Our relationship with porn might change if we viewed it the way we view heroin. Or Celebrex.
At least prescription drug companies are required by law to present the benefits and risks of their products “in a balanced fashion.”
And ya gotta tip your hat to ’em, because they do it spectacularly well. Their TV advertisements depict active and energetic people smiling, horseplaying, and sharing tender moments. Their homes are modern and immaculately kept.
The scenes are so magical (even the teenagers are smiling) you’ll hardly notice when the soothing voiceover transitions from the drug’s benefits to risks.
I transcribed this one word-for-word from an actual commercial:
“This medication may cause serious allergic reactions or suicidal thoughts or actions. Tell your doctor right away if you have these: new or worsening depression, unusual changes in mood or behavior, or swelling of the face, mouth, lips, gums, tongue, throat, or neck; trouble breathing, rash, hives, blisters, muscle pain with fever, tired feeling, or blurry vision. Common side effects are dizziness, sleepiness, weight gain, and swelling of the hands, legs, and feet. May cause … suicidal actions.”
Are they serious?!
You mean like walking in front of a train or putting a gun in my mouth?
If only the porn industry was this honest.
Imagine if every trip down Porn Lane was pre-empted with:
“What you’re about to view is more potent than high-grade heroin and faster in its onset of action. It will hijack your brain’s reward center, carving new and dangerous neural pathways, which, in turn, will render you incapable of forming close and satisfying relationships.
In lieu of a happy ending, you’ll be left feeling even more frustrated, hollow, and unfulfilled.
Evidence suggests porn will not solve your problems at home, but likely exacerbate them and create new ones.
Pornographic use is shown to increase marital tension and discord, erode trust, destroy intimacy, and heighten feelings of resentment. Even a strong marriage cannot compete with the unnatural and artificial levels of chemical excitement porn offers.
Men who indulge rate themselves as less in love with their partner, less attracted to their partner, less satisfied with their partner, and more critical of their partner’s appearance. They also cite greater frequency of erectile dysfunction, premature ejaculation, and involuntary outbursts of road rage.
Spouses report feelings of loss, betrayal, mistrust, devastation, and anger. Many exhibit symptoms of anxiety and depression, with an increase in suicidal thoughts and actions.
Porn, like all medications, carries some risk of dependency.
Get help right away if you have these: new or worsening insecurity, unusual changes in sexual preferences, emotional detachment, lack of empathy toward your spouse, sleeplessness, chronic self-loathing, unrealistic expectations in marriage, or a tendency to objectify women.
Common side effects include denial, self-centeredness, isolation, shorter attention span, decreased productivity, and carpal tunnel syndrome.
Studies show that married men who look at porn are more likely to cheat on their wives, visit prostitutes, confuse sex with love, and trade time with their children for time alone in a dark room. In some cases, repeated exposure to pornography leads to sexual compulsion, sexual addiction, divorce, loss of employment, and soullessness.
Individual results may vary.”
And that’s the sanitized version.
I like looking at pictures of naked women (hardly a groundbreaking admission), but I’d rather get my hands on a real one.
It’s the reason I stay away from porn.
It’s not because I’m a saint, it’s because I’ve read the fine print.
Porn is a colossal rip-off. It’s also a powerful and addictive drug, one that will grind you to powder.
If porn has been one-upping you lately, I’ve got some really good news:
1. You’re not alone
2. Help is just a mouse-click away
You can find it here. I’ve known the staff up close for eight years, and they’re some of the most caring, down-to-earth, gracious people I know.
Through workshops, blogs, software, videos, and peer support, they help ordinary Joes (and Josephines) live bigger lives.
Life is better without porn.
Marriage is better without porn.
Sex is better without porn.
Ultimately, you’re better without porn.