What is sexual aversion disorder? According to the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, sexual aversion disorder (SAD) is the active avoidance of or aversion to genital sexual contact with a partner that may cause extreme interpersonal difficulty or distress. The person may be extremely fearful about sexual activity.
Psychological factors, severe stress, and need for avoidant behavior as well as past history of emotional and sexual abuse have been implicated in the origin of this disorder.
What is sexual aversion disorder | adult skills
Patients often implement various avoidant behaviors so that they may limit or circumvent sexual contact. Avoidant behaviors and strategies that have been linked to sexual aversion disorder include excessive traveling for both business and pleasure to avoid sexual partners, alteration of sleep patterns
so that sexual activity is unlikely, neglecting personal hygiene, substance abuse, and appearing overtly involved with work commitments, social engagements, or family obligations.
Patrick Carnes is a well-known author on the subject and discusses this disorder in his 1998 article “The Case for Sexual Anorexia: An Interim Report on 144 Patients with Sexual Disorders” in Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity.
He also describes that the person with sexual aversion disorder may partake in extreme efforts to avoid sexual contact, including self-mutilation, self-cutting, and gross distortions of bodily image. It is a serious medical and sexual problem that warrants a complex treatment plan that may include medical and psychological intervention.
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