Sexual Politics

Everybody wants some, but women don’t call it an illness
By MARY ANN SORRENTINO  |  October 9, 2008

david-duchovny01_inside.jpg
HOOKED: Duchovny.

David Duchovny didn’t seem interested in being cured of his alleged sex addiction when he looked ahead to his rehab this way in the mid-’90s: “Either these meetings will help me deal with my addiction, or I’ll meet lots of women. Either way, I can’t lose . . . ”

When Duchovny left rehab that time, he said he still liked sex a lot, “but only with my wife.” Such a ringing endorsement of fidelity doubtless thrilled Tea Leoni, his spouse since 1997 (and the mother of their two children).

Duchovny, now 48 and with a nearly complete doctorate from Yale in English lit, says he is back in rehab for sex addiction. His Showtime series Californication — in which he conveniently plays a writer named Hank Moody, who, in midlife crisis, can’t get enough either — is perfect typecasting.

Hollywood peers Michael Douglas and Billy Bob Thornton can relate: they are recovering sex addicts, too. So are musician Eric Benet and comedian Russell Brand. Douglas is married to Catherine Zeta-Jones. Benet was Halle Berry’s husband: Thornton was with Angelina Jolie. And Brand dated Australian hottie Teresa Palmer — so much for blaming obsessive sex on an unattractive bedmate.

Hours of research failed, however, to identify many famous women “suffering” from this Mayo Clinic-recognized affliction. Catherine the Great’s name pops up repeatedly in searches for “famous female sex addicts” and the like, as does Roman Emperor Claudius’ wife Messalina (who challenged whores to public contests to see who could do the most men.)

This doesn’t mean that women — and famous Hollywood women in particular — aren’t also screwing their brains out outside of marriage, but it may mean they don’t consider such behavior an illness. Maybe they like screwing around and see “variety” as a personal, private, and even healthy sexual option. 

As far as their husbands are concerned, either they accept the “arrangement,” or the marriage comes to an end.

“Tant pis,” as they say in Burbank, or, “Tough darts.”

Since the 1960s, women have taken their so-called sexual “liberation” seriously. “Do Me” members of the Sex and the City generation seem unlikely to justify the sexual freedom so long in coming by claiming to be “sick” when they are caught in the sack with any partner of their choice. If the goose is playing the field, the gander feels entitled as well.

Faithful wives, however, are less likely to be understanding when he fesses up to extracurricular sex, especially of a serial nature. This may explain why the “sex addict” defense is so popular — in Tinseltown and beyond.

Faced with raging wives, some “addicts” may simply be trying to have their proverbial cake and — dare we say it — eat it, too.

So Tea Leoni, and women like her, soldier on in the hope their husbands will eventually take the pledge.

If that doesn’t happen, the grownup Halle Berry or Emperor Claudius options are also available: walk away and start a new life somewhere else.

  Topics: This Just In , Celebrity News, Entertainment, Health and Fitness,  More more >
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