Glen Williams, author of this post has written well over 100 articles on health related topics and is runs E-Home-Fellowship (EHF), Inc. which provides help to those with health issues. Here he shares the parties typically involved when someone has a pornography addiction and how each are affected by it. You can contact Glen here. His views are his own.
We get home from work and want to wind down, so we turn on the pornograph (computer) and visit our favorite sites. Soon, we don’t even remember the struggles of work. Afterwards, we’re relaxed, calm. To chase away that twinge of guilt, we tell ourselves, “How could this natural bodily function hurt anyone?” This article will reveal, in very frank language, how pornography addiction hurts everyone in your life, including you.
Pornography Hurts Your Marriage: O.K. “significant other” for you who aren’t married. Sexual intimacy is one of the factors that distinguish a committed relationship from, say, an affair. Though, pornography initially triggers an increase in sexual activity, it is anything but intimate. It wasn’t attraction to our partner that generated the contact, but a need to gratify the desires built up by viewing others. Forgive me for being blunt, but this turns our mate into little more than a tool for masturbation. Even more sad is the fact that, over time, our mate becomes the least favorite tool, since the other options place fewer expectations or demands on us. This is more than a weakened relationship, it is infidelity as severe as adultery, the affair being, in this case, with yourself. But, pornography addiction hurts more than our marriage, it hurts our children, too.
Porn Hurts Your Children: It amazes me how many adults are in denial about this one. First of all, if things aren’t right in your marriage, I think you’d agree that affects your children. If we’re addicted to porn, no matter how carefully we hide it, the marriage relationship problems will spill over to our children. Not only that, if we’re sharing computers with the kids, they can pull up the cache and see what we saw. If we’re sharing an internet connection, we have the same address, so they receive spam based on our internet habits. If you’re using pornography magazines, they have seen them…you think they’re not in your secret places when you’re not around? Because pornography changes how we see people, we can’t hide our thoughts from the kids. What you do speaks so loudly, they can’t hear what you say. They see how much attention we pay to underwear commercials on TV. They see where we’re looking at people’s bodies. They begin to form their values from ours.
A friend was hurt and angry when his 16-year-old daughter left home and, for 18 months, slept with every male she could get her hands on. While I was counseling her, it almost seemed she was bragging about her sexual popularity. Her Dad was angry at the world, but, having known him for years, I knew the problem was closer to home. You see, for most of the time she was growing up, he had the Playboy bunny logo (rabbit’s head) on his keychain, dangling from the steering column everywhere he drove her. By this, and probably other signals, Dad communicated to his daughter what was important. Sure, there were other factors, but her behavior after 16 was, in many ways, a fulfillment of years of programming.
While we’re on the subject of children, pornography is a reliable indicator of pedophilia. Why do you think it’s one of the first things police look for in a suspect’s home? An ex-friend of mine was a drug and pornography addict. I was very uncomfortable with how he and his teenage daughter clung to each other. Later, he went to prison for having sex with a 12-year-old. These ideas may be terrible thoughts, but, if you’re addicted to porn, chances are you’ll get to the point where the thought isn’t so terrible. Have you had these thoughts, already? Pay attention to where your mind goes when you’re looking at porn…or people. As Solomon said, “As a man thinketh…so is he.”
Pornography Hurts Your Co-workers And Friends: As pornography addiction changes how we see your mate and our children, it changes how we see everyone…even friends and people we work with. The more time we spend satisfying our addictive cravings, the more important those cravings become. Our priority at work is to do a good job to earn our pay, and maybe a promotion, but, just as an alcoholic will drink too much at lunch, a party, or hide a bottle at work, we do the same things with pornography, or short of that, with pornographic ideas. Sex becomes the focus of our life in all areas. Our judgments of co-workers are based on things other than work performance. The only friends we have left are those who didn’t notice how we were looking at their spouse, or their children. Instead of pictures being something we keep hidden away, they become how we frame everybody and everything we see. President Clinton was compelled to chase sexual gratification, obviously, above everything else in his life, wife, job, family. To be fair, apparently, we’re beginning to see the same characteristics in Congressman Foley. Do you think their addictions helped or hurt those who worked with or cared for them? How did their compulsions affect their attention to their jobs? Though there is less publicity, the same can be said of a sexual addiction to pornography. Our friends and co-workers are hurt by our obsession with sexual images and ideas.
Pornography Addiction Hurts You: As harmful as it is to spouse, children, friends and co-workers, pornography addiction hurts you the most. Let’s start with the productive, positive, creative things we could be doing with our time, money and energy. Instead, we waste it on overuse of a bodily function. When pornography becomes the focus of our mental energies, we propel ourselves toward ever more destructive behavior to fulfill our cravings. First, pictures, then movies, then violent movies or kiddy movies, then peep shows and computer sex. Every step we take lowers our self-esteem and makes sexual gratification more difficult to achieve…forcing us to desire more exotic and deviant behavior in the hopes of satisfying our ever-deepening cravings.
As addiction progresses, most move on to one or more of these behaviors: peeping, prostitutes, adultery, mate-swapping, orgies, sadomasochism, flashing, bestiality, pedophilia, rape and even murder. Of course, progression to these extremes is accelerated if porn addiction is combined with drugs or alcohol. If you’ve been aroused or worse, climaxed, to pictures or imagination of any of these extreme behaviors, it’s very likely your addiction will compel you to carry them out in real life.
To avoid hurting your family, your friends, your co-workers and yourself, you must get this stopped now. Learn how to stop it in our other two articles, “Pornography-An Addiction?” and “Pornography Addiction Recovery.”
Glen Williams is founder and CEO of E-Home Fellowship (EHF), Inc. and Webmaster for http://www.way2hope.org He has been helping people with family and life problems full-time since 1989. You can comment on his articles at Way2Hope Family Life Forums.