A. For Individuals Strugglingwith Problematic Sexual Behaviors
- Cybersex Unhooked: A Workbook for Breaking Free of Compulsive Online Sexual Behavior (2001), David L. Delmonico, Elizabeth Griffin & Joseph Moriarity. Gentle Path Press, Wickenburg, AZ.
This workbook is acompanion to In the Shadows of the Net: Breaking Free of Compulsive OnlineSexual Behavior (2001). The book is well-laid out and has a professionaltone throughout. The approach is holistic in that it takes into considerationone's stage of change, level of self-awareness, relapse prevention, triggers,psychological defenses, relationship patterns and lifestyle factors. Theworkbook also goes into quite a bit of detail as to why sexual behavior onlineis problematic.
- Healing from Sexual Addiction (2004). Mark Laaser. Zondervan Publishing, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
This book iswritten from the perspective of a recovered addict and Christian. It is anexcellent resource for clinicians, clergy, and people struggling with sexualaddiction alike. The book offers fresh insights into family dynamics that maycontribute to one's vulnerability to sexual addictions. Christian principles,aspects of the problem, treatment issues and suggestions for searching for aqualified clinician who treats sexual addictions are well-handled. There is adetailed resource listing at the back, as well as a chapter devotedspecifically to clergy who are struggling with this problem themselves.
- In the Shadows of the Net: Breaking Free of Compulsive Online Sexual Behavior (2001), Patrick Carnes, David L. Delmonico & Elizabeth Griffin. Hazelden, Center City, MN.
The book isauthored by well-reputed leaders in the field of sexual addictions. The bookprovides a good overview of problematic sexual behavior, and although notobvious to a lay reader, is rooted in solid social science research. Althoughthe book is more directed toward those with addictions, there is an excellentchapter toward the end of the book for spouses of addicts. The book alsoprovides several self-assessments and an excellent resource list at the back.
B. For Spouses
- After the Affair: Healing the Pain and Rebuilding Trust When a Partner has been Unfaithful (1994), Janis Abrams Spring. Harper Collins Publishers.
Although this bookis not written with sexual addictions specifically in mind, it is an excellentresource for couples that have experienced sexual addiction as a form ofinfidelity and betrayal. Janis Abrams Spring is a nationally renowned expertin the field of infidelity and she offers an excellent blend of case studies,ideas for restoring trust, and hope for affected couples.
- Discussing Pornography Problems with a Spouse: Confronting and Disclosing Secret Behaviors (2002 & 2005), Rory C. Reid & Dan Gray. Mental Health Publications, Salt Lake City, UT.
This booklet hasseveral advantages: it is very readable, affordable, and addresses an oftenneglected area of problematic sexual behavior, namely the impact on spouses. This book will help normalize the complex response spouses have to a disclosureor discovery of this problem and offer suggestions for tackling the toughconversations that follow.
- How Can I Forgive You? The Courage to Forgive, the Freedom Not To (2004), Janis Abrams Spring. Harper Collins Publishing, New York, NY.
This book tacklesan abstract subject (forgiveness) in a refreshingly concrete and structuredway. The author draws from her 20+ years as a therapist who specializes ininfidelity and wades through the complexities of trust, apologies andforgiveness in a refreshing, helpful and applicable way. The book addressesthe role of the offender and hurt party in forgiveness. The section on what agood apology looks like has been particularly helpful with couples, andespecially men who want to rebuild trust but don't know where to start. Plentyof case examples support each point and the layout of the book helps break downa historically tricky subject that is steeped in religious paradigms.
- Infidelity on the Internet: Virtual Relationships and Real Betrayal (2001), Marlene M. Maheu & Rona B. Subotnik. Sourcebooks Inc., Naperville, Illinois.
This book is idealfor someone who is naïve about problematic sexual behavior and needs anappropriate source of reliable information regarding what the problem canconsist of, the technological jargon that riddles 'cybersex' activities, andthe effect this type of problem typically has on a relationship. I suspectmany of the case examples will be difficult to read for those who are brand newto this issue because they will be tempted to wonder if their partner engagedin the types of behaviors and conversations outlined. The latter part of thebook explores aspects of recovery and the role loved ones can play insuccessful treatment.
- Living with Your Husband's Secret Wars (1999), Marsha Means. Fleming H. Revell, Grand Rapids, MI.
This book isfrequently recommended to me by spouses I interviewed for research purposes, aswell as women I work with in group therapy. It is an excellent resource forfemale clients who are in a marriage where a problem sexual behavior exists. The book normalizes women's responses to this form of infidelity and outlinesmany concepts that are used in group therapy with this population(codependency, boundaries, self-care, self-esteem, forgiveness and supportnetworks).
- The Dance of Intimacy (1989), Harriet G. Lerner. Harper & Row, New York, NY.
Dr. Lerner anchorsher perspectives in family systems theory and yet makes her work very readableand accessible for the lay reader. This book is catered to female audiencesand will assist readers in clarifying their role/position in key relationshipsand how to communicate 'tough stuff' in non-reactive, assertive ways. The bookaddresses family of origin issues as they pertain to communication patterns andhow anxiety is managed in family systems. For several years this has been afavourite book to recommend to clients.
9. The Drug of the New Millennium: The Science of How Internet PornographyRadically Alters the Human Brain and Body (2001), Mark B. Kastleman,Granite Publishing, Orem, UT.
Thisbook has been very popular with the public and is endorsed by respectedclinicians and researchers. This book can assist people in understanding whypornography consumption can be so problematic from a variety of angles. Thisbook also introduces a biological argument into an arena that is typicallydominated by moral, religious, or clinical views on this issue. There is anexcellent reading list at the back of the book. The insights into thepornography industry, the steps spouses can take, and the insights and phasesof recovery fit with my clinical observations and client learning.
C. For Therapists & SupportNetworks
1. Infidelity on the Internet: Virtual Relationships and Real Betrayal
(2001), Marlene M. Maheu & Rona B. Subotnik.
This book isideal for someone who knows little about problematic sexual behavior and needsan appropriate source of reliable information regarding what the problem canconsist of, the technological jargon that riddles 'cybersex' activities andaspects or recovery that clinicians would do well to cover. The first half ofthe book is a good resource for clinicians who want to understand thispresenting issue better. The latter part of the book explores aspects ofrecovery and the role loved ones can play in successful treatment. Theappendixes are useful for those who are not computer savvy.
2. Healing from Sexual Addiction (2004). Mark Laaser. ZondervanPublishing, Grand Rapids, Michigan.
This book iswritten from the perspective of a recovering addict, as well as a Christianstandpoint. It is an excellent resource for clinicians, ecclesiastical leadersand clients alike. The book offers fresh insights into family dynamics thatmay contribute to one's vulnerability to sexual addictions, Christianprinciples, aspects of the problem, treatment issues. There is a detailedresource listing at the back, as well as a chapter devoted specifically toecclesiastical leaders who are struggling with this problem themselves. Thisis one of the best books on the subject and integrates current researchfindings.
3. In the Shadows of the Net: Breaking Free of Compulsive OnlineSexual Behavior (2001), Patrick Carnes, David L. Delmonico & ElizabethGriffin. Hazelden, Center City, MN.
The book isauthored by well-reputed leaders in the field of sexual addictions. The bookprovides a good overview of problematic sexual behavior, and is rooted in solidsocial science research. Although the book is more directed toward those withaddictions, there is an excellent chapter toward the end of the book forspouses of addicts. The book also provides several self-assessments and anexcellent resource list at the back for clinicians.
4. Out of the Shadows: Understanding Sexual Addiction (2001),Patrick Carnes. Hazelden, Center City, MN.
This book blazed the trail for the field of sexual addictions to berecognized and sparked widespread debate and inquiry in the early 1980's. Itis considered the classic text on sexual addictions. The 2001 version isupdated and includes more recent research. The book has an easy to followchapter lay-out and provides insight into sexual addiction as a clinicalconstruct, beliefs that fuel this cycle, problematic family patterns,twelve-step approaches and the spouse's role in the addictive cycle.
D. Useful Websites
E. Professional Organizations
Faithful and True Ministries, Inc.
Mark Laaser, Ph.D., Director
P.O. Box 84
Chanhassen, MN 55317
The National Coalition for the Protection of Children andFamilies
800 Compton Road, Suite 9224
Cincinnati, OH 45231
HelpLine 1-800-583-2964 or (513) 521-6227
Society for the Advancement of Sexual Health (SASH)
P.O. Box 725544
Atlanta, GA 31139
1655 N. Tegner
Wickenburg, AZ 85390
1-800-MEADOWS or (928) 684-3926
Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
P.O. Box 11910
Nashville, TN 37222-1910
Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA)
P.O. Box 70949
Houston, TX 77270
Co-dependents of Sex Addicts (COSA)
P.O. Box 14537
Minneapolis, MN 55414
Recovering Couples Anonymous (RCA)
P.O. Box 11029
Oakland, CA 94611
The San Jose Marital & Sexuality Centre
1022 West Hedding Street
San Jose, CA 95126
(408) 248-9737 telephone
(408) 248-9753 fax
Compiled and reviewed by Jill C. Manning, Ph.D.
Manning, J. C. (2006) Aqualitative study of the supports women find most beneficial when dealing witha spouse's sexually addictive or compulsive behaviors. Unpublished doctoraldissertation, Brigham Young University.