Pornography: The Illusion Addiction
- Written by Joe Zychik
Steve, a client of mine used to masturbate to female newscasters. For him, the nightly news was his porn magazine. Jeffrey was turned on by a popular mainstream mail order catalogue. Richard went bananas over the women's underwear ads in the daily newspaper. By most people's standards none of these men were addicted to porn.
Eddie, like the many men I helped overcome sex addiction, used to spend hours searching the Internet for the perfect porno picture. He had the same problem Jeffrey, Richard, and Steve had. He relied on a visual stimulation to help facilitate masturbation. In fact, his real addiction was not porn. But when he entered counseling both he and his wife, Carla, were convinced that he was hooked on pornography.
Certainly, from Carla's point of view, the problem was porn. She found porno mags hidden in the trunk of the car and behind the headboard in their bedroom. She had put a filter on the computer to stop him from accessing porn sites. So, he bought a cheap a laptop she just happened to discover by chance. After she took the laptop away from him, he found software on the Internet that bypassed the filter she put on the family computer.
He appeared to be the typical junkie who would do anything to get his fix. But was his fix pornography or was it addictive masturbation?
I asked him two questions that helped Carla and Eddie revisit their assumption that he was addicted to porn.
The first question was: Do you use porn without masturbating? His answer was just about never.
Then I asked him the reverse question: Do you masturbate without using porn? His answer was the same.
For him and for just about all users of pornography, porn and masturbation are partners.
So the next issue for Eddie and his wife was: "Does porn cause a person to masturbate addictively? Or does addictive use of masturbation cause some people to become dependent on pornography?
There are three types of addicted masturbators.
-The most common type uses porn to create the fantasy necessary for masturbation.
-The second most common group creates the fantasy in their own mind without relying on any external pictures.
-The smallest group reads erotic stories to create their masturbation fantasy.
Here's a simple proof that addictive masturbation is the real problem and porn is merely the symptom. In my counseling when a person stops masturbating addictively, his interest in pornography subsides naturally.
The reason Eddie's wife could not stop him from using porn was that Eddie was hooked on masturbation just as a junkie gets hooked on heroin. Needles don't cause heroin addicts to become hooked on getting high. Pornography use doesn't cause a masturbation addiction. Porn is merely the delivery system for the person addicted to masturbation just as needles are the delivery system for the heroin addict.
Pornography does have its own problems apart from its association with a masturbation addiction. For a discussion of the unique problems associated with pornography addiction, and especially its effect on a relationship, I suggest you download all 48 chapters of The Most Personal Addiction for free. There is a special section devoted to the many complex aspects of porn in a relationship. I also suggest you read .
Articles in this categoryPornography Addiction Counseling | Pornography Addiction Insights For Men & Women | Pornography: The Illusion Addiction | A Sex Addiction Interview | The Sex Addiction FAQ | The Intimacy Factor and Sex Addiction | The Escape Factor and Sex Addiction | The Fear Factor and Sex Addiction |