My Addiction To Sex Is Ruining My Life Yet I Am Forced To Bury My Secret

Anonymous Anonymous in Dirty Picture on 25 September, 2018

I am a woman in my mid-20s. I belong to a reasonably well-to-do family. We all love and support one another. I’ve never even considered having a boyfriend because such things were against my semi-conservative upbringing. I am an introvert. I prefer wearing traditional clothes, am academically diligent, cheerful, polite and virtuous.

All these personality traits are not just a façade. I know myself. I also harbour a secret. I am a sex-crazed addict and this has turned me into a deceitful person.

I spend an excessive amount of time in wild, gruesome and abstract sexual fantasies. I often feel like I have produced, directed, enacted and viewed a blue film of my own creation. And I can watch this film for hours at a stretch in my mind.

I knew that there was something wrong with me even when I was a kid. At that time, I often thought I was a very ‘bad’ and ‘sinful’ child. I knew I had to stop indulging in such immoral conduct. But no matter how many times I tried to do so, I could never stop fantasizing about such things.

For a long time, I did not understand the true nature of my problem.

One day, I stumbled upon an article on the internet. I was completely astounded by what I read. Almost all the behavioural patterns of a sex addict matched with my own habits. I continued reading more on the subject and slowly started understanding the exact nature of my problem. I understood that I had started doing it subconsciously. I now knew that sex addiction was an excessive and compulsive preoccupation with sexual thoughts and this had a negative impact on one’s life. I also realized that, as in my case, it was possible to be a sex addict without ever having engaged in sex.

The addiction can manifest itself in different ways.

Most of the time, I was obsessed with enacting all kinds of sexual fantasies in my mind. But I had become bolder now. I watched porn and sexted with strangers on anonymous platforms.

I had a pretty normal childhood when I was growing up but I was sexually abused as a child. I knew I was subjected to something that was very wrong. But I never had the courage to confide in anyone. I was scared and felt uneasy and embarrassed about opening up to anyone else about it. So I ended up becoming a silent victim.
At that age, I did not know that I would end up paying such a heavy price for my silence. I would have definitely acted differently had I known how it would affect me in the future.

According to Dr Patrick Carnes, an internationally acclaimed authority on sex addiction, people who experience childhood trauma, are more prone to developing an addiction of this kind.

This addiction serves as a coping mechanism which eases the anxiety and stress of the trauma.

It was then that I realized that all the themes of my subconsciously evolved fantasies were intricately linked to the experiences of my assault. I felt safe and secure whenever I delved into my own world of sexual fantasy. Sometimes I could even control it. But I got a lot of peace and pleasure whenever I started fantasizing and this helped me ‘numb’ out.

By the time I turned 11, I had started enacting elaborate stories in my mind and they all were always sequenced in the right order. I would then start spending a great deal of time in my sexually explicit fantasy land. I also noted that these sexual desires hit me in cycles and often they would last for months at a stretch. At such times, I had the tendency of being completely engrossed with sexual thoughts and this suffocated me. This had often interfered with my social and academic life. My grades suffered in school because I would pretend to read a book while I spent my time fantasizing. I refused to pursue my hobbies and did not go out with my friends because I preferred being locked up in my room.

I felt so comfortable when I was alone with my thoughts.
But whenever I went out for a social gathering, I would get some relief from my sexual fantasies.

I could not indulge in them when I was amidst others. But on a few rare occasions, my sexual urges would engulf me even in the most inappropriate places and at the most unexpected of times. Sometimes this would happen even when I was in school or college. I would feel ashamed of myself at such times. These were sacred institutions that provided intellectual nourishment to young minds and all I could think of was how I could satiate my animalistic sexual urges.

My sexual addiction coupled with one bad decision ended up ruining my career. My friends and family members assumed that I was taking some time off to prepare for a brighter career. But this has just become a dream that I no longer believe in. I know I can never do full justice to my career.

I am at an all-time low now. Fear and uncertainty loom large in my life. But what breaks me the most is that I have to constantly lie to hide my secret. I have to bury my secret with my silence and then pretend to be cheerful. At such times, I often feel my life is falling apart.

This addiction has ruined my ambitions. It has made me act against my morals. I feel pathetic and depressed. I am ashamed of myself and sometimes I am plagued by a feeling of emptiness and hopelessness. When the cycle of sexual addiction waned for a while, I would cry my eyes out.

I wanted to change for the better.

I have tried to come out of this cycle of addiction for almost a decade now. I could clearly see the alternating phases of indulgence and withdrawal. But I would always find myself fantasizing again about lust before I could do anything about it.

Over a period of time, I have realized that sex addiction in itself is not shameful. What is actually shameful is that sex addicts are forced to struggle in silence because they fear social stigma and know that people will not understand them.

If I had received timely support to process the pain, maybe I too would have been able to lead a normal life. I would then be free from the clutches of these toxic fantasies. I realize I need support to recover, but I don’t know where to look for this kind of support.

Only people who go through such experiences will truly understand how complex all this can be. That is why I often feel that I am being forced to remain silent about my problem.

Yes, I choose to remain anonymous but it is empowering and liberating to scream out loud about my troubles after being stifled for years with my silence. I wanted people to know about a problem called ‘sex addiction’ because such things are never ever discussed by us. I don’t know how many other people can relate to my problem. All I know is that I have always felt terribly alone till now. But I presume there are others who are suffering from this problem.

I wrote this post to support the victims of child sexual abuse. I know that they carry a heavy baggage on their hearts which was unfairly thrust on them at a very tender age. I just hope that each victim finds the necessary support and care to recover fully even as I struggle to keep my own hopes up.
Author's Note:

I understand that sex and masturbation are healthy, normal and basic human needs. I am not saying that masturbation or porn is shameful or wrong. I only wanted to highlight the terrible impact this kind of addiction has on one’s life. I am neither looking for sympathy nor am I making any excuses for my behaviour. I desperately want to change and all I need is some help.

Editor's Note:

Guilt/shame is an extremely heavy burden to carry on our own. More than half our problems disappear when we share our past experiences/ deep-seated fears/ struggles openly with someone we trust completely. When we know we are accepted just the way we are - we are able to move on in our lives. Do share this story because we can overcome our challenges only if we make it a point to love ourselves. We can then easily create a life of our choice.