When I began my private practice in 2009 I was excited to be the first Certified Sex Addiction Therapist to serve the McKinney area. However, I quickly realized the difficulties my clients faced in maintaining and sustaining sobriety in a city with no S-groups (Twelve Step groups devoted to sex addiction recovery) and essentially no recovery community. That meant at a minimum a drive to Plano, Dallas or one of the fledgling Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA) or Sexaholics Anonymous (SA) groups available to recovering people in other cities. For clients from distant locations already traveling a distance to get to me in McKinney, it made participation in a recovery community virtually untenable on a regular and frequent basis. Given my firm belief that healing happens in community, the lack of one in McKinney saddened and frustrated me.
So I have watched with tremendous gratitude as that community has slowly grown in my city over the last 7 years. It started with the Saturday and then Thursday Primary Purpose SAA groups serving those struggling with sexual compulsion. I am grateful to the First Baptist Church for offering their facility for these groups, as well as the broader faith communities in supporting Celebrate Recovery and beginning to address issues related to pornography and sexual addiction.
2016 has seen another growth spurt in the McKinney with the Shepard Building in Adriatica sponsoring not one but two new SAA groups – a Tuesday evening Primary Purpose group and a Sunday evening traditional SAA group. I’m particularly pleased that the Sunday Hope and Recovery group uses a different format from the existing groups because I believe that one of the hallmarks of a healthy recovery community is not just having multiple groups, but having a diversity of styles and formats to meet the diversity of needs in recovering individuals – different strokes for different folks. So McKinney now has multiple SAA groups with diverse formats that meet in both religious settings and a secular setting.
I am also excited at no longer being the only professional in McKinney with specialty certification to treat sex and porn addiction. The first several years in my private practice were lonely ones for me. However, the Shepard Building is fast becoming a hub for professionals who specialize in treating sex and pornography addiction as well as betrayal trauma experienced by spouses and children. Although we all practice independently from each other, our close proximity in the Shepard Building allows for us to work collaboratively when possible.
We have kind of become our own professional tribe. Consequently, I’m appreciative of the colleagues who join me in supporting recovery in McKinney. That includes Gary Kindley, LPC, CSAT who continues fight his way north from his primary office in Dallas to facilitate his Wednesday night Facing the Shadows men’s psychotherapy group. This group has been running for several years and is still going strong.
Debra Larsen, LPC-S, certified by the American Association of Sex Addiction Therapy and the Association of Partners of Sex Addicts Trauma Specialists, works with partners of sex addicts and couples trying to restore their marriages in the wake of betrayal. She also brings her 20+ years of experience working with adolescents to helping teens and young adults impacted by a parent’s addiction. Given that I am now seeing second and third generations of sex addiction now, her expertise is going to be vital in helping break the cycle.
Ingela Edwards, LPC, who was formerly a co-facilitator for my Partner Empowerment Groups and Married and Alone Groups, is also certified as a Sexual Recovery Therapist and Certified Clinical Partner Specialist. Ingela works with recovering sex addicts and their partners, as well as counseling couples in the healing process.
I am excited about the most recent addition to the Shepard Building specialists. Steve Kelly, LPC, CSAT-c is well respected throughout the professional community and has been a beloved and trusted source of inspiration for many in recovering individuals he has worked with in residential treatment centers. Steve served in pastoral ministry for over 20 years. Not only is Steve a talented addiction therapist, he has a special gift for helping his clients navigate through the spiritual growth so important in the recovery process.
As for myself, I am a psychologist and CSAT who works with men and women struggling with sex or pornography addiction. In addition, I am a Partner Recovery Therapist, founding member of the Association of Partners of Sex Addicts Trauma Specialists, and helped develop a trauma model for healing spouses dealing with Sex Addiction Induced Trauma – the Multidimensional Partner Trauma Model. I have a passion for helping marriages heal from the impact of sex addiction and a frequently co-occurring relationship pattern called intimacy anorexia. I frequently do 3 and 4 day intensives to help couples begin to move past the tremendous damage compulsive sexual betrayal and intimacy anorexia inflict on the relationship.
Although McKinney now has a solid foundation in sex and porn addiction recovery resources, we still have a long way to go. Unfortunately, I see no signs that McKinney will not grow in need for even more S-group meetings in the future. While the recovery community has grown for the recovering addicts, there are still few resources for spouses and the north Texas area has virtually no recovery community resources for intimacy anorexia.
So my wish list for the future definitely includes COSA, S-Anon or POSA Twelve Step meetings for spouses to add to the Partner Empowerment psychotherapy groups offered by McKinney Counseling & Recovery. A growing need that I hope adolescent specialists such as Debra Larsen can help with is to create resources for the growing number of teens ensnarled by pornography or sex addiction. A final item on my wish list is the emergence of an intimacy anorexia recovery community. McKinney Counseling & Recovery plans to help launch its growth by recruiting for the first men’s intimacy anorexia psychotherapy group this fall.
I have watched with gratitude as the McKinney recovery community has grown in recent years. I hope to see it grown even more in the years to come.
Dr. Janice Caudill is the founder and Clinical Director of McKinney Counseling & Recovery. MCR offers individual, couples, group therapy, webinars, workshops and 3-day intensives for partners of sex addicts and wounded hearts struggling with sex addiction, infidelity, love addiction or love avoidance, intimacy anorexia, or relational trauma in the McKinney, Plano, Allen, Richardson, Frisco, Prosper, Carrollton, Lewisville, Dallas and surrounding areas.