11 years old & addicted to porn?
What do you think it’s going to take in order for rational thinking people to finally speak out in huge numbers? How much more do we need to see? How many more stories do we need to hear before we can comfortably speak the simple truth that pornography is the master exploiter of our world and has created a moral epidemic?
As a clinician who works in the pornography addiction recovery field, I am getting tired of hearing the same stories over and over again with nothing at all being done about it. Recently it came to my attention that an 11 year old girl had been viewing hard core pornography at home for the past four years without her parents knowledge. One might wonder how this could happen. Let me tell you in a very plain and simple manner how this can happen, and how it is happening everyday all over the world.
Mom is downstairs in the kitchen making dinner, dad is outside working on his car and little Susie is upstairs on the family computer looking at pornographic images. Little Susie hears mom walking upstairs and quickly clicks a button which closes down the pornographic images and then she is back on a site playing a child’s game. Mom comes in the room and asks Susie how she is doing to which Susie replies, “fine mom.” Mom smiles, goes back down stairs to continue preparing dinner and Susie clicks a few buttons and “poof”, she is again looking at very powerful, stimulating images that have her addicted at this early age. Susie has no idea what has grabbed her – she only knows that these images are very stimulating and creates a powerful drug rush inside her brain and body. This drug rush simply compels her – drives her to go back for more and more.
There has never been a drug so easily accessible before. Consider the following statement from Dr. Jeffery Satinover, Princeton University, “With the advent of the computer, the delivery system of this addictive stimulus has become nearly resistance free. It is as though we have devised a form of heroin 100 times more powerful than before, usable in the privacy of one’s own home and injected directly into the brain through the eyes. It’s now available in unlimited supply via a self-replicating distribution network, glorified as art and protected by the Constitution.”
We are in troubled times! If we do not wake up and become more pro-active in educating and protecting our children our world is going to find itself in deeper trouble than it is already in. If you think the above story is an isolated incident, think again. I am hearing more and more of such stories every week in my clinical practice. How does one go about treating an 11 year old sex addict?
Chris Lee’s November 25, 2011 Newsweek article “The Sex Addiction Epidemic“and MSNBC interview describe the destructiveness of sex addiction. He states that, “It wrecks marriages, destroys careers, and saps self-worth.” It seems like everyone knows this but for some strange reason, nothing of a significant nature, is ever done about it.
The leaders who founded this free nation struggled with the issue of some things being right and some things being wrong. The definition of conscience is as follows: “An inner feeling or voice viewed as acting as a guide to the rightness or wrongness of one’s behavior.” Our Founders sacrificed all they had for their cause. Fast forward 235+ years to the present day. Tolerance has been taken to levels unimaginable. What if the founding fathers just continued to tolerate the abuses and injustices of their day? Where would we be now? When is it time to speak out and take a stand? When is it time to do something about those things that are just plain wrong?
We have taken the freedoms that have been granted to us and allowed ourselves excursions into the deepest, darkest abyss of human behavior with pornography. I had a wife of a pornography addict recently ask me, “Who are the people who actually produce these pictures and videos. Who are the people who actually do these things? Where are they?” Almost as if she had a hard time believing that they were real people. She was wondering how someone could live with themselves after participating in such behaviors. The best word to describe her feelings surrounding the question was anger and sadness.
As a clinician who works with sexual addicts I can clearly and loudly say that I have never yet met a person who participates in pornography, in any way, that can say they feel right about it. Listen to the plea for help from the following email I received.
“I am sick to my core by virtue of my indulgence in pornography. To be honest, my appetite for porn accounted for why I got the Internet in the very first place and now that I am down in a horrendous pit, I seriously wonder whether there is hope of recovery for me, for whenever I log onto the Internet I must view porn. What is wrong with me? Why can’t I change who I am presently? Is there any change possible in the future of me?”
It is time to clearly state that some things are right and others are wrong because it is the truth! We all know it anyway – it’s just that too many have chosen the road of self-indulgence over self-discipline that conscience requires of us. Thankfully, our conscience is patient and persistent. It won’t give up easily. Yes, there are very powerful psychological denial mechanisms at play such as rationalization, justification, minimization and so forth but beneath them all the still small inner feeling voice tells us what is right and wrong and we all know it. Perhaps it is time to pay attention to it!
Any time we wish; we can discipline ourselves to change our lives. Any time we wish; we can open the book that will open our mind to new knowledge. Any time we wish; we can start a new activity. Any time we wish; we can start the process of life change.
The choices are ours to make. As Shakespeare uniquely observed, “The fault is not in the stars, but in ourselves.” We are who we are today because of our past choices. If we choose to look the other way and not do something about this problem, then we become a part of the problem. Haile Selassie who is a former emperor of Ethiopia put it this way, “Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph.”
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