Could porn be causing your erectile dysfunction or intimacy problems? With all the media coverage of porn addiction, you may be saying, “porn, what’s the big deal?” but if you or your partner has erectile dysfunction (difficulty getting or maintaining erections) or delayed orgasm you may want to read further. This recent article in the Huffington Post by Robert Weiss “Is Porn Destroying Your Relationship?” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/robert-weiss/is-porn-destroying-your-s_b_3862281.html?goback=.gmp_126839#! really hits home in the sex therapy work I do. So many of my sex therapy clients and couples are struggling with intimacy … connecting sexually and one common factor that impacts their sexual success is the use of porn. Now don’t get me wrong, I have never had a problem with porn – it’s a great teaching tool. Unfortunately, the immediate sexual gratification that internet porn provides is problematic – it is definitely not the porn that I grew up with and I am becoming more and more concerned about the impact of porn because I am seeing it as a direct correlation with sexual functioning. Porn addiction has become a common term and whether you agree with it’s usage or not it I am finding that it is more and more common for me to see male clients who report regular porn use come in with Erectile Dysfunction or Delayed Orgasm. Also, their partners are feeling confused as to why he has lost interest in sex with them or why he is so disconnected when they are sexual.
It’s much easier to get our immediate needs met using porn because there isn’t a partner to please, impress, disappoint… you get the idea. The problem comes in when porn is used habitually as a way to avoid or to fulfill needs that could be met by other means. When porn usage becomes automatic I encourage the user to ask him/herself “What am I horny for?” or “What am I yearning for?” Are you bored, lonely, depressed, angry, horny? And are you using porn EVERY time you have this feeling or only occasionally?
Of course overcoming sexual problems are not usually as quick and easy as just eliminating porn usage. Often times there are communication gaps and sexual topics that the couple hasn’t felt comfortable discussing that lead one partner to ultimately just avoid communicating about or having sex with their partner and move towards sex with themselves. That is where sex therapy comes in. I help guide my clients through these difficult issues that they have been avoiding and work with them to communicate directly with one another about tough issues sometimes related to sex and sometimes unrelated.
The bottom line is our biggest sex organ is between our ears … our brain, and porn used regularly to avoid sex with our partner rather than enhance it is becoming more and more problematic. Maintaining a healthy and satisfying sex life takes work, it takes being vulnerable and sometimes being rejected, but like the saying goes “Nothing worth having comes easy.”
Now go have sex!