Is Porn the Problem?

My porn use is hurting my wife and our relationship. I don’t know if I’m addicted. Can you help me figure out if this is an addiction, and if so, how to quit?

Porn addiction is like any other addiction: It’s unconscious behavior acted out repeatedly to the detriment of your of well-being. It’s no different from nicotine addiction or alcohol addiction, or anything else you believe yourself to be addicted to. What distinguishes an addiction from other habits in your life, is that an addiction has a negative effect and negative consequences on your life.

Porn is not bad or good, right or wrong, but it can be a real problem for you. It seems you are already experiencing this.

The problem for most men (or women) addicted to porn is that porn is a substitute for real intimacy and sexual pleasure with another human being. If you already have challenges with sexual intimacy, porn addiction makes it worse. Just as you can’t become adept at socializing by talking in chat rooms, you can’t become masterful at love and lovemaking, by watching other people make love.

When you get stuck on the idea that porn itself is the problem, you stop looking for the kind of solutions that work. You start thinking that porn is the enemy you need to fight. Most so-called porn experts will tell you that you must eradicate porn from your life — that you must launch a full-scale “war” on porn.

Porn is not only NOT the problem, but it is only a symptom of the REAL problem. You don’t “have” to quit using porn. Let’s get that straight. You don’t “have” to do anything about your issue. You can use porn until the cows come home. However, if you want, and choose, to have a sexual relationship that is highly fulfilling and deeply satisfying, that is loving and intimate, you will need to make the choice to let go of porn.

Porn is simply a substitute for deep, loving sexual connection. When you let it go, you make space to experience what you’ve been avoiding, or have simply never learned to cultivate. Negative motivators do not work well.  If you say, “I have to quit porn because it’s ruining my life,” you’re using a negative consequence to force a positive change. Negative motivators are rarely sustainable.  If negative motivators worked, nobody would continue to smoke cigarettes. They’d look at the negative consequences (clearly substantiated by science) and quit.

But that doesn’t happen.

While you can’t successfully use a negative motivator to inspire a positive, long-term change,  you can use a positive motivator to inspire a positive change! Find your most compelling reason to let go of porn. What is it you most want? Is it to feel sexually free and unencumbered by shame? Is it to feel love as you make love? Is it to experience Spirit in sex?

Whatever your ultimate and most desired experience, this is your focus. This is where you invest your thoughts, feelings and actions. Once you align your thoughts, feelings and actions with your most authentic desires for sexual connection and wholeness, porn will lose its hold on you, as what’s real and deeply satisfying takes its place!

By Karen Brody, All copyrights reserved, 2013. Please contact the author for permission to reprint this article.



One Response to “Is Porn the Problem?”

  1. Thankful says:

    Great post! It helped me a lot. Thank you!

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