We long for a lively and loving, safe and sensual connection with a life partner.

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■ Can't quit (persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to stop for good). ■ Preoccupation with thoughts of dysfunctional behavior.

■ Irresponsibility (behavior occurs during times committed to obligations).

These include such traditional sneaky thrills as affairs, prostitution and looking at pornography, but also new hybrids such as seductive texting, chat rooms and stripping by webcam.

Wealthy, lonely and high-tech Americans can even have virtual sex with avatars if they want. When sexual behavior works against intimacy in a love relationship, or against personal integrity for a single person who's not in love, it can be called "dysfunctional sexual behavior." It is an addiction when that behavior shows three or more of the following 10 signs: ■ Broken plans (frequency or duration of behavior exceeds what's planned).

Nymphomania, hypersexuality, erotomania, perversion, sexual obsession, sexual addiction.

Here are some signs and symptoms: There are a number of theories on why sexual addiction occurs, including psychological and emotional difficulties, personality disorder, as a coping mechanism, or as a result of childhood trauma.Following the crisis recovery we offer a Growth and Repair phase that includes individual, couple, and group work.Of all the experiences we 21st century Americans crave, the biggest advertising idol we worship never was Tiger Woods — it's romantic intimacy.It is important to have a skilled helper guide you through the dangers of disclosure and recovery.Learn more about our credentials and why it is important to find a skilled therapist. Scott Peck says, as a commitment to reality no matter what the cost, addiction can be defined as its most direct opposite: evading reality no matter the cost.