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Sexual Compulsives Anonymous (SCA) is a twelve-step program for recovery from sexual compulsion.[1] SCA was founded on June 22, 1982 in New York City to address particular issues of sexual compulsion among gay and bisexual men. Information on how it started in Los Angeles in 1973 is at Today, the program is LGBT friendly, open to all sexual orientations and there is an increasing number of women and heterosexual men participating—the majority of members, however, are gay and bisexual men.[2][3][4][5] SCA meetings are most likely to be held in urban areas with larger gay and bisexual male populations. The majority of members are white, but vary in age and socioeconomic background. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop having compulsive sex.[2][3][6]

Sexual recovery plans

File:Recovery plan.jpg

A sample of a (blank) SCA recovery plan document

SCA supports healthy sexual expression and does not expect members to repress their sexuality, which, in extreme cases, is associated with sexual anorexia. Members are encouraged to develop their own definition of sexual sobriety that does not place unreasonable demands on their time or energy, place them in legal jeopardy, or endanger their health.[1] SCA members incorporate their definition of sexual sobriety in what is known as a sexual recovery plan. Sexual recovery plans are modeled on the work of Patrick Carnes, a sexual addiction researcher, building on the practice in Overeaters Anonymous (OA) of members creating individualized "food plans."[2][5]

Sexual recovery plans have three columns: abstinence, high-risk, and recovery—similar to the three circles used in Sex Addicts Anonymous. The sexual recovery plan is used like a blueprint for recovery. The abstinence column includes "bottom-line" behaviors corresponding to relapse and from which the member asks his Higher Power to be freed of. The high-risk column includes behaviors, emotional states, ritualized activities, and situations that make the addict vulnerable to relapse. The recovery column includes positive behaviors that support the addict's wellbeing and meet his or her needs in a healthy manner.[3]

Literature and publications

SCA distributes its own literature, including the primary book used in the fellowship, Sexual Compulsives Anonymous: A Program of Recovery, and several book-length and smaller brochures and pamphlets, such as What About Masturbation?, Q&A: A Guide for Newcomers and Secret Shame.[7] Parts of these brochures are published on the SCA website.[8] SCA also publishes an online journal known as The SCAnner.[6]

SCA developed "The Twenty Questions," an instrument allowing potential members to self-evaluate their sexual compulsivity.[9] The results of this questionnaire correlate with symptoms of prefrontal cortex dysfunction, an area of the brain thought to be relevant to addiction—not only to substances, but also behaviors such as sex and gambling as measured according to the (FrSBe) Frontal Systems Behavior Scale.[10]


  • Following her affair with Bill Clinton, and at the prompting of her psychologist, Monica Lewinsky vowed to stay celibate for one year and attended Sexual Compulsives Anonymous meetings.[11]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Sexual Compulsives Anonymous (1990). A Program of Recovery. New York, NY; Los Angeles, CA: SCA. ISBN 0962796603. OCLC 27338605.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Parker, Jan; Guest, Diana L (1999). "Chapter 3: Choosing the Appropriate 12-Step Program for your Client". The Clinician's Guide to 12-Step Programs: How, When, and Why to Refer a Client. Westport, Connecticut: Auburn House/Greenwood. pp. 41–64. ISBN 0865692785. OCLC 40890897.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Parker, Jan; Guest, Diana (2002). "Chapter 8: The Integration of Psychotherapy and 12-Step Programs". In Carnes, Patrick; Adams, Kenneth M. Clinical Management of Sex Addiction. New York, New York: Psychology Press. pp. 115–124. ISBN 1583913610. OCLC 49312705.
  4. Buxton, Amity P. (2006). "When a Spouse Comes Out: Impact on the Heterosexual Partner". Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity 13 (2): 317–332. doi:10.1080/10720160600897599.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Salmon, Richard F. (1995). "Therapist's Guide to 12-Step Meetings for Sexual Dependencies". Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity 2 (3): 193–213. doi:10.1080/10720169508400081.
  6. 6.0 6.1 "Web Site Review". Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity 7 (1): 147–155.. 2000. doi:10.1080/10720160008400213.
  7. Sexual Compulsives Anonymous (2007-03-26). "Literature & resources". Retrieved 2007-10-22.
  8. Lerza, Linda J; Delmonico, David L (April 2002). "Sexual Compulsivity in the Workplace: Resources for Behavioral Health Providers". Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity: the Journal of Treatment & Prevention 9 (2): 173–183. doi:10.1080/10720160290062248.
  9. Sexual Compulsives Anonymous (2007-03-26). "The Twenty-questions Test". Retrieved 2007-10-22.
  10. Spinella, Marcello (2007). "The Role of Prefrontal Systems in Sexual Behavior". International Journal of Neuroscience 117 (3): 369–385. doi:10.1080/00207450600588980. PMID 17365121.
  11. Sarler, Carol (1999-03-07). "Monica: I'm a sex addict". The People. p. 21. Retrieved 2007-11-22.

External links

de:Sexual Compulsives Anonymous

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