Relationships from Addiction to Authenticity: Hope and Healing for Co-Sex Addiction


Relationships from Addiction to Authenticity is a 12-step spiritual recovery guide written by two survivors of—and experts in—co-sex addiction and is an advocate for restoring the Sacred Feminine Voice that has been muted through co-sex addiction. Sharing their own personal journeys toward renewal and the stories of other women who have tackled the diseases of sex addiction and co-sex addiction, Claudine Pletcher and Sally Bartolameolli, M.Ed., shed light on what you can do to ...

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Relationships from Addiction to Authenticity is a 12-step spiritual recovery guide written by two survivors of—and experts in—co-sex addiction and is an advocate for restoring the Sacred Feminine Voice that has been muted through co-sex addiction. Sharing their own personal journeys toward renewal and the stories of other women who have tackled the diseases of sex addiction and co-sex addiction, Claudine Pletcher and Sally Bartolameolli, M.Ed., shed light on what you can do to heal the shame that binds you and offer practical advice on:

  • Honoring the Feminine Voice to learn to love and respect yourself
  • How to set boundaries, honor your intuition, and demand to be heard
  • How to create authentic relationships and sustain them for a lifetime
  • How to experience authentic intimacy and rewire tainted perceptions of sex and sexuality
  • How to define and transfer a new relationship model to your children and loved ones

Through partaking in this 12-step recovery process you will, once and for all, stop objectifying and betraying yourself and handing yourself over to your own or another's addiction. In the process of embracing this spiritual program, you can finally experience an authentic connection that begins from within with yourself and others.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780757307461
  • Publisher: Health Communications, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/29/2008
  • Pages: 264
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.80 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Claudine Pletcher is in recovery from co-sex addiction and has been able to transform her marriage from one of dysfunction to one of recovery and authentic love. She mentors other recovering women and speaks regularly on sex addiction and co-sex addiction.

Sally Bartolameolli, M.Ed. is a certified Shadow Work™ facilitator and health counselor trainer at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and at Columbia University. Her personal 12-step journey enabled her to lead and teach seminars, weekend retreats, and workshops all over the country, focused on addictions, 12-step recovery, and the healing empowerment of women.

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Read an Excerpt

Addiction,* according to The Consolidated Webster Encyclopedia Dictionary, is defined as 'the act of devoting or giving up of one's self to a practice.' The sex addict is addicted to sex for a fix,* and the co-sex addict is addicted to the sex addict and the relationship. A co-sex addict may not only give her body, but may also give her time, emotional energy, financial resources, creativity, or her very soul over to her sex addict to fill the emptiness inside.

In our culture, we often hear about alcohol, drug addiction, eating disorders, workaholics, violence, gambling problems, and a host of other compulsive-addictive behaviors. The prevalence of sex addiction has now captured our attention. Computer pornography, rape, incest, molestation by religious officials, exhibitionism, prostitution, child pornography, and multiple affairs are all examples of sex addiction. The use of sex to avoid being responsible for one's own needs or feelings, or to medicate or cover up one's feelings of any sort, involves sex and co-sex addiction. The sex addict may use one or any variety of these various sources for his fix. This may or may not include using the relationship for sex in order to fix his feelings.

With each occurrence of sexual acting out* and sex addiction, there is the presence of co-sex addiction. Co-sex addicts are the individuals who are willing, either consciously or unconsciously, to give themselves over to another's addiction and be used to provide the fix. This is a co-sex addict's way to attempt to fill her internal emptiness by 'hoping' to solidify, create, or mend a relationship. This is how she gets her fix.

When addiction and the addictive cycle* is present in one's life, getting a fix from the addiction or addict becomes the center of one's life and energy. (Both individuals 'give up themselves,' as the Webster dictionary defined addiction, to practice their sex addiction and co-sex addiction.) It fills the space of what could be an authentic/healthy relationship with an obsessive-compulsive drive to fill the cravings and get that fix. Addictive behavior repels intimacy and an authentic relationship.

Beginning Co-Sex Addiction Recovery
Most women come into healing and recovery from co-sex addiction because of the discovery of their partner's sex addiction and actions pertaining to it. Sometimes it is about someone else's addiction close to them, such as a brother, father, or friend. Initially, we think that the trouble is the other person or the relationship itself. However, what one learns over time during recovery from co-sex addiction is that the source of the dysfunction is not in the relationship with others, but in the relationship with oneself. Before one can have an authentic relationship with another, one must have an authentic relationship with oneself.
Authentic relationship with oneself is about knowing our herstory/history (family of origin work*). Once we know this, we grieve the loss of what we often thought was a happy childhood. We embrace the reality of how we were hurt and set up* to be addicts/co-addicts with dysfunctional relationships. This is why we must look at any addiction that is in our lives. We will find that the co-sex/sex addiction we live with today was set up through our parents, extended family, or primary caregivers in our family of origin. This brings us into reality and eventually forgiveness of ourselves and our abusers/offenders.* Our family tree will be imprinted with the gifts of our recovery, and this will give birth to a profound spiritual healing for generations previous to us and generations to come.

In co-sex addiction recovery, we begin to develop tools to distinguish when our past hurts get triggered.* This tells us what old herstory/trauma is and what our present reality is. Recovery also provides a step-by-step process to assist in distinguishing automatic behaviors.* These old behaviors from the past lose their power, and we are free to choose behaviors based on our values today.

©2008. Claudine Pletcher, Sally Bartolameolli. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Relationships from Addiction to Authenticity. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442

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Table of Contents

Foreword   John Bradshaw     vii
Preface     xi
What Is Co-Sex Addiction?     1
Healthy Family Systems     31
The Core of Co-Sex Addiction     39
Shame Versus Empowerment     51
Trusting and Embracing Feelings     67
Body Image and Dysfunctional Eating Versus Healthy Self-Care     75
Addiction/Money Dysfunction Versus Abundance     81
Religious Addiction Versus Healthy Spirituality     89
Isolation Versus Mutually Empowering Connections with Other Women     95
Characteristics of Authentic Relationships and Recovery     101
Co-Sex Addiction Resources for Recovery     107
Stories of Authentic Recovery and Powerful Serenity     127
In Closing     171
Co-Sex Addiction Resource Guide     173
Glossary     195
Recommended Reading     207
Acknowledgments     209
Index     213
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2009

    I saw myself all over this book and it finally made since to me!!

    This book explains the other side of sex addiction in a way that made since to me. The experince, strength and hope of the stories these women tell is so couragous and gives hope to people who are still living in the bondage and pain of co-sex addiction. I know after reading this book that there is a way to recover and become healthy again. Thank you both for writing this book. SR

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 27, 2008

    I am personally well aquainted with this topic and found this book very inaccurate. I would not recommend it to anyone, especially someone seeking recovery from co-sex addiction.

    The book I would recommend is Mending a Shattered Heart - A Guide for Partners of Sex Addicts Edited by Stefanie Carnes Ph.D. Mending A Shattered Heart is well researched and I highly recommend it to anyone that has been affected by another person's compulsive sexual behavior. Many people are affected by another's sex addiction not just the female, married partner as is put forth in the Pletcher & Bartolameolli book. Also, what did the editor get paid to do for their book? There are so many errors I found it to be very distracting.

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