If you are fighting an addiction to pornography, you are not alone…68% of young men and 18% of women use porn at least once a week.
I share this statistic with you simply to let you know that you are not alone in your struggle. I don’t want you to think, If so many people are doing it, it must be okay,because it is not okay, but help is available. Many people have walked this road before you, and MANY of them are now free from the stronghold that pornography had on their life.
You need to realize that beyond the personal problems pornography causes, it is also causing problems within society such as an increase in Sexual Assault and an increase in demand for sex trafficking victims.
It is time to get the help you need. You too can be porn free.
To motivate you even further to break your addiction to porn, consider these personal consequences:
- Porn makes real relationships less satisfying, encouraging an unrealistic view of healthy relationships.
- Eventually, the porn user becomes obsessed with pornography in more extreme forms, growing increasingly secretive and isolated from loved ones.
- Men who are exposed to porn describe themselves as less in love with their partner than men who don’t view porn.
- After being exposed to porn, people are more critical of their partner’s appearance, sexual performance and displays of affection.
- Porn is devastating to the user’s partner too. From ignoring their partner to feeling like he or she doesn’t measure up, a porn habit destroys relationships and real love. In fact 56% of divorce cases involved one party having an obsessive interest in porn.
Breaking any addiction takes strength and perseverance. It takes courage to own up to the problem and actually do something about it. It’s not an easy journey but it’s worthwhile for you to live your life to the fullest.
Here are seven steps I would encourage you to take:
- Tell someone. As difficult as it may seem, you need to bring your struggle into the open and not keep it a secret. Talk with someone you trust about your struggle with porn, such as a parent, pastor, youth leader or close friend. This is an essential first step to recovering from an addiction.
- Find an accountability partner. Set aside a specific time and location where you feel comfortable discussing your addiction. Talk with him or her weekly and have open, honest conversations about your struggle. This is an essential part of getting your life back on track.
- Make a clean start. Another key part of recovery is getting rid of all pornographic content you have, like images, magazines, DVDs or computer files. Let your accountability partner know you’ve destroyed the content you have.
- Figure out when and where you usually struggle. If it’s late at night while you’re on the internet, turn your computer/phone/device off at 6pm and put it away or disassemble it completely. Some recovering porn addicts find it helpful to take time away from the internet completely.
- Stay clear of temptation. Temptation to look at porn often comes when someone is bored, tired or lonely. Have a plan when you feel tempted, like calling a friend, going on a walk or enjoying a hobby. Try to get out of your environment and engage your mind and body in a positive way.
- Recovery is a journey. If you end up looking at porn, be sure to let your accountability partner know as soon as possible. Overcoming porn is a journey, and is won day by day. Porn is a destructive cycle so when you breakdown, be transparent and talk to someone. Then start fresh.
- Get professional help. There are many professional counselors that are available to help you deal with porn and the underlying issues. If you don’t have access to a counselor, TheHopeLine offers a network of professional care and resources available to you
In the end, pornography robs you of the joy of a real-life intimate relationship replacing it with pixels on a screen. Is that really what you want?