I was first exposed to a pornographic magazine when I was about 11 years old; I had an older cousin who had a Playboy magazine and decided it would be cool to show me and another cousin my age what sex looked like and how a woman’s body looked underneath the clothes.
In my adolescence with raging hormones coming in, puberty, and with the onset of starting to find girls attractive of course it was alluring and exciting.
Sitcoms on TV portray teen boys’ viewing or keeping pornographic magazines under the mattresses as a “normal” thing, something to be expected. Pornography didn’t fully seem like it was a problem, it was something you did in private, especially if you were masturbating as well. I firmly believe that most males who are porn users also masturbate, they often go hand-in-hand and are what contribute to this becoming an addiction. I carried on with viewing pornography in magazines, but with the internet coming into mainstream and such, pornography was readily available at the click of a mouse and online videos were more interactive and alluring.
I eventually became so consumed by wanting to view pornography online and masturbate that I would do so several times a day, as often as I could get access to the internet. When I tried to stop, I would literally go through withdrawals, much like a drug addict. People may say, so what? However, coming from experience, while it seems that pornography isn’t harmful to some, it is very harmful. Pornography isolates a person from others, gives a person a false sense of sexual intimacy, destroys relationships, and it perverts what real intimate relationships are all about and portrays sex as just the act itself without any attachment. I noticed my mind becoming continually consumed by lustful thoughts of undressing some woman and just going at it, I placed myself in those fantasies and thought I was gaining knowledge about my sexuality and sexual responses, but those fantasies accompanied by masturbation left me empty and alone afterwards, left to cope with feelings of guilt and shame. Life didn’t feel as happy or interesting. I stopped being involved with family members and always felt to be hiding an awful secret. Pornography is addictive in nature and my relationships with those I love were affected. My view of women and sex truly were distorted and perverted.
About 15 years later, I am now in my mid-twenty’s and still struggle with the effects of pornography. I am now married to a wonderful woman who is my best friend, we have recently brought a beautiful baby girl into the world and life is really good, for the most part. 15 years and I am still haunted by pornography! I had to give control over to my wife who set up passwords and parental blocks on any computer I have access to because it is still difficult for me to not want to go back. I attend pornography addiction recovery meetings sponsored by my Church and am recovering, but this is an addiction over which a person surrenders their control if not taken care of. I know that life is in such a mess and in disarray with the effects of pornography. I know that it has had its effects on my wife, even though my exposure to it and addiction preceded before we met. She still feels like somehow it reflects on her, trust is compromised, and she compares herself with what she thinks these fantasies do for me…women are sensitive to the way they look and my wife especially strives to make me happy as I do try for her as well, but pornography and the addiction I’ve been recovering from has had it’s toll on our marriage already.
I don’t just believe that pornography is harmful, I know it is because I have been through the addictive cycle and still strive every day to stay clear and away from it. If this plague doesn’t stop, it will continue to destroy individuals and families and society will see the effects sooner or later. I am grateful for a wonderful wife who supports me and encourages me in my recovery and am also grateful for my Church and religious beliefs that help give me a moral foundation and provides me with the tools and support I need to overcome the addiction I have to pornography and masturbation. I will stand and fight for any cause that is anti-porn and that strives to expose pornography as the harmful, dangerous plague that it is.
Shared by Tyler