Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Let's do it like they do on the Discovery Channel

Not that I'm not usually fascinated with our cultural fascination with sex, but if I do manage to upkeep the blog this semester, I'll likely focus more on sex than usual. I'm teaching human sexuality this semester.
Which brings us to yet another NYT sex addiction article: Facing My Obsession, in the Flesh:
TO much of the general public, sex addiction is a punch line, a pop-psychology diagnosis or an attempt to explain away recklessness and perversion. But my sex addiction is unfortunately very real; it has cost me a job, romantic relationships, friendships and, on many days, my sanity and self-respect.
This is a fine first-person article about sex addiction, and as I've said over and over, I am not suggesting that people who exhibit behaviors with easily predictable negative consequences deserve no sympathy/empathy/whatever. But addiction cannot be said to be "very real" because it results in your doing stupid things. Addiction is defined as doing stupid things. Would anyone go to a therapist saying, "Doc, you gotta help me. I'm going to Vegas every weekend and coming back with shitloads of cash I've won. Make it stop!"? No. Someone's addicted to gambling when their gambling behavior is stupid. Stupid behaviors can't be both the cause and the effect of addiction.

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