This post is not written to shame anyone who views pornography. It is a post free of opinion and moral judgement. The sole purpose of this post is to inform readers of the risks involved in viewing internet pornography.
As a therapist, I am seeing more and more people come into my office with the same message. They report that pornography has stolen their partner and has left them feeling betrayed, rejected, and alone. They say that they feel left out of their partner’s sex life.
Most of us know the risks associated with cigarette smoking and alcohol abuse, but many people are still unaware of the risks associated with pornography use. And similar to the smoker who never gets cancer and the routine drinker who never becomes dependent on alcohol, the pornography viewer may never develop the problems that I mention below. But it is important to know the risks involved.
Below I have listed some of the things that have been associated with pornography use. Are you aware of these risk factors? Is your teen?
- Pornography often provides a warped view of sexuality. This can lead to unrealistic expectations and disappointment within a REAL relationship. Sexual expectations are based on fantasy and fictional filming. Filming that often involves actors and actresses with a history of emotional, physical, or sexual abuse.
- Pornography can lead to relating sexually in a mechanical way. Sexuality is more of a physical act, lacking deep emotional connection.
- Pornography can be addictive and can sometimes replace sexual relating within a partnership. This often leaves one partner feeling left out, rejected, and longing for connection.
- Pornography can destroy trust in a relationship. Pornography is sometimes viewed behind closed doors in the same home as a willing partner. When the partner discovers their loved one’s secret, he or she often feels deeply betrayed.
- Pornography can lead to more and more fantasy, replacing true intimacy within a relationship.
- When pornography is viewed in secret, it can create shame, and to cope with the shame, the person often self-medicates with more pornography.
- Pornography use can destroy intimacy in a relationship, but sometimes a fear of intimacy drives the pornography use.
Below I have included an excerpt from a post that I recently read in the Huffpost. I highly recommend you check it out. And I would love to hear your feedback.
“Even while I wasn’t ‘addicted’ to watching pornography, I always wanted more. It existed as a guaranteed time-filler and pleasure-bringer, and when you get an hour to yourself, that’s an easy default. An easy default activity that establishes a heavy precedence in what you do with your next bad night. I wish that 10 years ago someone had educated me on pornography. What it is, what it does, and what it reaches in and what it destroys…”
What I Wish I’d Known Before Watching Porn by Lauren Dubinsky