A LOOK AT HOW SEXUAL ADDICTION AFFECTS RELATIONSHIPS

A LOOK AT HOW SEXUAL ADDICTION AFFECTS RELATIONSHIPS

Because addiction affects everyone close to the addict, it is necessary to include family therapy or couples therapy as part of the healing process we offer at our treatment site near Long Beach and Los Angeles. Addiction counseling for the addict’s partner is especially important when the addiction in question is sex addiction and pornography. addiction or love addiction. Through outpatient sex addiction therapy, couples can learn to rebuild mutual trust and re-establish their relationships.

Addiction counseling

Evaluating the Relationship Breakdown

By the time a sex addict seeks treatment for the addiction in outpatient rehabilitation, it is likely that the relationship has already suffered considerable damage. When the partner discovers the existence of the addiction, he or she may feel a life-changing betrayal, especially if the sex addict has committed adultery. The partner may begin to wonder if he or she is “not good enough” for the sex addict. In the meantime, the sex addict almost certainly feels considerable shame and guilt. Both partners are likely to experience significant communication problems. Resentment and anger may blossom, and partners may begin to separate. It is not unusual for one or both partners to start thinking about separation or divorce in the absence of sex addiction treatment.

Understanding Sexual Codependence

As the relationship continues to deteriorate, the sex-addicted partner may develop signs of codependence, jeopardizing the health of the relationship. Codependence is a complex concept that is believed to arise from deeply rooted attachment problems stemming from a person’s early childhood development. A codependent couple fears being out of the relationship so much that they will do almost anything to keep the relationship alive. Sexual codependence can cause a couple to resist seeking addiction treatment for the addict and counseling for him or herself. Instead, the couple may continue to forgive repeated transgressions, neglect themselves for caring for the addict, and tolerate behaviors that would otherwise be unacceptable. To truly re-establish a relationship and help both heal, it is necessary to address the underlying psychological problems of the addict and the sexual codependent.

Therapy/psychological counselling for intercultural

Therapy/psychological counselling for intercultural
  • Do you or your partner come from a different culture?
  • Did your partner grow up with another language, religion, value system, or in another country?
  • Are you as a binational/intercultural couple in a transitional phase? e.g. newly married, newly arrived in Switzerland, in the process of obtaining a residence, recent paternity, recognition of diplomas, among others?
  • Do you or your partner experience a culture shock or migratory mourning after the migration experience?
  • Is it difficult for you as a binational/intercultural couple to live together in an “intercultural” way, i.e. giving space in your daily life to both cultures, languages and traditions?
  • Do you or your partner experience conflict in your family of origin as well as in your new nuclear family?
  • Is it difficult for you as a binational/intercultural couple to set limits to your environment and to be clear about yourself?
  • Can the member of the couple with migratory experience settle in the new country and culture?
  • Is everything okay in your relationship? Do you or your partner want to modify or implement something in your relationship?

Couples whose members come from different cultures are no longer a minority or an exception in our globalized world, on the contrary, the number of binational/intercultural couples is constantly growing.

Binational and intercultural couples have conflicts and problems similar to those experienced by monocultural couples. However, other factors also play a role, such as specific cultural differences such as language barriers, values, norms, habits, religion, organization of daily life, interpersonal relationships, child-rearing, etc., as well as culture shock and grief caused by the migration experience or disadvantages, misunderstandings or even in some cases discrimination faced by the whole partner who has emigrated from his or her home country.

All these stressful (mostly transitory) situations can lead to alienation, dissatisfaction and wounds in the binational/intercultural couple’s relationship and life. When these difficulties come to the fore in the daily life of the couple, valuation, affection, respect and trust, among others, are lost. (Experience shows that many couples often seek professional accompaniment too late).

Therefore, an intercultural couple therapy or counselling at this time is very useful, because it will help the couple to establish a culture of constructive and benevolent communication in a protected and impartial environment; to be able to express the needs, as well as the disagreements and emotional wounds of both; to recognise and change the negative patterns of interaction, to heal the wounds, to reach new agreements that favour healthy coexistence and to strengthen and deepen the connection with their partner.

Another objective of binational/intercultural couple counseling/therapy is to offer each member of the couple, in a safe and neutral environment, a space to reflect in depth on those cultural aspects such as beliefs, experiences, worldviews and/or expectations that are expected and accepted in one culture or another and that differ from each other, so that each member of the couple can know, reflect and if necessary clarify any misunderstandings that may have arisen between them, as well as make an effort to understand and give meaning to this, through a change of perspective. The aim is to provide a safe and neutral environment for each member of the couple to reflect in depth on those cultural aspects such as beliefs, experiences, worldviews and/or expectations that are expected and accepted in one culture or another and that differ from each other, so that each member of the couple can know, reflect and if necessary clarify any misunderstandings that may have arisen between the two, as well as make an effort to understand and give meaning to this, through a change of perspective.

Likewise, it is vital to analyze how the person who has emigrated perceives and lives the migration process, as well as the mourning that this process entails; because depending on the cultural context in which both have grown up, they will realize that according to the rules or norms it may be that some situations are perceived and evaluated in a very different way, be important or not, apparently insurmountable or on the contrary perceived as a valuable enrichment.

In my work with binational/intercultural couples, I apply Hans Jellouschek’s systemic-integrator approach and Dr. Sue Johnson’s Emotion-Focused Couple Therapy (EFT). In that sense, I start from the fact that the crises of the couple’s relationships are an opportunity for the personal development of each member as well as their life in common.

My work as an intercultural couple counsellor/therapist is based not only on the theories and approaches of couple counselling/therapy, but also on the different approaches of intercultural counselling. As well as in my practical experience in intercultural contexts and on the basis of my own migration history and my experience as a member of an intercultural/binational couple.