No card find sex
This week, after it became apparent that Weinstein’s pattern of sexual misconduct included sexual assaults, the idea that Weinstein gets to deflect these accusations with feels downright absurd. “This is a very typical psychological defense of people who are initially discovered or caught or held accountable,” said Douglas Braun-Harvey, a sex educator and counselor.“That’s one of the great appeals of the addiction model—it provides the person something outside of themselves to initially place responsibility.It seems unlikely, however, that he will actually be brought to justice: One of the more depressing revelations of this week has been the realization that even the woman who went straight to the police could not hold him accountable.The law likely won’t force accountability on Weinstein.It allows us to classify these kinds of actions as aberrations when in fact they are a part of the human condition, and something we must constantly guard against—in others and in ourselves.
And there are all kinds of reasons why someone would abuse power.
The problem is that he abused his position of influence and forced many, many women to subject themselves to sexual acts that were obviously nonconsensual or, more complicatedly, could never be truly consensual.
And nonconsensual sex is psychologically very harmful—it’s a “violation of human behavior,” as Braun-Harvey put it.
“AASECT 1) does not find sufficient empirical evidence to support the classification of sex addiction or porn addiction as a mental health disorder, and 2) does not find the sexual addiction training and treatment methods and educational pedagogies to be adequately informed by accurate human sexuality knowledge,” the organization wrote.
There are, of course, people who have problems with sexual compulsions, and there is indeed debate within the profession on the AASECT’s position, but the sex therapists that I spoke with agree that it is not a useful diagnosis—particularly when it is used as a get-out-of-jail-free card for behavior that is harmful to others.