How can I know if my loved one is addicted to pornography?

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“How can I tell if a loved one has a pornography problem?” There are some indicators which may be helpful in identifying if someone has a problem with pornography.

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“Some behaviors that may be associated with viewing pornography are lying, selfishness, denial, isolation, avoidance, hiding, secretiveness, becoming emotionally checked out, procrastinating, and objectifying others. The best way to identify if there is a problem is to discuss concerns with the individual.”

From Understanding Pornography and Sexual Addiction, p. 129
(http://salifeline.org/UnderstandPornographyBkWeb.pdf)

 

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Other signs that pornography addiction might be present:

– The objectification of women.  If he makes a lot of comments about women’s bodies, only notices the physical part of women, and devalues them as people.
– Lack of desire for sex.; he does not want to have sex for long periods of time.
– He pushes limits in the bedroom.   Pressuring you to participate in sex acts that you are uncomfortable with.
– Increased time spent on the computer.  Early in the morning, late at night.  Maybe even during the day when you are at work.  If he is “wasting” a lot of time on the computer this is a sign.
– Depression
-Withdrawing from religion/God.
– An emotional disconnection.  He is unable to connect with you emotionally and starts to distance himself.
– A general feeling of lack of safety in your relationship.  There may be a bunch of little signs that all add up to you feeling unsafe (emotionally) in the relationship.  Your gut is telling you something.
– Erratic patterns in his behaviors.  At times he may seem mad/angry for no reason at all.  For example; You telling him that you love him could trigger feelings of shame/guilt about his recent acting out which would lead to inconsistent behaviors.
– Other addictions.  Including; Food, drugs, alcohol, video games.
– Lack of motivation around the house.  Being unwilling to fully contribute to household needs.

These are just some signs that a spouse is struggling with a pornography problem.

-Brannon Patrick, LCSW

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