Home / Entertainment / Harvey Weinstein is reportedly heading to $37,000-per-month sex addiction rehab — here’s what it entails

Harvey Weinstein is reportedly heading to $37,000-per-month sex addiction rehab — here’s what it entails


HarveyGetty images

Harvey
Weinstein is reportedly getting out of Hollywood
and going to a swanky sex addiction treatment center,
according to TMZ.

Several recent reports from
The New York Times and
The New Yorker told the stories of women who
have accused Weinstein of harassing, groping, and raping
them — a pattern of behavior that seems to have spanned decades.
The powerful film executive’s decision to seek
treatment came days after those allegations led the
Weinstein Company to fire him, and just as his wife,
Marchesa co-founder Georgina Chapman, announced
she was leaving him.

Although Weinstein seems headed for in-patient
rehab, it’s not clear whether he has ever received an official
diagnosis or sought help in the past.

It’s also unknown exactly what kind of treatment he will
receive, or where — TMZ initially reported that Weinstein
was bound for an elite Swiss facility, but some reports now
suggest he might be checking in at The Meadows
treatment center in Wickenburg, Arizona.

Sex addiction treatment at the Meadows costs more than
$37,000 a month, according to some
online reviews. (The facility looks a bit like a desert spa,
horses included.) It’s billed as ‘the nation’s premier
inpatient treatment for sex addiction’ and offers a 45-day
“gentle path” sex treatment program that can host up to
28 men in 24-hour monitored care.

Most inpatient sex addiction programs follow
12-step recovery models similar to Alcoholics Anonymous, with a
mix of group sessions and one-on-one therapy. Some programs also
prescribe patients antidepressants, mood stabilizers, or
anti-androgen drugs, which reduce sexual urges. 

The Meadows’ website says: “Men are guided on their journey of
recovery by examining the underlying causes of addiction and
co-occurring disorders. The goal is for these individuals to gain
the courage to face difficult issues, including grief and loss;
heal from emotional trauma; and become accountable for their own
feelings, behaviors, and recovery.”

However, experts are still debating whether ‘sex addiction’ has a
place among other chronic dependencies like gambling or
drinking. According to
the American
Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and
Therapists, there’s
 not “sufficient
empirical evidence to support the classification of sex addiction
or porn addiction as a mental health disorder.” 
And
‘sexual addiction’ is not in the most recent edition of
the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental
Disorders, the go-to guide for American
psychiatrists.

Psychologist Michael Bader has called sex addiction an
excuse — he wrote in Psychology Today that the
diagnosis is just a “gloss
for bad behavior”. And many sex addiction therapists caution
that not everyone who seeks treatment for sex addiction really
needs help, since there are plenty who are merely looking
for
a way to justify past actions. Research by French
psychiatrist Laurent
Karila, on the other hand, has
suggested that between 3 and 6% of the
population suffers from sex addictions.

Celebrity Russell Brand described his sex addiction
treatment in his memoir, saying he attended meetings every
morning and afternoon in which the group would “go
round the room” introducing themselves, then talk about how their
everyday existence had become sexualized.

These aren’t really wrongdoings as we would normally
understand them,” Brand wrote in an excerpt of his memoir that
ran in
The Guardian, “more everyday actions that have developed a
sexual component: ‘I had an erotic thought’; ‘I experienced
eroticized rage’; or ‘I did some eroticized humor.’”

Professionals who work at treatment
centers say month-long regimens are simply a starting
point, and there’s no cure-all. 
Bob Poznanovich,
executive director of community outreach at Hazelden Betty Ford
Foundation Addiction Treatment Centers, does not treat sex
addicts, but estimates that around 45% of all patients in
any addiction treatment program suffer setbacks after
the inpatient portion ends. Rehab for drug addiction is
successful roughly half the time, according to the National
Institutes of Health.

“People do relapse and that’s part of the disease,” he told
Business Insider, adding that time, support, and a patient’s
own belief that they can succeed all help in their recovery
process.

As Weinstein wrote in a
statement to the New York Times, “my journey now will be to
learn about myself and conquer my demons.”

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