Men who turn sexually aggressive at night may be
suffering from a disorder known as Sleepsex.
In a 1/02 article in Cosmo,
they talk with women who live with someone with
this puzzling and often disturbing phenomenon.
To most, it doesn't seem to be a problem, once
they understand that the person is asleep. However,
for others it has been terrifying, especially when
it has become controling or violent since people
usually act very differently during sleepsex than
during normal lovemaking. Sometimes, they're more
tender, but usually, they're more aggressive and
even violent. And, for some women on the receiving
end, the experience can be psychologically
damaging. especially is they were sexually abused,
knowingly or unknowingly, as a child.
Thought to be a variation of sleepwalking,
sleepsex primarily affects people (primarily men)
who have a history of sleep problems. Experts
suggest that men might be more prone toward
sleepsexing for hormonal reasons or because
initiating sex is a part of a man's deeply
ingrained instincts. Like other nighttime
disorders, sleepsex seems to be triggered by a lack
of adequate rest.
Some doctors, however, doubt it's a legitimate
disorder and consider it a cover up for
inappropriate behavior. Others, however, are
convinced that sleepsex not only exists but is
actually fairly widespread.
Some men have been convicted of rape, child
abuse or indecent exposure, often because juries
are loathe to accept sleepsex as a defense. Some
sleep doctors insist that a sleep disorder cannot
excuse criminal behavior.
Treatment is available - more sleep, more
exercise, and sometimes the sedative Klonopin. But
many sleepsexers are either too embarrassed to
report their behavior or have a hard time finding a
doctor who will take them seriously.
So, if you or your partner are experiencing
sleepsex, get a handle on it and do something about
it, if necesscary, before it gets acted out in a
way that could result in criminal procesution.
Source: Sabrina Rubin Erdely,
What is "sleepsex"?
Sleepsex is sexual behavior that occurs during
sleep (SBS). In a 1996 case study, sleep
researchers first identified SBS as a new type of
parasomnia. In reference to Shapiro's work, more
recent research (1999) identifies SBS as a "newly
proposed parasomnia" Some experts (e.g., Rosenfeld
& Elhajjar, 1998) suggest SBS may be a variant
of sleepwalking. SBS is not included in the
American Academy of Sleep Medicine's (formerly
known as the American Sleep Disorder Association)
Diagnostic and Coding Manual/International
Classification of Sleep Disorders (ICSD) as a sleep
disorder. The ICSD, the most widely used
classification of sleep disorders, is now being
revised. Whether or not SBS will be included as a
new parasomnia in the revised ICSD is unknown at
this time. Source: www.sleepsex.org
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