Porn, what up with that?


#1

It’s difficult to construct this post; invariably there will be a small sect that screams, “You’re defending the use of porn.” Nothing could be further from the truth, but it seems like a few virulent posters want to see all men as porn-addicted perverts no matter what.

“What, your husband won’t take out the trash? He’s probably watching porn. Your children are at risk, get them out of the house. He’s likely to beat you. He’s going to watch enough porn to make him cheat on you. Luckily, you have reason to believe that your marriage is invalid and you can seek an annulment and find a real marriage.”

sigh An exaggeration? Yes, but not as much of one as I’d wish for. Husband/man bashing is an artform here at times.

Porn is bad. It’s horrible. It’s destructive. It’s also ubiquitous. Sadly, most of us can open up our spam folders and see free porn just sitting there. You don’t have to do anything to look for it; you have to actively defend against it.

Now that I’ve hopefully established my “bona-fides” about my position on porn, I’ll try and say what I wanted to say in sentence one.

“Why do women marry men addicted to porn” was the original question that spawned my response. There are other active threads here now about men hiding it and ignoring their wife. My response is a more general one: what attracts men to porn.

I can’t speak for all men, nor would I. I can speak for myself and for men I’ve talked with. Godly men will at time, when they’re feeling comfortable with each other, speak of the fight they have against looking at these images.

Many of us do fight that. It’s a siren song calling out to us: look at me, I’m beautiful (airbrushed); I want you (you’re money); I’ll do anything you want (give me your money). I’m young and firm (airbrushed); The lies are as old as time, but they are re-used for a reason: they work on many men.

It’s a constant fight for some of us to stay clear of that. There are times when the fight is easy. It doesn’t even seem like one. The temptations are distant and easily overcome. There are other times when it is not so easy, when the fight is in the gutter, hand-to-hand and the outcome is unclear. Even if we win every time, we still feel dirty for having to fight that fight.

When I look at the difference in the temptations there are generally two components: my walk with God and my wife’s treatment of me. There should only be one: my walk with God, but I am human and affected by how she treats me.

My walk with God is my own responsibility and I know that the closer He allows me to walk with Him the easier the battles of life are, including porn. I must do my part in this portion.

The real gist of my post is how much I am influenced by my wife. When she honors and respects me, covets my touch (in all ways, not just “that touch”), when she flirts with me and lets me know that I am still desirable as a man in spite of the slight paunch and receding hair, when she treats me as the man of the house and makes me feel wanted, my fight is so easy. I laugh at temptation; I mock it and skip past it carefree and whistling a happy tune.

That all requires that I am doing my part as the husband. I know that. I’m a pretty good husband (not perfect, mind you, but pretty good) and in general don’t do anything that should allow her to feel that she object to me.

I would ask you women who think your husbands struggle (I say struggle, not those who have given themselves over to sin, but those who fight) if you are helping him or if you are part of the fight? Regardless of if you know it or not, you’re either part of the solution or part of the problem.

NOTE: You are not responsible for your husband’s sin. I do not make excuses for his failing the fight. This is simple a post about how you can affect the outcome in one way or another. When he fails, it’s on him. When he succeeds in overcoming temptation, however, I believe it is at least partly due to your participation. See, you get all the credit and none of the blame. I’m a nice guy. Men are required to stay away form all porn, without excuse. There is no acceptable reason for failing. Again, I am anti-porn, I don’t beat my wife and I am not going to cheat on her. I’m reasonably certain our marriage is valid. Gosh I hate that I have to state that every few paragraphs.

Women, we need your help. The entire world’s against us here. We have only our own conscience and your support as weapons. It’s easy to slam a husband who fails (not one who is given over to fail, but one who – on a rare occasion – gives over), but can you honestly say you’re doing everything that you can. Again, I know that when my wife is doing all the positive “wifey” things that tell me she’s content, happy, loves AND desires me, my battle is won.

I will go out on a limb and say that the average man who is failing with this fight does not have a wife doing everything she can to help him. Go ahead, skewer away. I know that I’m now going to get blasted. In my experience, as with men I’ve personally talked with, this is the case. We have great difficulty winning this war when you’re either actively dismissing us in one way or another or you’re just not there.

You want a husband who wins? Then, respect him, honor him, touch him frequently – on the arm, the back, the shoulder, the face. Remind him of the softness of a real woman’s touch. Smile and flirt with him. Stop nagging him to do the mundane tasks all the time. Stop complaining that your day is hard with the kids – we all struggle at our occupations. It’s part of curse of the fall. I’m not saying never complain, just don’t make it the only topic of conversation you have with him. Don’t complain that your brother makes a better living or your father gave your mother a better car.


#2

I have to say (and I’m a woman here) that I do agree… We are NEVER responsible for another’s choice to sin, but we are sometimes responsible for at least part of their temptation to sin, whether in our actions or inactions.

I would like to add, and I think the OP knows this already, that it’s a two way street. The better a man treats his wife, the better she will treat him, the better he will treat her, etc. etc. until death do us part.


#3

Uh oh…Good luck brother.:eek:


#4

GM, are you suggesting that it would be easier to be single, than be married under the circumstances above?


#5

I also (as a woman) agree with your post.
When we married we became one with God. It is just as much my responsibility to insure DH is not tempted into Sin as it is for me to insure I am not tempted into Sin. and visa versa


#6

And there in “lies the rub” [as they say]

You are a good husband and your wife is a good wife …

Your ability to fight off sin is easier when your wife is treating you in a certain way … similarly your wife is able to fight off sin when you trreat her in a certain way … when either one of you is failing to behave in a certain way it makes it hard on the other …

Since both parties are human … that is and always be a hardship …

So what is it you need to do?

Couples need to foster those things that will help them through their “humanness” … regular Mass attendance, friends and associations who live out their Christian values and can help you “walk the walk” … prayer [together, as a family and individually] and more prayer … reading books [including scripture] that biuld up and reinforce the family …

You just can’t lay off your failings upon one other person … God has gven you many resources to build up your person … the Eucharist being the best armor, the Church, a Comunity of believers … :thumbsup:


#7

GhostMan… no flames from me. I agree with you.


#8

Golly, sounds like you might think that marriage is supposed to help us get to heaven! That would mean that I am responsible to do everything in my power to help my husband become a saint? That he is supposed to do the same thing for me? That we are somehow supposed to be DIFFERENT from other people and make SACRIFICES?

That is just crazy talk - we all know that marriage is about being romantic and happy, and felling good. As long as he makes me feel good, and as long as we look great to other people and have great sex THAT means we have a good marriage.

Come on, get real.

<<<<<<<< for those who may be unable to detect sarcasm, well, you will not get the above post. :smiley:


#9

Very good post and I have to agree with what you’ve said…

I don’t think this is ONLY limited to pornography, though (which is not something that we’ve dealt with in our marriage, personally)…

We are called in marriage to help bring each other to holiness in ALL WAYS…
From the catechism…

1641
"By reason of their state in life and of their order, [Christian spouses] have their own special gifts in the People of God."147 This grace proper to the sacrament of Matrimony is intended to perfect the couple’s love and to strengthen their indissoluble unity.** By this grace they "help one another to attain holiness in their married life **and in welcoming and educating their children."148

So I totally agree with what you’ve written and think it has a much broader application than JUST the sin of pornography.


#10

You know, once upon a time I would have agreed with your premise GM. I was married and totally went over and beyond with my husband, tried my best to overlook serious, serious character flaws in him, always did all that I could to build him up. I was very giving and generous in the way that you would think would help him to avoid temptation, but as I discovered I was only helping to feed a very disordered addiction to the point that things were seriously out of control. I had really hoped that this might be the way that I could “reach” him. Then one day I discovered in his drawer in his office evidence of a porn habit, and checking the history on our home computer and his business laptop confirmed it was frequent, pervasive, and disturbing.

I was completely repulsed and finally understood why there had never been any true intimacy between us. When I backed away from him in that regard, he forced things onward, and I guess why not. He had already trained himself to view women as objects, to view what should be a very giving unitive act as something totally selfish. It just follows logically that that is where it would end up with him.

So, the point that I am trying to make is…women really do not have the type of influence that you are trying to suggest that they have. Porn is completely disordered and destructive. When a man is involved with porn, it comes across to his wife because there is a lack of intimacy and a very selfish aspect to relations. Porn use damages marital relationships.

IMO, when a man is involved with porn, he robs himself of true intimacy and true satisfaction, even in his relations with his wife.


#11

I totally agree with you GMan. This is why I regularly suggest The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands by Dr. Laura.

Physical love is soul food for a man. Ladies, starving people go looking for food. Those with a smorgasbord at home don’t go looking.

dulcissima, your case is one where Proper Care principles do not apply. They only work on your basic, standard, decent guy. With those, we women have tons of power and influence. Yours was not the basic, standard, decent guy. The philosophy is simple. Choose wisely, treat sweetly. If you don’t do the first, no amount of the second will have any effect.


#12

Interesting fact about pornography. The english word is derived from two ancient Greek words:

Ponhrovß (poneros) - The evil one.
and
**Graphê ** - to make an Image of
:hmmm:


#13

I do totally agree with you here on the choose wisely, treat sweetly. I just want to underscore though that it is porn that damages relations more than anything. When I had confided in someone about what I had found, and was quite devastated and upset, she confided in me that her husband, who was a totally decent and nice guy had had these struggles. She said she could always tell when he had been backsliding, because the sex totally lost any feeling of closeness. Guess what that does for a wife wanting to be with her husband?

Guys, viewing porn is like shooting yourself in the foot. If you want more and better with your wife, don’t look to porn.

Yes, wives who are working on building up marriages with husbands who have been having problems with porn are going to have to look with in themselves and give up that disgust and still keep reaching out to their husbands. But they are not going to find that emotional connection that is so necessary for a woman until their husbands have given up the porn. Sacrifice from both spouses is what is needed.


#14

That’s why it is SO important to really look at the men/women we’re dating and search our hearts and listen to God and discern whether this is a good match or not. I realize there are people who can do a good job of hiding their true selves and it’s only found out once you’re married; and I don’t know if that was your case or not. But in my case (I’m single, never married) I know that I’ve not always made the best decisions for myself in past dating relationships. I’ve learned from those, though, and now look at all relationships past the physical (I mean, by that looks), the lifestyle and decide if this is the kind of person I can love, honor, and RESPECT for the rest of my life.

I loved the OP. I think it was very well stated. And I wholeheartedly agree with the recommendation of Dr. Laura’s book – I listen to her radio program as often as I can. We don’t have a local station that carries her show so I have to catch it on good clear days out of Austin. She got me just this past week to have the goal to read the entire CCC. She was talking to a caller who claimed to be Catholic; however, was doing things that revealed she was probably a cafeteria Catholic or Catholic in name only. Dr. Laura started quoting the CCC. I thought to myself, “This little Jewish woman has read the governing book of my Faith, and I haven’t.” Immediately picked it up that night and am making my way through it.

Easter blessings to all!!!


#15

On the one hand, I agree that pointing out the problem of porn is not always helping the situation, but I think it is walking a thin line to say that the wife can do more to help the situation. Yes spouses should be supportive when the other has an addiction… but you have to be very careful in what you saying and I know you are… but I still don’t really feel comfortable with what the OP said about how it it somewhat the spouses actions that determine whether or not the other spouse will sin…

I think the reason we talk about pornography on here so much is because there seem to be quite a few more women than men on here… so it is just a “common” problem that women experience. It is much more common than I thought.

I have been married for 1.5 years and I always thought my husband was a gentleman and absolutely innocent (yeah right) but I did once find that he had been looking at porn while I was away on a business trip. !!! I was lying in bed with him that night and I said “So, J, are we particularly horny these days?” and he said “uh… yeah?” and I said “yeah I saw so…” and he wasn’t really sure what I was talking about and then I saw the light go off in his head. He was mortified that I had found out. Personally I didn’t think it was a HUGE deal because I thought it was rather common. It seemed to offend him more than it offended me. He has apologized over 100 times. I haven’t caught him since, and I am thinking he hasn’t really done it but who knows for sure?

Definitely the fact that it is so widely available is a huge part of the problem…

I do give my husband attention… just as he gives me, but it really irks me to think that if I just did my wifely duties better and more, he wouldn’t ever look at porn again… :shrug: I guess it is more complicated than that.


#16

Perhaps we need to just be more upfront while dating. Ask him straight out: Do you look at porn? Do you see anything wrong with looking at it? Do you think it’s a normal part of being a guy?

His responses will tell you a lot, and so will his demeanor while giving them.

And guys, feel free to ask us girls, too. Woman are getting into this in greater numbers now, too. :frowning:


#17

You know what baffles me? I got this “couples” magazine from the department store where I had my wedding registry and in it, there was advice about sex. Different couples tried different things to “spice” up their sex life, and each couple had to try watching porn together as one of the experiments. Two of the three thought it spiced up their sex life.

As if??? I would feel really uncomfortable with that. Strange how it is so mainstream… like it is totally normal and acceptable.


#18

Women often have a problem with novels. Especially those historical fiction type. Total Porn. What man in real life could measure up to one of those guys!


#19

Yeah, I am really sorry I ever knew this, much less that I remember it, but I remember my grandmother telling my mom when I was a child that my grandpa told so many sex jokes because he hadn’t “gotten any” for about 20 years. She seemed to have tons of those novels…

I don’t know how people read those for years on end. I read a few… and then I got BORED. They’re the same plot over and over and over again! Give me some real literature, please! Or nonfiction.


#20

You know what is a good analogy? Who bears the guilt and blame for 9/11? Terrorists, obviously.

At risk of raising the ire of every republican on the board, might I suggest that we sure did and do make it easy for muslims to hate our culture. Does it justify what they did? No. Does the greed, debauchery and exploitation of our culture show glaringly bad in the Third World? You bet.

So how about it OP? Is America’s culture as much to blame for 9/11 as wives are for their husbands’ porn sins? Or is it totally different? Worth discussing.


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