Inside the Mind of a Sex Addict – More than the Naked Eye Sees
If you ever wanted to explore inside the mind of a sex addict, then just keep reading. I was a prime candidate for pornography addiction -- 29 years old, single, and I was horny as heck! New to town and not knowing any girls with whom I could talk made it easy to see them only as sex objects, so I focused only on their physical attributes.
Have you ever heard of the song, I’m A Girl Watcher? It became my theme song in my new hometown. Initially, I obsessed about women’s physical attributes with their clothes on, but this led to the natural progression of wanting to see them without clothes. More than a few counselors in my city, of which I was one, had a womanizing reputation. Being sexually active was almost expected and condoned. Daily, my boss retold his youthful sexual exploits -- now too old to continue. “Boy you ought to be humping (having sex) every night,” his chauffeur once said. Such surroundings would make it easy to blame others for my fall into pornography, but I take full responsibility. No one held a gun to my head.
Flipping TV channels at my boss’ home late one night, my eyes hit the Playboy channel and I was hooked! I couldn’t see enough nudity and sex. My conscience was saying “No,” but I wouldn’t listen. Having counsel from mature moral men would have been nice. But no excuses -- I’m totally responsible for my wrong choices and their consequences, some lifelong. How did a boy raised in church get here -- becoming a porn addict?
Inside the Mind of a Sex Addict—Living A Double Life
The reasoning inside the mind of a sex addict usually suggests going underground with your new lifestyle, becoming a secret agent because people won’t understand. They’ll reject you. You know the middle and high school drill -- one way with parents/teachers and another with peers. Getting high from the chemicals the brain releases makes pornography extremely addictive. Pornography enslaved me to this chemical release in my own brain -- doing whatever it took to get high. My brain became my own drug supplier, eliminating any middle man. No one warned me that this addiction would escalate. Watching pornography not only affected my mind, but my body.
Masturbation is the next step in pornography. Pornography triggers a physical response -- an erection. Erections demand a release or a cold shower. I wasn’t about to take a cold shower! Masturbating unleashed a new source of pleasure. My addiction had now tripled: my lusting eyes, the euphoric feeling from the brain chemicals, and the pleasure of masturbating. Avoiding peak hours at the video store was critical in not being seen with pornographic videos. Every free moment, my mind was focusing on pornography. You may be thinking similar thoughts, “So what if girls rejected me or someone mistreated me, relief is only a DVD or a website away.”
Often a constant battle rages inside the mind of a sex addict. Initially, all the secrecy and illicit pleasure was fun. But the more pornography I consumed, the more it consumed me. Stimulation required more perverse pornography. I wasn’t in control -- the pornography was! Addicted while single, I carried it into my marriage. This resulted in deceiving my wife, the one with whom I’m to be closest. Hiding my addiction from my wife got old quick. I must be crazy for risking my marriage for fantasy!
Pornography promotes selfishness. Seldom did I think of bringing sexual pleasure to my wife. I thought only about getting, not giving. Pornography made it difficult if not impossible to develop intimacy with my wife. When we had conflict, pornography made it so easy to cop out and not work through the conflict. (I’ve since learned that working through conflict, not avoiding it, is the key to marital intimacy.)
Finally, I saw that pornography was destroying my marriage and me. I needed help. God provided it through an unusual revival that broke out on Christian college campuses across the country. Without music and any form of manipulation, students gathered, one by one confessing their sins. My executive director thought it would be beneficial for our office to do this. So, in front of men and women and with God’s help, I publicly confessed my sin of pornography. Immediately, what felt like a physical weight was lifted off of me. I was free! Instead of receiving criticism, men put their hands on my shoulders and prayed for me! Then, I went home and confessed to my wife. She immediately forgave me. She has never mentioned it since then. In fact, she has given me permission to publicly share my story to help free others. Not every wife is ready for us to unload our guilt on them. Become a student of your wife -- be sure she’s ready and willing to hear this from you. You may first need to spend months building trust and intimacy with her.
Freedom is seldom appreciated until it is gone. Being free from pornography is incredible! It has resulted in a new closeness with my wife, less stress from living a double life, peace, self-worth, and no deception from momentary pleasure. I now have self-imposed boundaries and I also have an accountability partner. I’ve replaced pornography with life-giving priorities: family time, helping others, writing, and speaking.