For Pornography Addicts
If you think you might be a pornography addict or have a hypersexual disorder, you may want to take our confidential Sex Addiction Screening quiz. Click HERE to take the Men’s Screening Quiz, or HERE to take the Women’s Screening Quiz.
Porn addiction, often coupled with compulsive masturbation, is the most common form of sexual addiction. It occurs when a person loses the ability to choose whether he or she will continue to view pornography. In short, if you have said, “I don’t want to look at porn anymore,” yet you return to it anyway, time and time again, you may be addicted to pornography. Porn addiction often occurs in the absence of other issues, though many porn addicts also engage in other forms of non-intimate sexuality, including webcam sex, sexting, casual or anonymous sex, affairs, prostitution, exhibition and voyeurism (online or offline).
Contrary to widespread misconceptions, porn addicts (like other addicts) engage in addictive behaviors not to have fun and feel good, but to escape from painful emotions and feel less (i.e., to feel that they are in control of their emotions). These are the exact same reasons that people abuse drugs and alcohol, gamble compulsively and engage in other addictive behaviors.
Signs of Pornography Addiction
Today, most porn addicts get their “fix” on the Internet, spending at least 11 or 12 hours per week on digital devices in search of the perfect image or video. Many are on the hunt two or three times that amount. While magazines, videotapes and other “traditional” forms of pornography are still in use, most porn addicts prefer the anonymity, affordability and round-the-clock accessibility of the Internet. Typically, addictive porn use, like other forms of sexual addiction, reaches the point where it interferes with healthy activities, resulting in relationship, career, health, financial and legal troubles.
Common signs that casual porn use has escalated to the level of addiction include:
- Continued porn use despite consequences and/or promises to stop
- Increasing the amount of time spent on porn use
- Significant periods of time (hours or days) lost to finding and viewing pornography
- Needing to increase the intensity or type of sexual content viewed in order to get a fix
- Lying and covering up the nature and extent of porn use
- Anger or irritability if asked to stop
- Loss of interest in sexual relationships with spouses or partners
- Feeling alone or detached from others
- Using drugs or alcohol in conjunction with porn
- Objectifying strangers, or viewing them as body parts rather than people
- Escalation to using the Internet for anonymous sexual hookups or to find prostitutes
Getting Help for Porn Addiction
Sadly, porn addicts are often reluctant to seek help because they don’t view their solo sexual behaviors as a cause of their life problems. When they do reach out, they often seek help not for the porn problem itself, but for the symptoms of the problem, such as depression or relationship issues. Many participate in therapy for a long time without ever bringing up (or being asked about) pornography or masturbation. Thus, their core problem goes unidentified and unaddressed.
Our treatment programs can address exactly this sort of misdiagnosis and non-treatment. Give us a call at 855-900-7357.