Disclaimer: Mature Audience only
Part 1: Conversation with a Hooker: Adultery, Sex Addiction, and Muslims

When it comes to the subject of sexual addiction, the question that arises in most minds is, “Why do men seek women other than their wives?” Unfortunately, the most common misconception is, “his wife must be insufficient that's why he had to resort to other women.” While slightly more considerate people take the blame from the existing wife and blame it on the lack of multiple wives, “that's why Muslim men are allowed to have four wives so they can assuage their sexual desires, impossible to be satisfied by one woman alone.”

Let me frankly ask all the readers: “Is there any ex-sex addict whose addiction was cured by adding more wives in his life?”

and

“What solution do you offer to female sex addicts?!”

As for the “insufficient wife”, while I acknowledge that lack of an enthused, sexually active wife, or one who denies sex to her husband, is one of the many reasons why some Muslim men might indulge in illegitimate sexual intimacy, it is neither the only nor the main reason for their infidelity.

To better understand the question at hand, let me divide the reasons into 2 categories:

  1. Legitimate Marital Discord
  2. Sexual Disorder/Addiction

Legitimate Marital Discord:

Since this category is not within the paradigm of the series, I will briefly summarize this group into two main legitimate marital issues causing infidelity.

Denial of Intimacy by Wife

When a wife denies sex to her husband, whether regularly or occasionally, he might seek his satisfaction elsewhere.
Briefly, the reasons why a woman may deny sex to her husband:

  • Husband's failure of pleasing his wife with an orgasm
  • Lack of sexual interest due to improper introduction to sex, like 'sex is bad', 'dirty women enjoy sex' etc.
  • Some mishap associated with sexual intimacy, like childhood molestation, marital rape especially on the wedding night etc.
  • Sexual Anorexia
  • Channeling out anger related to other issues in the marriage through denying intimacy to her husband
  • Or there could be other reasons…

Lack of Emotional Attachment with the Wife

According to studies conducted by M. Gary Neuman, marriage counselor, 70 percent of men cheat because they were emotionally dissatisfied in their marriage.
Not to justify adultery or blame women but relaying actual reasons quoted by men on why they were emotionally distant from their wives:

    • Lack of appreciation by the wives
    • Husband felt he could never score high with his wife
    • Lack of wife's interest in husband's life, his job, or his interests
    • Lack of respect from the wife

Normally these legitimate marital issues cause a man to have an affair and not a one-night stand with some random woman. These men usually develop an affair with a colleague, or a family friend or an old school fellow where they feel physically satisfied and emotionally content. Whoever the other woman may be, these affairs can be physical or emotional affairs and may turn long term.
Since Legitimate Marital Discord is a separate topic of discussion, insha'Allah, MM will have a different series on this in the near future.

To seek other women outside of marriage due to a man's sexual addiction problem, has little, if anything, to do with the success or happiness of the marriage. In fact, in many cases, an addict is happily married and the problems in the marriage are a result of his addiction not the other way around.

What is Sexual Addiction?

The best way to describe this is: When a healthy relationship with the spouse is substituted with a harmful and sinful relationship. It is an “adaptive attempt to regulate mood and tolerate stressors through the abuse of intensely stimulating sexual fantasy and behavior… It is a dysfunctional adult response to innate personality, character or emotional regulatory deficits, as well as a reaction to early attachment disorders, abuse and trauma.

According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Psychiatric Disorders, “…a pattern of repeated sexual relationships involving a succession of lovers who are experienced by the individual only as things to be used.”

Also, “compulsive searching for multiple partners, compulsive fixation on an unattainable partner, compulsive masturbation, compulsive love relationships and compulsive sexuality in a relationship.”

Depending on a Muslim's spiritual level—who might avoid falling into complete zina—this sexual disorder can vary from being a complete addict to occasionally falling into forbidden sexual activities which may include:

      • Pornography
      • Cyber sex (chat rooms, video sex etc.)
      • Phone Sex
      • Massage Parlors (receive a sensual massage with or without sex—again depending on a man's level of faith)
      • In/Out Calls for sexual favors e.g. oral sex, hand job, massage etc. (with or without the actual act of penetration)

Excuses & Justifications*:

Of the excuses used to justify their behavior, sex addicts often say:

    • If I don't do this, the pressure builds up
    • I am oversexed and have to meet my needs
    • What she [wife] doesn't know, won't hurt her
    • If only my wife would be more [sexually] responsive
    • Men are like animals
    • Men are more sexual than females
    • Cybersex is not “real”
    • With the stress I am under, I needed a “release”
    • I didn't want to “make love” to my wife, I just needed to lay a woman
    • I can't help it, we live in a hypersexual society
    • Internet chat rooms/emails don't hurt anyone, it's just a “mind game”
    • Women are the greatest fitnah for men, what can I do? I'm just a man!
    • If only I had a second wife…
    • I need a variety of women
    • I avoid falling into the major act [major sin] and I repent every time…For a detail study of this, please refer to: Out of the Shadows by Patrick Carnes, PhD Pg 17

What makes someone a hypersexual?

This, indeed, is a complex subject and unfortunately there isn't any established “scientific” reason attributing to a single cause. It is more likely a combination of a build-up of conditions over time. The following are some common causes of sex addiction, but this list cannot be all-inclusive:

a. Wrong Introduction to Sex:

During childhood, they were introduced to sex in a very lewd, ethically wrong and morally corrupt way. Hence the very conception of sex was originated in a very degraded fashion causing their brain to link sexual desires with immoral actions from the very beginning.
Top that with a complete lack of “Islamic” sex education from the parents and/or from the community leaders, their concept of sex never gets rectified. Hence, they may always link sex or sexual desires to something being vulgar. Since a spouse is someone not only bonded through “holy” bond of marriage, but one who is pure and respected, an addict may mentally separate the intimacy with the spouse and the need of having an illegitimate sexual activities with “indecent” people to satisfy “impure” sexual desires [though almost all addicts have confessed that there is never any satisfaction through the illegitimate intimacy, in fact it always back fires with the sense of shame and disappointment].
b. Family Dysfunction:  
Research has shown that majority of sex addicts have complained about growing up in an emotionally distant family.
Dr. Patrick Carnes' research indicates that 87 percent of the families of sex addicts included more than one addict in the home and a majority of them grew up in a rigid family system or a disengaged family system or both rigid and disengaged family systems. This study implies that a lot of sexual addicts come from families where their emotional needs were not met.

Of all the cases I've dealt with, husbands had grown up in a very distant and emotionally cut-off families. They all complained of having a very strict and rigid father whose only function was to provide for the family while the mother took care of the kitchen and the house but never tried to communicate with children about their issues and problems.
c. Power Struggle:
Growing up, getting involved in inappropriate sexual activities was their way of releasing stress or showing power over other people [women] esp. when encountered with a difficult situation at school or among friends.

In one incident, a man grew up seeing prostitutes to receive oral sex every time he felt the need to empower another person. Later, in his married life he couldn't have his wife satisfy him through oral sex since it was “symbolic” for him and he was emotionally attached to his wife. Hence, he continued to see prostitutes for oral sex just to satisfy his need of empowering women.

Females may use their charms/bodies to seduce other men and feel empowered upon receiving the attention from men.

d. Objectifying Women:
Once introduced to sex in a morally corrupted way, these adolescents were introduced to using women as objects of pleasure, not human beings, without any emotional attachment.

It is essential to note that, in our times, those who were not necessarily introduced to sex through prostitution or porn, can still learn to objectify women through TV, Magazines, Songs, Internet etc.

It's a way for addicts to escape physical, emotional or sexual abuse. “Emotionally for the sex addicts, sex is not really about sex but a vehicle to provide an illusion of affirmation, a veneer of control and connection in a safe environment. The sexual “fix” has become the source of pleasure and avoids unpleasant feelings, a coping mechanism to fight stress, work difficulties, interpersonal psychological and emotional problems.”

f. Thrill & Excitement:
“Experts say there is a strong link between sexual addiction and risk-taking. Even though the risk of danger is clear…”
The excitement of being discreet and leading a secret life may appeal to some individuals and may continue through their adult life, except that at first they had to be discreet from their parents and now from their spouses.
“The riskier it gets, the more adrenaline they get. Like all addictions, the more they get, the more they need.”

g. The Chemical Imbalance:
Studies show that food, abused drugs and sexual interests share a common pathway within the brains' survival and reward systems.An addict may have conditioned his/her brain with the pleasure of illicit sex as being same as satisfying one with food when hungry, especially when growing up parents neglected to explicitly teach their children the seriousness of indulging in forbidden sexual activities.

“When people have sex, their bodies release dopamine, and this chemical tends to make the person feel happy, warm and powerful. Some people find this dopamine response simply fascinating, and they will do anything to achieve that feeling again. Over time, their bodies adjust to these high levels of dopamine, and it takes more of the chemical to bring on the positive feeling. The addict may need to have more sex, or different types of sex, in order to feel a dopamine response. The addiction begins to escalate. It's important to remember that this dopamine pathway is also activated in other forms of addiction, including heroin addiction. It's a strong and powerful chemical, and it can make people do things they wouldn't normally do.”

True Addiction or Not?

However, it must be noted that there is a huge debate amongst psychologists as to whether sexual addiction is a true addiction or not. I will discuss that more in detail in next part insha'Allah when we cover the cures and treatments.

 Raise your Children Wisely

Before I end this part, I sincerely want to advise all the parents to please take a moment and evaluate your parenting methods.

In far majority cases, sex addicts (apart from legitimate marital discords) draw the root of their problem to their childhood or adolescent years. Parent please:

  • Build communication with your children
  • Understand the environment our kids are growing up in
  • Be friendly even if you have to sacrifice some level of respect you receive from your kids.
  • Be wise and be patient
  • Be gentle, and be understanding
  • Talk, Talk and Talk to them about anything and everything
  • Make lots and lots of du'a for your kids

In my parenting series, I have advised parents to build an open and extremely frank communication with their children. I've also emphasized the importance of providing sexual education at home with the help of Qur'anic verses offering a pure and uncorrupted concept of sex and sexuality.

Though we can never guarantee a sin-proof life even with best parenting, we can for sure minimize the “slip-factors” for our children and, most importantly, we can fulfill our obligations as parents. The rest we leave with Allah azza wa jall while supplicating for our children's protection and for their guidance.

To be continued in next part:

  • Cybersex Revolution
  • True Addiction or Not
  • Role of Shaytaan and Sex Addiction
  • Cures and Treatment

Additional Resources

http://www.sexualrecovery.com/blog/sexual-addiction-sexual-objectification.php

http://billherring.info/atlanta_counseling/sexual-addiction-and-the-3-second-rule

[1] http://www.oprah.com/relationships/Why-Men-Cheat_2/1

[1] http://psychcentral.com/lib/hypersexuality-symptoms-of-sexual-addiction/00011488

[1] For a detail study of this, please refer to: Our of the Shadows by Partick Carnes. Pg 17

[1] http://freelanceatwork.hubpages.com/hub/What-Causes-Sexual-Addiction

[1] http://www.oprah.com/oprahshow/The-Truth-About-Cheating-Book

[1] http://www.sexualrecovery.com/blog/sexual-addiction-sexual-objectification.php

http://billherring.info/atlanta_counseling/sexual-addiction-and-the-3-second-rule

[1] http://psychcentral.com/lib/what-is-sexual-addiction/000748

[1] http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/182473.php

[1] http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2008/09/01/another-kind-of-addict.html

[1] http://www.interventionsupport.com/sex-addiction/

43 Responses

  1. The Salafi Feminist

    Glad to see an Islamic response to the serious topic of sex addiction amongst Muslims… especially since you’re pointing out and focusing on issues that many Muslims prefer to ignore, or myths that they cling to in a sad attempt to justify these sins.
    Can’t wait for the rest of the series, inshaAllah.

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  2. Aryel Lanes

    I’m not married yet (I’m only 19), but at least to me, there are NO excuses for cheating on your wife. NONE! This is disgunting. If a man does that, he lives in a fake marriage, with a FAKE LOVE. One who truly loves his wife will NEVER do it, no matter how the situation may be. You’re not satisfied with your wife? Better the divorce ! At least you won’t be cheating on someone who really loves you. It’s so sad to play with people’s emotions… It should be a crime!

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    • Umm Reem

      Someone who has never dealt with issues like these will obviously think black and white like you…
      unfortunately the reality is a bit different. THere are people who love their spouses and yet fall into this grave mistake for several reasons, men and women.
      The good news is that it is curable but the challenge in the marriage is whether or not one is capable of forgiving his/her spouse.

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  3. Hayat

    Great ! MashaAllah lots of lesson may Allah reward you for bringing this important subject for Umma .

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  4. Zaheer

    Salaam,

    It’s interesting that the article starts off with a tone of gender neutrality, hinting that sexual addiction can be prevalent amongst females as well as males, and maybe more often than we think,

    However, when the cause of sexual addiction are discussed – suddenly all the “Excuses & Justifications” are from the male perspective. And then, when one takes the article as a whole, it’s biased towards the view that men are generally the ones who cheat on their wives, and of those who have adulterous relationships, men are likelier to do so due to sexual addiction.

    Of course, the truth is that it’s 50-50, roughly speaking, because for a man to be adulterous he needs a woman with whom to be adulterous with. Sure, often married men will have adulterous relationships with unmarried women – however, besides the reverse being the case at times, there’s still the fact that the unmarried women are full partners in the infidelity, and their motivations for partaking in the relationship are left unanalyzed. We’re excluding non-heterosexual infidelity here as it makes up a very small amount.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m under no illusions as to the differing nature of men and women, in almost every regard. Sometimes I wonder how it’s possible we belong to the same species:-) Allah knows best, and he has indicated in His Qur’an that “..the male is not like the female” [3:36]{http://quran.com/3/36}

    I realize that large parts of the article are based on the studies quoted – and the author is not really “pushing” for any particular take on the matter; just presenting facts. Insha-Allah the next installment can provide a more balanced picture.

    May Allah instill within all of us the sanctity of marriage, Insha-Allah. Ameen

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  5. Hyde Head Down

    Well a lot has happened to me since the the first article came out. Most of it haarm and probably put a check on on one or two of the above bullet points. Can’t wait for this damnation to finish once and for all….

    Can’t wait for you to write Role of Shaytaan and Sex Addiction since I am so sure the the occult plays a big role in this.

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  6. Fatima Ariadne

    Masha Allah the article, can’t wait for the continuation! I read in book Women Limbo, something with title like that. There’s a research by the author that women are equally sexually responsive like their men counterpart. I think it’s the “sins” of our ummah perhaps due to culture, we just conveniently give false stereotype like “only dirty women enjoy sex”, “men are men, it’s their thing”. It’s like men are easily “forgiven” when it comes to sex addiction, but women? They’ll be blamed and shamed. While in Islam itself, guarding chastity is commanded to both men and women,not just one of them. So both genders need to be addressed too! [OK Sorry for ranting! :p]

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  7. Abdullah

    Alright. I grew up in an emotionally distant family. We don’t look at eachother while talking. Sometimes my mom/dad talk to me with their backs towards me or facing in some other direction.

    Does this mean im going to be a sex addict ?
    (Im not married but ive been a porn addict for many years …Not anymore inshaAllah)

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    • Umm Reem

      Abdullah, not *every* person who grew up in an emotionally distant family becomes a sex addict.

      May Allah protect you. Maybe you can share with us how you controlled your addiction.

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      • Abdullah

        I was first exposed to it when I was 14 and it was by accident (I was randomly changing channels). It always bothered me and I tried to quit and failed several times.
        Im 23 now.

        …..I really don’t know how I got off it . Maybe because I made sincere dua last Ramadan…lots and lots of dua.

        ….Also I take extra care to not look at anything that would stimulate my desires.
        …..I stopped being alone with any device that has internet access.
        (Im still afraid ill go back to that filth , that’s why I don’t have internet on my cell phone)
        ……I rarely watch TV.
        …… Ive programmed my mind to believe theres no way im going back to it except if im alone ……so Im never alone with any access to pornographic material.

        From my previous failed attempts to quit , I had learned that once im off pornography for couple of months ….My strength to fight my nafs becomes stronger and stronger …. And even if I relapsed ….I never gave in without a fight ….

        Please make dua that Allah keeps me and all the young brothers/sisters
        steadfast and patient.

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      • Abdullah

        Ive also tried joining the “purify your gaze” program by brother zain Ramadan to help people quit porn addiction. But they charged a lot and I was only a student. <<could be useful for anyone who wishes to quit.

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  8. Roberto

    Congratulation for the article. It’s the very first time that I’ve found several well-treated psychology topics by muslims. Usually it isn’t rooted in islamic culture and I ever felt the lack! Alhamdollilah, well done!

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  9. M.G.H

    Interesting !! I have learned a new term : Sexual Anorexia , not really sure what it means.
    People use Sexual Addiction as a way to escape from having a real relationship with someone because real relationships get messy and stressful.

    Also sex is used as a way to escape from dealing with your own true feelings. Many people who engage in this type of behavior have been raped and or molested.

    Also for men the need to perform can be overwhelming, they find quickies with a prostitute less stressful.

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    • Umm Reem

      I am traveling at the moment but once I get home (in 2 weeks inshaAllah), I can better explain Sexual Anorexia as my books are at home and I don’t want to misquote Dr. Carnes…

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  10. Siraaj

    Also, can you comment on the difference between an addict and a “recreational” user? Meaning, in the same way there are people addicted to cigarettes, drugs, and alcohol, there are also recreational users, social users, and so on. There are gambling addicts and there are people who gamble occasionally.

    Likewise, where is the line drawn for sexual / porn addiction vs the “recreational” user (which we still acknowledge is a problem). Sometimes I feel as I read material and discussion from Muslim authors, every problem of a sexual nature is an addiction. When we talk about pornography, we always seem to talk about it as an addiction rather mentioning the possibility that it is a bad habit that happens to not be an addiction.

    Siraaj

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    • Umm Reem

      it is a very good question br. siraaj. I was planning to discuss this in the part of “True Addiction or Not” in the next series.

      But in a nutshell a habit is frequent repetition of something to the point that one’s brain becomes programmed to perform it automatically. An addiction is a compulsive need of a certain thing or substance to the body. A habit is easier to control and change without any professional help but addiction needs a lot more effort and commitment to control and, in most cases, requires professional help.
      However, a habit can easily turn into an addiction.

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    • Megan Wyatt

      The distinction is that an addiction is something that is having a detrimental effect on your life, and continues to take over having major consequences.

      A man is looking at pornography at work even though if caught he can get fired, has gotten caught even, and has a warning..

      A man plans much of his day around a ritual related to pornography and it’s an ingrained pattern he cannot quit no matter how many times he has tried.

      A woman is losing sleep staying up extremely late in chat rooms, and it’s affecting her focus in school, but she keeps going back over and over. Her grades are suffering, she might fail exams, but she cannot quit even though she told herself she would…

      A man is married, but instead of being intimate with his wife, says he has work to do, stays up late, waits until she sleeps, and then acts out looking at pornography. He has lost interest in his wife….

      These are all real examples, and the difference is the consequence in life.

      Unfortunately, pornography is such a slippery slope, that so many people are unable to maintain it as just a “bad habit” as you mentioned, and it continues to spiral downwards over time.

      And some people think it’s just a bad habit, and in fact, have other things that make it an addiction – so until someone speaks with someone regarding why it’s not out of their life one hundred percent, as it should be, they may not know the difference.

      Lots of Muslims are in denial how bad things really are – until things get to intense, everything starts falling apart. I hope more people don’t wait that long.

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  11. ZAI

    Good article…
    I dunno if sex addiction is an actual disease,or more a symptom of another
    underlying disease…like perhaps Obessive Compulsive Disorder. Whatever, the
    cause it’s definitely a problem though.

    One thing I’d like to add though, is that sometimes…or often…it IS the fact
    that a person is dissatisfied with a partners physical appearance. This is something
    that cannot be totally denied. I wouldn’t say it’s the case in the majority of cases,
    but it is a factor for some people.

    In fact in the Muslim community w/ our arranged
    marriages and the priorities that are pushed, it might be MORE of a problem than
    in the general population. A lot of Muslims might be trying to live the ideal of “marrying for
    deen”, or pleasing their parents choices or their culture giving disproportionate importance
    to money as opposed to other things when searching for a spouse. This can backfire in
    the marriage if there is no sexual attraction as a result. There HAS to be a minimum level
    of physical attraction…or it is a great temptation outside of marriage and that unfulfilled desire
    will be sought out with the haraam.

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    • Umm Reem

      This is something that cannot be totally denied. I wouldn’t say it’s the case in the majority of cases,
      but it is a factor for some people.

      when you study the pattern of the addicts, it is usually *them* who have issues. When I was attending the sessions with the sex therapist, she emphasized this again and again that an addict could be married to the most beautiful looking person in the world, and will still look for other sexual partners.
      IN addition, she also emphasized that almost all her clients, esp. those who see prostitutes, have always described as the prostitutes ugly or less attractive than their spouses…

      I’m sure there are minority cases like this but we usually look at the majority. Besides, the pattern of struggle and shame that an addict goes through, they would rather divorce and marry someone else than go through the pain they do in their lives if it could solve their problem. And Allah knows best…

      As I said before, when the interest in others occur because of a legit marital problem (and not being physically attracted to the spouse is a legit problem), it usually turn into a long term affairs with colleague/friends/family rather than a one-night-stand with a total stranger.

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      • ZAI

        Salaam Umm Reem,
        I do not doubt the overall statistics you’ve cited or arguments you’ve presented concerning addicts or people with compulsive behavior. The question is whether all or most people engaged in these activities are addicts or simply immoral. The actual percentage given to the number of legitimate addicts amongst people who engage in these activities over-all would be interesting to ascertain. As siraaj alluded to above, a person might simply form a habit which is seen as an addiction, but is just a preference that’s become frequent as a choice.

        Regarding the rest of my comments, they apply to that group that isn’t addicted but simply doing these things out of choice. I bring up Muslims specifically because the arranged marriage system results in certain unique contexts and paradigms not present in so-called loved marriages. Family involvement, socio-cultural pressure/norms and even religious priorities shift the playing-field as it were. There are for example many Muslim women who are NOT attracted to certain proposals at the physical level, but pressured by families to consent for status, money, etc. Likewise for men. There are also other issues such as men losing attraction for wives who’ve had children or have become out of shape, and vice versa.

        I would not say these are “majority” issues, but they’re definitely an issue for much more than a fringe minority that can be dismissed. I also wouldn’t say there is a “problem” with the partner with whom fault is being found. It’s a matter of perspective.

        My dad tells a funny story about a man in Qandahar in the 60′s when he was growing up: He was known as Hassan e Baqaal(Hassan the Grocer). He was getting married and at the wedding they got to the part of the Afghan ceremony where the bride and groom sit under a cloth canopy held up by the elder women of the family, with a Qur’an held over their heads as well. The bride and groom then get their first look at each other through a mirror shown to each of them. It’s called aine mushaf. Anyways…Hassan e Baqaal looked in the mirror and let out a scream that even the jinn probably heard and ran at the speed of light outta there…lol. He was never seen again though…because his family had wanted that marriage and he’d shamed them by fleeing, and if he ever showed his face again his own family would have punished him for it.

        Now, this story is of course not the norm in the States. It has a rural and pre-modern context. But the point is a lot of our young people are pressured into marriages they don’t find ideal. I cannot discount that when I look at issues of marriages going badly, including those where adultery, sexual promiscuity, etc. are taking place. Getting out of marriages is not necessarily so easy in our immigrant communities either…

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      • Umm Reem

        wa alaikum assaalm ZAI,

        Yes there is a different between someone simply giving into the temptations of shaytaan and one suffering through an addiction. And as I said, I will discuss this in the next part of ‘real addiction or not’.
        however, you must understand that it is not an easy discussion, even the psychologists differ whether or not sex addiction is truly an addiction or not…

        As for this issue among the Muslims, I agree with you. I wish we could do a survey among the Muslims but we are still trying to get the suffering Muslims to open up and seek help. The intense sense of shame and the guilt of sin keep them from seeking help and as a consequence they keep drowning deeper and in many cases either their marriages break or their spouses suffer along with them.

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      • Aisha

        “not being physically attracted to the spouse is a legit problem”

        Oh my God. That makes me scared because I am a 23 yro girl who’s gonna get married soon, and I’m…not very pretty. I’m ugly. I don’t think any man would be attracted to my physical appearance. Even with makeup it’s not much better. I’m really scared he won’t like me, even if I try to be nice. Because men value beauty in a woman, so I’m screwed here :(

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      • HonestMale

        @Aisha: I was about to post something very mean. I had it figured out and all. But then I felt bad. I felt something. My cynicism should not be shared. At the end of the day, marriage is about watching each other’s back and walking carefully — together — towards the grave. There’s nothing else to it. How you look has no bearing when the lights of life go out. In life, during those moments of darkness, can we see anything but moonlit eyes?

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      • Z ebrahim

        @Aisha
        Dearest sister, Alaah created you. He is the best Fashioner. Can we doubt the design of the Most Wise? Trust in Allah and read O Allah beautify my character just as You have beautified me.good character makes brown look gold. Uhibbuki fill ah.

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  12. grace

    The usage of the term” Sexual Anorexia “bothered me as the parent of an anorexic, it is a very serious issue, sometimes life or death.
    Something I did not see mentioned is the idea that people are using Sexual Addiction as way to avoid dealing with their feelings,Gary Zukav’s book Heart of the Soul gives a lot of insight into Sexual Addiction and many other types of addictions.

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    • Umm Reem

      Dr. Partrick Carnes uses the term “Sexual Anorexia” in his book “Facing the Shadows” which is basically a 12-step recovery workbook. I didn’t discuss the details of it because it was out of the scope of this article.

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  13. AM

    Like Yasir Qadhi said in one lecture, there is a good reason why it is prohibited for a woman to withhold sexual intimacy. Additionally, there is nothing worse than a woman who is carrying a baby from extra-marital adultery.

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    • Fritz

      In the West this concept is alien; a woman has no responsibility towards her husband in this regard. Women are free to use intimacy as a bargaining tool within a marriage to try and control the other partner. The emotional disconnect and disastrous results which follow are plain to see. (of course there are other reasons and this does not excuse the other side)

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    • The Salafi Feminist

      Actually, there *is* something worse than a woman pregnant from zina. Riba. Backbiting. Shirk. Or a man who commits zina not just once or twice, but numerous times, who fathers many children from the zina, and yet never repents from it.

      Al-Ghaamidiyyah was a sahabiyyah who was married, who committed zina, who became pregnant from that zina… yet Allah revealed that her repentance was so great that it was sufficient for 70 of the people of Madinah – people such as Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, Ali, Khalid ibn Waleed, Usamah ibn Zaid… etc.

      The stereotypical narrative that women are solely responsible for the sexual behavior of men is not only tired, but incorrect. There are numerous reasons for which men (and women) alike commit zina, and for the most part, the blame falls not on their spouses, but on themselves. I pray that we can soon come to the enlightened realization that Allah holds us all to account individually for our sins, and that therefore there is really no benefit in constantly accusing women of being the reason for which zina is committed.

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  14. amuslim

    It is true some men have high sex drive and that’s ok. The Prophet Muhammad SAW himself saw all of his wives in a single night. It is important for the wife to meet her husband’s needs as it is prohibited not to do that and she must stay chaste when he is not around.

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  15. Brenna

    Men reject their wives just as much, if not more than wives reject their husbands.

    People need to quit acting like its just the men. A lot of men reject their wives for sex, hugs and kisses and will turn around and screw everything BUT their wives and then lie about it.

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  16. Sumaira

    I recently found out my husband was calling escorts. He denies going but I found the address in his phones sat nav as well. He said it was a habit to check where things were. I’m not stupid.
    Anyway I also recently found out I was pregnant the day before I saw the escorts number on husbands phone. Only been married 11 months and totally confused. I thought my husband was madly attracted to me and in love with me. I don’t know how to get over this. I keep visiting the escort sites and looking at these filthy women and what they offer and cry on the realisation I have married a man who from he religious devoted husband I thought he was.

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  17. Raheel

    The key to conquering this problem for men consists of a physical part and a mental part. The physical part is to lower the gaze and maintain a high degree of formality in dealing with women. Only after that, then the mental part is that one has to keep track of where his mind is wandering off to and if he finds that its even approching questionable areas, then immediately stop it in its tracks. One has to continually do this until death approches.

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  18. Aisha

    Also, I agree with some posters here. Most of this article is blaming the wife. Where is the self-restraint of the man? Where are his MORALS? I understand that physical temptation is hard, but I truly believe that if a man has a strong level in spirituality, he can (with dua) overcome them. Obviously his wife and his relationship with his wife plays a huge factor, but I’m just saying that the self-restraint on the part of the man is completely lacking from this article. There’s only so much a woman can do.

    Also – men tend to have affairs with women from work/school (as mentioned in the article). Like the poster above said – men need to keep themselves from becoming too emotionally attached and overly friendly with these women (esp in the West). It’s always best if the man is not working in an environment near women – attractions will become inevitable. Unfortunately this is impossible here in the West.

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  19. Parvez

    It was an interesting article and its related articles are somewhat beneficial for me.

    However i as a 21 yr old have some problems.
    I’m too embarassed to talk about marriage to my family. And my parents will not let me marry till when i’m abt 30.

    i do have problem with this delay since i am struggling for self restraint and have commited too many sins.
    I ask for forgivness from Allah (swt) but i still fall to this related sin and have sinful thoughts.

    I have fasted but i’m still stumbling and i lack that strong determination for self control.

    i dont know what to do. Plz help

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  20. Dan

    This piece assumes that a man’s attraction to anyone/thing other than his wife is pathological. Men just aren’t built that way (women are, at least some of them). A man can love his wife, be committed to her, and screw prostitutes right and left. Or masturbate to porn. Why is this a surprise? In what time in history have men been different?

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    • Parvez Khan

      loyalty is important in a marriage.
      the attraction alone is not a sin.
      but ofcourse adultery is a sin.

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  21. Halima

    what if you are not attracted to your husband…and you have to force yourself to do your wifey duties? he is not financially able but wants to take a second wife…..you are not entirely asexual just not attracted to you husband…any solutions?

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