Featured Guest Article by
Diane Strickland, M.A., M. Div.
Abuse is Abuse is Abuse
The news coverage of Ray Rice brutally beating his fiancee unconscious has brought back a flood of memories for me. I was a teen in the 60’s and fought long and hard, alongside other courageous women, to win basic rights. Our right to be treated at least as well as animals does not seem to apply to celebrities who can beat a woman to a pulp and get a mere slap on the hand. In the mid 90’s (not so very long ago) Joe Biden in the Senate, and Barbara Boxer in the House of Representatives, sponsored the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The bill, written by Biden’s office with input from multiple grassroots and advocacy organizations and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. Unfortunately in a society in which women are less than, where their value is not as great as men’s, they will continue to suffer physical violence and abuse. Guest author Diane Strickland has written a moving and important piece on this topic that I feel should be copied and displayed on every refrigerator in America. Thank you Diane.
Since the video of Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice punching his then fiancé unconscious in an elevator started making the rounds, there’s been some interesting discussion going on. Some of it we have heard before, but there are some new strong voices speaking sanity into the insanity of a cultural privilege for male violence. This is encouraging in the face of a resilient misogyny.
For me, one of those new voices was from Jackson Katz, creator of a gender violence prevention and education program entitled Mentors in Violence Prevention. I didn’t know about his initiative and was encouraged to learn about it. I believe it was Katz who, in the face of so much criticism of the female victim, asked us to consider whether we could believe Ray Rice would not be a violent abuser if he was with a woman other than Janay. In other words, the focus on her is the wrong focus.
It was in that question that I connected this episode to the misogyny we face as partners of sex addicts/compulsive/predators*. The prevailing treatment model makes exactly the same mistake. It focuses on the female partner, pitching her need to “own” what she contributed to the “problem”. Then it diminishes the “problem”—calling it “acting out” or “lapses” and berates the woman for not “putting it all behind her”. The model sets a stage for believing there would have been no “problem” had her sex addict/compulsive/predator been in a relationship with someone else. Can you believe that these men would not have continued in their sexual activities that many of them began as children or teenagers, if they had just married someone else?
Please, Come In…
Sit down, take a deep breath and relax. You are safe here. This is a place where you can learn about Sex Addiction and find support and comfort by reading stories from other women who have had similar experiences just like your own. If you think your partner is a Sex Addict or a Porn Addict, then you have come to the right place. Take your time and browse through the articles and stories which I think will help you understand just what Sex Addiction is and how it affects the partners and families of a Sex Addict. My name is JoAnn and I am married to a Sex Addict. This site, and the book I am writing, is for anyone who loves or cares about a Sex Addict. Also available here is a series of eBooks, which I have written, that I feel will help you with specific issues in dealing with your partner’s Sex Addiction. Here you will find real stories of real women and men who are in a relationship with a Sex Addict. If you browse through the site you will also find articles that I have written that may help you during this difficult time.
Women–Do You Need Support?
I have found that the most important thing that women need, when they discover that their husbands or partners have been engaging in secret sexual activities, is support. We need someone to talk with, someone who will understand, someone who will not judge or blame us. Hearing the truth from women who have or are experiencing the same discoveries, emotions, fears, trauma and doubts is vital to your healing. Hearing the truths rather than the lies and deception validates us and allows us to realize that we are not crazy. The Sisterhood Of Support is an informational website which includes a private membership support group for women who are in a relationship with a Sex Addict. Many women cannot afford expensive counseling or intensives or cannot find a counselor in their area. I receive many e-mails and calls from women who need support but just cannot find or afford it. So, I put together a very inexpensive, friendly, helpful and supportive place where you can could find all the help, friendship, resources, information and support that you need. For only $24.95 per month– less than the cost of ten or fifteen minutes with a counselor, this support group is available 24/7, offers complete privacy, exclusive resources, articles and stories and the ability to share and connect with other women who are in various phases of their crisis. In the private membership area of the Sisterhood site you can share your experiences, ask questions of me or the other Sisters, start forum topics or comment in the forums and chat live with the other members who are also going through the same difficulties as you. You can find out more about the Sisterhood Of Support by clicking here or just click on the ‘Join The Support Group’ tab on the menu at the top of the page.
A Message For Men Who Are Partners Of Sex Addicts.
When I started this website almost ten years ago I focused on women who were in a relationship with a Sex Addict. The women who came on this site were adamant that no men were allowed. They wanted a safe place to share and vent. I monitored the site and removed any comments from men and sadly had to answer their e-mails with the ‘no men allowed’ mantra. In order to provide a safe and completely private place for these women I created the Sisterhood Of Support, which requires a membership to view, share and comment. Recently I have receive so many e-mails from men who also need support and resources that I have decided to welcome men who are involved with a male or female Sex Addict to share and comment here on this site. Please send your stories via the Contact Page or directly to me at JoAnn@marriedtoasexaddict.com and feel free to comment on any of the posts here. After all, the pain and trauma of discovery transcends gender or orientation. Please understand that if you find references to ‘she’ or ‘her’ or ‘husband’ that this site was originally written for women, but the information certainly applies to all.
This Is NOT A Place For Sex Addicts
Any comments from Sex Addicts will be removed. It doesn’t matter what you have to say or what you think is important to share here, I will remove your comment. This is a place for Partners to share their stories and to find support for their trauma. Partners have enough input from the Sex Addicts within their own relationships, we do not need any other input from Sex Addicts.