Porn *IS* Addictive


#1

Was listening to Catholic Radio today (April 7, 2010 at around 1:00 to 1:30 for those of you who want to look up the source). Don’t know the name of the show, but the host was talking about a new neurological study that has come out describing the effects of porn on the brain. (Struthers, associate professor of psychology at Wheaton College, writes in Wired for Intimacy: How Pornography Hijacks the Male Brain.)

Basically, in layman’s terms, he described at least two major physical effects of porn on the brain.

  1. The brain becomes re-wired so that sexual stimulation becomes like a “super highway” of neural pathways. In other words, you start to look at many things, including harmless images of women or even their voices, in sexual terms. Why, because you have wired your brain to think that way. Every woman you come into contact with is objectified, undressed and evaluated as a willing (or unwilling) mental sexual partner.

  2. The brain releases powerful neuro chemicals when you view porn, aside from just the pure sexual pleasure. He didn’t say which while I was listening, but I imagine it’s dopamine and maybe some others.

So, there is a physical aspect of addictiveness to the porn.

Is that an excuse? NO!

But this makes fighting porn on all fronts even more imperitive.


#2

**Anyone who has tried to eradicate this sort of habit from their life can attest to the intense difficultly level.

As a non-Christian during my teen years, I never even thought twice about the morality of sexual sin, pornography included. When God called me to His Church, and I learned the truth, I began an unbelievably difficult battle. The devil knows all of the little buttons to push to get an addict to slip back into their habits, and if the person says no, the devil knows exactly how to respond. Throw in a bad day for the person, where they are upset or stressed or tired, and the devil will just have a field day. It's a vicious cycle, and the only real way to overcome it is through prayer and consistently and constantly striving to be a holy person in all facets of life, not just in sexuality (not to mention frequent confession). If the rest of the body and mind go, that part will eventually follow.

For all who are suffering from pornography addiction, a prayer to St. Michael to embolden their battle against satan:

Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray;
and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host -
by the Divine Power of God -
cast into hell, satan and all the evil spirits,
who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls.
Amen.
**


#3

When God called me to His Church, and I learned the truth, I began an unbelievably difficult battle.

Amen brother. It is difficult, but it can be done with God's grace.


#4

[quote="ContegoFides, post:3, topic:193982"]
Amen brother. It is difficult, but it can be done with God's grace.

[/quote]

I've never had this battle with lust, but I pray for your guys that do. I'm a guy, and I have my battles, but lust isn't one of them.

I am, however, in recovery. One year, two months on the 14th. Just take it day by day, and know that God loves you no matter what.


#5

This isn't that new. There has been a good source of information on this. For me, I found reading "The Drug of the New Millennium" as a very crucial part of being able to give up the habit. It explains much! This is "just" reinforcement. But a great thing indeed!


#6

Norman Doidge, a psychiatrist has said the same thing in his book “The Brain That Changes Itself”, and mentioned Oxytocin as a brain chemical that is affected by porn. Here is a very small excerpt from his book:

"The current porn epidemic gives a graphic demonstration that sexual tastes can be acquired. Pornography, delivered by high-speed Internet connections, satisfies every one of the prerequisites for neuroplastic change [forming new neural circuitry- a key piece in addiction].

Pornography seems, at first glance, to be a purely instinctual matter: sexually explicit pictures trigger instinctual responses, which are the product of millions of years of evolution. But if that were true, pornography would be unchanging. The same triggers, bodily parts and their proportions, that appealed to our ancestors would excite us. This is what pornographers would have us believe, for they claim they are battling sexual repression, taboo, and fear and that their goal is to liberate the natural, pent-up sexual instincts.

But in fact the content of pornography is a dynamic phenomenon that perfectly illustrates the progress of an acquired taste. Thirty years ago, “hardcore” pornography usually meant the explicit depiction of sexual intercourse between two aroused partners, displaying their genitals. “Softcore” meant pictures of women, mostly, on a bed, at their toilette, or in some semi-romantic setting, in various states of undress, breasts revealed.

Now hardcore has evolved and is increasingly dominated by the sadomasochistic themes…"

The fact that porn is getting more hardcore is worrisome for me; I wonder how this pornified culture will affect my kids over the long run. Porn has adversely affected their father, who is incapable of relating to women as anything but sex objects for his personal gratification.


#7

The fact that porn is getting more hardcore is worrisome for me; I wonder how this pornified culture will affect my kids over the long run. Porn has adversely affected their father, who is incapable of relating to women as anything but sex objects for his personal gratification.

Your kids will have to put on the armor of God - and you will have to teach them how to do that. In particular, a strong prayer life and a devotion to the Blessed Mother will be needed. I suspect you already know that.

I truly feel for you, given their father's situation. That's heartbreaking. As a husband and a father who is also a recovering porn addict, I can attest to the fact that it can be broken - but it is very hard. I often think to myself when I hear such stories that "there but for the grace of God go I."

My only suggestion is that you regularly pray before the Blessed Sacrament and additionally do penance for your children's father. The Lord can draw him out of sin.


#8

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