General

Porn Addiction. Truth, Reality and Hope for Addicts and Partners

For many years the debate on porn was centered around the notion that succumbing to the temptation of porn signified some kind of moral failing. From a religious/Christian point of view, it was a question of sinfulness. A sign that one has allowed oneself to become infected with one or more of the seven supposed deadliest of sins, lust and/or gluttony. Or, from a feminist point of view, porn is seen as the vile exploitation of women as sexual, one-dimensional objects with no humanity other than form. Yet as Naomi Wolf points out in her article, The Porn Myth, in actuality the end result of too much exposure to pornography has had the effect, not of turning men into sexually ravenous beasts, but the complete opposite; sexual and emotional anorexics who can no longer relate authentically to a real life woman or get aroused by one. As it turns out, excessive viewing of pornography in this digital age turns men off, not on.

As numerous studies now show, repetitive and compulsive viewing of internet porn by men (and a growing number of women) induces the opposite effect than one might expect, and just like a person who is addicted to a substance grows increasingly desensitized to the drug whilst continuing to crave it more and more, a person who is addicted to pornography finds he/she ends up on pretty much the same, well trodden treadmill. Intensely wanting something that can no longer provide the temporary relief and stimulation it once did.

Recent research implies that internet pornography is as addictive as certain drugs and affects the brain the same way. But, porn’s special hook is that it taps into that human need for attachment, connection and belonging even more than addictive substances by adding into the mix hormones that are normally associated with bonding, love and connection. In effect, a porn addict becomes more attached to porn than anything or anyone else in their life. As a consequence, relationships, marriages, work and soon enough, the relationship with the self begins to suffer. brazzers

Porn addiction, like any addiction goes through stages – however, unlike most other addictions, the physical effects of porn addiction are virtually invisible, and the psychological and emotional effects are quite subtle, at first. In-fact, many porn addicts may seek treatment for a variety of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression and OCD, as well as physical ailments, stress, other addictions and finally dysfunctional sexual performance before anyone thinks to ask about their porn viewing habits.

But more and more studies clearly link issues related to sexual performance, including erectile dysfunction in men in their late teens and early twenties, (something that was almost unheard of 10 – 15 years ago) back to extensive viewing of internet porn. It is only when they can no longer get an erection, or ejaculate even with porn that some men start to make the connection between their excessive viewing of porn and other issues in their life. Often this is the only thing that eventually get’s their attention. (Their partners, if they have partners, may have known for some time that something was happening, or rather… not happening!)

This sorry state of affairs is bad news for both porn addicts and partners of porn addicts. Many who spend night after night lying in bed next to a partner that never seems to be ‘in the mood’ for sex. The result can be devastating to marriages, relationships and the self-esteem of both parties. The secretive nature of most men’s porn addiction may also mean that some partners may not know that they are in a relationship with a porn addict or even if they are aware of their partner’s porn habit, they may not make the connection at first either. Or they may not know the extent of their partner’s porn viewing. The damage this causes relationships is thus far immeasurable. One site states that 56% of divorces in the U.S. involve one party having an obsessive interest in pornography, among other staggering statistics.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *