"How well I know with what burning intensity you live."
~ Anaïs Nin
Sex and love addicts confuse intensity with intimacy and are always looking for the next high. They change people like they change their clothes, for the reward of novelty. Their fantasy of the perfect lover who will fulfill every desire intensifies--like that of a vampire seeking blood--with each passing conquest.
Constantly dissatisfied intensity-seeking in sex and love is fueled by internal emptiness from early childhood. Imagine being emotionally abandoned by a stressed or depressed mother who, unable to attune to her infant's needs, leaves it to fight for its life. Since mother/infant attunement is necessary for babies' physical and emotional growth, a child who doesn't get the neural and affective regulation needed to feel secure grows up empty, numb, afraid, and lonely.
As an adult the intensity-seeker has little skill at genuine intimate connection, although she or he is driven to use people and sex to try to feel better. But the desired intensity ultimately dulls the senses, leaving him or her hungering always for more. Tragically, the locus of emotional control is in a lover's--often a stranger's--hands; life is good or bad depending on whether she or he is wanted, rejected, abandoned, or needed. Intense sex becomes the only criterion of whether life is happy or sad.
Intensity-seeking is an enslavement of our own perpetuation. When we step out of the delirium of always seeking someone new, and meet the same old sad and lonely child within, our healing journey begins. Exhausting ourselves with novelty is a defense against our deepest pain, one that we cannot outrun. But once we stop and feel our losses, we can begin our healing journey and be the authentic, joyous person we were born to be.
DAILY HEALTHY ACTS
- How connected are you to your childhood trauma? Have you ever investigated the wounds of your past?
- Do you drag your past into your present? If you're an intensity-seeker, the answer is most likely "yes."
- Take time to journal and ask yourself whether you have difficulty with sex, love and intimacy. If so, get some help today.
CSH - Los Angeles