Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous (S.L.A.A.)

Fellowship-Wide Services (F.W.S.)

Characteristics of sex and love anorexia  (LA version)

(Developed by SLAA members during a women’s retreat. Not FWS approved. LA version)  

1. Having few healthy boundaries, we become sexually repulsed by and/or emotionally  threatened by people without knowing them. 

2. Fearing intimacy and vulnerability, we avoid closeness with others, concealing our  dependency needs from ourselves and others, growing more isolated and alienated  from friends and loved ones, ourselves and God. 

3. Fearing emotional and/or sexual nurturing, we compulsively avoid and stay away from  romantic and sexual relationships, sometimes going for years at a time without  participating in dating or sustained relationships. 

4. We over-idealize love and sex or conversely confuse love and sex with physical and  sexual abuse, shame, immorality, engulfment, enmeshment, pity and/or the need to  rescue or be rescued. 

5. We retreat into the apparent safety of being alone. Even if we long for intimacy and  commitment, we continually avoid relationships and sexual contacts. 

6. We are deeply anxious and insecure but may cover feelings of stress, guilt, loneliness,  anger, fear and envy with a persona of independence and self-sufficiency. We may use  self-reliance, martyrdom and/or deprivation as substitutes for nurturing, care and  support. 

7. We judge others and or project that others judge us. We employ distancing strategies  and build emotional walls. We withhold love and sex to feel in control and/or to control  and manipulate others. 

8. We may substitute intimate relationships with romantic or sexual fantasies; and may  use pornography, compulsive masturbation, anonymous sex and/or prostitutes to feed  this fantasy world. 

9. We avoid responsibility for ourselves by focusing on others, denying our own feelings,  wants and needs and being emotionally unavailable in relationships. 

10. We stay enslaved to isolation. 

11. We may mask our fears of authentic connection and sexuality by involving ourselves in  addictive romantic and sexual relationships with unavailable people. 

12. We assign magical qualities to others. We idealize and fear them, then resent them for  the power they hold over us.

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