09222017

13 myths about pornography addiction

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Brannon Patrick, a pornography addiction recovery therapist from Lehi. (Photo courtesy of Brannon Patrick)

Pornography addiction recovery therapist Brannon Patrick practices in Lehi. (Photo courtesy of Brannon Patrick)

Lehi therapist Brannon Patrick, who specializes in pornography addiction recovery, talks about some of the most common myths he sees regarding pornography and addiction.

To connect with a therapist like Patrick, visit lifestarlehi.com. For more resources on this topic, visit lightsalongtheshore.com.

1. Sexual addiction shouldn’t be treated like a real addiction.

Compulsive pornography use has all the elements of an addiction. The rate and duration increase over time. People use it to numb out pain or medicate their emotions. It causes disconnection, denial and trauma in relationships.

 2. If you’re active in church you’re less likely to have a problem with pornography.

That’s not the case at all. Utah’s population is more than 60 percent Latter-day Saint and it has the some of the highest pornography subscription rates in the country. I have several theories on that, one of which is that our culture is sadly shame-based. Shame is the driving force behind addiction.

 3. When people get married, their pornography addictions will stop.

This isn’t true, because pornography addiction, which is a form of sexual addiction, isn’t about healthy sex. It’s not about an intimate relationship. Sex doesn’t fulfill the lustful hit a person gets from pornography. This misconception leads to other misconceptions as well, like partners of addicts believing they can have sex more to the control their spouse’s addiction.

4. Feeling enough shame about an addiction will cause someone to seek help.

Feeling shame will cause you to hide, to go into secrecy. You’re not going to be driven to confront a problem if you have a lot of shame. Guilt is slightly different, if it’s healthy guilt. Knowing you’ve done something wrong could lead someone to treatment, but most often, it’s just pain and tough consequences that bring people to my office.

5. If the addict wants it enough, God will always take away their addiction.

I believe that God can do this, but I don’t believe that God often does. Many people desperately want to overcome their addictions, but still continue to struggle. I don’t see many miracles in the sense of people being cured simply because they have an experience with God. What I do see is that whoever gets into recovery has to have God involved to progress. Addicts use the 12-Step program and learn how to surrender to a “higher power.” God is there to help them walk the path of overcoming their addiction.

6. Sobriety is recovery.

Being sober is not enough. Recovery is a lifestyle change. It’s being transparent. It’s overcoming shame. It’s being humble and honest. Sobriety is a byproduct of recovery.

7. Compulsive pornography use only affects the user.

It’s like any addiction. It’s an attachment disorder, meaning if affects relationships. In order for someone to be addicted, they need to be in some denial, which prevents them from being authentic. It causes trauma for parents, children, spouses and all kinds of family relationships. It definitely doesn’t just affect the user.

8. Spouses of addicts should just forgive and forget. It’s not that big a deal.

Spouses are truly traumatized by their partners’ addictions in ways they might not even realize. They need to learn how to cope. They need their own recovery plan and support system.

9. Every ecclesiastical leader will know how best to help a pornography addict.

You may get the help you need from your ecclesiastical leader alone. You may not. Often well-meaning ecclesiastical leaders are untrained in dealing with this issue and are subject to many of the same misconceptions as the general population. In an effort to be helpful, sometimes religious leaders say things that unknowingly undermine the spouse as well as the person struggling with the addiction.

10. Once you’ve stopped compulsively viewing pornography and repented, you’re in the clear. The problem won’t resurface.

This is a common misconception that leads to so many more, like “If I’ve repented, I don’t need to tell my future spouse about it because I’m done.” Addiction is a disease and it’s a lifelong disease. It’s not just a moral issue. Even after repentance, you still have to work your recovery to stay sober or you’ll fall back into addiction.

11. My teenager probably hasn’t been exposed to pornography.

If you believe that, you’re most likely in denial. It’s everywhere. Almost every teenager has been exposed to pornography in some way. Parents who don’t accept it are hurting their children. Children need them to talk openly about what they might feel, what they should do and whom they should talk to when it happens.

12. Discussing pornography with a prepubescent child is unnecessary.

Exposure to pornography is happening at younger and younger ages. If they’re old enough to view it, they’re old enough to talk about it. The game has changed. The talk needs to start sooner and happen more often. Either children will learn about sex and pornography from friends at school or from their parents. It’s better to get to them first before they learn elsewhere.

13. Viewing pornography is only a problem among men.

Pornography use is increasing in all forms. It’s not just a male problem. I hear that more and more women are involved with it, but I don’t see more and more women in my practice. My theory on that is that it’s even more culturally shameful for women who have a problem, so they’re even less likely than men to come out about it.

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41 Responses to "13 myths about pornography addiction"

  1. David says:

    The LDS church has a 12 step program that has been adopted from the AA 12 step. It is called ARP – Addiction Recovery Program. It is available to anyone. They have a specific sub group called Pornography Addiction Support Group (PASG) and typically they have a spouse support meeting at the same time. My wife and I were group leaders for several years and then area directors. The program works well for those that use it. You can find meeting times and locations on lds dot org.

  2. Shane Hatch says:

    I am a Bishop and this is a wonderful article! I worry about how the culture we have developed is a contributing factor. Satan wants us to hide and be in the darkness, to feel shame, so we won’t repent. If we could expose this and bring it into the light, miracles can and will happen. I also feel that another reason we have such a high number of pornography and sex addiction issues, is due to the fact that alcohol, smoking and drug abuse/addiction has been taught to us since we were little. Pornography, sex and appropriate intimacy have not been taught the same way. Because parents feel it’s a “taboo” subject. Our children need to be taught when very young about appropriate and beautiful intimacy and how inappropriate lustful sex, masturbation & pornography are. They need to be taught, early and often, by examples of good parents who make the sex talk a daily part of life, just like we do with alcohol, drugs and smoking. This is how to bring this out into the light. Help your children feel comfortable to talk about these things so it’s no longer shameful. Where healthy guilt, which leads to true repentance, can replace evil, damning shame that Satan wants us to feel so we will quickly hide! Satan wants all of the saints to “hide” I hope and pray we will all bring this out of darkness and into the light.

    • Bishop Hatch,

      I so appreciate your comments. You are spot on with everything that you said. I wish that all Bishops and parents were as knowledgeable as you. I try hard to educate leaders and parents as much as possible. I wish there was an easier way to educate on a larger scale. We need to open up this topic completely and make it a regular discussion both in church and in our families. Thanks again for your thoughts.

      -Brannon Pat

      • fred says:

        What is the why behind the addiction? Why are married men struggling with this? I have heard some say they have no intimate relationship with their spouse so they have turned to porn. Is this true or is there deeper issues?

        • Joel says:

          Nephi said that when he taught his people, he spike with boldness. He said it was painfull to see those who suffered from sin to be so bluntly confronted with their weaknesses, but it was necessary to bring them out of darkness. So to put it boldly, this is a terrible lie and an attemt at justifying the sin.
          Let me explain the why. Satan is called the father of lies. It is not a title bestowed by men but by God the Father, and he is very deserving of the earned title. Many seem to forget that Lucifer once stood at the Fathers side even as Jesus Christ does now. Until his fall, Lucifer was Gods student and learned from Him all he knows. His intelligence is second only to Christ.
          When Korihor was struck dumb because of his incessant pride and wicked preachings, having led away the hearts of men, he was finally forced to admit that he had been deceived. He said that a devil had appeared to him in the form of an angel and taught him what he should say. So powerful were those teachings that Korihor was, as he put it, able to convince even himself that these lies were the truth. Alma then accentuates just how powerful thise lies can be by revealing, that even though Korihor by his own genuine admission knew he was lieing, if he were given back his voice, he would continue to teach the people in wickedness.
          Addicts are administered to by Satan’s angels to bring about an individuals spiritual death. He has used all of his intelligence and learning to plan for your being carefully led away. He will teach you how to defend your adictions by the most destructive means possible. He does it all to instill a sense of worthlessness in you and to infect another at the same time.
          No human being has ever “needed to turn to porn” for any reason. That is the Devil’s great lie. Because Satan is so adept at his deceptions, we all fall to one lie or another to some extent. That is why God the Father has given us the gifts of many various rightous companions including spouses, the Holy Ghost, Prophets, family members, the Hosts of Heaven who have come before us and those who hold the spiritual line while we prepare the earth to recieve our Savior once again. The list goes on.
          If you are suffering from addiction, ultimately you are most likely feeling alone and worthless. You feel like your Heavenly Family has forgotten you, like your Eternal Father doesnt miss you or hope for your safe return home. This is how Satan wants us to feel. Its why we as addicts turn to whatever comfort we can.
          Saddly few of us realize He was there the whole time. He picks us up when we fall. He teaches us the hard lessons no one else can or will. He sends us companions when we need them most. Most importantly, He sent His Son to die so we might live.
          I testify that He loves us all, the sinner as well as the saint. He promised that we would never be left alone, and as I learned the hard way recently, we never have been. In the sacred name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

    • Julie Treadwell says:

      Bishop, I thank you. I just learned something very critical from you. I need to “make the sex talk a daily part of life.” It does need to become as comfortable to discuss as it is with alcohol, drugs and smoking. We had “THE Talk” and we’ve had some other conversations but we haven’t made it as open as it needs to be. As I read what you wrote I felt my husband and I MUST lay more groundwork to enable the kids to approach us more comfortably. I fear we’ve created an environment that would lend itself more to shame. Again, I thank you for your insights.

  3. mandy says:

    Sadly, I know for myself that this problem is not just a male problem. I believe more women suffer from this addiction than admit it. I am working with my Bishop to recover from this. It is shameful to me but talking to my Bishop has helped a lot. The ARP meetings mentioned above Very helpful.

    • Julie Treadwell says:

      Way to Go, Mandy. Every time you are brave enough to speak out, it shines a light into the dark places. Satan tries to keep us in the dark as much as he can. Keep going, Girl. You are strong! Tap into a group called “Daughters of Light” for even more support!

  4. Rebecca says:

    Great article!
    As a spouse of a recovering addict, I can attest that every one of these points is exactly right. Addicts need help and spouses need help, too. I would encourage addicts and spouses to seek ecclesiastical and professional help. Recovery is available! It will be hard-work and may at times be unpleasant but recovery is possible. We have lived with this problem for many years (hiding, in shame) but finally got the help we needed from a knowledgeable bishop and a great therapist. Our family is healing.
    The Church’s 12-step program is AMAZING! The Church also has a great website for overcoming pornography. Even if you do not live in an area that has a 12 step program in place, the workbook is available online. https://arp.lds.org/steps?lang=eng
    When we have sought help in the past, our leaders did not really know much about how to help us but things are much different now. There is more training and information available to leaders and to addicts and family members. Educate yourself on what sexual addiction is and is not. Knowledge will empower you to keep on the path to recovery and give you hope.
    Seek help. From the moment you begin, you will know that you are on the right track. Heavenly Father loves each of us and will NEVER leave us alone. He will guide you back to a better place.

  5. Julie Treadwell says:

    Sooooooooo glad to see this article. We need more of them and on a regular basis. As much as I would love to see this eradicated, I fear this is one “epidemic” that is not going away. Because the 12 step program is for older members, but the exposure is happening at younger and younger ages, I want to point out that there is a program available to younger people. It is through a group called “Sons of Helaman” and is LDS philosophy and scripture based. Good stuff. No, GREAT stuff. Help is out there. Here’s a link:

    http://www.lifechangingservices.org/sonsofhelaman/

    • Carol says:

      I agree – these myths spell it out pretty well. This Life Changing Services organization also has a program for men which is called “Men of Moroni.” The teachings they promote are outlined in a book that the director, Maurice Harker, wrote entitled, “Like Dragons Did They Fight.” In this work he helps you see how/why we get stuck in these types of addictions, and gives specific tools of how to get out. The principles really do work. The “Sons of Helaman” program has had almost 500 young men graduate, which means the student is able to go at least 12 weeks in a row without sliding. I know some of the men, young and older who have participated and they testify of how their lives have been completely turned around and they are either completely freed from their addiction, or are at least in control instead of it controlling them. The phone number to reach them is 877-HERO-877 if you want more information.

  6. kplano says:

    Thank you for this article and everyone who has commented. This is a very real problem that few have the courage to talk about. My son was exposed to nude photos in an art book at the public library when he was about 7, just randomly looking through books there. That set him on a course of pornography addiction that plagued him for decades. My husband and I never knew about his addiction until he was in college. He was that good at hiding it from us and his siblings and friends. There were times when he would trade that addiction for another addiction like smoking, or alcohol, or drugs. We tried to help him by putting “Covenant Eyes” on our computer at home, we went to the bishop, he went to meetings at the stake center with LDS Social Services. We thought he was in recovery when he got married in the temple to our sweet daughter in law, but he relapsed after a few years by smoking again and then back into the pornography. This caused much heartache for his wife and us. He and his wife went to the LDS Recovery meetings and that has helped them both. One of the books I would recommend for anyone who is in this situation themselves or has a loved one involved in it is, “He Restoreth My Soul”, by Donald L. Hilton Jr, MD. It brings the Savior’s Atonement into the recovery process and is so helpful. That is the only way I found peace to my soul about the whole trap of parental guilt that I felt, like I should have been able to prevent it from happening. Parents are supposed to protect their children. I felt like such a failure. But, I have placed that burden on my savior and he is carrying it for me now. I feel such love from him for me and my son and it has brought peace to my soul and we are happy. I am no longer naive. I know there may be relapses still for him, but Christ’s love for us will not dry up and he will always be there for us and give us strength to climb again when we fall.

  7. Natalie says:

    Sons of Helaman has been a life-changer for my son and consequently
    For our whole family! As a curious 12 yr old he got pulled into something much stronger than he imagined it would be, but he has been rescued thanks to the Son’s of Helaman program where he is taught HOW to apply the Atonement in a very practical way! He has come out of the experience a lot wiser and with a healthy respect for the power of the adversary.
    He knows the battle is ongoing but is so much happier, helpful, and at peace with himself and with others. Motivation and enthusiasm for life have replaced apathy and anger.
    He genuinely looks forward to the weekly group meetings where he is surrounded by other
    Courageous young men who help hold each other accountable and cheer each other on as they fight this most critical battle with courage, strength, and faith in the Living God! It is AWESOME!!!

  8. herman says:

    “It causes disconnection, denial and trauma in relationships.” How so? I have read so many things about the downside of porn and not one of them have ever made any sense to me. The only time I ever see porn causing problems in a relationship is when the spouse who doesn’t look at it is full of jealous fear. In relationships where the non-viewing spouse is indifferent to porn, nothing happens. Worst case scenario is that the viewer wastes a lot of time and lotion. The REAL problem with porn is the sad existence experienced by the people IN the pornography. It could be reasoned that watching porn continues/promotes this sick world of the makers of porn. Then again, these people obviously have issues anyways, issues that will still be there even if they are broke because they can’t participate in the porn industry. I would not be worried about my spouse looking at naked people until it got into some of the weird fetishes, in which case they would suddenly appear very unattractive to me as a mate. Addiction to drugs can kill you. Addiction to gambling can leave you in poverty. What is porn addiction going to do other than chase away some uptight woman who needs to control you? I suppose you could masturbate yourself into a heart-attack?

    • Sara says:

      I suspect you don’t under stand because you haven’t lived it. As a spouse porn addiction led my husband to treat me and other women poorly. As any addict will attest, addiction affects relationships, doesn’t matter what the substance us, and that is not the partners fault! Add that to a layer of betrayal, comparisons and virtual infidelity, no partner on earth would not have an issue with sexual addiction. It’s time to stop blaming spouses for addicts choices and behaviors. It’s time to place accountability and responsibility with who it should- the lying, betraying spouse.

      • fred says:

        Were you betraying your spouse before he started addiction? Did he want to love you and you forced him to live alone in your marriage. Did he treat you poorly because it was easier to be mad at you than to desire you? If he was kind did you return the love and love him how he needed to be loved?

    • Erik says:

      To answer your question, it does harm relationships, but mostly only LDS relationships. If you look at couples outside the church, most will be completely open and accepting of their significant others porn usage. The LDS church invented, or it least embellished, the sin of porn. People like this author are told all their lives that porn wrecks families, so they expect it to and it causes unnecessary drama in the home.

      Myth number 8 basically states that your natural reaction is to think its not a big deal (because it isn’t). But don’t take that tone anyways. Consider it a big deal, don’t forgive them and assume they will fall back into the routine. This is a perfect example of what I am talking about. The Mormon church fabricates the drama. It is the Mormon church that is destroying the family, not porn.

      • CK says:

        Sorry, Erik, but were your unenlightened response not so tragic, it would be laughable. The real addiction is to lust, with pornography being but one way of “self medication” the addict uses to deal with his or her problems of life. It’s way, way bigger than “just” pornography, as bad as THAT is. And for many, their problems for which they seek “medication” in the form of porn or acting out in several other sexual ways may not even be their fault, at least initially. Abusive treatment of young people as well as other “environmental” or family factors have contributed to thousands seeking love and acceptance, yet not knowing where to get it. And often, it’s from the wrong source.

        Where on earth do you get the notion that porn harms “mostly only LDS relationships?” You’re simply wrong. I know people who have lost six-figure jobs due to their porn addiction — for the second and third times. And they are not all LDS, in fact; their religious affiliation is more non-LDS, among the people I know.

        Do you think losing your means to provide for your family (LDS or not)doesn’t “harm a relationship?” Cause serious shame issues? Many have considered suicide as their “only way out” due to the incredibly destructive nature of these and other manifestations of lust addiction. I’ll leave to your native curiosity and local library the volumes there that can enlighten you to possible consequences of family destruction to which lust addictions can lead.

        Your anger and distrust of the Church are obvious and palpable. Get over yourself. It sounds like you think the Church was created just to, as you say, “destroy families.” Unreal (and delusional). When you are ready to address your own addictions (which may not happen until YOU hit rock bottom and have no where else to turn), you may be open to seeking help from whatever Higher Power you have at that point. And over time, you may be able to stop blaming others and see that there is something within you that can recover with the help of that Higher power. I know about these things because I’ve been there. Good luck.

      • Andi says:

        Wow, Herman. Since you are so sure of yourself let me give you a glimpse of what I lived. We had a good sex life and were both pretty considerate of each other. At a certain point he just couldn’t complete the act. I knew he looked at porn sometimes, but eventually apparently my body, which I work hard to keep in shape wasn’t good enough to keep him interested. I wasn’t the photoshopped 20 yr. old with a boob job. For years I didn’t get to enjoy the sex we had. I tried extreme waxing like he had made himself used to. Nothing worked. It made me angry that he was comparing me to the unreal images he saw. It hurt our relationship and he treated my with disrespect as he compared me to them and found me wanting. Since he has been off the sex has improved and things are much better. I will never go back. I will leave him if it happens again.

    • Jennifer says:

      Herman,

      I fear from your response that you are likely a pornography user yourself and as a result, you are unable to see the full effects of your choices. You are likely in the denial stage you are unable to see.

      There are social ramifications with any addiction because the addiction becomes more important than your relationships with other people. Think about drug users, alcoholics, over-eaters or compulsive gamblers that you know. Are they able to sustain meaningful, reciprocating relationships? Never. With an addiction, the user’s main focus in life is to figure out a way to get their next “fix.” (Though they don’t always cognitively acknowledge that.)

      With pornography use, the relationship damage is heightened because it turns other people into objects of pleasure. Relationship damage is not just limited to romantic relationships. As it progresses, it affects the user’s ability to have meaningful friendships with family members, peers, friends, co-workers, etc. It truly stunts their ability to develop, which is why is is so damaging in children and teenagers. The addiction literally limits their social development.

      The addict isn’t just disconnected in romantic or sexual relationships. Eventually, all relationships are just a mechanism they can exploit to get more pleasure, or simply to make their lives easier.

      Pornography addicts (just like any drug addict or alcoholic) get to the point where they are disconnected from friends, family members, neighbors, co-workers and romantic partners alike. It is a sad phenomenon to watch and only brings heartache to everyone. Pornography use brings no positive benefits.

      It’s great that there are articles like this that are willing to spell it out for people. Too many people and families are being harmed by this new drug.

    • Andi says:

      There’s a growing consensus that it hurts young men’s sex lives.

      https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/therapy-matters/201205/does-porn-contribute-ed

  9. Catalina says:

    Thank you for this article. My husband was addicted to porn from age 8 when he and neighborhood kids found abandoned Playboys near their bus stop. EIGHT. That was not a choice and not an adult intrigue. He chose not to tell me about his past ever, but more than five years into our marriage he still felt that if I knew the truth I wouldn’t fully love him, and so he told me. I still love him and am so grateful that he told me. He relapsed once so far in our marriage, and it was a brief time that we had the communication, trust, and love to be able to work through. And although comments like Herman’s initially infuriate me, if I remove my emotions and speak only from logic, I guess I too am curious what the “non-viewing partner” really thinks and feels and if they’re really “ok” with it or if so many people just consider it the norm that they think only “uptight” and “jealous” people have a problem and don’t want to have such labels applied to them and/or lose their “partner”. For anyone familiar with addiction of any kind, I don’t understand, Herman, how you can be so closed to the reality of the pain and suffering. I also don’t believe it causes pain and suffering only for those who believe in and strive to live traditional judeo-christian values, but for anyone. All in all, thank you for the article, another one in a mounting body of research, support, and information becoming widely available for public consumption and education on this important topic.

  10. Kim says:

    I feel as though this is more about apathy and ignorance. We have options. In raising our families in this world, we have choices about what environment we live, work, and even how and where to educate our children. We don’t have to accept the influence of the society we live. We can stand apart and with sacred communication regarding this topic of sex, avoid many of those “accidental” first images, and continued secrecy. Open communication is crucial, so is constant guarding of what we allow in our homes, on our tv, games we play on the computer, and even magazines and advertisements. We can’t be too careful. We as a people are way to concerned about not being “normal” or with missing our favorite show, the latest movie, or sexiest fashion. Take a moment and think about what comes into your home, you will be surprised how much influence is from sources that lead right into pornography addiction. Most will be offended by such a claim. Calling me backwards or living in a cave, but believe me, I am loving being free from the media and it’s grasp. It was hard at first but I see so clearly now. I even homeschool my children. My husband and I are committed to being “peculiar” and to not following the trend into traps like this. It is better to avoid it all together, than to back track out. So much pain.

    • Rita says:

      Kim, I agree that we have to be ever vigilant in order to protect our children from pornography, as well as other evil influences. We also owe it to our children to give them opportunities to make good choices, so they can strengthen their own “spiritual muscles”. Unless we follow them around 24/7 for the rest of their lives, they will at some point encounter pornography. I served my mission in Portugal, and it’s all there, out in the open, for anyone to see. We have to be open and communicate with them and teach them, because to think that we can protect them forever simply isn’t realistic. We are taught to live in the world, but not be of the world. And, unfortunately, this is a very real part of the world that we live in.

  11. Marie says:

    As a recovering pornography addict myself, (and an active, LDS returned missionary), I agree with this article 100%.
    “In order for someone to be addicted, they have to be in some denial.” : A very strong statement that I wish I had known earlier.
    I was sexually abused (long term) as a young child.
    I didn’t know (conciously) about this abuse until I was in college, when I started remembering little bits. I saw a councelor there, who told me after a couple of sessions that I was fine – however I learned to cope with it must have worked. So I just thought, “I guess if I can’t remember it, it isn’t going to affect my life”. I had no idea that that I was in denial about the abuse’s real effects, pornography addiction being one of them.
    If you are struggling with addiction (or love someone who is), I would strongly encourage you to seek help, and to recover from (or learn more/about) possible abuse from your past.

  12. Marriner says:

    Wow, great article and maybe even better responses. I appreciated the real-life examples and the very optimistic tone throughout. My oldest will be 10 this year, and I just pray that we can have him prepared enough and have open communication lines available that when (not if) he is exposed, he will recognize the lie for what it is.

  13. Utah's Therapist says:

    Hi Utah, your therapist here.

    I’ve considered what you’ve said and I’m ready to diagnose. You have an unhealthy preoccupation with sex because you’ve denied yourself basic human contact. You are projecting your problems dealing with your undeveloped sexuality by painting the rest of the world as struggling with, and the cause of, your sexual problems.

    There’s a cure.

    Stop having children. Oh, there’s a cure for you to, but it requires a rational mind and a divorce from absolutisms regarding morality taught in a shifting framework from men with little sexual awareness. Since that’s not going to happen, please stop having children. You can help cure the future.

  14. ex-lamanite says:

    As a once believing Mormon (bic, served mission, married in temple, worked for the church full-time as an Engineer at the ROB), I always like porn and had a “struggle” with it.
    I thought for the longest time something was wrong with me. I kept hearing in priesthood session I was evil and I’m an addict. I had low self esteem and didn’t have a very high view of myself. Finally I came across some “anti” material against the church. Long story short I started using my wonderful engineering brain and I no longer could no longer support and believe the claims on the LDS church. So I left and the wife and I have never been more happier. Once this shroud of lies was lifted, I could see things more clearer. For me now being free of this religion I can look at porn all I want. The truth is I’m really not that interested in porn when I was a fully believing Mormon.
    Most of these recovery programs basically are out for your money. So beware of these “addiction recovery” centers.
    Think of this, the only ones that are pushing this “recovery” are extreme religious like the Mormons. Truth be told they want your money. Isn’t 10% already enough?

    • Shane says:

      We have an addiction recovery program in our stake. Cost $0! Don’t you dare try to compare worldly “freedom” and temporary “happiness”, just wait till you or your wife commits adultery! That’s just a load of fun, to Eternal Joy and true freedom utilizing the atonement of Jesus Christ! Read Helaman 5:10, Christ will save us from our sin, that is true liberty and freedom. He will not save us in our sin. The purpose of this life is to become like our Father in Heaven and His Son. Not to join the great and spacious building and mock the saints like your doing.

    • Andi says:

      I wonder if she thinks it’s as great as you do. My husband couldn’t perform when he looked at porn a lot. http://www.mensjournal.com/health-fitness/health/are-you-watching-too-much-porn-20130821 It’s a problem for lots of people.

    • c.cad says:

      ex-lamanite. I do not know what “Church” you claim to have been in but it was not the LDS church.If it was you would know the Addiction Recovery Groups are FREE. Stop trying to make something very wrong and hurtful be ok just to push your own lustful desires!!!

  15. Trish says:

    It’s interesting. The only people I ever hear about having pornography “addictions”
    are religious people. Perhaps if this behavior wasn’t demonized, couples would find ways to harness that energy and put it to use in their marriage.

    • Ray says:

      Very true Trish. Have you ever noticed they never bother trying to fix religious addiction. Recovering alcoholics that have gone through the 12 step program just substitute one drug for another. They use religion pretty much the same as they used the drug. The personality and hasn’t changed. It does no good to have a discussion about any subject since they have predetermined that they are right. Look at Herald up above. The circular reasoning can justify attacking him.

  16. Matt says:

    Trish,

    Unfortunately, it is not just religious people. There are multiple studies that have been done with respect to serious criminals (rapists, murderers, etc.). In every study I have read, pornography has been one of the correlating and in some cases controlling elements. This is not a religious issue and if you believe it is, please Google the internet for pornography and its effects on crime. I think this may open your eyes.

    • Ray says:

      Matt
      Do you think that criminals such as murderers, rapists, child molesters, are not religious. And Matt, I just read through a few studies on the porn addiction. At most it is a compulsion but it doesn’t meet the criteria of being an addiction. The level of porn addiction that users believe they have is in proportion to there religious affiliation. People need to take responsibility for their own actions but when they cry addiction. There are many addictions that are real and need to be treated. As for your compulsions and habits, seek help if you need it but don’t call everything you can’t control an addiction.

      I know how you think so I can pretty much predict what you will say.

  17. Rob says:

    After a lifetime of manipulation and emotional blackmail by the church over this issue, I am so happy to have discovered the myth of pornography addiction!!! Truly this is one of the most disgusting and manipulative forces that the church employs to keep it’s men feeling weak and subordinate and in need of getting fixed.

    Real psychology does not term the occasional viewing of pornography as addiction. This is not addiction. Most Mormons who think they are addicted are nothing of the sort, and this is clown paychology to say otherwise. This is real life as a real human. There’s nothing wrong or unnatural about it and I have felt no disconnection from my wife over it. It is only the church’s propaganda that causes this distorted reality and demonization of a natural part of being human.

    I have never been so happy as to have discovered this as a huge realization after discovering that the church had lied to me about it’s real history and that it’s truth claims are falsified by Joseph Smith’s own words.

    I am sickened that so many of you suffer needless shame for such a natural and fun part of life. My wife and I have really enjoyed our sexuality and adventures with pornography since leaving the church, and we recommend that you check yourselves on this horrifically disturbing practice of control and manipulation by church that has founded itself on lies.

  18. Herman says:

    I would like to say, “Hat’s Off!” to the moderator of this website. I am beyond amazed at the open-mind allowing some of these comments that conflict with the church and/or author of this article. In response to Jennifer above, of course I look at porn – when I feel like it. I have seen it since I was a kid. None of these horrible things people are mentioning on here have been a part of my life. You could ask my girlfriend (who by the way refuses to watch porn but could care less if I do) how I treat her. You could ask this of any woman I have been with in 43 years and I can promise you they would say I treat them like gold. So I am not sure at what point I would have to become an, “addict”. I mean if you are losing jobs because of it, you obviously have deeper issues. I have sex every day whether I am alone or not but I can wait until I get behind closed doors. You see, I am not lying or betraying anyone. I never hid the fact that I look at porn and I would gladly have sex with my girlfriend over an image on a screen any day. I bet you are the same people who think hallucinogens and marijuana are, “bad” too? Drama queens who have lived sheltered lives controlled by freaks that can’t even research their own religion to see how full of lies and betrayal IT is.

  19. Cassie says:

    My husbands addiction has gotten a little better. he is still in some denial. He makes me feel like I just need to sweep it under the rug every time that he looks at it. I can’t seem to do it I’m lost advice? ? I ask what i can do to help him he just says he doesn’t know that i need to figure it out

  20. Don't want to say says:

    My father in-law has a serious pornography addiction . He watches it at night in open dining room that he turned into a messy office. Ive even was next door in kitchen 1 time & caught him watching it & I suspect masterbating (I have to pass the room to get to bathroom) An hour later I walked by again and he was still watching then another 2 hours later. I talked to my husband who was genuinally concerned and said he would talk to his mom about it. His sister defended him saying everyone watches porn. I said yes but not in room that is near entrance of house when your sons girlfriend in next room and has to pass by to use the restroom nor is it normal to watch for that many hours straight. Her response was well its his dam house he can watch wherever. Im like yea if noones home & if someone is in bedroom or bathroom thats kinda public. Now I’m expecting a child and I’m scarred my child will bump into such behavior. I caught him at it again last night when going to restroom when had to crash at their house. Like I want my child to see their grandparents and grandma wants baby sit but this addiction scares my child may witness this or though I highly doubt it worse. Like is he gonna be jerking off to porn w/my kid in next room & when they pass witness this. After happens so many times will he not care about doing it in front of kid anymore. It scares me more then anyone in his family can understand. Its been going on for over a decade.

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