While trying to decompress from a long day yesterday, I watched a little 20/20. They were discussing the increase of people who are struggling with sex addiction. This appears to be a new phenomenon that is growing in our culture, or at least someone decided that it is time to give it a lot of coverage in the media. Of course, Tiger Woods leads the field of the poor souls who can’t control their sexual behavior. But recently some other high-profile people have checked into rehab to get treatment for the problem. Steve Phillips, a former ESPN sportscaster, is the latest “victim”. There is a center in Mississippi that is getting a lot of press, and making a lot of money as the “go-to” place for the stars who are hooked on sex.
I will try to temper my cynicism. The stories that are being featured are about married men who have cheated on their wives several times because of their addiction. My response: give me a break. Guys have had girlfriends for a few thousand years now. Men have been hooked on sex since God created it. There is nothing new about sleeping around. We should be sensitive to the victims of extra-marital sex, but we need to identify who the victims are. A guy who sleeps with anyone other than his wife is not a victim of an addiction, he is an adulterer. The victim is the innocent ones(s).
I am disturbed that our culture is letting these guys off the hook by labeling this sin as an addiction. This seems to be an attempt to say, “It’s not my fault” or “I can’t help myself”. Hey Tiger and Steve, It is your fault and you can help yourself. Honor your wedding vows and respect your wife. You may indeed be addicted. But be a man and deal with it in a mature and responsible way. Keep your pants on until your get home. And treat your wife with honor.
Drug treatment and therapy seems to be helping in some cases. Tiger is out of treatment and is rumored to be back on the PGA tour soon. Steve is on national talk shows saying that he is doing better. (I predict a book written by one, if not both of these guys.) I am thinking of some other treatments that may be equally as effective as drugs and counseling. Mrs. Woods golf club therapy seems to be what got Tiger thinking straight. Steve’s loss of employment worked well to motivate him to stop acting like a hormone-driven teenager. I think if our culture stops propping these guys up and starts letting them suffer as the idiots that they are, behavior will improve. If that doesn’t work, maybe a few minutes alone in a locked room with the husbands, fathers and brothers of the women they violate would help. Sorry for my reversion to caveman methods, but they have been proven to work quite effectively.
Yes, I realize that women are also guilty of this behavior. But we can’t let athletes and actors and rock stars get by with acting irresponsibly because they are famous. Grow up, guys. Deal with your “addictions”. Accept responsibility for your behavior. Be a man.