Sex addiction might seem like a bizarre, or even funny, concept to some. But for British sufferer, Sami Walton, it’s a serious problem; a problem that cost her friends, partners and even her job.
The 29-year-old’s addiction took hold in her early 20s following the break-down of a long-term relationship. She’s now compelled to have sex as often as 10 times a day, and even once managed 40 times in a single weekend.
Thankfully, her current partner, James Keates, is understanding. “I’m lucky to have James,” Sami told Sunday People. “Not only does he have the stamina to keep up with me, he’s really supportive and doesn’t judge me when I’m having a bad day.”
Prior to James coming on the scene, Sami found herself relying on friends and often strangers to satisfy her addiction.
"Some evenings if I had nothing else to do I’d go to a wine bar, order myself a drink and sit at the bar until I got chatting to someone in the hope of sleeping with them," she said.
"I was so desperate for some action, I'd do anything for sex. I consider myself straight but I’d sleep with women just to satisfy my cravings."
Sami's sordid string of "dangerous" one-night stands ended in 2010 when she awoke in a stranger's bed, hundreds of kilometres from home. Not long afterwards, she lost her high-flying finance job due to her frequent absences.
It was then Sami realised she had a serious problem.
Sami struggled to find doctors who will take her condition seriously, and found the waiting list to see a counsellor to be too long.
She now sees James as her "therapist as well as her lover", and calls him whenever she is feeling overwhelmed or in need of support.
"In the early days I felt like I'd won the lottery," James told Sunday People. "But now I'm getting a bit older it can be exhausting and I know it gets Sami down. I just try my best to be understanding."
"Most men think they would love a partner who needs sex so much," Sami said, "but none of my previous boyfriends could handle it."
Of course, James isn't always up to the task, and so Sami supplements her sex-life with her collection of toys, apparently worth as much as $2700.
The result is a satisfying balance that means Sami is no longer seeking treatment. “I'm not sure counselling would help. I think I’ll always need sex in the way I do," she said. "I'd rather talk to James and at least I know if I'm having sex with him I'm not putting myself in any dangerous situations.”
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