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For those with excessive or uncontrolled desires and behaviour, the diagnosis of hypersexuality – sexual compulsion or addiction – is now applied.

The male version of the diagnosis, satyriasis, was rarely applied; it was hard to imagine men wanting too much sex.

But the powerful sexuality of the nymphomaniac posed a threat to civilisation.

Those of us who are still in relationships enjoy sex as much as at any point in our lives – even if society doesn’t want to think about it.

Apparently once we turn 60, women are supposed to be sexless and invisible.

Complainants are accused of imagining sexual assaults, or inciting the sexual act with their lewd desires. Ultimately, nymphomania, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

A woman will only be described as wanting sex too much if her partner cannot satisfy her. Men like to imagine the existence of nymphomaniacs – as long as they don’t have to have sex with one.She no longer made excessive sexual demands on her husband and had assumed a “chaste” demeanour.Nymphomania, along with oral sex, masturbation and homosexuality, was removed from the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) in 1980.As with nymphomania, is sex addiction simply a label for sexual behaviour society finds unacceptable? The use of this diagnosis by doctors defending Bill Clinton during the Monica Lewinksy investigation is a case in point.Why would a woman label herself a nymphomaniac in the 21st century?As the German sexologist, Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ebbing, declared in 1886: The treatments for nymphomania were severe.

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