Shame about Pornography Use: It’s Not Just You
Shame about pornography use is very common; I often hear from men about how ashamed they are of using pornography. No matter how long they have been doing it, for most men this sense of shame is very strong.
Why we are ashamed of pornography
One reason for this is that people often have a sense of shame regarding sexuality, no matter how standard their sexuality is. This can be a reflection of concerns about inadequacy. Further, people often have a sense of privacy about their sex life and sexual identity; it can be hard enough to talk about it with their partners, and it can seem impossible to talk about it with other people.
Shame about pornography use – everyone feels it
However, pornography use is very widespread in the community, particularly amongst men. Accurate statistics about pornography use are notoriously unreliable because men don’t actually report what they’re doing. However, there are strong indications that pornography use is extremely widespread amongst men.
Chances are, if you know two or three other men, at least one of them is a regular user of pornography and feels about as bad about it as you do.
How shame locks you in
The tragedy about the shame that men feel regarding using pornography is that shame is one of the things that men try to soothe through the use of pornography. This is one of the reasons that pornography use so prevalent – men’s negative feelings about using pornography actually contributes to their continued use of it.
It’s a vicious cycle.
You don’t need to be ashamed to stop
So what can you do? Find a way to reduce your shame about using pornography whilst at the same time continuing to reduce using it. You don’t have to feel ashamed about using pornography in order to be able to stop using it. A later blog post will focus on reducing shame.
Paradoxically, the more you can let go the shame of using pornography, the more likely you are to actually experience a reduction in wanting to use pornography, and this can lead to actually using it less.
If you think you’re the only one, I offer individual counselling and couples counselling regarding pornography use in Richmond in Sunbury. there you can discover how other people have fought – and won – against pornography.
Let me know what you think in the comments. Now, read about Pornography: It’s Much More Than Just Sex.
– Tim Hill
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