This is the first in a series on pornography and its impact on marriages, families and communities.

Studies indicate that porn is a very significant problem in the U.S.

In fact, the Justice Department estimates that 9 out of 10 kids between 8 and 16 have seen online porn.

Two-thirds of attendees at an American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers meeting said excessive interest in online pornography contributed to more than half their divorce caseload. 

A leading Fortune 500 company study found that men spent 62% of their computer time on cybersex sites.

Plus:

  • More than 25 million Americans visit cybersex sites weekly. And 60% of all website visits are sexual in nature. (Sexual Recovery Institute of Los Angeles)
  • An Internet traffic study by InternetWeek.com showed that people visit porn sites three times more often than Google, Yahoo! and MSN Search combined.
  • About 3 to 6% of Americans (20 million people) are sexual addicts. (Dr. Patrick Carnes, International Institute for Trauma and Addiction Professionals)

“Rarely does someone’s participation remain at just looking at porn,” says Dr. Mark Laaser, author of The Pornography Trap. “They begin with looking at porn, then they move to self-stimulation and then onto pursuing the things they are looking at. There is definitely a progression from soft porn to harder porn.

“…Some believe soft porn has a disinhibiting effect and could be helpful in relationships… I have never seen a case where pornography has been helpful to a marriage,” he says. “It always winds up negatively. Porn is designed to make you dissatisfied. It is not designed to help you feel content with your marriage partner.”

Many have joined the fight against pornography, including Fight the New Drug.

Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non-legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography. It does this by raising awareness of porn’s harmful effects – using only science, facts and personal accounts.

Laaser says research shows that the endorphins released in the brain while viewing pornography are 200 times more potent than morphine and more addictive than cocaine. Researchers believe porn addiction may be harder to break than heroin addiction. Why? It’s because the brain stores images and can recall them at any moment.

According to Fight the New Drug, porn physically changes the brain over time.

Looking at porn releases a surge of the feel-good chemical dopamine. Dopamine helps create new brain pathways that lead the user back to the behavior that triggered the chemical release. Porn users build up a tolerance as their brains adapt to those high dopamine levels, but the user can’t feel its effects as much.

“It is as though we have devised a form of heroin – usable in the privacy of one’s own home and injected directly to the brain through the eyes,” says Princeton’s Dr. Jeffrey Satinover, describing porn’s effect to a U.S. Senate committee.

In porn, everything from how people look to how and why they have sex is unreal. Unfortunately, porn addicts often obsess over chasing some fantasy so much that they miss out on actual relationships. Porn kills love.

Click here to learn more about warning signs and where to find help.

Looking for more resources? Watch this episode of JulieB TV for an in-depth look on this topic!

 

***If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship, contact the National Hotline for Domestic Abuse. At this link, you can access a private chat with someone who can help you 24/7. If you fear that someone is monitoring your computer or device, call the hotline 24/7 at 1−800−799−7233. For a clear understanding of what defines an abusive relationship, click here.***

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  1. Greta James
    Greta James says:

    Wow, thank you for informing me that around 20 million Americans are addicted to porn. Yesterday, my sister came to me asking for help because she is struggling with a porn addiction. It will be good for me to let her know that she is not alone in this struggle. Then, I will help her look into pornography consulting services in the area.

    Reply