Porn Addiction

An unfortunate problem that is affecting many people and relationships is porn addiction. This disease can be as hard to get over as drug addiction, but it is also a problem that is kept more secretive than drug addiction.

An Increasing Problem

Porn addiction has been a problem since its origin, but it occurs much more frequently in today’s world. Today, more and more men especially are addicted to the sexual images they see. The reason for the increase is that so many Internet sites are dedicated to the x-rated images. A person does not need to go to the corner store to buy a magazine or rent a video – they have access to it on their home computer or cell phone. There are an estimated 420 million adult web pages online. (1)

For some people, looking at pornographic images is truly an addiction. They aren’t physically dependent on any substance, but they have triggers and cravings much the same as a drug addict has. Those who are so accustomed to viewing the images and the behaviors that go along with it may be so addicted that their life and relationships are ruined because of it. Men may stay at work for long hours looking at sites on their computer. Others can’t drive alone in their car for even half and hour without having to pull over and look at some images on their phone.

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The Impact of Porn Addiction on Marriages

Porn addiction devastates many marriages and lives every year. “Learning that their husband is addicted to pornography is especially devastating to a woman’s self-esteem and ability to trust,” said Mark Chamberlain, co-author of “Love You, Hate the Porn”. “And it’s perfectly natural to feel that way.” (2) But those spouses who are willing to stay and help their addicted partner recover, will find that they can be an important part of recovery. According to co-author Geoff Steurer, “An addiction to pornography is not about sex. It’s about attachment. Spouses threatened by porn can learn that the emotional connection only they can offer is a powerful means of helping their spouse to recover.” (2) This addiction is embarrassing for many, and even though many people are affected, few get the help they need.

Preventing Porn Addiction

Just as important as treating people with a porn addiction is the prevention of the problem. Most men who are addicted to porn and are getting help for it are in their 20s, and most say they first saw a pornographic image when they were around 10 years of age. Parents should be careful to keep their computer parental locks up and running to prevent children from accessing the sites accidentally. However, it does not stop there. When a young adult goes away to college or gets their own place, they will have more opportunities to get on these sites. Continued awareness for the problem should be the focus of parents and schools as they work with young adults who may be at risk for this kind of addiction.  

Sources

(1) Pastors share personal struggles with porn addiction

(2) ‘Love You, Hate the Porn’ shows path to healing a marriage

Is Pornography Addictive?

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