Should They Require Love Addiction Therapy Atlanta Residents Have Dedicated Professionals They Can Turn To

By Marci Glover

Some may regard the notion of love addiction as trivial, but it is in fact a serious condition that ruins many lives. While it may not cause the same kind of visible damage as, say, alcoholism, it undoubtedly causes genuine damage to the life of each sufferer and to those close to them. Should they be in need of love addiction therapy Atlanta GA residents will be relieved to know that expert help is available.

Many people are surprised at how common this condition is. It permeates all levels of society and is characterized by dysfunctional patterns of behavior pertaining to sexual and romantic relationships. These behavior patterns are rooted in dysfunctional emotional responses that are a source of huge stress and misery for sufferers. Their low levels of self-esteem lead to an inordinate amount of fear towards rejection, pain and the unknown. Compulsive sexual/romantic relationships are an unconscious way in which sufferers attempt to gain safety and approval.

As with most disorders of this nature, it often has its origins in the sufferer's childhood experiences. Traumatic events such as loss, rejection, neglect and abandonment, not to mention physical, emotional and sexual abuse, can have a devastating effect on a child's emotional and psychological development. Experiences of this nature can result in a damaged identity and seriously impaired self-confidence that sufferers seek to compensate for.

Victims struggle with a deep sense of insecurity and consequent difficulties in forming healthy, mutually beneficial bonds with others. They also tend to have difficulty establishing appropriate boundaries in their relationships (romantic or otherwise) with other people. They tend to be either overly needy or smothering, or jealous and controlling.

People with this disorder will tend to exhibit certain pathologies in their relationships. Things like difficulty staying single for any length of time, anxiety about being single, tolerating abusive relationships, sabotaging relationships, sabotaging their reputation (by unwisely pursuing unsuitable potential partners) and ruining their finances, are just a handful of the kind of problems that sufferers create for themselves.

A big side-effect of these pathologies is the impact they have on other important areas of the sufferer's life. Areas like work and family life can deteriorate badly when the sufferer's time and energy is wasted elsewhere. Failures in time-keeping and productivity can lead to job loss and consequent financial difficulties. Neglected family relationships can lead to conflict and estrangement.

The good news is, the root causes of these behavior patterns can certainly be overcome with the right help. There are proven therapies that facilitate the development of healthy, positive behaviors and vastly improved ways of living. One-on-one counseling, support groups and CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), are all excellent ways in which patients can move beyond negative patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving.

Regardless of the kind of treatment patients engage in, they will generally be asked to refrain from sexual/romantic encounters for at least a short period of time. It is important for them to take some time out and gain a fresh perspective on their problems. If necessary, it also provides them with an opportunity to deal with substance abuse (a common related issue). In time, and with expert support, patients can learn how to form healthy relationships that are based on genuine love and respect for other people.

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