Addicted?

>> Monday, April 25, 2011

assalamualaikom sisters, i'm thankful for this blog because at least i have someone to turn to alhamdollelah.may Allah place all of you in jannatul firdaws. i have an embarrassing question to ask and i hope you can help me with this problem. the problem is that i keep thinking of sex and i dont know why i can't get it out of my head. i'm not married so i know that i have to stay away from zina and have not done anything of that sort before. i have tried fasting too but even so it will still be at the back of my head. marriage is not an option at the moment since i'm still a student and my parents have said that i get a career first before settling down. that would be a long time before i can get married. and i can't talk to them about this because they are not open to such discussions. am i a sex addict or some sort? do you think i need to see a therapy? could you give me advice on how to deal with this?

jazakallah kheir. may Allah bless you

wa'alykum as salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatoo!

Dearest "Wondering if I'm Addicted",

Sis, this is not embarrassing! Embarassing is when you hold up your pad in the middle of the classroom, mistaking it for your calculator. Yeah, been there. Done that. (Luckily nobody was paying attention, though, and it was an all girls' school- just a male teacher :P).

Anyways, here's the thing. In today's world, we are bombarded with 'sex'. We really are. You turn on the radio or t.v.., read a book, pass by a magazine or billboard....and all you see are some things designed to make you think, whether subconciously or not, about sex. "Buy product X and you'll no longer be a loser. You'll be sexy." (OMG: Did you hear about the 'bras' and 'thongs' some companies were marketing for 7 years olds and the like?) Not only that, but if you're in America or in a Western country, and you're in high school...well, you might hear your friends talking about it, too. Just about anything and everything now has 'some sexual aspect in it'-you could even be watching the NEWS and suddenly there's some report on 'sex'- (don't you just hate it when you're watching something clean and then your parents walk in right when the topic's changed, LOL?).

But seriously, a study conducted on television shows in 2005 (I bet by now its worse) found that 70 percent of all shows included some sexual content, averaging about five sex scenes per hour! Even Disney, which at least used to make its sexual messages a little hidden,  is now much more open about it. In the movie El Dorado, they literally have a make-out'/ 'sex' scene! (If you haven't seen the movie, don't watch it, but if you don't believe me that there is such a scene, check this link out. And for the record, I actually can't decide what's worse- subliminal messages or being open about this stuff).


So with that said, I think that 'thinking' about sex is something normal- I'm not sure how much you mean about 'a lot', though, but I tried looking it up for you in a 'an official health website', hehe. Basically someone had the exact same question as you:

I think about sex a lot. Is that normal, or am I a pervert?
- Aubrey*

It's normal to think about sex — occasionally or frequently. As people mature physically and emotionally, they become increasingly curious about their sexuality and their own bodies. As your body goes through many changes and your hormones fluctuate, you will start noticing people who you find attractive. It's normal to feel a sexual attraction and even to find yourself daydreaming, often about no one in particular.

Sometimes thinking about sex is unavoidable, like in dreams. And sometimes, you might start to think about it in a setting with a lot of people — like school. Whether you think about it a lot or a little, it's only natural to be curious and have thoughts about sex.
Reviewed by: Larissa Hirsch, MD

http://kidshealth.org/teen/expert/emotions/thinking.html

However, we do have to be honest and say that there are some people who are sexual addicts.

So how can you tell if you are a sexual addict? Well, Dr. Patrick Carnes has given some differences between the 'normal person interested in sex' and the 'sexual addict'. He says, the 'sexual addict has learned to rely on sex for comfort from pain, nurturing, or relief from stress, etc., in the way an alcoholic relies on alcohol or a drug addict relies on drugs.

* Ask yourself- do you use your sexual thoughts as an escapist method? To get away from any discomfort/ uncomfortable feelings or realities of your life? Are you very very lonely? Do you deal with your emotions or run away from them by 'thinking of sex'?

Dr. Carne also said (and this I think is the very important part of the definition) that the sexual addict: "transforms sex into 'the primary relationship or need, for which all else may be sacrificed, including family, friends, values, health, safety and work". When sexual behavior is compulsive and yet continues despite adverse consequences, it is called sex addiction."

*Well, what kind of behavior are we talking about?
- compulsive masturbation
- frequently visiting pornography websites/ reading or looking at pornographic magazines, watching videos, - etc.
(Btw: the Islamic ruling on these can be found in Islam Q&A)

If this stuff ^ doesn't apply to you, rest assured that inshaAllah you don't have an addiction. (FYI, though, he lists many numerous signs/ symptoms of someone addicted to sex.)

But, still, even if you don't have a problem, I do want to caution you that you may really be setting yourself up for a huge disappointment. I mean, you are building up expectation...dreaming/ thinking about it all the time.Chances are it's not going to be at all the way the media portrays it....Your expectations could be really detrimental to your marriage. Not only that, but as Muslims we should try to purify our thoughts and let our lives revolve around God and Islam- not our desires.

So what can you do about that?

Well, our minds are like sponges and they soak up what we give them. If you're watching t.v., reading romantic books, listening to hiphop/music...you're bound to be thinking of sex.  But if you:

- listen to an Islamic lecture a day.....www.halaltube.com
- read more Qur'an- its translation- its tafsir- etc. Check out Bayyinah's tafsir : http://bayyinah.com/media/
- read Islamic magazines - they're so much more interesting these days! Like: http://www.sisters-magazine.com/
- so you're interested in marriage- why don't you try reading about the differences in communication between men and women? Men Are From Mars, Women are From Venus? Or learning more about what your Islamic duties are regarding marriage?
- try joining a fun Islamic girl's forum (e.g. z12.invisionfree.com/MuslimSistersUnite/index.php)
- have a project/goal that you're trying to reach- whether it's a charity project or anything else...
-You can try blogging (it's fun/challenging, lol), graphic designing (check out easelandink.forumotion.com- a Muslim sister's site that will help teach it you to make awesome graphics), gardening (well, if possible), drawing/painting, writing short stories (we need more Muslim writers who voice the Muslim girl's opinions!), etc.
- You can even become a 'movie director'- you know those short videos that teach people a 'dua' to say or something like that? You can try to make one! Have you used Windows Movie Maker/DVD Maker? It should be on your computer :D

you won't be thinking about it, anymore!

And....the most awesome thing about these kinda activities is that you can actually 'turn' them into ibadahs if you have the right intention! Like if you design graphics to spread dawah, not only will you be doing something fun and interesting and that will take your mind off of it, but you might make someone interested in Islam! Same thing with writing stories..

and yes, I know you said you tried fasting, but what you gotta do is try fasting and also fill up your day with activities ^ :)

I hope this helps, inshaAllah.

Lots of love,
P.S. If you haven't already do check out our "Grey's Anatomy Addict Post

7 wonderful sprinkely thoughts:

TheOneWhoNeedsReminders April 25, 2011 at 4:50 AM  

DLA - I love you! :D These are some really great tips :)

Is-za April 25, 2011 at 8:54 AM  

LIttle Auntie, you rock.

All the regards,

Is-za

http://furiouslyfabmuslim.blogspot.com/

M4D April 25, 2011 at 8:55 AM  

You completely right about this world, especially the west, bombarding us with sex. It's crazy! Disney who use to be my BFF deceived me! I learn't about their subliminal messages a while ago and couldn't believe it! But sis you know what I found out really works, even though I slip sometimes, may Allah help us all, that if we honestly distance ourselves from their messages we won't have time to think of the haraam they bombbard us with. I use to watch a lot of TV shows, and when I would watch them I would sometimes have bad thoughts and it drove me crazy. Alhumduliah when I gave certain TV shows and MUSIC (which turns your heart away from things to do with Islam) I never EVER had those thought. ALSO, if you live in the West ask your parents if you can get the international satellite that well allow you to watch all those brillant Islamic shows the East gets! I've been begging my parents and inshaAllah we will be getting it in a week or two!

Read Islamic related books like books by Umm Zakiyyah! She is amazing MashaAllah. My sister order her books and at first didn't want to read them, but when I did I found htat they are AMAZING, they will lift your Imann inshaAllah! I She just wrote a new one, and this time I was first to order it online and this Easter weekend when they deliver no mail is driving me insane! check out her site: http://ummzakiyyah.com/ I would start with "If I should speak"!

Also the Aunties are right about Islamic lectures. If you take the bus to school and have an Ipod fill it with good Islamic lectures on what your interested in! Hijab, the hereafter, day of judgement, quran, history of Palestine [My favourite :)]...anything! Here's a good link for downloads: http://www.kalamullah.com/lectures.html

Also look through the Quran and let it soften your heart. Find the ayahs that speak to you and lift your Imaan. Post them on your walls for reminders!

And at the moment my favoutite lectures are by sheiek Mohammad Elshinawy. May Allah reward him with jannatul firdaus! All sisters who wear the Hijab or don't should listen to his lecture to veil or not to veil! Here's a link to his lectures!http://tawheednyc.com/mohammadelshinawy.html

I'm not sure what grade your in but if your school has an MSA or a ton of Muslimahs surround yourself with them! I just finished my first year of Uni and I found so many good sisters who helped me keep my Iman intact, May allah reward them! And of courses these Aunties also helped me so much! And I also love the website "I got it covered" check it out as well! http://www.igotitcovered.org/

I think I might be dragging on, but the list of ideas the Aunites gave are great! I gave up my facebook a long time ago for my Youtube page! And as bad as my video making might be (I've only done a couple) I love it! And I've meet many sisters on it who are great! And no-one knows who I 'really' am lol ;)

InshaAllah everything goes well with you sister. Love love LOVE,
M4D

Uri Fatimah,  April 25, 2011 at 8:59 AM  

Thank you for questioner who openly asked this question:)
Well, I read exactly same story in Korea.
She was a high school student, and couldn't even concentrate on study because of sexual thinking. Like some making-out scenes in movies.

I think it is not sex addiction or something. Just for some reason one's thinking attach on thinkng something strongly. and those symptoms are commonly found in unmarried young students. So don't feel alone. I hope I provided helpful advise. Assalam alykum

sister,  April 25, 2011 at 7:31 PM  

THANK YOU LOADS SISTERS for the replies!i'm quite overwhelmed by all responses. really put a smile to my face. this problem has made me feel very down lately and i dont like how it affects my life. maybe it's the tv and movies that ive been watching so will try to stay away from it and do something else instead. ill defo try the tips given by all of you and see if it works inshallah.im giving it few weeks to months and if it progressively affects my life then ill really consider getting professional help.keep me in your duas inshallah.i pray that HE rewards all of you for your advices.

Little Auntie April 26, 2011 at 1:03 AM  

awwww- thank you ladies!! You guys rock, too, hehe =)

M4D- ma'shaAllah, GREAAAAAT advice. I wanna see your videos! Send me a msg with them- so I can put them up and pass them around, inshaAllah ...more ajr for you :)

Sister, I think that's a good plan! It's great that you're being so proactive about this :)

Lady of the Ozarks May 7, 2011 at 11:14 AM  

That is a great answer you guys. :-)

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Asalamu aialkum!
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