Monday, July 10, 2006

Confessions of a Crack Whore

I am a crack whore. There, I said it. Okay, I am not really a crack whore – but I have a confession to make, and I figured this will take the sting out of the confession. Also, this post is not for the meek of heart, or the weak of stomach. And it is definitely not for those under 18, or under 21 in some municipalities. This is a big girl post – so be forewarned.

Last week, I spoke about a strong woman – a woman that wrote about a very deep and personal experience. I was deeply moved by her, in both her ability to share and willingness to "put herself out there". At the time, I wanted to share something deeply personal with me, but, er, I chickened out.

Actually, I once, months ago, asked Dr. ~Deb to allow me to post on this subject on her blog anonymously. I wanted to tell my story, but I did not want it to be attributed to me. Talk about a chicken.

Well, here it goes. Deep breath for real. You see, fellow bloggers, I have an addiction. I am a sex addict. And it is not as titillating as it sounds. I remember snickering about this addiction in college – really thinking that there is no such addiction. It was just people who liked sex a lot and did not want to take personal responsibility for either sticking their thingie in other peoples' orifices or letting others do things to their special places. I am talking about a compulsive behavior that completely dominated my life.

I am not an expert on this addiction – but I have read a whole lot about it. I am not going to talk about what I have learned; you can read that in a book. I am going to tell you about my experiences.

I started out, innocently enough, looking at pictures online. Yeah, I had seen Playboys when I was growing up, but I wanted to be these women, not masturbate to them. And, yes, I had access to these magazines so in the back of my mind, there was nothing wrong with the images. Personally, there is still nothing wrong with nude images – but it throws my life completely out of control. Wrong for me.

I started looking at men mostly. I mean, there were some women's asses receiving penises and all, but my first concern was with the male penis. Then I started collecting images, looking at other images, and then cataloging all of the images. I would feel ashamed, guilty and the like, and stop looking for some time. Sometimes days, sometimes as long as a month. But I still needed to go back to the images.

When the modem fired up and I heard it start, my nipples would go hard. I masturbated to these images, felt guilty, and spent many unproductive hours after hubbie went to sleep. Heck, I was even let go from a job because of my performance. Surfing for images online.

Then I started chatting online. I was so good at cybersex. I am quick-witted, I type fast, and I can describe things well. That and a dirty mind, and you are off to the races.

Again, this really impacted my life. By this time, my sex drive was practically nil with hubbie. Yeah, he complained, and yeah, we had sex occasionally. But it went from the wonderful sex – us becoming one, sharing wonderful experiences, etc. to mechanical sex. Really tragic.

Again, it went from spending hours doing this, more hours thinking about it, and more tragically, not being present for the one person I was supposed to be sharing my life with. I would abstain for a time, feeling guilty, and then back to my normal routine, nipples hard when I would hear the modem, and back to masturbating to images.

Then it spiraled completely out of control. Before, I convinced myself I was not hurting anyone. It was not true, but plausible. And then I started fucking strangers. Fucking friends. Fucking everyone. I would stop for a while, then start again when the temptation grew too strong.

Some of you would say, "You were just having fun. No big deal."

The big deal was that I was ruining my marriage, my work life, my spiritual life, my whole fucking life. There is a lot more than I will put to words right here, right now. I scared the crap out of me the first time I had unprotected sex in a bathroom of a club. What the heck was I thinking? Problem was that I wasn't. Sex had a hold on me, and I was not making rational choices.

A couple of things you might have noticed during my time here blogging: (1) I write erotica, (2) I refrain from using pictures on this site, and (3) I don't masturbate.

About my erotica – this has to do with what I have felt, what I have done. I don't typically masturbate to my own erotica, or, for that matter, any text erotica. But most of my erotica is one particular type. Interestingly, last week, I posted some erotica, and Monica said in the comments, "Nicely tied up, but the story overall lacked your usual roundness and softness. I'm not sure I would have recognized it on a group writing page like your other writings." Okay, I actually wrote it, but she was right, this was a different type of erotica, one that I don't normally write. This would be the type of erotica I would write when experiencing a relapse. Bad Leesa. But it is true.

I don't view erotic pictures, and I probably can't ever do this again. I am not saying that nudes are good or bad, but they start me in my downward spiral. Several times MT Leesa has offered to share some of her pictures. I would love to see them, partly because she is a photographer, and partly because she is a cutie. But I can't. Some pictures don't affect me that way, but I can never tell. Muse took some New York pictures of her in a window. The sun was coming through, and everything glowed gold. They were beautiful pictures of a beautiful woman, and they did not put me in the downward spiral.

I don't masturbate. Not that masturbation is bad. In college, after I figured out how to masturbate in private, it was a small relaxing part of my life. Now, I don't know if it will cause me to do things I have trouble controlling. And I am sure some of you are thinking, "Weak Leesa, can't control her sexual feelings." First, I would like to say, "Fuck you, ignorant bitch." Er, I meant to type: you may think I am making this whole thing up, but I tell you that these feelings/urges are so overpowering. You don't give a rat's ass about the consequences. You just do it. And then you feel awful about it.

One of the most popular books on the subject is Dr. Patrick Carnes' 1983 book, Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction. You can still go to the local bookstore and pay cash for this book if you think you may have a sexual addiction or if you just want to learn more about this. If you think you have a sexual addiction – do not buy the book instead of seeking professional help. Seek professional help.

I know several are saying, "Sure, Leesa, cry me a river. This is just a bunch of BS." Well, maybe it is. Maybe it isn't. All I know is that once I was treated for my sexual addiction, it helped my depression, my marriage, my spirituality, and even my sex life. I am still healing, but I have been doing so for a long time.

Sure, I joke a lot about sex. But that does not fuel this at all. I am learning what does. That last erotica did. Bad Leesa. Again, I feel shame for that. I nearly lost my marriage because of the addiction – and I can remember Prata once asking what made me cheat on hubbie. He could not understand it at all – he is an extremely rational guy, and it baffled him. Perhaps this explains things a little better. I don't know.

I have really struggled with sharing this – but I have seen so much in the past few days, the strong woman, another woman going through a hard time (her hubbie may have the same thing). I don't know. I am breaking all of the rules here – this post is way long, it is too personal, and there are too few jokes.

And I am not the typical sex addict – I am female, and I think 4 in 5 diagnosed sex addicts are male. I was not abused sexually as a child – most were. Funny thing is that when early research in this field was talking place, they found a lot of prostitutes were sex addicts. I mean, getting paid to feed the addiction – sort of brilliant and sad at the same time.

Comments are okay, but not necessary. This is a dirty post about a dirty subject. Some don't believe that this exists, and some don't see it as a problem. Men have asphyxiated while masturbating in a closet (clear bag over head) – nice image for the daughter and wife to see. Some have performed illegal sex acts. Others have driven into trees while masturbating. Sad, sad stories. Hopefully someone reading this may do as I have done and sought help before their live spiraled out of control. Or maybe this will encourage tolerance.

41 comments:

nosthegametoo said...

Thank you for sharing. I’m sure your fans and admirers (me definitely among them) appreciate it. I know I do.

Addictions are terrible things. I have/had my share. To overcome them take great strength. I constantly work on mine.

It’s also tough to do alone. A supportive partner your can trust is paramount, I think.

Once again, thank you for sharing a piece of your heart with us.

kathi said...

Sex was one of my addictions, too. I have an addictive personality, so sex was easy to be addicted to...didn't impair my driving, my work hours...wasn't illegal.
Sometimes I'd go out, pick someone up, make it with them, say see ya, go back and pick up somebody else, and so on...2,3,4 a night. If I'd been charging, I'd made a ton of money. But, it was just trying to fill a void that couldn't be filled by the method I was using. Can't even say I enjoyed it that much really.
So, sugar, I understand. And though I've been faithful physically for years, I understand the the pull many things have (like pics, web sites, etc.). I admire your courage to admit and face it. Big hug hon.

moebugge said...

I, we are apt to accuse others of our mistakes. Once I stopped pointing my finger at others for my not being all that I wanted to be then change can occur. I take my hat off to you. I bow down and humble myself before you. You are a brave and truthful soul to the one person it really matters- Your Self.

Rick said...

Addiction is addiction... sex, drugs, or rock 'n' roll... if it gets in the way of real life, it needs to be taken seriously. Though I can't honestly say I've met a rock 'n' roll addict, I've met the rest (including crack whores) and watched them recover. It absolutely can be done. Good for you!

Lee Ann said...

You are a strong woman, whether you believe it or not. First to accept the fact you have an addiction and second to talk openly about it.
To be honest, I think my boyfriend is a Sex addict. I don't want to go into details, but I feel strongly this is a possibility.
Thank you for sharing such a personal thing.
~hugs

Kuan Gung said...

I admire your honesty with sharing this. I'm sure it's been a struggle. Best of wishes...

Dreaming again said...

I read your comments frequently on Dr. Deb. So, I came to read your story and offer support.

My addiction is an eating disorder that is just ... argh!
Learning that compliance in behavior isn't necessarily all there is to healing, and for me, it may be a permanent thing ... it may be a daily decision.

(only in therapy for 5 1/2 years for it :D)

You're not alone. Hollar if you need support ...even if it's just for someone to say "hey! it's ok to feel this way!"

oh ... by the way ... you're not 'bad leesa' :*(

*HUGS*

Jason said...

Either way it's very big of you to admit it.

Edge said...

I am glad you posted this. This is a tough addiction. I think this and food/weight/self-image addictions are the toughest to understand. Some people just don't get it or how easy it is to go down that road. I think you have an insight into the pull of an addiction, especially for men, that other women can't understand. It does wreck your life. I'm glad you got help and are trying.

~Jef

halo said...

This is the sort of post I need to read again and again and slowly let it sink in. Theres so many aspects to digest and come to an understanding about.

I know your beautiful and brave for sharing this. I know your strong for facing it. I know your marriage is very important to you, as is your God.

So much to wrap my mind around, Lisa, I think I'll send you an email.

SJ said...

Glad to know you are healing. I don't think it's BS at all.

I do like our stories however.

Can you avoid them pics? I thought they found their way in somehow or other.

Rob said...

You know Leesa, when I first started reading this entry, I was already formulating a smart-ass comment to make along the lines of "So, your point is? 'Cause I don't see the problem here" -- BUT, then I finished reading the WHOLE thing! Wow, that took some guts and a real understanding of yourself, not to mention a lot of thought in laying it all out for us in such detail. I have always enjoyed reading your blog; today you gained a HUGE amount of additional respect from me toward you as a person. I don't know if opening up and sharing all of this with us helped you in any way -- you laid you pretty bare for all the world to see -- but I hope it did. You are an amazing writer and an even more amazing person, Leesa. I'm glad I know you, at least in a virtual sense...

minijonb said...

Inspired post. The part that made me do a double take was the "cataloging all of the images" concept. Been there, done that.

Compulsive, repetitive behavior can be unhealthy in general... it can be life threatening if it's sex, drugs or rock and roll. Dang, why do all the fun things have to be bad for you?

I'll leave you with one snarky comment that has a little nugget of truth in it: congratulations on replacing your sexual addiction with a blogging addiction... it could be worse, it could have been crack.

The Seeker said...

A lot of directions I could take this comment. I almost don't know what to say. Acceptance. Certainly. Understanding? Doubtful. We can't know until we've been there. I wonder why you read my blog though based on what this post says.

No_the_game said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
No_the_game said...

Leesa,

Thank you soooooooooooo much for sharing. I know what you talking about. I went thru "Addiction" myself. I know I am chicken to talk about it.

Once thing I will tell you is do not try too hard to control it because it will back fire you.

The more you try to control it the more it will control you.

If you want to control it then you are on the right direction. Understanding and accepting it is a huge step.

Stay strong sister!!!!
Luvvvvvvvvv,
No_the_Game

hardasabullet said...

she... im addicted too, i think, sometimes i wish i was a pornstar

Goddess said...

Sex Addict... I was married to one. He would stay online having cyber sex, while I was in the bedroom, after telling him, "Honey, lets go to bed", dressed in some flimsy thing that barely covered anything at all. He didnt want me. He was also an alcoholic, and, well, that marriage ended. Then I went on a sex rampage. I dont think I was an addict, I just wanted to feel WANTED. Yeah, silly me. I finally got a grip on myself, and realized that what I was doing was self destructive, and that I really didnt want any of those men. I just let flirting go wayyyyyyyy tooooo fffaaaaarrrrrrr. But, once I realized what I was doing, it was empowering, in a way. Sure, I still get the urges to partake in that self destructive behavior, but I know they are not what I want. What I want seems to be in Iraq, whether I am what he wants or not. So, I am now on the 6th month, 8th day of no sex, and it really, really, really sucks.

Monica said...

Purging is good. Drag out the ugly and let the sun shine on it. Addiction is like mildew- it gets worse if you ignore it, and you can't really clean it out without dragging it out in the open to dry up.

mal said...

Wow...our sexuality is ALWAYS a tough topic to discuss, especially when it does not slide into what ever we view societal norms to be.

odd little statistic, it seems that every sexual "abberation" (I hate the term) is dominated by males. It does not seem to matter whether it is Homosexuality, Gender Dysphoria, Onanism et al. I am not sure if this is a true number, or if women are better are supressing/hiding it.

Another thought provoking post

Dr. Deborah Serani said...

This is a brave post about a VERY COMMON addiction. It's great that you know what can trigger you into a downward spiral.

Your story is very similar to many others, and you have done a wonderful thing getting this subject out.

You rock, Leesa.

Leesa said...

nosthegametoo: A supportive partner and a good therapist, actually.

kathi: I would have never guessed. Thanks for sharing!

moebugge: I am not really that into pointing fingers now. Interesting how that is.

WhiteGuy: thanks for the support.

lee ann: I would read the book I mentioned. It will at least give you some more information on the addiction.

kuan gung: thanks for the support.

dreaming again: I have a fairly addictive personality, but so far, this is my only true addiction. I do stay away from drugs and alcohol, though.

jason: thanks.

jef: women understand addictions, too. how about the weight addictions.

halo: thanks for the words of encouragement. Looking forward for the email.

sj: I am avoiding the pics, though I have added a few recently. None of which are dirty pics.

rob: thanks, sweetie.

minijonb: not addicted to blogging. But I do enjoy it.

seeker: not sure I have read your blog in a while. Perhaps at weak points.

No_the_Game: thansk for the encouragement.

hardasabullet: er, okay.

goddess: I completely understand. Hubbie and I missed some great opportunities.

monica: thanks, sweetie, for everything.

mal: interesting perspective. Not sure why males dominate the stats, but you have an interesting hypothesis.

dr. ~deb: thanks. I tried to stay away from the intellectual part of the addiction - just telling my story and recommending a book. Others, if they see themselves in this post, can - if they want to - read and decide for themselves. Perhaps even go to a counselor and see what happens.

Ian Lidster said...

This is courageous stuff, Leesa, and good for you for running it. And, it is 'not' dirty, it is real, and I admire your candor. Personal honesty and avoidance of denial is a vital step in dealing with an addiction, whether it is sex, alcohol, or crack, or whatever. I am a former addictions counselor and have seen all and every manifestation of addiction, including to sex, which often goes hand-in-glove with adddictions to booze and/or drugs. There is a high that goes with sex, and an escape from mundane reality. I have been there, so I know a bit about what I am writing in your subject area. I found it did the same for me as alcohol did, which was also a negative part of my life until I addressed that about a decade ago.
So, I applaud you in this, and I applaud your courage.

Ian

Tony said...

You hit the nail on the head with this post. I can say I've experienced everything to the point of actually going out and engaging in sex. For me, the only thing keeping me from doing that is work (and I do have a partner here at work that I've had sex with and who would do it again if I wanted.)and family life (I have four kids that take up a lot of time. My wife works nights as a nurse and is home more often than she's away. But when she's away, I'm on the internet surfing as soon as the kids are in bed. I'll spend hours looking at images and masturbating. It seems as though I'm perpetually horny and everywhere I go I'm checking out the women. Not just one type, ALL types. I masturbate several times a day, though not always to climax. I've written some erotica in the past and I always have a wet spot in my drawers when I'm done. Not from an actual climax, it's just that I'm so engrossed in the story and it's so vivid to me.

I digress. I could go on about my situations but I'm sure you've encountered everything I'd mention. I appreciate you coming forward with this addiction and I applaud you even more that you have the strength it takes to get a handle on it. You are incredibly strong to do what you've done so far in overcoming it's grip.

Video X said...

This was very informative. I had a cousin who died of that auto-asphyxiation sex stuff. It was awful really. I did not know this cousin really...but I knew her family...her brother and her mom very well(who found her hanging in the closet at 2am). she was younger than me, so we just never really played together like i did with my cousins my age. Regardless, i just felt very wierd about the whole thing...i seriously (and very disrespectfully and judgementally) just tuned the whole thing out by chalking it up to the fact that she was just some nutso i would never want to admit to being related to in any way. i cried about being such an ass like that when i read this post though. thanks for this one!!

Leesa said...

ian: thanks for the encouragement.

tony: I would encourage you to read the book mentioned plus, if you think you see you in this, to start counseling. Sex addicts remove themselves from their family, their spouses. It is tragic, actually.

VX: your family may not have had all the information possible. If she was a sex addict, it might make everything else make sense. Not sure if she was or not, but there is the possibility.

Leigh said...

Leesa,
I amire your strength and your courage to have shared this post. I believe that this is one of the hardest addictions to gain control of. It is not one you can just quite cold turkey. Thank you for sharing your story.

Killdare said...

Thanks for commenting on my site and the permission to link. I'm sure there are women you described, do you know any??? ;-)

Leesa said...

leigh: thanks for the kind words. I think many addictions are hard to overcome, and I admire people who work on them.

killdare: I am not going to point out women with sex addictions so you can score easily. Just not going to happen. I know of at least two who are sex addicts. Sad actually.

Killdare said...

***I hope this doesn't post twice, I think I erred the first time***

As I was saying, relax. If I ever did meet a woman like that self control would get the better of me. It always has.

JD said...

once again, no wonder i love your blog. i too think i'm an addict sexually. i wish i could come to grips with it as eloquently as you have hon.

Leesa said...

killdare: good to hear.

jd: thanks for the compliment, sweetie. Not sure how eloquent my words are, though.

Heather said...

Thank you for sharing your story..

the horrible truth about addiction of any sort is, the more you have, the more you want..

it took alot of courage to post..

*hug*

JD said...

very eloquent. i just love the way you write, everything.

newnytalkshow said...

I work for a new daytime talk show in NYC. We are doing a show on women and various forms of addiction. I am especially interested in women who are addicted to pornography. If you are struggling with an addiction, I would love to talk to you more about it.

This could be your chance to share your story with the rest of America and receive advice from our host (a licensed psychiatrist).

Feel free to call me at our toll free number:
1.888.372.2569 (ext. 4294), or you can email me at
newnytalkshow@yahoo.com.

Thank you!!!

Leesa said...

heather: thanks, sweetie.

jd: thanks!

newnytalkshow: I have been in counceling for this so I am not sure that "advice from a licensed psychiatrist" would add anything to how I am growing. Good luck finding people - sex addicts have quite a bit of shame. Good luck for finding some (I am telling others about this so you may get a nibble).

newnytalkshow said...

Thanks so much Leesa for passing the word on!

Anonymous said...

You are an excellent writer. Do it for a living! Good luck!

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JJ65MA said...

I just stumbled on your sight. Thank you for sharing. I would really like to hear how your marriage survived this and how this relationship is doing now.