Sexual Addiction Counseling Frisco TX

Self-Compassion: A Pathway Toward Healing Trauma

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blog article. self-compassion healing traumaFor many people, the word trauma conjures up images of serious life experiences such as war, abuse, suicide and divorce. Many therapists call these types of threat to life and/or safety “Big T Trauma.”  This type of trauma is complex trauma, and is often associated with layers of traumatic events being repeatedly thrust upon a victim.  Some examples of complex trauma include: abuse throughout childhood, a domestic violence victim staying in an abusive relationship, or a spouse being betrayed repeatedly by a partner’s chronic infidelity.

Many neglect to consider “Small T Trauma” and the impact that these experiences have on one’s personal life.  For myself, during my high school years I had a crush on Stacey and got the courage to ask her to Homecoming.  She said yes and I was on top of the world.  Soon after homecoming, Stacey gave me the cold shoulder and dated many of my friends.  The pain of this was like the world on top of me!   Even 20 years later at a high school reunion, I felt the lingering pain of that event.  Some other examples of Small T Trauma include a parent not being there during a significant period in your life, drama that can happen during a holiday with family or a weekend with friends, chronic conflicts with a boss, or impaired functioning at school or work.

Here are some warning signs that you are experiencing Small T Trauma:

  • Intrusive memories or triggers from earlier traumatic events
  • Sudden mood swings with a tendency to be over-reactive
  • Flooding of emotions such as anxiety, fear, panic, anger
  • Being hypervigilent – obsessively focused on past injuries, being a detective, feeling uptight and tense

Here are some lesser known symptoms of trauma that many tend to overlook:

  • Feeling emotionally worn out or depressed as a result of too many days of fear/anxiety
  • Disassociation – or feeling outside yourself as if you are observing what is happening around you rather than being a part of your life
  • Codependency – a reaction to trauma where one seeks to care-take others in an effort to self-heal. This often leads to a neglect of your own self-care.
  • Aches and pains in the body. These can be unresolved trauma stored in the body.
  • Feeling disoriented, in a daze, a flight of ideas, and poor concentration.
  • Chronic avoidance or distancing oneself from people

Now that we have laid the groundwork for understanding Small T Trauma in your life, here are some do’s and don’ts when it comes to healing.

  • Don’t suffer in the symptoms above and think “they are not that bad” or “this is just the way I am.” Healing from these symptoms is possible
  • Healing takes time. Even if you have a symptom free season in your life, it is not a guarantee that something in life may reawaken old wounds.
  • Don’t over-function and expect that filling your life with business will prevent you from suffering. Unresolved trauma will surface in your life.

Here are some Self-Compassion guidelines for healing trauma

  • Self-compassion means slowing down, taking time for self-care and when you make a mistake you gently say, “I learned something important about myself.” I love Brene Brown’s daily affirmation: “At the end of the day whatever is done or left undone, I know I am still loveable.”
  • Meditation or Mindfulness—there are many free phone apps on the market such as Head Space or Breathe that offers a helpful guide to clear your mind and relax. The big benefit beyond relaxation is the practice of  tuning-in to oneself.  Trauma survivors learn self-attunement and grounding are vital.
  • Spirituality is about connection to self, others, God. Spiritual people tend to have a sense of purpose or meaning to what they do.  A common phrase in trauma recovery is “it is not the traumatic event that hurts us; it is the meaning we attach to the trauma.”  Spirituality teaches things like “surrender this to God” and offers insights that can create meaning to our suffering.
  • Break toxic loyalties: carefully consider relationships or projects that are leading you to be overcommitted and exhausted. Set boundaries and/or say no in order to preserve some time for self-care and a realistic pace in life.
  • Remember that F.E.A.R can be reframed to False Evidence Appearing Real or Forgetting Everything is All Right. As you recover from Trauma, you begin to allow things to happen and stop trying to control or manipulate things.
  • Remember that forgiveness is not for the offender it is for us.  Righteous anger is hard to overcome.  When we forgive, we allow more space in our hearts to love.
  • Develop an optimistic outlook. “The greatest discover of any generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.” W. James
  • Slow down. Drive the speed limit; watch the sun set or rise;  play with a child; stare into a fire;  slow your thinking, walking and daily routine!
  • Develop a social support network. Find at least 3 friends that are safe, non-judgmental, and available.  Reach-out and share one another’s burdens.
  • Seek professional help. A good clinician has been in the pit with many suffering in trauma. He or she can walk along side you in your healing.

Remember that you are unique and that ALL your life experiences can work together for your good.  You have a special call and life purpose.  Unresolved trauma can distract and disorient you from your best self.  Practice self-compassion by taking the time to heal your wounds and so you may rise-up to your call in life. Come see us at Center for Marriage and Family Counseling and LifeSTAR Dallas, for help along your pathway toward healing trauma.

When Sex Becomes a Drug

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Sex addiction Frisco, TXAlthough some would argue that sex addiction does not exist (take the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-5 for example), many others argue that it does, and back their argument with strong neurobiological evidence. Research by Patrick Carnes and Donald Hilton, among others, is beginning to show that sex addiction exists and needs to be effectively treated (more on their work later). Sex addiction is an addiction and here’s why.

Addiction is a disease of reward. Addiction hijacks the reward pathways in the brain and damages brain circuits. More and more research has shown that addiction can occur not only to chemical substances, but to behaviors as well. Individuals with behavioral addictions or process addictions are addicted to the process of doing something “rewarding” for that individual, including: gambling, shopping, work, playing video games, and sex (Hagedorn & Juhnke, 2005). Individuals can become addicted to sex and addicted to porn. I’m not talking about repeatedly enjoying sex with a partner. To call that a sex addiction would be misunderstanding what an addiction means. Sex can become an addiction when an individual:

  1. Experiences cravings for sexual experiences. Over time, the individual develops triggers that lead them to have cravings.
  2. Loses control over how often and how long he/she engages in sex, and cannot stop his/her sexual stimulation behaviors. Has an inability to abstain from sexual stimulation. This causes consequences in personal relationships, work, etc.
  3. Uses sex to augment pleasure or reduce pain.
  4. Increasingly does not recognize the consequences of his/her sexual acting out behaviors.

This is sex addiction. At Center for Marriage and Family Counseling and LifeSTAR Dallas, we work to help many clients who struggle with sex addictions, each receiving treatment because his/her life has become increasingly unmanageable due to his/her addictive behaviors.

Sex addiction means an individual is addicted to sexual stimulation and release. Sex is the “drug” of choice for an individual with a sex addiction. This can take the form of an individual being addicted to pornography and/or masturbation addiction, having sexual encounters online, having sexual encounters in person, and/or having an affair partner / affair partners. Increased internet availability has resulted in an increase in out-of-control sexual behavior (Hentsch-Cowles & Brock, 2013). With sexual content constantly available, this “drug” can be free, always accessible, and an easy escape for an addict.

Although the “drug” in sex addiction is sex, sex addiction is not about sex. It is about emotional mismanagement. It occurs when an individual uses sex to minimize pain and painful emotions or augment pleasure. Generally, a mix of genetics and traumatic experiences underlie sex addiction. When an individual with a sex addiction feels a difficult emotion, and he/she does not have healthy ways of coping with that emotion, he/she will often turn to sex. He/she will feel a “high” with sexual release, which is very short-lived, and only helps the individual “escape” temporarily. Then the individual often feels guilt and shame (two difficult emotions), and that can start the whole process over. The individual becomes caught in the the squirrel-cage of addiction.

Sex addiction, like all addictions, makes addicts lives become out of control and unmanageable. Sex addiction harms the addict’s ability to make choices and the addict’s ability to maintain loving relationships. Untreated sex addiction leads to some severe consequences, especially the longer it is untreated. Fight the New Drug, an agency campaigning against pornography, states that pornography itself harms the brain, relationships, and society. All forms of sex addiction have these same harmful effects. The severity of sex addiction and its consequences progresses if left unaddressed.

At Center for Marriage and Family Counseling and LifeSTAR Dallas, we specialize in treatment for sex addiction. If you think that you have a sex addiction, schedule an appointment with us today. You are not alone. We can help!


Fight the New Drug. (2014). Get the facts. Retrieved from

Hagedorn, W. B., & Juhnke, G. A. (2005). Treating the sexually addicted client: Establishing a need for increased counselor awareness. Journal of Addictions & Offender Counseling, 25(2), 66-86.

Hentsch-Cowles, G., & Brock, L. J. (2013). A systemic review of the literature on the role of the partner of the sex addict, treatment models, and a call for research for systems theory model in treating the partner. Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity, 20(4), 323-335. doi:10.1080/10720162.2013.845864

Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TX: What You Need To Know About It

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Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TXAddiction comes in many forms, from alcohol to narcotics to gambling; but in North Texas, there is also a growing concern about sex addiction and what it does to people and families. With sex addiction counseling, people who have this type of addiction can be helped so that they can live fuller, happier lives. If you suspect that you or someone you love has a problem, it’s important to learn about sex addiction and about the many ways it can manifest itself so that you can better recognize if there is a problem that should be addressed.

What is sex addiction?

Sex addiction is a compulsion that completely dominates the addict’s life and takes precedence over friends, family and even work. The compulsion revolves around sexuality and sexual behavior. This sexuality is often used to regulate the addict’s emotional life or even as a way to relieve anxiety. Sex addiction is such an overwhelming compulsion that the addict will often do things that are dangerous or exploitative and that can cause them shame afterwards.

What are the types of sex addiction?

Sex addiction can present itself in a number of different way, including voyeurism, exhibitionism, seductive role sex, trading sex, intrusive sex, fantasy sex, paying for sex, anonymous sex, pain-exchange sex and exploitative sex. There are generally three levels of severity for these types of sex – level one includes chronic masturbation, infidelities, cybersex and use of pornography; level two includes public sex, voyeurism, exhibitionism and sexual harassment; level three includes rape, child molestation, incest and child pornography.

Is sex addiction a real addiction?

Sexual arousal involves an elevation in a number of hormones and chemicals in the body including dopamine, serotonin and endorphins and it is as easy to become addicted to the way their elevation makes you feel as it is for an alcoholic or drug addict to become addicted to the feelings they get from drinking or taking drugs. In this way, sex addiction is the same as a drug addiction in that it is a pathological relationship to mood-altering behaviors. So it is important to keep it in check.

How can sex addiction counseling help?

Sex addiction has many short-term and long-term repercussions that include loss of employment and loss of personal relationships so it should be addressed as soon as possible. Sex addiction counseling can help the addict recognize all of their compulsive behaviors and can examine the reasons for those behaviors so that they can be modified. In addition, triggers for certain behaviors can be identified and a plan for avoiding those triggers can be put in place. If the behavior has affected loved ones, family counseling can help all of those affected.

If you feel you have a problem with a sexual compulsion, you should seek out sex addiction counseling. For help, call us at the Center for Marriage and Family Counseling at (214) 250-7808 or schedule an appointment online here.

Center For Marriage & Family Counseling
8380 Warren Parkway #604
Frisco, Texas 75034
(214) 250-7808

Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TX

Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TX: Don’t Let Denial Stand in the Way

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Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TXThe debate is still on regarding whether to term sex addiction as a disorder, a disease or a “just” problem. The issue that no one denies is that it is a behavioral problem that can benefit from sex addiction counseling. According to WebMD, there are deeper, underlying matters that cause the risky behavior associated with sex addiction, such as anxiety, depression, shame, stress or a combination of more than one. Treating those underlying problems is the foundation for treating the addiction in general and helping the patient to stop engaging in damaging behaviors. Reading sex addiction books can be a really positive way of identifying the issue within yourself.

Often, a crisis such as when the addiction causes the loss of a job or the destruction of a marriage might prompt someone to seek sex addiction counseling from a therapist. Unless and until a crisis occurs, however, many people carry on with their lives and their addiction with only vague feelings that something isn’t right. They may not even associate their behavior with the feelings that are causing it. Therefore, many times they justify or disregard it, feeling that they are in control and can quit any time. By nature, however, addictions are essentially uncontrollable without proper counseling to address the contributing issues.

According to the Journal of Addictions and Offender Counseling, there are between 17 and 37 million people in America struggling with sex addiction. Regardless of the controversy over how to classify it, it’s essential to obtain counseling from a professional who is experienced in treating addiction. Though numerous self-help groups have sprung up over the years, unless they’re run by a qualified counselor, they cannot be as effective as consulting a professional. While the groups may have good intentions and even model themselves on similar groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step programs, the absence of a qualified therapist or counselor may end up inhibiting participating individuals’ progress.

When it’s time to seek sex addiction counseling in Frisco TX, you’ll find compassionate, qualified professionals at the Center for Marriage and Family Counseling. There’s no need to feel embarrassed asking for help as the counselors deal with sex addiction every day of the week. They’ll work with you one-on-one to identify the issues that are at the root of your problem. They know how to help you create the changes that will heal you and bring joy, peace and self-esteem back into your life. Don’t delay treatment remaining in denial. You recognize that you have a problem, so don’t wait for a crisis before you seek help. Make an appointment at the Center for Marriage and Family Counseling today.

Sex Addiction Counseling Frisco TX
Center For Marriage & Family Counseling
8380 Warren Parkway #604
Frisco, Texas 75034
(214) 250-7808


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