Sex and pornography addiction are growing problems that devastate the lives of partners as well as sufferers. Sex Addiction: The Partner's Perspective has been written to help partners and those who care about them to survive the shock of discovering their partner is a sex addict and to help them make decisions about the future of their relationships and their lives. First and foremost, it is a practical book, full of facts, and self help exercises to give partners a much needed sense of stability and control. Like its sister book, Understanding and Treating Sex Addiction, it includes case examples and survey results revealing the reality of life for partners of sex addicts.
Sex Addiction: The Partner's Perspective is divided into three parts. Part I explores the myths surrounding sex addiction and provides up to date information about what sex addiction is and what causes it before moving on to explain why the discovery hurts partners so much. Part II is about partners’ needs and includes self-help exercises and strategies to help partners regain stability, rebuild self-esteem and consider their future. The controversial topic of co-dependency is also explored with guidance on how to identify it, avoid it and overcome it. Part III focuses on the couple relationship starting with the difficult decision of whether to stay or leave. Whatever the decision, partners will then find help and support for rebuilding trust and reclaiming their sexuality.
This book has been written to help partners not only survive, but to grow stronger and move on with their lives – whether alone, or in their relationship. Readers will find revealing statistics and real life stories shared by partners who kindly took part in the first UK survey of sex addiction partners. This book will this book be a valuable guide for partners, but also for the therapists who seek to support them on their journey of recovery.
Table of Contents
Introduction. Part I: Facing the Reality of Sex Addiction. Does Sex Addiction Really Exist? Understanding Sex Addiction. Why Sex Addiction Hurts Partner’s So Much. Part II – Caring for Partners’ Needs. Surviving the Trauma of Discovery. Understanding the Cycle of Reaction. Repairing Self Identity & Self Esteem. Facing the Future. Identifying, Avoiding and Overcoming Co-dependency. Part III – The Couple Relationship – Make or Break? Can the Relationship Survive? How Sex Addiction Impacts Couple Relationships. Rebuilding Trust. Reclaiming Sex & Sexuality. Conclusion. References. Recommended Reading & Resources
Paula Hall is one of the UK’s leading sex addiction specialists and author of Understanding and Treating Sex Addiction. She created the Europe-wide Hall Recovery Course for people with sex addiction and the Hall Recovery Course for Partners. She is also a renowned speaker and trainer, and founder of the Institute for Sex Addiction Training.
"Hall is excellent at writing in a clear and understandable manner and to describe the issue at hand so that is becomes easy to understand and interesting to read about. The book therefore is easy to read, understand and follow and Hall has a great way of explaining complex behaviors or brain patterns in a manageable way. I appreciate that Hall has included real life stories that explain how people feel about sex addiction, their reaction to it and also the feelings and reactions of those who have an addiction to sex. I also appreciate how Hall places such emphasis on actually describing how and why partners of sex addicts feel the way they feel and I will not be surprised if readers of this book have many "aha-moments". I believe that this book would be of excellent use to any one interested in sex addiction and it would also be of great use in classes dealing with sexuality." - Elin Weiss, metapsychology.mentalhelp.net
"Paula Hall presents a much-needed and useful handbook for the partners and loved ones of someone who faces what is colloquially known as sex addiction... Sex Addiction is a practical tool for partners and would prove especially useful in the immediate traumatic aftermath of full disclosure... Hall does an expecially effective job ina ccounting for the feelings of children in these strained relationships." - Michelle Iwen, Arizona State University, PsycCritiques
"I am grateful for the breadth and wealth of information found in Paula Hall’s The Partner’s Perspective! In an era when the term sex addiction is still confusing and misunderstood, loved ones of these "addicts" have been left wanting for understanding, support, and appropriate help. Partners of sex addicts have been isolated, misunderstood, and often without knowledgeable help or resources. Paula’s new book is an excellent addition to available resources that address the trauma experienced by many partners in response to discovery of secret sexual behaviors in their loved ones. I believe this book will provide information, encouragement and hope to partners and relationships shattered by sex addiction, and become a valuable tool in partner recovery and healing!" - Barbara Steffens PhD Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, Certified Clinical Partner Specialist, Certified Partner Coach, Board Certified Coach, President, Association of Partners of Sex Addicts Trauma Specialist (APSATS), Co-author, Your Sexually Addicted Spouse: How Partners Can Cope and Heal (Steffens & Means, 2009)
"With Sex Addiction – the Partner’s Perspective, Paula Hall has effectively shined a light on an otherwise much underserved clinical population: those spouses and partners traumatized and otherwise negatively hurt due to the ongoing sexual and/or emotional betrayal of a cheating spouse. Throughout the book, Paula recognizes and elucidates how the emotional reactivity expressed by cheated-on partners at the height of their relationship-grief, is not necessarily indicative of "codependency" or any other particular emotional disorder; but is in fact a natural and perfectly healthy response to the pain and distress of being habitually lied to, manipulated and ultimately betrayed. Ms. Hall also acknowledges that the aftermath of endless cheating, affairs and even sexual addiction do not necessarily lead to the end of a relationship, as many couples grow beyond such damage to rebuild trust, and establish newfound intimacies. She makes clear that with useful professional guidance and hard work on the part of both partners, many such couples can regain trust and establish newly evolved intimacies and attachments." - Robert Weiss LCSW, CSAT-S, US Therapist, Educator, Author of Always Turned On : Understanding Sexual Addiction in the Digital Age
"Following the first UK Survey of partners of sex addicts, Paula Hall highlights the extent of the distress and dilemmas of this considerable population. Challenging previous notions of theory about why partners choose or stay with addicts, she weaves an original and common sense path. Whilst acknowledging the value of some earlier thinking, she focuses on the trauma experienced by those whose world is not as they thought it was.
This is a long awaited work for the UK. We now have an approach which reflects the diverse needs of those who find themselves with these challenges, offering shame reduction, hope and understanding. Where Paula Hall excels is in her breadth of therapy and counselling experience, as well as being a sex addiction specialist. The clear and accessible style, with many practical strategies for coping and moving forward,will be helpful for therapists and clients alike." - Joy Rosendale MA Cert Ed, COSRT, CSAT 1 & 2Partners' Programme Clinical Lead, Marylebone Centre London W1