Individuals diagnosed with schizoid personality disorder can have “covert” symptoms. Meaning, people with this disorder many not appear to be schizoid on the surface. Covert schizoids appear to be very social, have an active social life, and can even seem extroverted on the surface. However, these individuals are basically just putting on a show when they are in public. They keep their emotions sequestered and may even leave a situation that requires them to be emotionally intimate with someone else.
In regards to their sexuality, covert schizoids may not be interested in sex like a traditional schizoid. In many cases though, individuals with schizoid personality disorder many seek out “secret” sex and if they are in a relationship have affairs. They can seek out sexual partners that they do not know such as meeting people online (e.g. dating apps) and/or at bars. This allows them to experience short term encounters and fill a sexual void without feelings of emotional intimacy.
Covert Schizoid Sexuality: The research
A leading researcher, Harry Guntrip describes a “secret sexual affair” that married schizoids may be involved with. This is merely an attempt to reduce the quantity of emotional intimacy focused within a single relationship. Covert schizoids may exclude sex as being “too intimate” for a permanent relationship – which may result in covert schizoids having sex with strangers.
Another aspect to keep in mind in regards to individuals with covert schizoid personality disorder is that they may restrict all of their relationships to sexual contacts and not share any other emotional or bonding experiences with the partner. Individuals that are covert or “secret” schizoids tend to have social skills to find other partners. For this reason, they are more likely to end up engaging in sexual activity.
- Affairs: Secret sexual affairs or “cheating” is likely the case with some schizoids. They feel too emotionally connected to their partners and don’t like the feelings of emotional intimacy. In this case, they may seek out other secretive partners and have affairs.
- Asexuality: Some covert schizoids are asexual – and do not desire any sort of sexual activity with the opposite sex. Typically this is not the case with covert schizoids and is more common with traditional schizoids.
- Celibate: Sometimes people with covert schizoid personality disorder are completely celibate. They may turn their focus towards other areas of life and not be motivated by primal, sexual instincts.
- Frequent sex: Some covert schizoids may engage in very frequent sexual activity – and in some cases a sex addiction. They do this to fill voids in their life including: emotional intimacy voids and social voids.
- Masturbation: Some secret schizoids may engage in masturbation or become addicted to pornography. This allows them to experience sexual gratification without seeking out another partner.
- Meets at bars / online dating: An easy way for covert schizoids to meet people is at bars and/or via online dating sites. Being at a bar under the influence of alcohol makes it easier to socialize and online dating sites can help minimize anxiety associated with social interaction.
- One-night stands: It is common for schizoids to have one night stands as a means to avoid emotional intimacy with the prospective partner. Instead of something ongoing, they may resort to finding a new person each night to have sex with.
- Schizoid hunger: This is a phenomenon detailed by Jeffrey Seinfeld (New York University), who published reports that schizoids seek out sexual pursuits to fill voids of emotional hunger, loneliness, and emptiness. The sex serves as a temporary solution to meeting the covert schizoid’s needs.
- Sex with strangers: It is common for individuals that are covertly schizoid to engage in sex with strangers. People that they just met and/or new social contacts may serve as the perfect opportunity for sex without a long term emotional component.
Are you a covert schizoid? How is your sexual behavior?
Although it is pretty difficult to study covert schizoids in general, there is some good information on their sexual behavior from various researchers. If you would label yourself or have been formally diagnosed with schizoid personality disorder (SPD) and you would classify the diagnosis as a “covert” subtype, how is your sexuality. It would help if you shared your thoughts and personal experiences in the comments section.