Pornography Addiction Part 1

How does a porn addiction get started?

By Christopher Schwinger

Pornography Addiction: The Series
How does a porn addiction get started?
A Christian Philosophy of Love
Spiritual Health Principles

If you have a porn addiction, your problem is very common. And an addiction to images can quickly get to the point where your imagination has been so fine-honed that you don't need sexual images — you can create them yourself, just from seeing a female friend wearing perfectly modest clothing. Despite your best efforts, your eyes start to undress her. You try to blame it on what she's wearing, but you know that's ludicrous; it's your problem, not hers, and a sweater and jeans are not immodest. So, you feel awful, but you don't know where to go from here. How do you even pray?

For those who hate their own struggle with pornography, their sense of self-worth is very low because how can you love yourself if you can't trust your own self-control? And the struggle to control your mind means there's an innate, God-given need that's not being satisfied, so you try to force your mind to suppress the desire — unsuccessfully. Of course, the pornographic type of desire is not God-given, but it is a distortion of what God naturally gave us, like any addiction. I don't think working through an addiction is necessarily a step-by-step, once-and-for-all healing process. But I do believe with time and daily choices, you can get to where you won't even have the pornographic desire anymore.

My own really difficult tendency, which at times has been addicting, is anxiety. I never thought I could become less driven by it, yet God has enabled me to be. I think variants of the same basic truths that help me would probably help any addiction. To an extent, my anxiety went away when specific situations got resolved, but I also know there are some issues which will always be there, and I will just have to find ways to take advantage of the situation I have and make the best of it. The way to get rid of something bad isn't just to suppress the bad, but replace it with something good. It's a principle that's true with bodily health also — it's better to use nutrition to strengthen your body than get stuck on medications to suppress the symptoms that come with bad nutrition.

Though I have not struggled with sexual desire myself, it is my understanding that it's mainly based on beliefs about oneself. Sexual fantasies and affairs and homosexuality involve the pursuit of love from outside oneself. It's a big problem, but perhaps the solution isn't that complicated. Sex addicts have guilt and depression often, but not active self-loathing.

There is often a connection between an overly strict upbringing and uncontrollable sexual desire, because one's individual desires are suppressed too often and too harshly, so that person turns to fantasy. Soldiers from brutal militaries routinely rape their victims, and prostitution is a problem even in less-abusive militaries for this reason. If the military authorities were less harsh, their soldiers would have less sex problems. Poor role modeling by authorities, or lack of intervention when there is an abusive peer or sibling relationship, can also cause self-loathing and pornographic fantasy. There is probably a connection between post-traumatic stress disorder and pornography in that PTSD results from being unallowed to emotionally express a struggle. Having divorced parents is more painful in the long run for those children who are not allowed to emotionally express their struggles for fear of rejection.

Image Credit: Antranias; untitled; Creative Commons

TagsBiblical-Truth  | Christian-Life  | Sin-Evil

comments powered by Disqus
Published on 3-13-17