Men and Porn Addiction

men-and-porn-addiction

The American pornography industry first started gaining momentum in the 1960s, and has become increasingly widespread and lucrative ever since. With the invention of the internet, pornography became available in a way it never had been. Currently, porn-related websites generate more online traffic than any other type of existing site, and the porn industry as a whole generates about as much as $13 million annually. It has been proven that roughly 90 percent of boys under the age of 18 have been exposed to pornography. A recent study concluded that 79 percent of American men between the ages of 18 and 30 view porn at least monthly. 67 percent of men between the ages of 31 and 49 view porn monthly, and 49 percent of men between the ages of 50 and 68 view porn monthly. Other studies suggest that 54 percent of men view pornography on a weekly basis – and that overall, men are 543 percent more likely to look at porn than women. And hey, who can blame them? Pornography is as readily available as chocolate chip cookie recipes. Young men had to produce valid identification to view pornography up until the 1990s (or rummage through grandpa’s sock drawer) – now, they can simply Google search and number of sex-related terms.

Porn Addiction and Sexual Dysfunction

In the age of convenience and instant gratification, excessive numbers of men are taking advantage of the limitless pornography right at their fingertips. Generally speaking, this is not such a damaging thing; viewing pornography at a young age is usually not enough to dramatically affect healthy sexual functioning. However, there are those who will develop an unhealthy relationship with porn – many men even become dependent upon it. Porn addiction is often classified as a sexual addiction – those who use porn excessively (and often masturbate excessively) are considered to fall under the ‘sex addict’ category. Addiction of any kind is defined as a chronic and relapsing brain disease; one directly affecting reward, memory, motivation, and other related neurological circuitry. It is characterized by an inability to abstain from self-destructive behaviors regardless of personal consequences. Addiction is also characterized by intense cravings, and is considered progressive unless adequately treated.

More on Porn and Sex Addiction

Porn addiction, like other forms of sexual addiction, is marked by issues with intimacy and interpersonal relationships, along with an obsession and compulsion relating to the use and viewing of pornography. In many instances (the vast majority, in fact), men will turn to porn as a means of emotional avoidance or escape. The causes of porn addiction are extremely complex, and they vary greatly from person-to-person. However, like other behavioral addictions, compulsive porn use can often be linked to an attempt to self-medicate unresolved emotional pain. For some, porn serves as an alternative to authentic intimacy. An inability to form meaningful, intimate relationships can often be further linked back to a dysfunctional childhood. If children grow up feeling unworthy of love, or if a child adopts the belief that others are not to be trusted (due to parental neglect or abandonment), this child will likely mature into an adult who still feels inadequate or untrusting. Porn may fill a void created by a lack of healthy intimacy.

Porn Addiction Recovery for Men

Fortunately, regardless of the cause, treatment for porn addiction has become widely available. Therapeutic treatment is often recommended, seeing as porn addiction often stems from deep-seated emotional issues (and unresolved trauma, in many cases). Therapeutic recovery is also beneficial in the sense that it allows loved ones the opportunity to heal as well. Interpersonal relationships – especially romantic relationships – are often quite damaged by compulsive pornography use. Healing in a safe and supportive setting allows for the restoration of relationships. We at Next Chapter treat sexual addiction as a primary condition, and have extensive experience working with sufferers of porn addiction. For more information, please contact us today.