7 Real Stories of People Opening Up for the First Time About Their Struggle with Porn

By KC

Fortify
Cover photo credit to iStock. 5-minute read.

By now you’ve probably heard our slogan: porn kills love.

While porn does take a toll on significant others, it also affects love in all kinds of relationships—friends, family, and the relationship you have with yourself. With an estimated $97 billion dollar industry pushing porn into every aspect of our society and culture, suffice to say, it can be difficult to avoid.

In fact, according to a survey done by the New York Times, 93% of college-age men have been exposed to porn before the age of 18. Another survey showed that 31% of women watch porn every week.

Related: Tips For Opening Up To A Loved One About Your Struggle With Porn

Porn is a real issue that affects a large percentage of the population, and because study after study is confirming that porn is harmful, we’re starting to understand the real-life negative implications of it all around the world. Now more than ever, it’s an important conversation to have between loved ones, so whoever might be struggling with compulsive tendencies can have a resource within reach.

Friends, family, partners: 7 success stories

Porn can be a challenging topic to talk about, whether you’re the one who’s struggling or it’s your loved one, or both of you. So, how do you bring this up? How do you react when someone you love brings it up with you? To give you some examples and inspiration, we talked to several people who have success stories of opening up.

J, 21 years old

J: “I kind of knew that something was up with my roommate, but I wasn’t sure how to bring it up. One day we were just talking on the floor of our room. We were talking about dating and treating women properly. I started opening up to him about some of the harder things in my life and he opened up about his pornography problem. I just felt so much love for him and we both cried. He asked me to help keep him accountable, so every day I would just hold up my thumb and he would give me a thumbs up if he had done well or a thumbs down if he hadn’t. He knew that there would be no judgment on my part, just love.”

Related: Opening Up About My Secret Porn Struggle Helped Set Me Free

M, 25 years old

M: “My brother sat me down on my bed and told me he had something to tell me. He told me he had been struggling with pornography for years, but that he was getting better and that he was healing. He didn’t know it then, but him talking to me about his problem was the beginning of my journey to overcoming my own issue with pornography. Eventually, he became my confidant as I worked through a recovery program. He was my proof that things could get better.”

A, 24 years old

A: “When my husband and I were just friends, I was suffering from depression. I was talking about my struggles and he told me he could relate. He told me about his struggle with pornography. Since then, we have been completely honest about our struggles. It’s helped us so much. It means there are no secrets and no shame. We focus on solutions and helping each other become better.”

Related: Can Watching Porn Make Existing Mental Health Issues Worse?

J, 23 years old

J: “When things were starting to get serious between me and a boy that I was dating, I knew we would have to have a conversation about porn. We discussed how everyone has an Achilles heel of some kind. He opened up and told me that his weakness was pornography. I told him that I had a similar problem in the past. For the first time in a long time, I didn’t feel shame for my history with it. Instead, we were able to discuss how we could set goals and boundaries to work together to get over this problem.”

Brain Heart World

S, 21 years old

S: “My friend opened up to me and my boyfriend about a struggle with compulsively viewing pornography. It was hard for us to hear, but we tried not to show that. We tried to just listen and be loving and accepting. We asked some questions about how it had affected him and had a good discussion about it. He told us that he was so grateful that we reacted the way we did.”

Related: 7 Tips For Supporting A Friend Who’s Struggling With Porn

K, 23 years old

K: “When my boyfriend told me he was addicted to pornography, he was extremely honest with me. He told me about the nature of the addiction and the steps he had taken, and was currently taking, to overcome it. He also explained that watching porn had nothing to do with me—it wasn’t my fault he watched it and it wasn’t my job to ‘fix’ him. We discussed what I could do to help him moving forward. He cried, and I cried with him. We both tried to approach it with a willingness to understand and empathize. We continued to have respectful and helpful conversations about it as often as either of us felt necessary.”

J, 29 years old

J: “I noticed my friend was upset about something. I asked him about it, and he told me about his pornography addiction—that he’d been “clean” for over 100 days and he’d slipped up, and was so upset with himself. I told him I was so sorry it was so hard for him and that I knew he could get past it. I congratulated him on his progress so far and thanked him for confiding in me.”

Hat - Fight For Love

Why open up?

These stories remind us why we fight. We fight for porn to be a topic that isn’t discussed in hushed, shameful voices, but instead is talked about with hope and recognition that it’s an issue everyone comes in contact with at some point in their life.

Somewhere along the way, our society fell into thinking that porn is something we shouldn’t talk about, but everyone should quietly get into for themselves. The arguments for keeping quiet go something like this: it’s too embarrassing, it isn’t appropriate, it’s not a real issue, it isn’t harmful, etc.

We are living in a society where the consumption of porn has become mainstream, yet the discussion about it and how it can be harmful to relationships has remained taboo. How does that make sense?

Let’s face it: the porn issue will only get worse if we ignore it. If we don’t start the conversation about porn with the recognition that it’s actually harmful, who will? If not now, when? Pornography won’t stop causing emotional, physical, relational, and societal damage just because we turn a blind eye to it. It only will get stronger and continue to hurt the lives of millions all across the world.

With something this dangerous in our society, it’s time we started talking about it. It’s time to break the silence. Change starts with us. It starts with us taking a stand for authentic relationships, and raising awareness on the harms of porn.

It starts with us taking away the shame and secrecy in opening up about a very real issue. Join us in fighting for love.

The post 7 Real Stories of People Opening Up for the First Time About Their Struggle with Porn appeared first on Fight the New Drug.