Suggested resources will be added to this page as I find them.
- The first book I read about sex addiction remains the most helpful I have found to-date. It is a short read by Dr. Linda Hatch, a certified sex addiction therapist, that explains exactly what sex addiction is, signs that someone has it, what this means for you, WHY your loved one has it in the first place (my most burning question), and what to do next.
You can find it on her website, which is also extremely helpful. In the first few months after the devastation of discovering my husband’s addiction, I read every single article on her website. Living With a Sex Addict: From Crisis to Recovery
- Articles by Dorothy Hayden on selfgrowth.com Another tremendously valuable set of articles by another certified sex addiction therapist is that by Dorothy Hayden. Her articles are addressed to the addict, not the partner, but if you want to learn about why your partner is a sex addict, her articles go into some depth on that — and offer hope about the possibility for healing, if you are ready to think about that. For me, personally, understanding the addict allows me to empathize, which takes away some of my anger and my pain. If you have any lingering doubts about whether sex addiction has anything to do with any shortcoming of yours (hint: the answer is no, NOT AT ALL!), this may help reassure you.
- After discovering my husband’s sex addiction, a book that really helped me work through the grief and find some level of healing was Conscious Uncoupling by Katherine Woodward Thomas. Don’t be put off by the fact that it’s definitely intended for people planning to divorce. Whether you stay together or not, your relationship as you knew it is over, and that is a loss worth grieving.
Other helpful websites include:
- Dr. Omar Minwalla’s Institute for Sexual Health
- Mark Falango’s writings on partner betrayal trauma
- Dr. Robert Weiss’s website about Sex and Relationship Healing
- Ella Hutchinson’s website, Comfort Christian Counseling – don’t be put off by the fact that it’s explicitly Christian. You may find this worth looking at anyway, if only because of the ongoing success story of Ella and her husband, Jeff Hutchinson, a recovered sex addict.
- Dr. Doug Weiss’s website
All of these are the websites of Certified Sex Addiction Therapists. The best resource for dealing with sex addiction or trauma resulting from being the partner of a sex addict is a CSAT. Find one near you using this website:
If you’re already familiar with the sex addiction community, you will notice I have chosen not to recommend any of the numerous 12-step groups available for people in our position (S-Anon, et. al.) This is a very deliberate choice, and I am going to go a step further and recommend that you actively avoid these groups unless a professional therapist who is currently treating you suggests that one of these groups might be helpful for specific issues that you are dealing with. I feel that 12-step groups intended for partners can do more harm than good, and I am fully prepared to defend that statement — in a separate post for another day.
You may also notice that I do not recommend any books or workbooks authored by or affiliated with Dr. Patrick Carnes. This is deliberate as well. I find Dr. Carnes to espouse misogyny, victim-blaming and other problematic attitudes, including shaming partners who choose to disconnect from a sex addict.
I have no doubt that many people have found S-Anon-type groups and Dr. Carnes to be helpful, and if you did, I’m glad for you. But I absolutely cannot recommend them to anyone.