What’s the difference between liking a man you’re hooking up with a lot, and being codependent on the c*ck? How do you know if you’re a sex addict?

Everybody loves sex, right? Well, yes. But there is a difference.

According to The National Council on Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity, the definition of sexual addiction is when a person continues “engaging in persistent and escalating patterns of sexual behavior acted out despite increasing negative consequences to self and others.”

It can be extremely difficult to admit that you might have an addiction.

If you’re using too much alcohol or drugs, if you get arrested, or if you’re gambling away all of your money, it’s a bit easier to see when there’s a problem.

But when it comes to relationships, it’s natural to want to enjoy sex with a partner, so how do you know when you’ve crossed the line?

People are meeting people online on sites like Tinder, and more and more people are traveling and having foreign flings and just aren’t ready to settle down yet, while others might be seeing someone who can be a real asshole and treat them poorly, but they continue seeing the guy.

So when is a lot of sex too much, or worse, an addiction? And if you’re “in love” with the guy, doesn’t that make a difference?

I don’t think anyone can tell you if you’re addicted to anything.

Whether you love alcohol or food or sex, or anything that you might like a little too much, a passion or love for something can bring you happiness. Or, it can destroy you.

Only you can decide if you’re struggling with something serious enough to call it an addiction or not, and if so, how you can get help.

Girl we’ve all been there; hooking up with a man who is fine as hell, smooth, sexy, and different from any other man we have ever been with. I get it. But there’s a point when being with him (or being with different men) just isn’t healthy for us anymore. Below are some questions to ask yourself when trying to decide whether you’re addicted to the dick or codependent on the cock. (There, I said it; no asterisk. We need to be brave to have this honest conversation.)

I don’t have a scientific definition of a sex or love addiction, but here’s what I think; an addiction is when you wish you could stop doing something, you really really try, but you keep doing the same sh*t over and over even though it really sucks every time you do, and you swear you’ll stop.

For example, I have a food addiction. Well, I’m addicted to flour and sugar, and maybe even to meat.

So I try to stop eating too much and choose healthier options and portion sizes.

I’m overweight and single, and it sucks to drool over a fine mofo and watch him walk over to a thinner chick wearing a sexy, skin-tight dress and…well, I digress. My point is that I try to eat healthy food, but sometimes ice cream or chocolate and junk calls my name and it’s like I’m possessed. I forget everything around me that’s going on, and I cannot remember why it’s so important for me to not eat that unhealthy thing.

All I know is that I must have it, now, and only later, after I’ve inhaled and devoured every last bit of it do I remember, sh*t, I wasn’t supposed to eat that.

Sometimes it can be like that with a man, right?

It’s easy to think of a s*x addict as the typical stereotype pervert that comes to mind. Maybe we envision some asshole who cheats on every woman he’s ever been with, a player that can’t keep it in his pants like Tiger Woods. A pedophile maybe, or a dirty old man at work, like a Harvey Weinstein who sexually harasses every woman he meets. Or a guy who masturbates to porn every minute of the day and can’t keep a job because he spends all his time and money on hookers, and ends up either in jail or living in his mother’s basement.

But the truth is, sex and love addiction are much more common, and something that many people struggle with.

We women may lean toward “love addiction”, and sometimes just have s*x with one dude, or think that if we aren’t having actual intercourse with anyone then we can’t be s*x addicts. But let me share a few questions with you from The Love Addicts Anonymous website.

Now s*x and love addiction are two different things, and if you want to look deeper into what s*x addiction is (and see some questions you can ask yourself,) click here.

Below, I’ve just listed the questions for love addiction because this is where many women struggle, whether it’s with one guy who isn’t healthy for us, or it’s a pattern and we tend to pick the same type of guys over and over.

The reason it’s important to look at this, even if you aren’t a s*x or love addict, is because these questions can remind of us what a healthy relationship is and isn’t, and if something isn’t working, we can think about making some changes.

Asking these tough questions is a huge first step, so I think you’re pretty brave for reading this far.

Are you a love addict?

If you can answer yes to more than a few of the following questions, you are probably a love addict. Remember that love addiction comes in many forms, so even if you don’t answer yes to all of the questions you may still be a love addict.

  1. You are very needy when it comes to relationships.
  2. You fall in love very easily and too quickly.
  3. When you fall in love, you can’t stop fantasizing—even to do important things. You can’t help yourself.
  4. Sometimes, when you are lonely and looking for companionship, you lower your standards and settle for less than you want or deserve.
  5. When you are in a relationship, you tend to smother your partner.
  6. More than once, you have gotten involved with someone who is unable to commit—hoping he or she will change.
  7. Once you have bonded with someone, you can’t let go.
  8. When you are attracted to someone, you will ignore all the warning signs that this person is not good for you.
  9. Initial attraction is more important to you than anything else when it comes to falling in love and choosing a partner. Falling in love over time does not appeal to you and is not an option.
  10. When you are in love, you trust people who are not trustworthy. The rest of the time you have a hard time trusting people.
  11. When a relationship ends, you feel your life is over and more than once you have thought about suicide because of a failed relationship.
  12. You take on more than your share of responsibility for the survival of a relationship.
  13. Love and relationships are the only things that interest you.
  14. In some of your relationships you were the only one in love.
  15. You are overwhelmed with loneliness when you are not in love or in a relationship.
  16. You cannot stand being alone. You do not enjoy your own company.
  17. More than once, you have gotten involved with the wrong person to avoid being lonely.
  18. You are terrified of never finding someone to love.
  19. You feel inadequate if you are not in a relationship.
  20. You cannot say no when you are in love or if your partner threatens to leave you.
  21. You try very hard to be who your partner wants you to be. You will do anything to please him or her—even abandon yourself (sacrifice what you want, need and value).
  22. When you are in love, you only see what you want to see. You distort reality to quell anxiety and feed your fantasies.
  23. You have a high tolerance for suffering in relationships. You are willing to suffer neglect, depression, loneliness, dishonesty—even abuse—to avoid the pain of separation anxiety (what you feel when you are not with someone you have bonded with).
  24. More than once, you have carried a torch for someone and it was agonizing.
  25. You love romance. You have had more than one romantic interest at a time even when it involved dishonesty.
  26. You have stayed with an abusive person.
  27. Fantasies about someone you love, even if he or she is unavailable, are more important to you than meeting someone who is available.
  28. You are terrified of being abandoned. Even the slightest rejection feels like abandonment and it makes you feel horrible.
  29. You chase after people who have rejected you and try desperately to change their minds.
  30. When you are in love, you are overly possessive and jealous.
  31. More than once, you have neglected family or friends because of your relationship.
  32. You have no impulse control when you are in love.
  33. You feel an overwhelming need to check up on someone you are in love with.
  34. More than once, you have spied on someone you are in love with.
  35. You pursue someone you are in love with even if he or she is with another person.
  36. If you are part of a love triangle (three people), you believe all is fair in love and war. You do not walk away.
  37. Love is the most important thing in the world to you.
  38. Even if you are not in a relationship, you still fantasize about love all the time— either someone you once loved or the perfect person who is going to come into your life someday.
  39. As far back as you can remember, you have been preoccupied with love and romantic fantasies.
  40. You feel powerless when you fall in love—as if you are in some kind of trance or under a spell. You lose your ability to make wise choices.

These questions can help you decide whether you might want to seek help. You can do so anonymously by going to a meeting (they’re free, and they have women only meetings, as well as telephone meetings where you don’t even have to speak if you don’t want to) or talk to a therapist.

If you think you might have a s*x addiction as well as a love addiction, there are 12-step anonymous groups as well.

Love Addicts Anonymous This program seems to ignore the physical part of sex and love addiction, and doesn’t seem to have the large fellowship that the other groups do, but check it out.

Sexaholics Anonymous – Most of the 12 step programs around sex and love let you define your own sobriety, but this one says you should not have sex outside of marriage, and only between a male and a female.

Sex Addicts Anonymous – This group has some pretty strong recovery, and they’ve got plenty of telephone meetings for women only.

Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous – this group is geared for both sex and love addiction, which includes a dependency on a person or people in addition to sexual acts. SLAA also encourages recovery from sexual anorexia, emotional, and social anorexia.

Sexual Compulsives Anonymous this program welcomes people from all orientations.

S-Anon and COSA – similar to Alanon, these groups also help partners and families.

Recovering Couples Anonymous – the only fellowship specifically for couples.

Do you think you might be addicted to a man? Or have you ever been in a codependent relationship? How did you end it? What do you think a healthy relationship is?

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