10 months ago

Why I used porn and how I quit watching it

the love drive

I use porn to change the way I feel.

I’ve been quitting lots of things lately. Online dating, eating meat, baked goods and desserts, casual sex (sort of), and watching porn.

I go in and out with regards to watching porn. I have had periods in my life when I intentionally didn’t use porn, times when I just wasn’t particularly interested in it, and other times when I would watch it several times a day to help with masturbation and orgasm.

Why and how I use porn

For the past several years though pornography has served as a shortcut to orgasm. I’ve been using pornography to get turned on so that I can experience orgasm and change the way I feel.

This is how it works for me. I’m feeling a certain way that I don’t enjoy and want to change that feeling. Perhaps I’m writing and I don’t want to be writing anymore. Perhaps I just had an unpleasant conversation with a rude customer service rep. Maybe I’m sad and lonely because a friend has rescheduled a date I was looking forward to. Whatever the case – I’m having feelings I don’t want to be having.

Instead of sitting with those feelings – I choose to actively distract myself from them. And few things help with a complete feeling change than orgasm. The problem is that when I’m sad/lonely/angry/tired/frustrated – I’m not turned on. At all.

I know however that just looking at porn will turn me on in a matter of minutes and I’ll then be happily distracted from whatever it was I didn’t want to be feeling. And after I cum – somehow I’m less tired/angry/lonely/sad/whatever. I’ve been distracted enough that I’m no longer stressing about the thing I was stressing out about.

You might think this sounds OK – but the reality is that I’m using sex and pornography to change the way I feel because I’m not feeling GOOD about myself. Instead of examining why I’m not feeling good, or continuing to do something hard and challenging, I instantly look for something to make me feel better. In the old days it used to be drugs and alcohol. When I stopped drinking – it became food and cigarettes. Now that I eat well and don’t smoke – it’s pornography.

Benefits of not using porn

When I go through periods of not looking at porn – I get turned on much less frequently but when I do – oh boy is it ever exciting. Masturbation without pornography feels much more intentional. I have to take the time to lay down and really tune into my body. It doesn’t happen as often and it takes longer to achieve orgasm but I love how connected to myself I feel, and I love using my memory of past lovers and my fantasies to turn myself on.

I’m hornier in bed. I feel sexier and I’m more interested in other people. I’m less likely to rush through anything to get to orgasm. I’m more likely to just let go of control. I masturbate less so play dates with lovers are more exciting and sexier.

I’m also forced to sit with those uncomfortable feelings – or to find a healthier outlet for them. Whether its writing it down, talking with someone else, going for a run or getting some exercise, or just sitting and feeling that discomfort – its healthier for me to go without. I’m dealing with my negative emotions more.

Either I sit with them, acknowledge them, process them, or just let them pass.

I have increased self esteem. I feel less bad about myself for resorting to escapist behaviors when I’m feeling bad.

How I quit using porn

First I became aware of the behavior. Then I called up a buddy who was having a similar issue and we made a no porn pact. This kept me accountable to someone else and vice versa. We agreed to not watch pornography and to send an update text every morning. No porn last night : killing it.

Whenever I had the urge to look at porn – I would acknowledge the urge, sit with it, and often the urge would pass. If it didn’t – then I’d turn my attention to something else. I drank a glass of water, called a friend, did some pushups, walked around the block with my dog, read a few pages of a book, or ate a snack.

After a while – the pattern is disrupted and a new habit is built. I don’t reach for porn anymore when I’m feeling down. I do something else.

Sex is great, and masturbation is great, and porn is great too! Especially when it’s used for connecting with myself, another person, or when it’s genuinely fun. I’m going to stick with not watching porn for now – I’m loving the benefits. Give it a shot – you might love it too.


 Shaun Galanos is the host and producer of The Love Drive. He lives, drives, and writes in Montreal.

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Shaun Galanos

Shaun Galanos is The Love Drive. He believes we all deserve love and works to help men (and women) develop more intimate relationships through honest and playful communication. He lives, writes, and makes videos in Montreal.

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