How pornography may be ruining your relationship
Written by listed counsellor/psychotherapist: Jill Mitev-Will BA(Hons) MBACP (registered)
19th November, 20160 Comments
As we are all aware, pornography is available at the click of a button. It's watched by over 40 million people just in the United States and seems to be accepted by the majority of people as normal. I am therefore wondering, why do I come across so many couples and individuals that feel that pornography has indeed ruined their relationships?
A family member recently confessed to me that his use of pornography and live web cams practised secretly in the night whilst his partner was asleep, was exciting, incredibly erotic and some of the models had made him feel alive, sexy, attractive, and of course had made him feel exceptionally confident of his own ability, to the possibility of new partners outside of his relationship. The images of sexy, attractive women with incredible bronzed toned bodies in this created a 'fantasy', which meant a negative effect on the way he viewed his partner. Sex with the 'real person' became a thing of the past, with excuses made on his part to refrain from sex, as he found it much more erotic to have interaction from live models. Over time, his marriage began to suffer, as he further distanced himself physically and emotionally from his wife.
One lady explained that she was devastated to find hundreds of sexy images on her husband's computer, having felt something had been wrong for sometime. Her husband had began to abstain from sex with her, leaving her feeling unattractive, unhappy and sexually unfulfilled. He had began to get easily annoyed and agitated if she asked questions about why he was emotionally distancing himself from her.
For the couples that had found soft pornography exciting in the early days enhancing their sex life, had indeed over time, meant the early 'highs' had been replaced by moving onto more extreme pornography images. For some couples, this had led on to meeting up with other 'real life' people to include within their own sex lives. This of course may be acceptable to some couples providing that both partners are agreeable, but from the couples that I see in therapy it has certainly caused trust, jealousy and insecurity issues, and for some, the breakdown of their relationships.
It seems that as with most addictions, what starts out with a person in control of a situation which was adding some excitement creating a 'high', had over time, indeed started to 'control' its viewers. Therefore, pornography seems to have a negative effect meaning it can become harder to be aroused by one's own partner.
Pornography, arguably, has caused the partners of an 'addict' to feel isolated, betrayed, abandoned, rejected and humiliated. Furthermore, it feels as painful to the partner as if they had actually gone out and had an affair or a one night stand.
Having been in counselling with partners, feeling betrayed by their findings that there partners were involved in pornography, have found it exceptionally difficult to be able to work through this situation. In fact, many have found it totally unacceptable and have not been able to comprehend it. My findings further suggest, that the partners of pornography addicts have said they would have found it easier if their partner had had an affair, rather than made them feel rejected by online pornography.
My conclusion therefore, is that I would question that pornography is healthy in relationships. It would appear that it indeed, has only a negative effect.
About the author
I have a delightful room in my home that provides a safe place for one to talk through their concerns. I also practice from Norwich and Bury St Edmunds. I think you will find me warm, welcoming, non-judgemental, empathic with a quirky energetic style of working. Jill Mitev-Will BA(Hons).
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