Teen Sex Addiction Red Flags

By Matt Bulkley | Addiction For Men

STAR Guides Wilderness - Teen Sex Addiction Red Flags

In today’s sexually saturated times, it is becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate between normal and abnormal sexual behavior. With teenagers, it is even more difficult to recognize sexually deviant behavior. Often, parents have a hard time recognizing the signs of sex addiction in their teenage children because the teens experience heavy exposure to hypersexual materials on a daily basis and teens often emulate what they see; as a result, some of this behavior has become the norm in ‘teenage’ culture.

The list below is intended to tell parents about what sexual behavior is considered developmentally normal and what are some of the “red flags” that they can look for in identifying deviant sexual behavior in their teens:

Normal Behavior

  • Among teenagers it is very common to use sexually explicit words in daily conversation
  • Making obscene gestures and jokes among peers is normal
  • Using sexual innuendo in conversations
  • Showing attraction to age appropriate individuals is normal
  • Having a natural curiosity about sexual acts is normal
  • Experimenting with masturbation is normal (depends on the frequency)
  • Displaying affection publicly, like kissing, holding hands etc, is normal
  • If sexually active, having a stable, long-term girlfriend/boyfriend is normal

Red Flags

  • Chronic masturbation; having the compulsion to and progressing to masturbate even in public
  • Exposing private body parts of themselves and others
  • Looking at pornography for longer periods of time
  • Being preoccupied with pornography all the time and ignoring other activities
  • Exposing others, especially younger siblings, to explicit images
  • Exhibiting voyeuristic behavior
  • Sending sexually explicit images of themselves to other individuals (Sexting)
  • Touching others without permission and experiencing sexual gratification from the act (Frottage)
  • Initiating sexual contact with younger individuals
  • Coercing or forcing other individuals into committing sexual acts

The red flags will never present themselves as a single characteristic in sexually deviant teens; there will always be a combination of different inappropriate behavior in sexually addicted teenagers. You have to carefully look for the above mentioned red flags to determine whether your child is addicted to sex or not.

If you observe any of the abnormal behaviors mentioned above, then contact us immediately (800.584.4629). STAR Guides Wilderness has sexually specific treatment programs for teens struggling from different types of deviant sexual behavior issues.

About the Author

Matt is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been working in the field of youth treatment and psychotherapy since 1995. He did his undergraduate work at BYU and earned his M.S.W. at the University of Utah. He has worked in a variety of treatment setting in his career ranging from wilderness therapy and residential treatment to outpatient treatment and state government.

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