Understanding Why Pornography Addiction is a Brain Disease

Understanding How the Brain Works

Our brain is made up of Neurotransmitters.
Our brain is made up of Neurotransmitters.
The two part brain: Pre-frontal cortex; Limbic system
The two part brain: Pre-frontal cortex; Limbic system
85% to 90% of our behaviors are driven from the subconscious limbic region of the brain.
85% to 90% of our behaviors are driven from the subconscious limbic region of the brain.

By: Gordon S. Bruin M.A., L.P.C

“One ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them. One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them. In the Land of Mordor where the shadows lie.” -J.R.R. Tolkien

Until the general public becomes more informed about the reality of how pornography impacts the human brain it will continue to be looked upon as a moral weakness or a form of mere entertainment.  As a professional counselor who has worked in the addictions field for over 20 years I want to make it clear that pornography addiction is a CHEMICAL ADDICTION. In fact it is the PRIME CHEMICAL ADDICTION!

Pornography addiction is the most difficult addiction to treat because it hits at the very core of our humanity.  Interest in sexuality is a primary driving force in human beings.  It is pleasurable by design so that we continue to exist as a human race.  If there were ever to be the perfect drug created pornography would be it.  As one client recently put it, “It is the perfect poison.”  Let me explain why. 

Throughout my professional carrier I have spent countless hours treating those with chemical dependency addictions such as with alcohol, heroin/opiates, cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana etc.  Through much research we have come to the understanding that these addictions are chemical addictions.  Ingestion of these drugs affects how the brain works and changes the functionality of our microscopic brain cells.  

Our brains are made up of tiny chemicals called neurotransmitters.  These tiny chemicals drive our emotions, feelings and behaviors.  I believe that many scarcely realize how powerful these tiny chemicals are and how deeply they impact our lives and behavior.  At this microscopic level there is a constant interplay between a chemical and electrical interaction.  In his fascinating book entitled “The Mind and the Brain” Dr. Jeffery Schwartz delineates between the mind and the brain.  The mind is separate from the physical brain.  My interpretation of this is that the mind or spirit is the electrical intelligence that lives in this physical body and chemical brain.  There is a constant interplay between these two parts and each can have a powerful influence on the other.  Addiction occurs when the physical brain has taken control of the mind.  The mind is the intelligence part that is frustrated about the loss of control.  It is in the mind that the conscience exists.  This is the part that generates feelings of right or wrong.  The physical brain has no concept of right or wrong.  Its primary function is to keep us alive and it does this by driving one to avoid pain and seek pleasure.   

The physical/chemical brain has a tremendous capacity to gain control of the mind.  It can subject it and trap it.  In other words it can take over the human will and influence how a person thinks, feels and acts.  This state is known as addiction.  It is a state where the physical/chemical brain demands or compels one towards a certain behavior regardless what the mind or conscience says.  There appears to be something inherent in the human family that feels it is wrong to view the private sexual acts of others. In other words the mind, the electrical intelligent part of us simply cannot feel good about participating in it.  I make this claim after listening to hundreds of stories of clients who have relapsed.  The results are always the same.  I have never had a client come in and tell me that they had a slip during the past week and they felt good about.  NEVER!  Viewing pornography leaves in its wake feelings of frustration, irritation, and depression.  

Because of the power of the Limbic part of the brain and its capacity to mask or overshadow  the moral and rational part of the brain, there are many who claim that this behavior in normal or mere entertainment.  The rationalization and justifications that can come from the survival part of the brain are incredibly alluring and convincing for sure.  It is the absolute reality that these individuals whether they know it or not are the ultimate drug pushers.  It makes one stare in mute disbelief when you hear them say that they are family men or women.  In one recent interview on MSNBC a female porn star stated that she had an 11 year old son at home.   She has become so addicted herself that she can no longer think from her rational mind.  She rejoices in her profession even though she stated that her son didn’t know what she did for a living.  I wonder how this little boy will react when he comes to an understanding of what his mother is doing for a living.  When she was asked if her son knew what she did for employment she said with a little smirk on her face, “Oh no, I couldn’t tell him that.”   If she were to actually see the damage that she is helping create in our society, I wonder if even then she or those like her would really get it.  These pornographers are the ones preying on the vulnerabilities of our natural instincts.  One day they will stare in mute disbelief at what they have been involved in.  In fact, those who find a way out of this world will tell you details of the profession that no one in their right mind would want to hear.   Isn’t it a funny thing that we live in a world where we can no longer even call things right or wrong without great censorship and criticism? 

In essence, the only difference between a heroin or cocaine addict is the way the drug enters the system.  The brain responds from information received from the eye quicker than from any other source.  Visual information is processed in the limbic system in nanoseconds.   This is why pornography is such a big deal.  Visual information is processed faster than from any of our others senses.   Even the ingestion of heroin or cocaine is much slower in comparison.  The brain responds to visual sexual images in microseconds where chemical reactions take place automatically.  There is a release of powerful chemicals that can overrule the rational brain and drive one to behaviors.

Just as Dopamine is the chemical of pleasure, Oxytocin is the chemical of bonding. For example, when a mother gives birth, extreme amounts of Oxytocin are released, creating a powerful emotional bond between mother and child. Father's also experience this Oxytocin bonding when their children are born. Oxytocin is also released in high amounts during sexual experiences.  This bonding creates companionship and a feeling of togetherness during sexual intercourse.  Oxytocin is also released during visual arousal, however; When sexually aroused without a committed partner through means such as pornography, the recipient of Oxytocin is left feeling alone, depressed and confused, despite the rush of dopamine. See the dangerous irony? Oxytocin has the power to sexually bond a committed couple in healthy and meaningful ways or it can destroy an individual with feelings of emptiness and depression. Oxytocin is a chemical "glue" seeking something to bond with. When there is no bonding, isolation and secrecy result. Pornography is an Oxytocin powerhouse leaving a wake of emptiness and confusion to all those it claims.  

So, I feel qualified to make the claim from a clinical therapeutic position that pornography addiction is the grand daddy of them all.  It hits at the very core of our humanity and is negatively impacting the world in ways that most scarcely imagine.  The greatest of all concerns is what will happen with the rising generation without education and help.  The young have no immunity to it and the young are the ones who are being exposed at an increasingly alarming rate.  

To those who have trouble accepting the fact that pornography addiction is a “brain disease” and the prime addiction of all addictions; Listen to the following email that I recently received.  As you read this email ask yourself the question?  Is this individual seeking this material as mere healthy entertainment or is he driven or compelled to have it?  This email comes from a man who is highly respected in his community, loves his family and is committed to providing for them and caring for them.  

“I am sick to my core by virtue of my indulgence in pornography. To be honest my appetite for porn accounted for why I got the internet in the very first place and now that I am down in a horrendous pit I seriously wonder whether there is hope of recovery for me for whenever I log onto the internet I must view porn. What is wrong with me? Why can't I change who I am presently? Is there any change possible in the future for me?”

The feeling expressed in this letter is common to what I am seeing in my clinical practice day in and day out.  Pornography eats away at the inner soul.   After one views it (almost always in secrecy – and isolation) it leaves in its wake feelings of absolute determination never to look at it again.  It leaves one frustrated with themselves, depressed, discouraged and a very powerful feeling of all consuming hopelessness.  Pay particular attention to the above email when this individual uses the words, “I am sick to my core.”  

Nothing can be more frustrating to a strong willed man or women with high values to face the reality that he/she cannot control their behavior in regards to viewing pornography viewing.  Again, pay attention to the words in the above email when he says, “whenever I log onto the internet I must view porn.”

To those who read this and still have a hard time accepting his statement that, “I must view porn”  let me explain a little more about addiction and the compelling force which drives one to certain behaviors.   In the simplest terms we in essence have two brains that work in concert with each other.  How these two brains communicate with each other determines how we function in the world.  For the purposes of this paper I will refer to these two different parts of our brain as the  limbic system and the pre-frontal cortex. 

To understand more about how these two different parts of the brain work, I refer to the work of James Olds.  James Olds was one of the most important psychologists of the twentieth century.  Indeed, many feel that his discovery of the "reward" system in the brain is the most important single discovery yet made in the field concerned with how the brain works and how it affects behavior. His discovery has given us a much-increased understanding of addiction.  

What Olds discovered that is so significant to the understanding of addiction, is that our pleasure centers (where the addiction lives) are housed in the Midbrain or Limbic System, which is not under the direct control of the conscious mind or the Frontal Cortex.  The Midbrain’s prime directive above all others is survival.  This part of the brain has the task of keeping us alive. It is the part that monitors our basic survival needs.  This part of the brain generates survival appetites that drive the rest of the body toward what it demands such as oxygen, water, food, sleep, sex, etc.  James Olds discovered the power of the Midbrain when doing experiments with mice.  When mapping out how the brain responded to pleasurable stimuli by placing electrodes on different areas of the brain, he was astounded when he saw what happened to the mice when he connected to the Midbrain.  He found that when the mice had the capacity to tap into the pleasure centers of the Midbrain and receive continual pleasure they would do so at the expense of all other functions until they died.  In other words, these mice would keep pressing a certain lever that delivered incredible pleasure until they would die of exhaustion or starvation. These pleasure centers simply overwhelmed the other functions of the brain.  Our pleasure centers work in a similar manner.  Now we are beginning to get a clearer glimpse of the challenging nature of addictions.  

When one views pornography there are a whole cocktail of pleasure chemicals released in the human system that change the way the brain functions.  Such chemicals as dopamine, norepinephrine, Oxytocin, and serotonin bind the brain to seek certain behaviors that will produce a feeling state.  The person at the chemical biological level begins to lose control of their lives.  

Scientific evidence now strongly supports an organic basis for all addiction.  Neuroscience has shown that all addictions, both drug and natural, are caused by a deficit of dopamine in the reward system.  This deficit can be facilitated by viewing pornography.   The viewing of pornography disrupts the regular and natural production of dopamine and resets the cells internal thermostat.  This deficit produces a very powerful craving which underlies all addiction.  The power or driving force behind these cravings and obsessions can literally disconnect the pre-frontal rational brain and drive one to behaviors that can destroy lives.  The very definition of addiction is that one continues to participate in behaviors where there are negative consequences despite their best efforts to stop.  What we are now seeing is that if the limbic system is constantly unrestrained, it grows stronger and the pre-frontal cortex actually shrinks.  In other words, the part of our brains that is able to put the brakes on begins to malfunction.  It simply looses the strength to restrain the unwanted behavior.  Fortunately, with abstinence and counseling support, there is evidence that the brain can heal itself.  

This reality was hypothesized almost a century ago before we had the evidence to support it.  William James made the follow state in the 1800’s,   “I believe that we are subject to the law of habit in consequence of the fact that we have bodies. The plasticity of the living matter of our nervous system, in short, is the reason why we do a thing with difficulty the first time, but soon do it more and more easily, and finally, with sufficient practice, do it semi-mechanically, or with hardly any consciousness at all. Our nervous systems have grown to the way in which they have been exercised, just as a sheet of paper or a coat, once creased or folded, tends to fall forever afterward into the same identical folds.” 

The Hope of Recovery

I know all of the above information can sound pretty discouraging but we must not lose hope.  If one has the deep desire to change it is not only possible but probable.  One can retrain the brain to turn away at an instant but this process requires help and support.  Yes, it is difficult but possible.  The words of Thomas Paine can provide hope and comfort when he stated, “These are the times that try men’s souls.  Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.  What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly:  it is dearness only that gives ever thing its value.  Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated.”  

Here is the difficult truth I have seen.  Most who struggle with this addiction are looking for the quick cure or more importantly, that they can do it on their own.  This addiction cannot be wished, willed or prayed away.  It must be treated with proven scientific principles along with faith.  It is a chemical disease of the brain and in order to strengthen the pre-frontal cortex to learn how to deal with it, one needs to reach out and use the support of others in the process.  Therapy by a qualified therapist along with 12 step meetings can prove invaluable in the healing process.  Those who eventually reach out for help generally say that they wished they had done it much earlier.  An addiction isn’t something to overcome in isolation.  Regardless of the resistance to discuss addiction outwardly, one must reach out for help and break the isolation barrier.  There are safe places to go where anonymity will be preserved.  It is common for me to hear something similar to another email I recently received,  “I haven't cried in years.  I want to cry to somebody about my addiction.  I want to yell and scream because I feel no one understands how I feel.  I'm afraid if I open up I will be rejected and feel stupid.”

In his masterpiece The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien tells the story of how one powerful ring must be destroyed to save the land from destruction.  “One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them.  One Ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them.  In the Land of Mordor where the shadows lie.”   Pornography addiction can be likened unto this One captivating Ring, trying to find and bring all it can to the mental and spiritual land of Mordor where the shadows lie.  In this story Frodo, a hobbit, is the one chosen to carry this ring to the dark land of Mordor and cast the ring into the Crack of Doom where it would finally be destroyed.  It is interesting to note that Frodo hates the burden of carrying the ring but also doesn’t want to part with it.  In fact, he becomes frustrated, irritated and angry when anyone tries to take the Ring away.    By nature, Frodo is kind and thoughtful but he becomes cruel and selfish when this happens.  It is also interesting to note that when he puts the Ring on, he becomes invisible while wearing it.  How like the isolation of addiction is this?  When one is acting out it is almost always in isolation apart from loved ones.  Note the similarities of the Ring – the power to isolate, to make invisible and produce feelings of lust.  Remember with pornography these feelings of lust are caused by very real biochemical reactions within the brain.

One of the most poignant parts of this classic story is that when Frodo comes closer to Mordor, he describes the great burden that he carries.  He loses strength and finds that he cannot do it alone.  He needs the help of his friend Sam.  Sam says to Frodo, “Come, Mr. Frodo!  I can’t carry it for you but I can carry you and it as well.  So up you get!  Come on, Mr. Frodo, Dear!  Sam will give you a ride.  Just tell him where to go, and he’ll go” (The Return of the King, The Easton Press, 1984, 217-218).

Even at the end of this long and arduous journey he cannot throw the Ring away by himself.  Those who have faced this addiction themselves or have struggled like Sam to help and carry a loved one will be able to recognize the similarities.  Those addicted can feel like they are in an endless battle and struggle.  They may lose all hope of ever being free.  With great effort they will fight the continual obsessions and compulsions, only to slip and fall again and again.  They must come to the conclusion that they cannot do this on their own.  Sometimes the “ Sams” in their lives will have to carry them, although the “Sams cannot carry the addiction for them.   Help and education on how to manage and deal with this issue are available.  Many resources can be found at www.innergold.com.  Of particular interest is the Innergold Manual and the book “The Language of Recovery.” 




Comments 49 comments

feedtherightwolf profile image

feedtherightwolf 6 years ago

Very good article, I have found from my personal experience that long articles do not do well on the intern :(

Now I try to keep my articles short and sweet :)

http://hubpages.com/hub/Dealing-with-Addiction-to-...


Michael 6 years ago

Excellent article. I will be delighted to follow up on the inner gold sight. There are too many that really 'poo-poo' the idea of porn similar as an addiction to cocaine or heroin...but their wrong. Sure, the hype of cocaine or the euphoria of heroin may manifest differently, but porn not only has its own manifestation, such as isolation/depersonalization dynamic going on, among others, but at the root base, I suspect the stimulus properties exist in a very analagous parallel to abstract substance precipitants such as cocaine and heroin. The difference which can be deceiving is confusing the expressions in terms of their dangers.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 6 years ago Author

Thank you Michael. You are correct there are too many individuals who just want to dismiss the idea of sexual addiction issues but the truth is, it is affecting more and more individuals, friends and families daily.

Addiction to anything, is detrimental because an individual becomes a slave to the substance or behavior.


LINK OF NEGATIVE AND POSITIVE 6 years ago

The Identity or personality (The real I is the controller of body brain and even sex.Weak personality inclined to gratification derived from act sends chemical signals to brain than to tiny chemicals to activate desire or behavior to act for gratification derived from sex act


MazinkaiserPR profile image

MazinkaiserPR 6 years ago from Illinois

The addiction to sex is also driven by the media and marketing who only purpose is to generate money out of it, and that is generating more attention for sex to the human.

Nice Hub by the way.


winker 6 years ago

My brother killed himself seven years ago over porn and what I am sure was some other type of mental illness. He was married three times and all of his wives found out about this problem. He spent too much money on it and avoided intimacy after each marriage because of the porn. It took the place of each wife, he was ashamed of himself and much more. He and I discussed it many times and he attempted counseling a number of times. He lost two jobs as a result of the addiction. He was a smart computer guy and yet he could not help himself but stay late at work and look up porn so that he could have privacy instead of looking it up at home and angering his wife. He was too smart to do this knowing that there was a policy against this and that even he a computer person knew he could be found out. The force and drive was that strong that he took huge risks in his life over the porn time and time again. In the end, I really don't think he could stand it any more. I only wish that this topic was more out there years ago so that maybe he could have gotten better help and the stigma was less than it was years ago.

Too late for him but hopefully some others can benefit from your article and others.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 6 years ago Author

Sorry to hear your loss but thank you for sharing your story to illustrate the danger of pornography. It is our hope that family, friends and loved ones of addicts, as well as the addict themselves, will find our videos and our site and learn more about this problem that is increasing daily. We post regular videos on YouTube about managing pornography addiction. We wish you the best.


Unknown  5 years ago

I have suffered from sex addiction for the past 12 years. I was an addict and had no idea. Quitting is extremely hard, and the average person will not be able to do it. In order to quit, you first have to ween your body off of it because your brain craves it. I spent one year in my own personal rehab. It's very easy to slip back into the cycle. If I did not make the choice to stop, I would of ended up killing my self. If your suffering from it, might I suggest praying to god. Your going to need it.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 5 years ago Author

Believing in a Higher Power will help any struggling with an addiction and we highly recommend it. Addiction is something that takes over a person's life but, yet, the individual wants to stop. Quitting is difficult but it is possible. We have seen thousands of individuals use our system and find the long-term sobriety they were wanting. Best wishes to all of those struggling with this, or any addiction. Don't give up!


Jdd3479 5 years ago

Guys - you have to get a blocker and an accountability partner! http://www1.k9webprotection.com/ is a free one that I use. You need to restrict your access.


InnerGold 5 years ago

Web blockers help and so do accountability partners, however, a person still needs to learn how to manage their addiction because they don't have blockers at the hotels, etc. When an addict learns to manage their addiction properly, they have the strength for these other situations when the blocker is not installed.

Don't get us wrong. We do encourage blockers and accountability partners but this is only part of the whole.


Noom 5 years ago

Suggestions:

- Try to live without the computer so much, the computer is like a mind trap, much like tv, you are exposed to all different types of lights and colors that make the brain go crazy.

- When you realize how badly women are exposed and treated, much like objects, you might start to think different and hopefully begin to avoid the net and magazines etc.

- Einstein once said - "insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results".

You need to rethink the whole process, it's not meant that you only go against your needs, you have the right to change the surroundings and enviorment around you so it gets easier for you to change. Just try to reverse the exposure, from bad to something good. It is how you change as a human.


Victim 5 years ago

Thank you sir, I am 25, I have been addicted for the past 10 years, I was exposed to it the first time when i was 10... It is hard to get off but i can stop if i feel i have to or need to, however sometimes i build excuses in my head to watch some a little bit and then it starts back... The worst part in all this is that i am quite a good looking attractive guy and i have turned down so many girls because my brain was more connected to porn arousal...


an idea can change your life 5 years ago

hello!IM from Pakistan.....your given information is efficient and effective 100% helpful for those who really want to get recover from this evil act of pornography or sex addiction..is a serious disease which kills inner beauty n innocence of a human pornography will result in (GREAT LOSS OF LIFE) After reading this page we can overcome this disease as well as with help of relegion help like Islam we have a perfect treatment to overcome on this addiction is to perform (NAMaaZ) WITH pure interest ......Islam is the religion of peace.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 5 years ago Author

Thank you for all of the comments. We are glad this information is helping so many people.

Victim, part of the survival techniques the addict uses is the mastery at justification. It takes time to learn to manage this addiction.

idea, I really wished that was true that followers of Islam did not have this struggle but we have many individuals who are struggling with this, who follow Islam. Unfortunately, pornography does not exempt anyone from its grasp. It is up to the individual and their belief to implement the systems that work for them.

InnerGold's Treatment System is helping a lot of people world-wide, no matter the race, religion or culture and that is our focus. We wish you all the best.


Overwhelmed and Confused 5 years ago

Thank you, this article really helped me. I recently found out that my husband of over 20 years has been struggling with porn addiction for over 30 years. He kept it well hidden, but it was growing recently and I found it on his internet history. I've been struggling with why and how he could continue in this when he has a wife who loves him. This article really helped me to understand how the porn has changed his brain and why he would continue to go back to something he knew was wrong so many times.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 5 years ago Author

Overwhelmed, what you are experiencing is happening over and over again. One reason they go back to it, is because of the two-part brain. They don't know what to do. There is a part of them that wants to continue to indulge but there is also a part of them that absolutely abhors the behavior and is frustrated when they act out. There is help and the InnerGold Treatment System has helped people world-wide but the individual must want the help. We are sorry you are having to go through this. We encourage you to watch our videos at http://youtube.com/innergold1000 . Their is a series of videos there that explains the two-part brain. We will also be launching several more in the upcoming weeks. We wish you the best.


Ip 4 years ago

My husband bought an itouch a few years ago

And been watching porn every morning and evening whenhes in the Tiolet

When I walk in he takes it off

He don't want to admit it

But he rather not have sex and said he can take care of his needs

If I talk to him he will try to become violence to me

He don't want to go anywhere with out his itouch


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 4 years ago Author

lp, It is unfortunate how porn can grasp a man to the point that he would become violent. We have many spouses that are in counseling so they can gain some healing. You may want to talk with a counselor in your area or you can join our forum http://innergold.org to help with your healing.

Our prayers are with you.


Cat 4 years ago

Pornography is only one of many things that a person can become habituated to. People who are hookedon this stuff should not be ashamed, pornogaphy has been around for hundreds, perhaps thousands of years (made more popular with the invention of the printing press). Pornography is a choice, just like anything else, and a person should feel no more shame about it than a person addicted to gmbling, alcohol, or food


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 4 years ago Author

We can see the devastation that porn causes by just reading some of the comments above. Porn is the worst addiction because it is on of the hardest to learn how to manage.


littlebutstrong 4 years ago

2 weeks ago, I confronted my husband over his porn problem. Like many at first he denied it. After having what I said run through his brain, something clicked. We have started counselling and I pray that this works. It was suggested that we get rid of temptations. I watched my husband smash our laptop, computer hard drive and his Blackberry. The internet modem has also been sent back. As of Monday, my internet will be off this phone as well. I know this is nothing I have brought on but that doesn't mean it still doesn't hurt any less. I am here to help and support but it's up to my husband to beat this. We have 3 beautiful children. Hopefully this will work. I love him but I will not tolerate or feel the need to try to compete with a fantasy world. Thank you for this article.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 4 years ago Author

This is admirable but the truth is that we can't live without technology. Technology has become so entrenched with every business that it is a must. A person must learn how to manage the addiction. They need the tools necessary to implement into their life so that true healing happens. I hope your counselor is a good counselor and is not accepting behavior as it is ok to experiment, etc. Porn destroys many families and individuals and unless the individual learns the correct principles they will never find the healing they need. You can learn more about the two-part brain and innergold. http://youtube.com/innergold1000 or visit our site http://innergold.com


vikram shah 4 years ago

I believe that porn ruins life. It kills intelligence and your brain power making you loose confidence. Spending hours on web searching for porn stuff is sheer waste of time. One need strong determination to quit it. Just avoid it for few weeks and see the difference in your though process and your energy level. You will start thinking positive and become happy. Just determine that whatever happens are not going to watch porn again from now on and discover a new you.


JV Joshi 4 years ago

Very Good Article.In Orient they believe in females purity & do respect as Goddess.But @the ground realty the,economic environments cause them to become prostitutes,bar girls . The people with excess money buy anything they wish including above female services.That is the sad part of life.


Northern Guy 3 years ago

4 months in. Depression is intense, it's a state of complete anhedonia. I really don't feel like doing anything because I can't seem to get pleasure out of anything anymore. I self-pleasure once per week to "get rid of the pressure" (wife not interested in sex these days) but that has been reduced to what amounts to a body function: it gives temporary relief like going to the bathroom rather than the usual afterglow of release. For those who say porn is just an obsession or defect of characted, I advise them to TRY WITHDRAWAL from it for a few months. I kicked alcohol, cigarettes and have withdrawn from anti-depressants. This is the worst.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 3 years ago Author

Northern Guy, you are not alone. We have several individuals that said kicking heroine and other drug addictions was easy compared to porn addiction. We have helped them. You may be interested in learning more about InnerGold. We have been helping individuals for over 20 years. Read our testimonials, they are copied and pasted from the emails we receive. http://innergold.com

We are here to help you and we know we can.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 3 years ago Author

Northern Guy, you are not alone. We have several individuals that said kicking heroine and other drug addictions was easy compared to porn addiction. We have helped them. You may be interested in learning more about InnerGold. We have been helping individuals for over 20 years. Read our testimonials, they are copied and pasted from the emails we receive. http://innergold.com

We are here to help you and we know we can.


muhd fuzail 3 years ago

thank u and god bless u this is a good inititave this kind of article really help people to think and make them aware that they are the victims i think we should not be alone as quoted by our beloved prophet muhammed saw that "satan is an enemy of human one should not be alone, but must be engaged with others as wolf can kill one goat but cannot kill several togather, and satan is a wolf for human" and allah knows better.


Solomon R John, 3 years ago

Dear Gordon. Thanks for this brilliant article, which caught my uninterrupted attention. Today, the world is confused between the two: right and wrong. I think evil has taken its turn to strip off the morality of human beings.

May God help us!


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 3 years ago Author

Thank you. We are determined to help as many people as possible.


Brad2001 profile image

Brad2001 3 years ago from Lewiston, New York

How can you be addicted to something like masturbation? Doesn't the term addiction relate to a pathological condition, or a behavior that leads to self-destructive activities? I can see how, yes, too much casual sex can lead to STD's, or unwanted pregnancies, even losing a sense of obligation towards personal responsibilities (like going into work), but sex is pleasurable. When someone literally dies from a dopamine overdose, or keels over from an orgasm (and not a 75 yr. old on a pacemaker), I am not convinced. In my opinion, the DSM has gone completely overboard with labelling everything as a pathological condition. As someone who enjoys sex, many many times, in a responsible fashion, and I am in a monogamous relationship, I feel like the psy-sciences are taking the joy out of lovemaking, making us feel guilty about 'is this too much sex? am I masturbating too much? is this normal?' its creating a society of control, a panopticon so to speak. Anyway, no disrespect to you. I respectfully disagree with your synopsis. Porn addiction is not like drug addiction, in my opinion, but we can discuss this.


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 3 years ago Author

Brad2001 - Sexuality is indeed pleasurable as it should be. It binds people together and is a part of a healthy marriage. Having said that can it become destructive when out of control? Yes it can. I have individuals that come to me who compulsively masturbate numerous times per day when they say they don't want to do it. They say they are compelled to do it. That is one of the signs of an addiction - unwanted cravings and a driving compulsion. Pornography is generally the fuel for addictions like this. When people come to me in such a state I try to normalize sexuality and help them understand that learning to be sexually healthy is a quest for all people. It is a part of our lives. However, the stuff that is now available online is not normal nor healthy. It is apparent that what people are seeing now is disturbing them in a great degree.

Everyone has to answer these difficult questions for themselves but I strongly caution against the use of pornography just as I would caution someone about the use of alcohol or drugs. Are they millions that claim these activities are just fine - again yes. Use your wisdom and do what is right for you but be honest with yourself. If you are enjoying sex in a monogamous relationship then you are blessed. What two consenting adults decide to do together is their business and no one else's.


krillco profile image

krillco 3 years ago from Hollidaysburg, PA

As a clinical counselor (LPC) who has worked in the mental health and addiction fields for over 35 years, readers should know that there are legitimate disagreements about ‘porn addiction’ and approaches to treating the marriage difficulties that surround porn (Yes, even among good Christian believers, but most are not brave enough to say it). The overriding Christian approach to ‘porn addiction’ leaves a great deal to desire in efficacy of altering the behavior…in short, most pastors and pastoral responses are woefully inadequate and give false and exaggerated claims of ‘cure’. The issue of people (men and women) who compulsively look at porn is not nearly as simple as many would want to believe. In most cases, the commonly accepted reasons for the compulsion (note, not ‘addiction’) are far more complex and are based more in issues of intolerance of couple intimacy, reactive process, and inhibited sexual communication between spouses. Calling porn viewing ‘addiction’ in many ways is a pacifier for wives and an excuse for men. There is no argument that sexual arousal produces increases in pleasurable feelings based in altered brain chemistry, but such a natural function in response to visual cuing does not qualify as and addiction in the truest sense. I also do not argue that compulsions damage relationships. Find a qualified clinical counselor with a Christian background for marriage help, and not a ‘sex addiction counselor’. Really, the former will help and the latter MIGHT be a qualified and legitimate treatment person with proven outcomes or they may be simply cashing in on a trendy, hyped 'diagnosis' that is not even accepted by the APA or included in the DSM. bandbseminars.com


sam 2 years ago

what about believing in Allah , do you think that may help me ?


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 2 years ago Author

Any help is good help, but some people seem to need more help then just prayer. However, there are some people that have been able to exercise enough faith and belief to kick their addiction.


eagle 2 years ago

omg!


Jeric 2 years ago

try www.xxxchurch.com


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 2 years ago Author

Triple X church is a good resource for some but a lot of addicts find them extremely triggering, thus defeating the purpose of healing.


Paul Ganley 2 years ago

Well done Mr Bruin. An excellent article from you especially considering the pleasure thermostat.

Compulsions versus addictions;

A VERY fine line between both. Usually the compulsive pathway fuels the addiction..both are linked heavily. You can quibble over words but it's STILL a destructive thing whether compulsive OR addictive destroying lives whilst others analyse words to fit around the condition.

Gary Wilson from "'yourbrainonporn"' is not religious yet says the same thing as the above. He calls it an addiction and says it soothes the same areas of the brain as narcotics. Does he make excuses for it? NO.

If you over to Daily Strength you read of countless cases of people who accept they are porn addicts (yes, ADDICTS) yet none of them make excuses for their behaviour by saying "'it's not ME..it's my addiction"'. Nor do their spouses. All of them confess to making a CHOICE.

Compulsive people have NO choice. Theirs is a ritual in order to survive.( as they believe it)

With compulsions, most obsessive compulsives don't derive any pleasure from their daily ritual..e.g. walking around their car 3 times before entering brings no pleasure, neither does washing their hands 10 times whilst counting. (I had many relatives who did this and I can tell you from experience they didn't enjoy or understand why).

With an addiction, pleasure IS received everytime and one becomes hooked on the chemical rush.

Which category does porn or masturbation fall under here?

Thanks again Mr Bruin. You are very accurate in your evaluation of a dangerous addiction.


Paul Ganley 2 years ago

krillco;

If we go to any of the websites(which don't involve money making yet say the same as the article here) referring to porn addiction we don't encounter any who rate their problem as an "'excuse. Most are in deep shame and pain and are totally AWARE of their behaviour (unlike compulsive people who are locked into a sort of curse).

Porn addicts realise they DO have a CHOICE and they make the wrong one each occasion until they come out of their ignorance and learn how their brain is tricking them.

I think you can waste time "'legitimising"' words whilst missing the evidence. It destroys lives, whatever it is.


Milk Mazx profile image

Milk Mazx 2 years ago from new Zealand

Hi every one yes sam  believing in Allah would help you but you get to pray 5 times a day do good deeds


Milk Mazx profile image

Milk Mazx 2 years ago from new Zealand

please stop jerking off Because I am so addicted to it and I am 22 years old and I have eye problem from porn and I anxiety and depression I feel so bad I real want to stop and have a job and a family of my own


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 2 years ago Author

krillco - We respectfully disagree with you. We believe pornography addiction does exist and maybe one reason why it is hard to find a base is because a lot of counselors/scientist struggle with pornography as an addiction but do not want to admit it. We are not just sex addiction counselors, we are clinical addiction counselors/therapists.


Milk Mazx profile image

Milk Mazx 2 years ago from new Zealand

innergold Can you help me please


InnerGold profile image

InnerGold 2 years ago Author

Milk, we strongly recommend our online addiction course http://innergold.com . If you are having financially difficulties, apply for a scholarship.


zahour 22 months ago

Thank you. Very Scientific Approach.


zahour 22 months ago

Thank you. Very Scientific Approach.


Moral Man 11 months ago

I used to watch pornography and Im ashamed of it. Its gross, disgusting, repulsive, degrading, and dangerous, and Aids and venereal diseases are the end results not to mention being addicted to this garbage. Its immoral but I think Nature is at least partly to blame for this as it has given humans n overly strong sex drive. Pornography is scum.

Im interested in actress Amber Hunt. She did a porno movie called Candy Stripers in 1978. I dont wish to see this disgusting movie. Im just interested in Amber Hunt as a person and not her pornographic movies. I saw a picture of her and she sort of looks like actress Lea Thompson. Does anyone know anything at all about Amber Hunt? Im all done looking at porno.

This is an imformative hub.

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