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'Giving up sex addiction was agony but celibacy was worth it for my baby son'; Laurie Jade Woodruff, 30, was obsessed with sex until she had her son and used celibacy to help beat her addiction.

Byline: Julie McCaffrey

Headaches, crippling pains, low moods, obsessive thoughts and fatigue - all common withdrawal effects endured by addicts.

Laurie Jade Woodruff suffered them all, but she wasn't detoxing from a drink or drug addiction. Instead, Laurie was turning celibate after a 18-year addiction tosex.

"I even had bad pains down there," she says. "It was weird and horrible.

"But I had to force myself to become celibate because I was fixated on sex for too long. My life revolved around it. My addiction meant I was jumping from one damaging relationship to another and always felt needy.

"When I had my beautiful, perfectbaby sonin my arms and found myself texting men, I knew it was time to break the cycle. So I became celibate."

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Laurie, 30, from Chesterfield, lost her virginity frighteningly early and says she became "very sexually active" from then on.

"I know it was wrong so become sexually active so young. And even then, I was hanging around arcades in mixed groups and was often approached by boys. I had a real problem saying no.

"I didn't realise it then, but I was constantly searching for a connection - that intimate moment of being loved, appreciated and wanted. It took me years to realise I was going about it all the wrong way."

Jade's sex addiction even influenced her career choices. With ambitions to be a writer, she ditched her first job on a magazine to become a glamour model and lap dancer.

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"Looking back, I craved the attention and the immediate feedback. I met many men through those jobs. But I always seemed to be attracted to the wrong kind of man - often ones who were very dominant.

"And I spent a lot of time yo-yoing from the high of a new relationship to the low of being unhappy because I was being treated badly.

"Up until my late 20s, I didn't realise I had a problem. Because I always felt I was having fun. Like all addictions, it felt great at first.

"But I was experiencing short term highs and much longer lows. Having sex felt like a fix - and I wanted more and more.

"One night I went to a sex party where loads of people were doing lots of wild things - doing everything with everyone. That night I had maybe six different partners.

"I was overtly sexual but not in a healthy way. I can't say how many men and women I slept with in total over the years because I didn't keep a tally. But it's possibly around 200."

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Tragedy made Laurie's addiction worse. Her son Arthur was born on 6 January 2015 but died on 27 February that year from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

"The shock and grief and was unbearable," she says. "I was so vulnerable, heartbroken and lost. And I craved love even more.

"My relationship with Arthur's dad crumbled under the strain. But I felt I needed someone to show me they cared.

"And, because my glamour model pictures get a lot of attention from men onInstagram, I followed people who left me nice comments and met up with some. There was never any need to look for sex or join dating apps.

"I was jumping from relationship to relationship to try to numb the pain. And I still hadn't learned to say no. Now I realise it was because my self esteem was so low."

Laurie settled in a new relationship for a while and had another son, Henry, who is now two. But the same problems of constantly craving sex and attention ended their relationship.

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Laurie tried to find the help she needed, eventually filling in questionnaires from Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous and attending group therapy meetings.

"I tried all sorts, like yoga, meditating, self-help books. But I still was still focussed on sex all the time and texting men I knew weren't right for me.

"After losing Arthur, I felt extremely lucky to have my perfect little son Henry. But when I caught myself texting men when he was in my arms I knew I had to take drastic measures.

"That's when I decided to become celibate to see if and how I would cope, and to try and break the habit that was ruining my life."

After the mental and physical side effects of suddenly stopping a long-term emotional and physical addiction, Laurie found herself feeling stronger.

"I felt empowered and ended up loving saying no. I felt freed from the constant stress of dating and game-playing. My mind cleared and I felt far more focussed. Finally I could see the pattern in the way I attracted the wrong people.

Sex addict used to sleep with six men a night but is celibate now she's a mum

"With men who are sex addicts, they seem to like porn and escorts. With me, I kept becoming co-dependent in needy relationships.

"But although it was hard being celibate, it helped stabilise my sex drive, helped me feel more independent and proved I could be happy alone.

"I realised I was still the creative person who had wanted to be a writer when I was young but became dangerously distracted.

"So I started writing a very honest diary - and that became the basis of my first book Diary of a Sex Addict.

"Celibacy also cleared my time and made me much more productive. I have two more books coming out soon and would never have been able to write them, or achieve much at all, if I'd been back to my old ways."

Laurie's celibate period lasted four months but ended for a happy reason: she is dating someone kind.

Laurie says: "It's only been two weeks, but I'm far less needy and more in control so it's a far better balanced relationship.

"I'm dating someone from my past who was really nice. I'm much more authentic and am letting myself be vulnerable.

"Although it's far too early to say if we have a future, I'm having a lovely time and feel far stronger emotionally than I have in years.

"My sex addiction is still at the back of my mind and maybe always will be, but I'm much more on top of things now."

Diary of a Sex Addict, by Laurie Jade Woodruff, is published by www.vixenbooks.co.uk

Follow Jade on Instagram andTwitter@lauriejaderotic

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Laurie Jade Woodruff says having her son Henry helped her tackle her sex addiction.

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Laurie says she suffered crippling pain when she gave up sex

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Laurie Jade Woodruff says having her son Henry inspired her to tackle her sex addiction

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Laurie says her addiction was made worse after her first son died from Sudden Infant Death syndrome

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Laurie's relationship with Henry's father fell apart because of her addiction to sex

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Laurie says she felt empowered when she turned celibate

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Laurie Jade Woodruff says becoming celibate cleared her focus
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Title Annotation:News,UK News
Publication:Daily Mirror (London, England)
Date:Apr 1, 2019
Words:1228
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