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Therapists reach out to those affected by Ashley Madison data breach

September 8, 2015
by Gary A. Enos, Editor
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Therapists who treat sex addiction are reaching out to the public and highlighting available services in the wake of this summer's data hack that exposed millions of users of the Ashley Madison infidelity website.

Los Angeles-based Center for Healthy Sex clinical director Alexandra Katehakis, MFT, CST-S, CSAT-S, last week issued a news release that focused on the therapy resources available through the database of the Society for the Advancement of Sexual Health. The statement emphasizes the possible need for professional support for users of the Ashley Madison site who may have a problem with compulsive sexual behavior and for their partners.

The news release reads, “The partner of a person who has engaged in sexually deceptive behavior can also finds professional support. The profound shame, fear, disorientation, rage and grief experienced by people who learn that they have been betrayed can be extremely difficult to manage, especially when this behavior has occurred over a lengthy period of time.”

In addition, sex and technology addiction expert Robert Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S, whose 2015 book Always Turned On addresses technology's impacts on sexual behavior, last month stated that the ItsCheating.com service is listing resources and advice for couples affected by infidelity.

Among Weiss's thoughts related to the Ashley Madison breach are that affected individuals should refrain from making any long-term decisions affecting their relationship for at least a month.

Weiss, senior vice president of clinical development at Elements Behavioral Health, where he has developed sex addiction and intimacy disorders treatment programs, adds in a statement, “Trust can be restored if both people are willing to do the work. In fact, the relationship can be more honest, more intimate and more vulnerable over time when the secrets are on the table.”

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