Sexual addiction doesn’t just impact the individual struggling with it. Instead, the affliction radiates outward causing severe damage to nearly all personal relationships. Certainly, the most immediately betrayed and traumatized are the sex addicts spouse or partner. Healing from sex or porn addiction requires not just addressing the root cause of the individual’s addiction but also finding the proper means for partners to heal as well. Fortunately, our addiction treatment therapies at the Begin Again Institute understand just how vital recovery is and how it involves accountability and forgiveness.
BAI Sex and Porn Addiction Treatment Therapies
The comprehensive TINSA® treatment model is an integrative approach to healing not just the risky and consequential behaviors of sex and porn addiction, but the catalysts of that addictive pattern. Staff includes Certified Sex Addiction Therapists (CSATs), Trauma Specialists, and Certified Clinical Partner Specialists who the Multidimensional Partner Trauma Model. Begin Again Institute sexual addiction so that they know the origins of the addictive thinking and behavior and they become conscious of the impact of that thinking and behavior on their partners – and all relationships.
Therapeutic Modalities utilized in the Men’s 14 Day Intensive
Extensive assessment and evaluation tools
Sexual Dependency Inventory (SDI) created by Dr. Patrick Carnes and offered by CSAT trained therapists. The original Sexual Dependency Inventory (SDI) evolved out of a long-term study of 932 sex addicts and their partners. All data, gathered over a seven-year period, traced the recoveries of study participants. Initially, a series of factor analyses revealed ten typologies that seemed to consistently relate the behaviors. Since this early study, the SDI has gone through several iterations of improvements and the scales have been expanded. The instrument’s normative data and the psychometrics have been evaluated extensively by researchers using data from thousands of research participants.
A later iteration of the SDI, SDI 4.0 version of the SDI, represents a new generation of reporting. It reflects significant increases in items added to various scales, plus new scales. The earlier calculations were based on an algorithm which combined both frequency and power. With version 4.0, the combined calculation was split and two separate dimensions were created: the behavioral scales, representing the frequency of behaviors; and the preoccupation scales, which are based on power ratings. The results reveal patterns of behaviors and obsessional thinking, or preoccupation.
Each client takes the SDI 4.0 upon Admission and the results are reviewed by staff and incorporated into the individual’s treatment.
BECK Depression Inventory
This assessment tool scores the severity of depression so the BAI staff can establish safety protocols for each individual. Regardless of depression levels, typically, the content of the first few days of treatment and the neurobiological explanation of brain reward pathways, helps individuals see that their addictive behavior developed over time as emotional survival strategies. Consciousness and choice, as well as tools of healthy self-soothing and self-regulation rewire the brain patterns and restore connections with the pre-frontal cortex, the executive function portion of the brain.
The genogram (also known as a McGoldrick–Gerson study, a Lapidus schematic or a family diagram) is a pictorial display of a person’s family relationships, addictive behaviors, and medical history. Clients “map” three generations of their family, allowing them to discover patterns and the impact that imprinting has had on them.
Looking at a linear timeline of addictive behavior allows a client to see the initiation and progression and the impact it has on the individual and in their relationships. Some sex addicts may look at the progression of more than one addiction, say alcohol or drugs and sexual acting out behavior.
Dr. Barta teaches the TINSA® model of treatment, helping clients understand the neurobiological explanation of how the addiction initially formed (and continues to be used) as a way to regulate damaged anatomical systems. Once an addict can comprehend how the addiction is used in this way, as a sort of survival mechanism, then the healing process can begin. Through complete understanding of how early trauma can adversely effect the brain and nervous systems, an addict can then use alternative, healthier methods of mending and regulating these damaged systems.
Group Dialogue and Interaction
Clients share their Genogram and Time Line openly with their peers under the facilitation of primary therapists, who use indicators from the SDI 4.0 to provide insight into patterns and explanations about “why” the survival behaviors started and pointing out their progression. Men learn from one another, for what they can’t see in their own lives (because of a history of dishonest and denial), they can see clearly in the life of another. These discussions cultivate honesty and transparency; they dispel shame; and they offer an entry into vulnerability – the foundational building block of intimacy.
Individual 1:1 Trauma Therapy
Clients meet with their assigned individual therapist twice during the 14 Day Intensive. In these sessions, the client receives specific trauma therapy to begin removing deep seated trauma that is the chief cause of the addictive behaviors.
Impact Letter from Partner, Spouse, or Significant Relationship
Begin Again Institute is clear about the impact of addictive behavior on the partner and the family and the Impact Letter (written by the Partner, Spouse, or Significant Relationship) allows the client and his peers and staff therapists to hear clearly how devastating that behavior, that he had minimized, dismissed, or denied, has been – how it has broken trust, inflicted the pain of betrayal, and made intimacy impossible. The primary therapists help clients take in and own the pain they have caused – and they are ready to do that once they understand how trauma and attachment wounding was the cause of their own pain.
Our Intensive Programs for Couple and Partners
To further help couples and partners address, cope with, and recover from sexual addiction, Begin Again Institutes offers several intensive programs. For instance, couples and partners can take advantage of these programs as well as our residential 14-Day Men’s Intensive:
- 3-Day Couples Intensive: This program is designed to treat sex and pornography addicts in a front-loaded, intensive treatment format. The intensives are ideal for couples who have just gone through discovery and are in crisis. It provides a significant head start in recovery and gives more support and education than can be found in weekly individual therapy or couples counseling.
- 2-Day Partner’s Intensives: All of our programs are done one-on-one, never with others, and with a highly-skilled partner specialist. Your entire treatment is private and designed just for you to accommodate your unique needs. Our partner intensives run weekly so you never have to wait to begin your healing.
We understand that most sex and pornography addicts, including their partners, will benefit greatly from intensive treatment, and that most of them are financially and/or logistically unable to take a month or more off from work or parenting. Thus, our intensives are an excellent option.
Begin Again Institute Mini Intensives for Couples and Partners
These are individually scheduled and separate from the 14 Day Intensive for Men. The Couples’ Intensive is uniquely designed to include two therapists; one male addict specialist and one female partner specialist, giving each person their own advocate and support system. Typically, 2-3 days in duration, the couple stays in a hotel room in Boulder and meets with the therapeutic team at the Begin Again Institute offices.
The Partner’s Intensive is typically 2 days in duration and the Partner stays in a hotel in Boulder and meets with a clinical staff member who is trained in Partner Betrayal healing and is sensitive to Partner needs.