Sex addiction recovery is a lifelong commitment. Based on what I have seen there is no quick fix.
In the beginning of my own recovery, I was determined to learn what I needed to know and then move on as quickly as possible. I read everything I could find on the topic of sex addiction and sped my way through the recovery workbooks that were recommended to me. I even got a sponsor and worked the twelve steps at record pace.
Over time, however, I realized that this approach was not going to bring me the lasting freedom from addiction that I so desperately craved. Unlike other areas of my life in which I had been successful – school, work, hobbies – I found that I couldn’t just execute my way through recovery. Although “doing the work” was necessary, it was not sufficient to keep me sober.
After all, if willpower was enough, I wouldn’t be an addict. I had to accept that execution was not enough. I had to surrender to a new way of life.
Sex addiction is quite similar to compulsive overeating. Even though an obese person might be able to lose their excess weight in relatively short order, they will have to work every day for the rest of their lives to keep the weight off. They will have to monitor what they put into their bodies on a daily basis. And they’ll have to go to the gym regularly.
The recovery process is the same for a sex addict. I have to be constantly aware of the images and words I take into my body. I have to go to meetings regularly and stay accountable to my friends and my partner. Lasting freedom from my addiction requires a lifelong commitment to recovery.