Sex and love addiction is a serious problem in the world and Sex And Love Addiction (SLAA) is a serious 12 Step program to help those who suffer from it, but it’s often misunderstood and not as respected as it could or should be.
People tend to misinterpret sex and love addiction as the worst of the worst type of perversion. They judge that people who qualify under this type of addiction are only pedophiles, those who wear long trench coats and flash people in public places, or individuals who frequently engage in risky forms of promiscuity.
While those who suffer from these forms of sex and love addiction can find a path to recovery in SLAA, the vast majority who come to SLAA and other “S” programs fall under behaviors that many in this world have probably engaged in at one point or another, but never with repeated excessiveness. Things like watching pornography, cheating on a partner, or sexting on a cell phone for example.
I personally attend SLAA 12 Step meetings because there was a time when I really struggled with pornography, phone/cybersex, and becoming love addicted to unavailable individuals. It’s been well over 8 years now that I’ve remained clean and sober from each of those and it’s all because of SLAA and God.
I can’t speak highly enough of this 12 Step program and the help it’s given me. I don’t have shame over going to it either, although many do. Sadly, this program still holds a stigma like Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) once did many decades ago when people assumed an alcoholic was simply a stinky drunk holding a paper bag around his alcohol while homeless on the streets. Obviously most of us know nowadays that’s far from an accurate portrayal of an alcoholic.
Nevertheless, 10 years ago, when I was still so very sick in this addiction I was one of those who disrespected SLAA and the “S”-type 12 Step programs because I went to the meetings to look for potential “dates” or opportunities to act out rather than to focus on getting well. Thankfully, I have long since changed my ways by doing my 12 Step work in the SLAA program. Now, I’m on the other side and often meet newcomers who remind me of my old sick-addicted self.
One such person briefly came into my life recently when they called the local SLAA contact in my area, which is me, and initially expressed a sincere desire for help with their addictive behaviors. I gave them guidance on this addiction, pointed them in the direction for when meetings occur, and even friended them on Facebook so they could read some of my 12 Step postings there and hopefully find encouragement. Sadly, once they connected with me on there, they proceeded to hit on me and send me an extremely explicit picture that I immediately deleted and had to set a definitive boundary. It’s time like this which truly frustrate me in the “S” world of 12 Step recovery, when people aren’t ready to take their addiction serious. But, I know I can’t judge them because I was once just like them.
Regardless, SLAA and all the other “S”-type recovery programs are legitimate 12 Step recovery methods to aid those who suffer from sex and love addiction type problems. There are many types of behaviors that fall under this type of addiction and you don’t have to be ashamed to go to one of the “S” meetings. Hopefully one day, SLAA and the other “S”-type recovery programs will garner the respect they deserve just like AA has in society and many other 12 Step recovery programs as well. SLAA has saved my life and if you have ever suffered from behaviors you feel might qualify, it could help save your life too.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson