Health, Latest, LifeStyle, Politics

Harvey Weinstein: Predator or sex addict?

Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein

After his sacking from his own company, Harvey Weinstein said that he was going into rehab to deal with his addiction to sex. He hoped that his peers and society would give him a second chance.

In the past, careers blighted by things like drug and sustance abuse, the celebrity checked into a rehab clinic and came out weeks or months later with their fans and industry were willing to give them another chance.

The fact that the celebrity turned to clinical professionals was a way of saying, “I was not fully in control of my actions.” They are also saying that they are helpless and at the mercy of a clinical illness that requires the intervention of professionals to assist them in overcoming their problems.

Does this really represent Harvey Weinstein’s  situation – was he a helplessly sick man in the grip of an illness?

Sex addiction has been described by experts as indulgence in any sexual activity that feels out of control. Sex addiction does not just involve a partner, it also includes activities like pornography, masturbation, visiting prostitutes or using chat lines.

It is generally recognised that sex addiction can involve frequent self-destructive or high-risk activity that tends not to be emotionally fulfilling, that the person regrets after the act however is unable to stop, regardless of the damage being done.

Some of the aspects of sex addiction appear to fit nicely with what has happened to Mr Weinstein, including his ghastly self-destructive behaviour such as the repeated harassment of women.

It is hard to understand how he continued with such behaviour even as he was signing financial settlements with women on the receiving end of his conduct.

Some could say he was a sexual predator on a power trip – determined to engage in sexual activity with any woman he desired, especially if he believed that he could use his power and influence in the industry to pressure and intimidate that person.

Predatory conduct is when the person’s motives for whatever they are trying to achieve are selfish and rapacious. A sexual predator therefore tries to obtain sexual contact with another person in a predatory or abusive manner.

Sexual predators look for ‘prey’ that are in some way vulnerable such as people who commit sex crimes – rape or child sexual abuse.

I therefore do not think that Harvey Weinstein fits neatly into the box of a sexual predator given that his accusers all appear to be confident professionals and not people that you would initially describe as vulnerable.

Did he target them because he felt that with his power and influence he get whatever he wanted as well as get away with his abhorrent behaviour? Or is this a man so hopelessly hooked on sex that he was prepared to risk everything in order to get it?

It’s that classic chicken and egg situation: Did he use his power to satisfy uncontrollable sexual urges or was this a case of someone with power who just got his kicks out of making the women do what he wanted?

Harvey Weinstein and Georgina Chapman
Harvey Weinstein and Georgina Chapman

In order to properly answer some of these questions, we also need to understand what type of sexual relationship he had with his British wife Georgina Chapman, who left him because of the scandal.

Was he an avid consumer of pornography and did he regularly hire the services professional sex workers?

Without answers to these questions it would be mere speculation to say whether he was a sexual predator or a sex addict.




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