5 ways pornography harms your sex life

509803729

The internet has made pornography more accessible than ever in the history of mankind. With a few simple clicks anyone can view just about any type of pornography they desire.  Many couples may view it as an enhancement to their sex life yet is it really the best way to bring a couple closer together or is it driving more of a wedge between them?

Here are ways in which pornography has a bigger, more harmful effect than we realize:

1.  Addiction to porn escalates

You may think viewing just a small sampling of porn won’t be harmful.  But the more you watch, the more you need an ever increasing dosage whetting the appetite for more hardcore porn to reach the same level of arousal. 

2.  What used to disgust you now turns you on

After viewing a steady diet of porn, in time your behavior begins to change in that what used to be disturbing and disgusting to you, now seems more normal and common.  Your brain is rewarding you for watching porn by pumping the chemical dopamine making you feel terrific but only temporarily.  What may have started out as being a connoisseur of soft porn can eventually turn more hardcore in order to get the same sexual response. 

3.  Porn destroys love

Research has shown men exposed to pornography are often more critical of their partner’s appearance, sexual performance and displays of affection.  Women are portrayed as sex objects needing to be dominated.  Frequent users of porn may find that they have lost interest in finding love making them more cynical of loving relationships, unable to trust others and have a view of marriage being confining.

4.  Porn harms our sex life

When watching porn, everything seems surreal as the viewer falls into a fantasy world of perfect sex, more sex and better sex than what is happening in their real life.  Exposure to soft core porn displaying women with perfect bodies can create feelings of dissatisfaction with our partner’s looks with less willingness to try new sex acts leading to feelings of falling out of love with our significant other. 

A dramatic downfall for men who view porn frequently, is the inability to achieve an erection. Viewing porn hijacks the reward center in our brain by flooding the brain with an overload of chemicals.  This results in the user’s brain responding by reducing the amount of pleasure chemicals it produces so that it stops responding to the chemicals being produced.   This leads to a man experiencing erectile dysfunction when with a real person and that they are unable to get an erection without viewing porn. 

5.  Porn destroys relationships

Some people may view porn as just another type of sexual experience but in reality it deceives our sense of judgement.  Porn teaches just the opposite of what real loving relationships are all about – equality, trust, honesty, respect, and love.  Instead, porn demonstrates that relationships are based on domination, disrespect, abuse, violence, and detachment. The more a person views porn, the harder it will be for them to have a real loving relationship or sex life.

At this time there is no medical consensus on whether pornography is addictive or not but the short term pleasure it may provide can easily turn into long-term pain proving to be a problem for many couples.

How to respond to a spouse’s porn addiction

Typically we believe that only men develop an addiction to pornography.  However, plenty of women can and do too.  Either way, when one partner is struggling with the addiction of viewing porn and it is affecting your sex life, here is how to respond to this situation:

·      Avoid overreacting

It would be very easy to overreact the first time you find out your spouse’s addiction.  As disgusting as it may be, resist the temptation.  Porn addiction is a big deal and it should be dealt with but your spouse is human with real struggles just like we all have.  No one is perfect.  All marriages face challenges.  You can and will get through this but realize it may take some time.

·      Confront your spouse with open communication

Generally, pornography is viewed in secrecy but once you find out what has been going on, it’s time to bring it to light.  Calmly let your spouse how much it hurts you and ask that they stop.  If you attack, criticize, condemn, or judge them, the lines of communication will be shut.  Keep communication open between you both so that you can find out what’s going on and what you can do to help. 

·      Seek marital counseling

Unless your spouse stops seeking out porn, there may not be a need to seek counseling.  But, it wouldn’t hurt to have some professional counseling to at least get a deeper understanding as to why they sought out porn to begin with and to make sure it does not happen again.