Just can’t get enough
By Viv Steele, Sex Maniac
Sex can be many things to an individual. For some it’s simply a way to make a baby. Those people might have lower needs than others and think about sex rarely. For most people, sex is a way to show intimacy in a monogamous relationship, something they engage in with varying degrees of frequency. And for others, sex consumes much of their thoughts. They think about it every hour that they’re awake and engage in casual sex for recreational purposes. It should be obvious that individuals operate on a spectrum of sexuality.
But how much sex is too much sex? Is there a line that can be crossed? When does that girl who just likes to have a good time turn into a full-blown sex addict? These are the questions we’ll be talking about between the sheets this week.
When I think of sex addiction, I think of Choke, that Chuck Palahniuk novel where the main character is such a serious sex addict that he fucks a girl from his sexaholics anonymous meeting right there in the community centre bathroom. This scenario is not true of all sex addicts, although it’s the most common and recognizable symptom. This type of dependency is also known as nymphomania or compulsive sexual behaviour. Those afflicted will engage in frequent sex, often risky—meaning unprotected sex or sex in a dangerous situation, like an enclosed area with a stranger, a moving vehicle, or the Wild Mouse roller coaster at Playland (which is dangerous even if you’re not having sex on it).
Another metric to determine sex addiction is how much it interferes with your life. This is a tool generally used to gauge levels of dependency on a certain substance or activity—for example, you might be an alcoholic if you’re bringing mickeys of whiskey to campus in your backpack. And you might be a sex addict if you skip class to get hot and heavy in the bathroom with a fellow coed.
Or you could be this term that I just coined: a sex procrastinator. Sex procrastination usually takes the form of what I like to call “napsturbation;” masturbation followed by a deep slumber, which usually has the effect of derailing any essay writing or textbook reading that I may have had going on. A sex procrastinator could also flirt with men or women, and even exchange dirty text messages (also known as sexting) in order to further avoid a looming deadline. While it may seem like harmless fun that operates on the low end of sex addiction, this form of procrastination can negatively affect grades and relationships.
Sex addiction is a topic that can easily be made fun of (“I’d hardly call too much sex suffering!”), but for those who have it, it’s not very funny. Sex addiction can be compounded by other mental health disorders like bipolar disorder, narcissistic personality disorder, or drug and alcohol dependency. If you have what you feel is an unhealthily high sex drive (you’re missing school or work to have sex, or engaging in the aforementioned risky behaviour), it could be worth it to speak to a medical professional. Your sex addiction could be a cause or a symptom of another underlying problem.