Thursday, November 1, 2012

PTSD in Partners of Sex Addicts

I am pleased to share this link to my first radio production, PTSD in Partners of Sex Addicts. At the site you can click to hear the story as well as read the story notes. This piece is the culmination of a six month radio production training program Community Voices at WYSO in Yellow Springs, Ohio.

My piece, along with the nine other pieces produced by my Community Voices 2012 classmates, premiered at the FilmDayton Festival on August 26th at The Black Box Improv Theater. Since then it has played during the Sunday Evening Documentary Hour and during Excursions on WYSO.

Dr, Barbara Steffens, interview subject, is the nationally recognized expert on PTSD in partners of sex addicts. She has developed a new treatment model that rejects the addict centered model that labels the partner as a co-addict or co-dependent. Instead her model treats the partner for the trauma they have experienced, focusing on the partner as opposed to the addict. You can contact her and learn more about her research and treatment model at Safe Passages Counseling.

As a Community Voices graduate I now have the skills to produce additional radio programs. The Dayton area is rich in story and I am looking forward to exploring new project possibilities. I'm currently interested in foreign language speaking groups in the area. If you know of any good stories, let me know!


  1. Wow, Judy, congratulations on such an important achievement. As I often say, the learning never stops. I had no idea that one of the sources of my trauma response when my daughter was killed was the discovery, only 3 days earlier, that my "finance" of two years was a sex addict, had been cheating on me and using me as "the other woman," and that our relationship had been a sham, and marriage and monogamy were never going to happen. It took me 18 years to be able to trust another man. It's all in my book, but I didn't really fully appreciate the source of all my pain and trauma. I attributed it to my daughter's death, not knowing that the discovery of betrayal, especially at that particular time, contributed to the paralysis that overtook me. If I were to write about that time in my life again, I would feel supported by what you have posted here. Dr. Thomas Szasz said, "Most of what we label as mental illness is actually the response of a normal person to intolerable events and circumstances." So I wasn't crazy or overreacting at all! Thank you for shining a light on this sensitive subject. I have seen it in my own clients, too. But I didn't become a therapist until after it happened to me.

  2. Samantha, thank you for your thoughtful response and for sharing your story. I have read your book Someone to Talk To: Finding Peace, Purpose, and Joy After Tragedy and Loss and recommend it often. I am grateful for your comment about feeling supported by the post and production. PTSD is a lonely journey made more difficult by the lack of understanding. It is my hope that shining some light on trauma's impact will add to the general knowledge and make the recovery path a bit easier.