Pornography is becoming more and more accessible these days, and because of that, people are viewing it much more often. Men are being labeled as “porn addicts” on a regular basis. We are here to challenge this conclusion that many people jump to. We argue that porn use is much more complicated than what meets the eye. Where some people see addiction, we see relationship issues. Read the article below to learn more about labels and their importance.
Many times, there is more under the surface that needs to be recognized and considered before slapping an addict label on a man. More often than not, there is simply a relationship issue that needs to be addressed. Because of fear, shame, and various other aspects, it is hard for men to address relationship issues, so they resort to looking at pornography instead.
For example, many men do not feel capable of sharing their sexual desires with their partner. Embarrassment often takes hold and prevents open communication. This is often because they are raised to believe sexuality is weird or wrong. This leaves men unhappy with their sex lives and looking to other outlets to fulfill their needs.
Other times, the relationship issue is not a sexual one. Emotional disengagement and misunderstanding can also lead to pornography as a coping mechanism. This does not necessarily mean there is an addiction present, but rather a hole in the relationship that needs to be healed.
Pornography is also used by some people as a stress relief. In this case, there is not necessarily an addiction. One just needs to find another, healthier way to deal with stress. Redirection is always possible.
Addiction is thrown around way more often than it should be. Just because a man is looking at pornography after his wife has asked him not to does not mean that he is an addict. It could simply mean he has unfulfilled sexual desires that he is too ashamed to communicate to his wife. Throwing around words like addiction can make a man feel trapped. It can make him feel like has an incurable disease. Using words like addiction are more likely to hinder progress than to create it. Before labeling a man as a porn addict, try to analyze the ins and outs of his sexuality, his relationship, and his life. Try to find other terms and descriptions that are not so limiting, and that will encourage him to work through the obstacle rather than get stuck in it forever.
Calling someone a porn addict also breeds shame in the relationship. Labeling a man as an addict places the blame entirely on him. It takes away any possibility to work on underlying relationship issues. It takes away the opportunity for a wife to examine her role in the situation. Labels like this are completely counterproductive. If you wish to help a man out of his pornography viewing habits, we recommend avoiding labels that limit his ability to overcome, and stick with terms that will better his relationship and his life overall.