Survey findings indicate that most addicts have more than one addictive behavior. Only 13% report one addiction. Most sex addicts also report coming from families where multiple addictions existed.
Current research and clinical observations indicate that these addictions do not track along separate or parallel paths, but indeed, work together to intensify the “high” for the addict or meditate withdrawal symptoms from another addiction. For example, a sex addict may work compulsively then feel entitled to act out sexually at a strip club and use alcohol to “dis-inhibit” impulses that lead to direct sexual contact with the dancer. They may then over- eat, drink, or use other drugs to mediate the shame and regret that follow. Here, multiple addictions are being used to create a “cocktail” of an experience that make treating only one addiction a path to failure. All addictions should be addressed in sexual addiction treatment in order to better equip the recovering addict to find success. We provide a thorough assessment of all addictions.