I’m Addicted to Pornography

Dear GoodTherapy.org,
Thank you for this opportunity that you have given us to ask questions. My name is Joseph and i would like to ask a question related to addictions and complusions. For about 6 years now i have been addicted to porn and masturbation. I have prayed about it, it,read articles but nothing seems to work. Kindly guide me on what i really need to do. - Addicted
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Dear Addicted,

Well first of all congratulations for seeking help, the single most important step you can take. Secondly you freely admit you are addicted which takes courage and self-love, so the truth is, just in seeking help for the problem you have made a crucial step that many others never take. Fact is, addiction is extremely hard to overcome on one’s own without help. So you’re right to seek help for this very complex issue. Sounds like your prayers have worked because you have been steered to a place that can offer assistance!

For starters, I’m obviously biased, being a therapist, but I do think seeking a counselor or therapist who is knowledgeable about sex addiction and/or addictions generally would be helpful. So much of this malady is caught up in issues of shame, self-loathing, relational injuries and so forth, that having emotional support and guidance is essential. I’ve recently posted blog articles about this addiction and how therapy can help, if you want to check on the site. (You could seek out a therapist on this website.)

I also recommend, in addition to therapy, some kind of group support. There are therapy groups that meet weekly and offer encouragement and a communal haven. Also there are religious support groups for porn; a client of mine attends a weekly non-denominational Christian support group for men addicted to pornography and says it is very helpful. Others have found Sex Addicts Anonymous (SAA) or Sex/Love Addicts Anonymous (SLAA) meetings indispensable. Each program has a website with meeting information, including meetings by phone if you live in a remote area. http://saa-recovery.org/ or http://www.slaafws.org/

Finally I recommend several informative books, starting with Patrick Carnes’ pioneering study of sex addiction, “Out of the Shadows.” “The Porn Trap,” “In the Shadows of the Net,” and “Untangling the Web” are other good resources.

Congratulations again on having the bravery to seek out help to what can be a very intractable problem, but also a gateway to a much better life when help is sought. You are not alone, and your willingness to seek transformation could be a much-needed help and inspiration to others in similar straits.

Thanks for writing!

Darren Haber
Darren Haber, PsyD, MFT is a psychotherapist specializing in treating alcoholism and drug addiction as well as co-occurring issues such as anxiety, depression, relationship concerns, secondary addictions (especially sex addiction), and trauma (both single-incident and repetitive). He works in a variety of modalities, primarily cognitive behavioral, spiritual/recovery-based, and psychodynamic. He is certified in eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, and continues to receive psychodynamic training in treating relational trauma, including emotional abuse/neglect and physical and sexual abuse.
  • Leave a Comment
  • Samantha


    June 19th, 2012 at 3:06 PM

    I just don’t understand how men can fall into such a pitiful trap as pornography. It has ruined so many of my relationships. From the relationship that I had with my first husband who wanted nothing more than to go to the local club and watch the women strip to my most recent relationship with an otherwise wonderful man. All he wanted each night was to look at his different sites on the computer and masturbate.

    When you have a loving wonderful woman beside you why do you drift to such follies? Are we not enough to satisfy your needs?

  • Johnny R

    Johnny R

    January 26th, 2017 at 10:59 AM

    Not always true I love to watch porn daily and masturbate, but at night I climb into bed and fuck the sh*t out my wife. She’s 51 and cums harder than ever. Just because you watch don’t judge.

  • Craig


    July 9th, 2012 at 4:58 AM

    I too have an issue with pornography. having my wife with me for once or twice a month just isn’t enough female contact. She says that it is natural and that I am overyly sexed. I think that she is being a bit of a prude, but this has driven me to graphic pornography and masturbation to keep myself sane.

    She completely fails to understand the situation and leaves me feeling guilty for wanting her month than the one or two times per month that she is willing to have me.

  • Sammy


    March 23rd, 2013 at 5:44 AM

    I have never really told this to anyone. Many think I’m quiet,innocent and just there. I would say that I am too but I hate myself. I am addicted to porn and masturbation. I hate it! I always tell myself that I will stop and never do it again but I fail. People think only guys get addicted but I’m a girl and I am addicted to it. The most shameful part is that I have and am raised in a Christian home. I feels so embaressed and I feel I bring shame to my family and house. In the end I’m always saying God I’m sorry and I promise not to do it again…but I do anyways! I truly need help anyone please to talk to me. Well that’s kind of my story as a girl and being addicted to porn….

  • Tessy


    August 26th, 2014 at 8:34 AM

    It feels like that is me speaking,I hate myself for doing the things that I do. I feel ashamed and disgusted in myself, I know I need help, but I am so afraid that people will look down on me. I love God, he is my all, but I am failing Him, my children,my boyfriend and my family all the time. I’m also afraid that I might end up loosing my boyfriend through all of this

  • Homer


    August 25th, 2016 at 2:13 PM

    Sammy, I can tell you…please watch Theology of the Body by Christopher West…

  • Arthur


    May 29th, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    hey Sammy I’m a guy and I have the exact same problem real conservative Christian home, so I do not think pornography is ok and I always tell God I am sorry and I will stop, but then I don’t and I do it again and I always fell so ashamed, and like a big hypocrite I want to stop and I want to be a better man in the eyes of the lord, a man after Gods own heart but I fall back into it and I feel like I am trapped in a circle

  • webpage


    October 27th, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    Vous écrivez continuellement des posts attractifs

  • mauritanienne c

    mauritanienne c

    November 16th, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    On voit tout de sjite que vous maîtrisez très bien
    ce que vous dites

  • turlutte


    November 24th, 2013 at 10:23 AM

    Bon ce post va atterrir sur mon site perso

  • accro


    November 24th, 2013 at 2:07 PM

    Follement fascinant : mon petit doigt mee dit que
    cet article intéresserait ma pote

  • michael


    December 6th, 2014 at 7:07 PM

    Samantha, there isn’t a just about you not being good enough. The truth is you are. There is something in most of the men’s lives that needs to be identified. I’m currently identifying what my addiction is fueling and trying to work through it. It ruined things in my life, and hurt people around me. It isn’t something I embrace or am proud of, but don’t take it to heart. I assure if you look deeper, it isn’t about you or what you’re doing.

  • Peter


    December 20th, 2014 at 2:23 AM

    I Feel like I’m traped in d sin of Pornography & Masturbation too, Everybody around me see me as a good christian, but God sees all my sins & guilt, I need help on how to stop it & become a Upright man.

  • Jacob


    February 24th, 2015 at 7:13 PM

    Greetings, I too am what I believe to be addicted to porno. For me the issue I’ve got is these images that I see are women whom appear to be in states of intensive pleasure. (I know they’re fake but none-the-less I reason it’s true.) Which leads me to believe (foolishly) that I am the source of their pleasure. In order to fix this problem I think I need to remove my computer from my room. But that raises the problem of how do I study in a quiet/secluded area? Our family life is rather distracting. If there’s any possibility does anyone know of a few support groups around here that will listen to my story? Or allow me to listen to theirs?

  • james


    February 24th, 2015 at 11:54 PM

    I struggle with porn.im a christian man.i dont get much intimacy from my wife and i feel lonely and empty.I hardly have sex and i feel lonely.my drive is high and i constantly fall into the sin of porn to cure my loneliness but it makes me feel empty and condemened.I need help.

  • Jonathan G

    Jonathan G

    April 26th, 2016 at 1:35 AM

    I’m addicted to porn, I’m lonely and I don’t have a girlfriend, I stare at women but I never approach them….

  • Dan


    July 8th, 2016 at 9:55 PM

    I love to look at porn. The harder and kinkier the better for me. I masturbate nearly everyday. And I love doing it. I am older and sometimes have ED. But not when I look at porn. It was private to me until today. This post. I can tell you one thing. It relieves stress and keeps me from cheating on my wife. And another thing. My wife and I have a wonderful sex life. I used o feel guilty but not anymore. The kids are grown and gone I have more privacy than ever before. The one thing that keeps me from going crazy over this is that I don’t care anymore. I like it, it feels good and I do it.

  • Meshack


    December 26th, 2017 at 7:23 AM

    I also need help regarding porn addiction

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