When there is a sex addict in the family, everyone is affected.
Often focus on the addict or even the partner overshadows the pain felt by children and adolescents. The family is no longer a safe haven from which they can flourish. It becomes a place of secrets and shame.
The sense of loss can shake the family at every level. In an attempt to find ways to cope or alleviate strain, everyone begins to behave differently. Efforts may be made to control or fix the addict or the family. Destructive or acting out behaviors may be an attempt to pull attention back into the family. Very quickly, everyone in the family begins to lose a sense of well-being and safety.
Sex addiction is a progressive disorder, and the disintegration of well-being in the family is progressive, as well. Children do not heal on their own. Children heal in the context of a renewed sense of safety within a renewed sense of family. Working together with an integrative, team-approach, we can begin to create relief and a renewed sense of hope.