Effects Of Pornograpy on the Brain

18 10 2013

Porn addict

This is a rather frank post on porn, so proceed, or not, with that in mind.

Porn is a problem. It’s a personal problem for many and a cultural problem for all. You may think you have not been affected by porn, but you have because it’s embedded in the surrounding culture. The staggering size of the pornography industry, its influence upon the media and the acceleration of technology, paired with the accessibility, anonymity, and affordability of porn all contribute to its increasing impact upon the culture.

Pornography affects you whether you’ve ever viewed it or not, and it is helpful to understand some of its negative effects, whether you are a man or woman, struggling with watching it, or simply a mom or dad with a son or daughter. There is a plethora of research on the detrimental effects of pornography (and I do not think that what follows are necessarily the worst of them), but here are seven negative effects of porn upon men and women:

1. PORN CONTRIBUTES TO SOCIAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL PROBLEMS WITHIN MEN
Anti-pornography activist, Gail Dines, notes that young men who become addicted to porn, “neglect their schoolwork, spend huge amounts of money they don’t have, become isolated from others, and often suffer depression.” (Pornland, 93). Dr. William Struthers, who has a PhD in biopsychology from the University of Illinois at Chicago, confirms some of these and adds more, finding that men who use porn become controlling, highly introverted, have high anxiety, narcissistic, curious, have low self-esteem, depressed, dissociative, distractible (Wired for Intimacy, 64-65). Ironically, while viewing porn creates momentary intensely pleasurable experiences, it ends up leading to several negative lingering psychological experiences.

2. PORN REWIRES THE MALE BRAIN
Struthers elaborates,

As men fall deeper into the mental habit of fixating on [pornographic images], the exposure to them creates neural pathways. Like a path is created in the woods with each successive hiker, so do the neural paths set the course for the next time an erotic image is viewed. Over time these neural paths become wider as they are repeatedly traveled with each exposure to pornography. They become the automatic pathway through which interactions with woman are routed….They have unknowingly created a neurological circuit that imprisons their ability to see women rightly as created in God’s image (Wired For Intimacy, 85).
In a similar vein regarding porn’s effect upon the brain, Naomi Wolf writes in her article, “The Porn Myth,”

After all, pornography works in the most basic of ways on the brain: It is Pavlovian. An orgasm is one of the biggest reinforcers imaginable. If you associate orgasm with your wife, a kiss, a scent, a body, that is what, over time, will turn you on; if you open your focus to an endless stream of ever-more-transgressive images of cybersex slaves, that is what it will take to turn you on. The ubiquity of sexual images does not free eros but dilutes it.

3. PORN TURNS SEX INTO MASTURBATION
Sex becomes self-serving. It becomes about your pleasure and not the self-giving, mutually reciprocating intimacy that it was designed for.

4. PORN DEMEANS AND OBJECTIFIES WOMEN
This occurs from hard-core to soft-core pornography. Pamela Paul, in her book Pornified, quoting the research of one psychologist who has researched pornography at Texas A&M, writes,

‘Softcore pornography has a very negative effect on men as well. The problem with softcore pornography is that it’s voyeurism teaches men to view women as objects rather than to be in relationships with women as human beings.’ According to Brooks, pornography gives men the false impression that sex and pleasure are entirely divorced from relatoinships. In other words, pornography is inherently self-centered–something a man does by himself, for himself–by using another women as the means to pleasure, as yet another product to consume (80).
Paul references one experiment that revealed a rather shocking further effect of porn: “men and women who were exposed to large amounts of pornography were significantly less likely to want daughters than those who had none. Who would want their own little girl to be treated that way?” (80).

It becomes about your pleasure and not the self-giving, mutually reciprocating intimacy that it was designed for.
Again, it needs to be emphasized, that this is not an effect that only rests upon those who have viewed porn. The massive consumption of porn and the the size of the porn industry has hypersexualized the entire culture. Men and women are born into a pornified culture, and women are the biggest losers. Dines continues,

By inundating girls and women with the message that their most worthy attribute is their sexual hotness and crowding out other messages, pop culture is grooming them just like an individual perpetrator would. It is slowly chipping away at their self-esteem, stripping them of a sense of themselves as whole human beings, and providing them with an identity that emphasizes sex and de-emphasizes every other human attribute (Pornland, 118).

5. PORN SQUASHES THE BEAUTY OF A REAL NAKED WOMAN
Wolf, in her own blunt way, confirms this,

For most of human history, the erotic images have been reflections of, or celebrations of, or substitutes for, real naked women. For the first time in history, the images’ power and allure have supplanted that of real naked women. Today, real naked women are just bad porn (Quoted in Wired for Intimacy, 38).

6. PORN HAS A NUMBING EFFECT UPON REALITY
It makes real sex and even the real world boring in comparison. It particularly anesthetizes the emotional life of a man. Paul comments,

Pornography leaves men desensitivzed to both outrage and to excitement, leading to an overall diminishment of feeling and eventually to dissatisfaction with the emotional tugs of everyday life…Eventually they are left with a confusing mix of supersized expectations about sex and numbed emotions about women…When a man gets bored with pornography, both his fantasy and real worlds become imbued with indifference. The real world often gets really boring…” (Pornified, 90, 91).

7. PORN LIES ABOUT WHAT IT MEANS TO BE MALE AND FEMALE
Dines records how porn tells a false story about men and women. In the story of porn, women are “one-dimensional”–they never say no, never get pregnant, and can’t wait to have sex with any man and please them in whatever way imaginable (or even unimaginable). On the other hand, the story porn tells about men is that they are “soulless, unfeeling, amoral life-support systems for erect penises who are entitled to use women in any way they want. These men demonstrated zero empathy, respect, or love for the women they have sex with…(Pornland, xxiv).”
From http://theresurgence.co

8. EFFECTS OF PORNOGRAPHY ON THE BRAIN

The pornified brain sounds a lot like Mick Jagger; it can’t get no satisfaction. On the surface it sounds absurd. Pornography offers endless opportunities for arousal. If a human masturbates to a wider range of images or videos, shouldn’t that satiate? The simple answer is no.

Dr. Norm Doidge explains that porn is more exciting than satisfying because we have two separate pleasure systems in our brains: one for exciting pleasure and another for satisfying pleasure.

The exciting system, fueled by dopamine and anticipation, is all about appetite, such as imagining your favorite meal or a sexual episode.

The satisfying system involves actually having the meal or having sex, which provides a calming, fulfilling pleasure. This system releases opiate-like endorphins that provide feelings of peace and euphoria.

Pornography, Doidge writes, hyperactivates the appetite system. But the satisfying system is left starving for the real thing, which includes actual touching, kissing, caressing, and a connection not only with the body but also the mind and soul. The satisfying system releases oxytocin and endorphins, and bellows, in the words of Marvin Gaye, “Ain’t nothing like the real thing, Baby.”

The porn-saturated brain is fixated on sex, Dr. William Struthers explains, but real sex is intended for intimacy. The pornified brain is ready for multiple partners, images, and sexual possibilities, but it is intended for a narrow focus of exclusive sharing. Porn’s neurological superhighway is built for speed, but satisfying sex is designed for the slow and evolving discovery and appreciation of a loving partner. Porn provides few off-ramps (masturbation) that offer fleeting escapes that hasten the need for more. Meanwhile a committed couple can have long and satisfying encounters with many off ramps for creative expressions of intimacy that are not genitally oriented.

Doidge writes:

Pornographers promise healthy pleasure and relief from sexual tension, but what they often deliver is an addiction, tolerance, and an eventual decrease in pleasure. Paradoxically, the male patients I worked with often craved pornography but didn’t like it.

9. HOW PORN HURTS MARITAL SEX

Pornographers want people to believe that viewing porn is harmless entertainment and that it can even spice up one’s love life, but the opposite is true. Rather than encouraging intimacy, research shows that porn steals it away.

Porn encourages selfishness rather than an exchange of intimacy. Especially among men, who are more visually stimulated than women, porn teaches that women are objects for their lust. Women are just body parts, used for personal gratification.

Pornography trains men to be consumers, to treat sex as a commodity, to think about sex as something on-tap and made-to-order. As Dr. Mary Anne Layden writes, “It is toxic miseducation about sex and relationships.”6

  • In Dr. Gary Brooks’ book, The Centerfold Syndrome, he explains that because the women in porn are only glossy magazine pictures or pixels on the screen, they have no sexual or relational expectations of their own. This trains men to desire the cheap thrill of fantasy over a committed relationship that requires them to connect to another human being. Pornography essentially trains men to be digital voyeurs: looking at women rather than seeking genuine intimacy.
  • According to a study published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, after only a few prolonged exposures to pornographic videos, men and women alike reported less sexual satisfaction with their intimate partners, including their partners’ affection, physical appearance, and sexual performance.
  • Another study that appeared in the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy found similar results. When men and women were exposed to pictures of female centerfold models from Playboy and Penthouse, this significantly lowered their judgments about the attractiveness of “average” people.
  • Dr. Victor Cline’s research has shown that sexual arousal and excitement diminish with repeated exposure to sexual scenes, leading people to seek out greater variety and novelty in the pornography they view.
  • French neuroscientist Serge Stoleru reports on how overexposure to erotic stimuli actually exhausts the sexual responses of healthy young men.
  • Dr. Dolf Zillmann reports when young people are repeatedly exposed to pornography, it can have a long-lasting impact on their beliefs and behaviors. Frequently, men who habitually view pornography develop cynical attitudes about love and the need for affection between partners. They begin to view the institution of marriage as sexually confining. Often, men develop a “tolerance” for sexually explicit material, leading them to seek out more novel or bizarre material to achieve the same level of arousal.

Dr. Judith Reisman summarizes it well: Pornography causes impotence — an inability to function with your own sexual power. “If he has to imagine a picture, if he has to imagine a scene, in order to actually reach the heights of completion with this person, then he’s no longer with his own power, is he? He has been stripped. He has been hijacked. He has been emasculated. He has, in effect, been castrated visually.”

10. PORN CAUSES ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION

If the concerns above were not enough, many men become so habituated to pornography that they experience erectile dysfunction when they are with their spouse. Rather than performing better, as pornography promises, many men find that they can only achieve consistent and sustained erections with porn.

Drs. Marnia Robinson and Gary Wilson explained in Psychology Today that overstimulation with pornography creates changes in the brain that make a man less responsive to the physical pleasure of a real woman and hyper-responsive to Internet porn. Men become sensitized to Internet porn, but desensitized to sex in general, which requires more and more stimulation to achieve arousal. When preparing for real sex, the pornified brain fails to get its dopamine surge and the signal to the penis is too weak to achieve erection. But turn on an Internet device with unlimited pages of novelty, and boom, the plumbing works.

Fast-growing online communities of people who call themselves “Fapstronauts” complain that porn is the root of their problems with ED and premature ejaculation. “Fapping,” slang for masturbating to Internet porn, is causing these people so many troubles they banded together for support. One online community claims 50,000 members, and their goal is to encourage each other to avoid pornography and masturbation for 90 days in the hope of never going back.

Download and read the rest of the book, The Porn Circuit: Understand Your Brain and Break Porn Habits in 90 Days. click the_porn_circuit_covenant_eyes

Author, Sam Black

Watch Video below for 10 Steps to Stop Porn Addiction

 

For More Help Overcome Porn Addiction, read  Free E-book  “Porn Circuit” Click herethe_porn_circuit_covenant_eye  

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12 responses

12 05 2019
KBN EBENEZER

Productive information. Be blessed.

10 05 2019
Cendrine Saah Nanfack

Thanks it was actually helpful

10 05 2019
Editor

Happy to hear that, Cendrine Saah Nangack, you make it worthwhile

7 05 2019
Simba Mudzvova

Ok then

7 05 2019
Mind Cruxifix De-Pablo

Everything is a problem

7 05 2019
Rashid Musah

The only movie without shooting, fighting and you are telling me it has a side effect to the brain?

7 05 2019
Dahonest Bwoy

Cute like dat ❤💓💯

1 05 2019
Marvel Superhero Actress Pained by Past Nude Scenes | Authors-choice

[…] Effects Of Pornograpy on the Brain […]

25 04 2019
Anonymous

Cock block 101

24 04 2016
Tanda

Good job. keep up!

4 11 2013
Loren

I have agree completely with your findings.As a former frequent porn user I have found it took more and more exposure to get the same feeling of arousal than before ever viewing porn. I was finally ashamed and disgusted enough with myself to ask God to help me lose the lusting and fantasizing thinking that porn provides and I found it easier to stop going to those sites. I now am disgusted and turned off by all the sexual references and suggestive dress code we have allowed into our televisions. It’s on all the half hour sitcoms that used to be good family entertainment and now they are just trashed with sexual talk and discussion of both male and female body parts.How much lower will our culture have to sink before we demand changes with regard to the whole porn culture.I hope some changes take place in the near future or we as a society are surely doomed from our excessive behaviors.

4 11 2013
Editor

Thanks Loren for sharing your story with us. I am sure your story will encourage millions of young people whose lives are ruined because they are enslaved by porn and perhaps help them overcome it and live a better life.

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