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Is Someone I Know Addicted to Sex?

Sometimes, it’s difficult to know whether someone close to you has an addiction. The addict might hide the addictive behavior or you might not know the warning signs or symptoms. The following behaviors are characteristic of sex addicts:

  • Stay up late to watch television or surf the Web
  • Look at pornographic material such as magazines, books, videos and clothing catalogs
  • Frequently isolate themselves from spouses or partners, and don’t inform them of their whereabouts
  • Are controlling during sexual activity or have frequent mood swings before or after sex
  • Are demanding about sex, especially regarding time and place
  • Get angry if someone shows concern about a problem with pornography
  • Offer no appropriate communication during sex
  • Lack intimacy before, during and after sex, and offer little or no genuine intimacy in the relationship
  • Do not want to socialize with others, especially peers who might intimidate them
  • Fail to account for increasing number of toll — 800 or 900 — calls
  • Frequently rent pornographic videotapes
  • Seem to be preoccupied in public with everything around them
  • Have tried to switch to other forms of pornography to show a lack of dependency on one kind; concoct rules to cut down but don’t seem to adhere to them
  • Feel depressed
  • Are increasingly dishonest
  • Hide pornography at work or home
  • Lack close friends of the same sex
  • Frequently use sexual humor
  • Always have a good reason for looking at pornography

Explore More About Sexual Addiction

Mark S. Gold, M.D., and Drew W. Edwards, M.S. contributed to this article.

Is Someone I Know Addicted to Sex?

Michael Herkov, Ph.D

APA Reference
Herkov, M. (2016). Is Someone I Know Addicted to Sex?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 19, 2018, from


Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 17 Jul 2016
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Jul 2016
Published on All rights reserved.