Am I Addicted?
I remember in the midst of my own fight with porn addiction I never once thought that I was actually ADDICTED. Addiction is something associated with drugs and alcohol. This was just some harmless thing I did, it wasn’t hurting anyone. Addiction has the implication that I couldn’t stop on my own and although that is exactly where I was, I would not admit it.
So how do you tell if you’re addicted or not?
Contrary to popular belief, addiction has nothing to do with how much you consume or how often you turn to porn. And although there is no official test to take to see if you are addicted there are symptoms that we can see in one’s life that exhibit the presence of addiction. Just like the wind, we cannot see the wind, however we can see its effects, and the effects let us know the wind is there.
Here are the two symptoms of a porn addict:
By obsession I mean an unhealthy and compulsive preoccupation with something or someone. What does that mean? Basically it means spending an unhealthy amount of time thinking about porn. A good example of this is if you ever spend time thinking “How can I do this?” Whether at work, scrolling on your phone, or when your wife leaves to run some errands, if you find yourself asking that question it qualifies as obsession.
In continuing it has to do with continuing in the bad behavior after receiving negative consequences. For the Christian, he knows that lusting after and then masturbating to images or videos is sin. Sin; negative consequence. But then there is the negative consequence of hurting your loved ones, betraying your spouse, or withdrawing from family to pursue the addiction. If you know it’s bad or if you’ve been caught but you continue in the behavior then it is addiction.
An easier way to determine if you are addicted is to simply ask yourself: “Can I walk away from this right now.” If you can’t, then you are addicted and you need help.
As I progressed towards starting my recovery I knew that my problem was undoubtedly an addiction and I needed help. I tried many, MANY times to quit but I always came back to it. I don’t know why it took me so long to figure out that it was an addiction but I wasted a lot of time and hurt a lot of people along the way. Don’t make the same mistakes I did. Recognize the addiction and get help.
If you need help in setting up an accountability group, or telling a loved one of your addiction, or implementing some simple steps to keep you pure please let me know.