Sexual anorexia is a term used to refer to a medical condition where a person compulsively avoids sex and all matters related to it. The term was first highlighted by Dr. Patrick Carnes, a sexual addict expert in whom according to him the term anorexia means loss of sexual appetite. Sexual anorexia is a form of sex addiction because it makes the affected person to avoid sex compulsively.
People who suffer from sexual anorexia usually want to avoid sex at all cost because they are scared of the prospect of getting intimate for fear of getting hurt in the end.
Good relationships demand vulnerability in that the partners involved give their all to their other halves in the relationship in terms of their soul, heart, love and everything. Unfortunately for sexual anorexics this prospect terrifies them. The prospect of becoming vulnerable to another person scares them and it actually makes them get defensive.
Most of those affected by it are those who suffered from some form of serious sexual abuse usually at an early stage in their lives. Some of the different ways by which sexual anorexic people act include:
- Constant fear of intimacy, sexual contact, or sexual pleasure.
- Being preoccupied with sexual issues all the time to a point where sexual obsession sets in. The sexual issues that a person may be obsessed with may be sexual intentions, sexuality or sexual behaviors of others.
- Harboring negative, rigid, judgmental attitudes regarding sex, body appearance, or sexual activity.
- Getting ashamed or having self pity over your sexual experience.
- Engaging sex destructive behavior to avoid getting intimate.
Who Can Develop Sexual Anorexia?
Sexual anorexia is a sexual condition that can affect both men and women but women are the most affected by the condition. Usually past victims of sexual abuse or sexual rejection are the ones who are most affected by it. These people in most cases are usually not even aware of the reasons causing their difficulties with sex.
Sexual anorexia sufferers may also be experiencing concurrent problems with other types of addictions which may include food addiction, substance abuse, and other anxiety driven or obsessive kinds of problems.
Medical experts also link people who are strongly attached to social, cultural and religious groups that fan sexual oppression, repression, and other negative approaches to sexuality to be particularly susceptible to developing the condition.
Is It Possible For Sexual Anorexics To Have Sex?
There are instances where sexual anorexics usually become susceptible to occasional episodes sexual infidelity. These instances may be similar to people who usually starve themselves food then afterwards go on an eating spree (bulimia). This can be explained for instance where a sexual anorexic will abstain from any sexual activity but indulge in it when under the effect of alcohol or some other drug.
For sexual anorexics their boundaries around sexual expressions are extremely rigid, but will collapse when their self-consciousness is lowered.
Another interesting thing with sexual anorexics is the fact that they may also be involved in sexual relationships or even marriage. The unfortunate thing is that their condition may affect the relationship negatively leading to serious issues such as divorce.
What Effects Does Sex Anorexia Have On Relationships?
Any partner of a sexually anorexic person will feel unloved, unwanted and isolated because sexually anorexic people avoid getting intimate with their lovers as much as they can. They may pretend in public by showing affection to their partners but when they are back to their private life they will use all manner of excuses not to get intimate with their other halves.
A good example is of a woman who may be married to such a man who will be at pains to absorb deprivations her husband may be imposing on her. Such a woman may reach point where she will want to seek the sexual services of another man out of wedlock.
Is There Treatment For Sexual Anorexia?
Currently the problem of sexual anorexia is not categorized as a disorder but it is recognized by medical experts like couple counselors and sex therapists as a medical problem.
Couples who are having problems with their feelings and sexual expressions should get help from sex therapists. It is important that patients of this condition seek help of qualified sex therapists who are well trained to work with patients of sexual anorexia. It must be noted that not all therapists understand these matters therefore getting exact information about a specific therapist is advised.
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Sexual anorexia is sexual condition where a person will always avoid any form of getting intimate with another. Some experts argue that it is a way of self defense mechanism that people affected by it usually employ to satisfy their ego.
People suffering from the condition can get help from trained sex therapists experienced in dealing with such cases. If the condition is left untreated it can come with very serious negative effects in any given relationship.