Sponsorship is the missing link for many people in recovery … and especially for sex addicts. Sex addicts are especially prone to isolation and many guys struggle with the willingness to persevere in the ups and downs that occur in sponsor relationships. (I’ll be using male language here, because this was originally written for the 90 Days to Sexual Sanity program … which is for male sexual strugglers.)
I don’t have empirical research to back this up, but I talk to a lot of people about this subject, and continue to get this message: the sex addict who’s actively working with a sponsor is the exception rather than the rule. That’s a big part of the reason why so many people are struggling and not recovering.
In early AA, there were no “walkins.” People didn’t come to the meetings without being sponsored in by someone. AA continues to have a stronger commitment to sponsorship than most sex addiction groups.
This is especially true with church based groups like Celebrate Recovery. In fact, the material I have seen from Celebrate Recovery applies principles of sponsorship to either sponsors or “accountability partners.” Big problem.
If you are focusing your recovery around a relationship with an accountability partner, you are asking for trouble. If you were out in the middle of a lake, struggling to swim and starting to drown, who would you rather have … another guy who’s drowning like you, or someone who’s a strong swimmer? Your accountability partner in the water is just as likely to pull you down into the water with him as he is to pull you to shore. Find someone who is further along than you are, who you can learn from and lean on.