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Sex Addiction: Real Diagnosis or Lame Excuse?

The issue of “Sex Addiction” is one that has become quite popular after the Tiger Woods saga. A topic that has been around for sometime now has become a forefront issue, and still has varying public opinions on the “addiction”.

In the past year, we have seen many public figures admit to being “Sex Addicts” in Tiger Woods and Steve Phillips, as well as shows dedicated to the topic such as Sex Rehab with Dr. Drew. Yet, despite the sudden boom in being a “sex addict”, there still lies many doubters over whether this is a serious addiction, or just another sham to explain our society's lack of responsibility and self-control. And for that reason, we’ll keep the title within quotes.

Today, ESPN.com featured a very interesting and powerful ten minute clip from their superb documentary series, Outside The Lines. The piece touches base on former basketball player and coach, Winston Bennett, and his struggles with “sex addiction”, and how it affected his life, and those that love him.

The aspect that really brings the situation out is Bennett’s ability to openly share his life. Most have used “sex addiction” as a reason to escape from infidelity and twist the situation into making themselves the victim.

While the notion of being addicted to whatever it may be, alcohol, drugs, or painkillers, are understandable, real, and scientifically supported by the body’s dependency for the addictive substance, “sex addiction” is described as being a compulsivity within the mind that triggers a person to act on their resting thoughts.

Maybe I am being a bit cynical, and slightly sarcastic, but if that were the case, couldn’t we slap “addict” after about anything a person does that they shouldn’t act upon?

“Jay-walking Addict”

or maybe thoughts that constantly consumes a person’s mind such as:

“Baseball Addict”

I often describe myself as a , “professional wrestling addict”, hey, maybe it is a real diagnosis. That’s my excuse, I just can’t help myself, I just need to see body slams, clotheslines and chair shots.

In all seriousness, whether being a “sex addict” is real or not, is yet to be determined. However, in a society where many of our mistakes, wrong doings, and transgressions are finding there way to being placed in the “It’s not your fault” pile, its no wonder the next generation is lacking responsibility and self control.

However with that said, Winston Bennett’s story is one - out of all the many that has been told - that has truly brought “sex addiction” to a real stature. One where a man lost everything, admitted it, has received help, and has created a support system to keep him accountable.

For the first time in hearing a story about someone being a “sex addict”, I didn’t roll my eyes or listen in cynicism.

And if this “addiction” is real and just that – an addiction – I shutter to think how many people out their in our “sex sells” society that are not in the public eye are suffering from this.

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