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Helping Porn Pack Its Bags: Paul’s Story

by Paul R. on May 27th, 2013 in Students

When my friend brought my buddy William and I into the room to show us his brand new computer which had recently been connected to this new technological marvel, the internet; little did I know that my life would never be the same again.

In that cramped room where I saw my first pretty graphic image of pornography, things would never be the same again. So much so that 15 years later I can still remember the image I saw on the screen. Not only that, but the room, the day, the people who were there are all connected in my memory. Porn had entered my life and it was unpacking its suitcases.

I didn’t actually become hooked that first time. I was really disgusted by it if the truth be told. But soon, other friends started to bring lingerie magazines into school, then lads mags. Now I was intrigued. I was just becoming interested in girls and now I was seeing pictures of women I knew wearing next to nothing, seducing me. These were women who I had seen on TV, in movies. They were popstars, models; they were celebs who I had never thought of like “that” before.

So I bought my first copy of FHM with money my mom had given me for school supplies. I was willing to go without a few pens and books as long as I got to spend time with those women. For the first time I saw porn in the privacy of my own bedroom. Coupling the excitement and danger of buying those magazines in public, bringing them home and discovering masturbation for the first time, it was safe to say I was hooked.

And it was fun.

It was dangerous and I loved it.

By the time I turned 15 we had the internet in our own home. The world that was about to open up to me would change everything. Free images, more images, anything I wanted. Clips of sex scenes to whole sites dedicated to women I fancied. There was nothing I couldn’t get.

Long story short I spent the next ten years constantly indulging myself. With one eye over my shoulder waiting for someone to walk in and one on the screen; with one hand on the mouse ready to switch to my homework and one down my pants, porn had me.

Now saying this, I didn’t end up looking at harder images like some people. It’s just that I was constantly looking at it. In some ways this was worse because I was lying to myself every time by saying that I could stop. I lied by telling myself I didn’t have a problem because these were pretty soft images. But I couldn’t stop and no one knew.

Until my friend Mark at college asked me if I looked at porn. This was my chance to tell someone. So of course, like a good porn addict, I lied and told him no. But I was starting to learn that if I wanted to stop and if I did, that I was going to have to tell someone.

So I emailed Mark soon after and told him everything. How I had lied, how I couldn’t stop, how I needed his help.

Next thing I know Mark is calling me once a week to ask me if I was looking at porn. He prayed with me and we talked about how I was feeling.

For the first time I was accountable to someone.

Looking at porn several times a week turned into once a week, then no times a week. I was free. Porn had left the building. This is the point in the movie where everyone lifts me on their shoulders, carries me out of the stadium chanting my name.

Kind of.

At first the novelty of accountability was having a transformative effect on my life. I was finding it easier and easier to resist the temptation. I was to discover that porn doesn’t give up without a fight though. In fact I ended up deeper than I had ever been before. I was deflated, exhausted and wanted to give up. But something inside me kept pushing me. I went through a number of different accountability partners, some successful some not so, but that was ok because it’s a journey, not a quick fix.

I received counseling as I started to understand that some of the reasons why I looked to porn were deeply rooted from my childhood. I started to see how porn was basically the way I felt better about myself because of times I had felt rejected as a kid. I started to see how my father dying when I was eleven had created a void in my life that I didn’t know how to fill. I started to hate myself for this, to feel unloved because other friends had dads.

In some ways this had never been about porn.

Or sex.

It was about how I viewed myself.

I’m not going to pretend it was easy. There were times I felt confident, then weak, then hopeful, then despairing.  I lied, I loved myself again, I loved God, I hated God. Porn was attacking me and many times it won.

But…sometimes so did I. More and more I started to see porn weaken. I would get stronger. God would start to tell me truths about myself that countered the lies porn told me. I started to believe truth among the doubts. And I kept fighting.

Now I am 30. I am married to a wonderful woman and I am porn free. I help other guys who have struggled through x3groups. God is using the pain that I caused in my own life for good. Yes there are times when I am tempted and yes, lust still tries to rear its ugly head, but I still tell people as soon as I feel tempted. That call is worth it if it means someone is praying for me right in the midst of temptation.

The biggest thing I have learned is that I am loved, not just by God but by my family and friends and by my wife. That means that those times when I feel tempted I can immediately tell them knowing that they will pray for me and won’t judge me. Even though it has been a few years since I looked at porn I know I could still go back any moment.

So I don’t care if I have to bug my friend three times in one day. I know he will be there for me. I don’t care if it looks like I am weak. Hey I am, but I have people around me who make me strong.

Looking at porn was the worst decision of my life, but getting help and continually seeking help and being honest even now, was the best decision.

The feeling of waking up everyday knowing that Satan isn’t holding anything over me like dirty little secrets is so joyous and life affirming. There is no guilt and no shame and that means there is no porn.

It has been a hard journey and I have given up more times than I can remember but I pursued freedom. That is the main thing.

And finally I can say, porn has moved out.

 

 

 

 

 

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  • JJ

    Thanks for sharing this… I am still young and I have tried many times to quit masturbating, and watching porn, and every time I have failed. I think what people like me need is a group even over the internet, a group of people to chat with that I can make friends with, then when I am tempted, I could flip open a chat and tell them, I could get support at any time.

  • avramel

    Masturbating and watching porn are normal for a teenager. See, humans are the only ones that don’t use sex only for reproduction. As soon as you get a lover, you will see that you will no longer have the urge to masturbate. There is no God in here and there is no pain… it’s just as simple as I said it 🙂

    • sbirdy

      The old claim that humans alone have sex for recreation is actually false. While it is true that most animals mate only to achieve fertilisation, humans are not the only exception. Non-reproductive sexual activity has also been observed in dolphins and some species of ape, where it serves a social purpose in defining pair bonds and heirachy.

  • SH

    JJ!! I would like the same thing!!

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