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Pornography Addiction

answered 08:00 PM EST, Mon August 13, 2012
anonymous anonymous
My fiancee has an addiction to pornography. I do not know if I can deal with this or not and so I am unsure about whether or not I should break of our engagement. We have had a problem about this issue in the past and I eventually told him that he needed to get help or I was going to leave him and so he did arrange to get some counseling with our pastor who is also a counselor and he is still going to see him once a week. I am happy that he is trying and I believe that he is making a real effort to get better but I found out yesterday that he has found some way to override the porn blocking software on our computer and has been looking at it again while I am doing shift work in the evenings. He can spend hours and hours doing it.

I do not know what to do. I love him and I beleive that he is trying to change and I want to support him, but based on the evidence I am not sure if he ever can. What I really want to know is if he cannot control his urges to look at porn will he also not be able to control his urges to have sex with another woman if the opportunity ever presents - or is this a separate thing. I do not really understand sex addiction. Can a person be just a porn addict or are they a sex addict and that also looks at porn? I guess I am fortunate that our physical relationship is still OK and the porn has not affected his desire to be with me physically.

Dr. Lani Chin Says...

It sounds like you are going through a tough time with your partner.  Based on what you've said about your fiancee, it seems like he is needing more intensive therapy.  I would recommend a sex therapist or someone that specializes in sex addiction.  Although most treatments can show an immediate decrease in behavior, it is not atypical for previous behaviors to crop up later. 

I would also recommend couples therapy so that you can communicate to your partner how his addiction is affecting your relationship.  Although you say your "physical relationship is OK," I can hear the pain in what you're describing and couples therapy could help for you two to work on rebuilding the emotional intimacy in your lives.

I don't know your partner so I cannot tell if he is "just a porn addict or a sex addict that also looks at porn."  Again, more intensive individual therapy for your partner plus couples therapy for the both of you could help to sort this out.  If you are in the Los Angeles area, I would be happy to help you talk about how this is affecting you: www.drlanichin.com.  Good luck.

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Page last updated Aug 13, 2012

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