But they haven’t had sex since June 2012, haven’t even seen each other naked (except by accident) since he told her he was a sex addict.

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In the age of smartphones and frictionless-dating apps, sex addiction is like being hooked on a drug that's always available in unlimited supply.

It's like living with a meth dealer at your side, or a brick of cocaine in your pocket.

Jacob grew up devoutly Christian in a remote part of a midwestern state.

His father worked the late shift in a factory and typically wasn’t home before eleven at night. He dreamed of being an astronaut and walking on Mars, of his toys coming to life and being perfect friends to him.

Worse, you can get a potential high from every person you meet.

But unlike other addictions, this one isn't officially recognized.If sex is ordinarily a way of dealing with another person, then sex addiction is a way of dealing with yourself.You act out—you can’t act out—in order to escape from unbearable feelings: depression, severe ADD, bipolar disorders, the scars of family trauma, profound despair.Most addictions require you to extend yourself in some way—go to a particular place, spend a certain amount of money. The fuel for your disease is all around you, invading your senses. But when I ask him if he’s tired, he says no, just the opposite: "I sleep In a wedding photograph on the wall, Jacob holds hands with his wife, Ashley, on a country lane.The poet and professor Michael Ryan captures this experience in his unsettling, mesmerizing autobiography, JACOB* IS A COMPUTER PROGRAMMER, and on the morning he greets me at the door of his and his wife’s Seattle-area apartment, he looks as though he’s been up all night wrestling with code. He smiles hesitantly, his eyes skittering off to one side.The number of certified sex-addiction therapists has more than doubled since 2008, according to the International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals.