, added up to a certainty. No matter how you learn about your partner’s sexual addiction, it is a stunning and painful revelation. You may feel shocked or numb, hurt, ashamed, afraid, and angry.

We are here to help… call us at 925-932-0201

All Contacts Are Completely Confidential

Faye Reitman, MFT

Faye has vast experience in supporting women in their relationship with a partner who is sexually compulsive. She has also spent many years counseling women with issues around self-esteem, food, and eating

Message from Faye: I believe that the therapeutic dialogue is a joint venture between the client and the therapist. Every client has both areas of strengths that she needs to discover and perceived weaknesses that need to be acknowledged, embraced, and healed. That is the core of our work together.

A Couple’s Guide to Sexual Addiction: A Step-By-Step Plan to Rebuild Trust & Restore Intimacy


This book by Compulsion Solution’s Paldrom & George (published by Adams Media) presents a refreshing new approach for couples struggling with the issue of sexually compulsive behaviors such as excessive pornography and masturbation, frequenting prostitutes or strip clubs, serial affairs, and other acting out behaviors.

The book takes readers by the hand and gently and compassionately leads them from the pain and disillusionment of a relationship shattered and betrayed through a forest of confusing past and present influences toward a future based on trust, vulnerability, and the joy of true intimacy.

It is possible to rebuild your relationship.  Read a wife’s letter to her husband.

We are here to help… call us at 925-932-0201

All Contacts Are Completely Confidential