Author Topic: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery  (Read 566 times)

HumbleRich

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The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« on: October 13, 2018, 10:52:06 PM »
[I got on the laptop to write this post (hoorah), rather than using the Ipad or my smart phone, so there should be less typos.]

I have to celebrate something that happened yesterday, folks.  I was outside saying goodbye to the students as they left, with a group of other teachers.  This one coworker, who has become a bit of an acquaintance and who I am attracted to, was wearing a work-appropriate shirt, but it was still snug, emphasizing her form...

And I wasn't even tempted to look.  I noticed, as I am sure anyone would, but I had no temptation to look at all.  Had it been a year ago, I would have been awkwardly avoiding eye contact as I took peeks.  Perhaps I would have been caught leering.  But now I have no problem avoiding it.  It doesn't even register.  Regardless of how aesthetically pleasing I find a woman, I just have no temptation to leer.

And that brings me to the question: what is the connection between the two?  Because I know that not all porn addicts become leerers.  Not everyone with a porn addiction starts rudely staring at women.  Not everyone does the "zombie stare" that I started doing very early in my addiction.

Why is it that some people have the addiction transfer to real life, while others don't?

And furthermore, why does getting rid of the porn addiction and compulsive masturbation miraculously cure the problem?

These questions still bother me, but perhaps it doesn't matter.

The point is that with each passing day I get better, become a more respectful person, and a better me.

Great stuff.

Rich

Finwë

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2018, 04:44:53 AM »
I think in the early stages of addiction porn conditions tendencies towards voyeurism in the addict, and these tendencies can play out in real life. However in the later stages, desensitization usually escalates to the point where the addict isn't fully aroused by looking at people, and can only be satisfied by hardcore porn.

That was the case for me. I was addicted from around age 13 to 21. I had problems with ogling/leering from age 14-17, though I tried to be discreet. I'm sure it's normal for boys of that age to look at girls, but I believe porn was contributing to an excessive and unpleasant voyeurism at that time. From age 18-21 I had no problem with ogling - I was desensitized to the point where girls were not attractive. I quit when I turned 22, am 23 now, and still have no urge to ogle inappropriately.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2018, 05:15:21 AM by Finwë »

DoneAtLast

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2018, 11:39:15 AM »
Very well said.

There is also a cyclical element to this, I believe.  The leering/fantasizing/desire feeds porn addiction as much as porn addiction feeds those behaviors.  How many people on here have gotten frustrated with themselves because they go out, see all sorts of beautiful women, get angry that they "aren't getting laid, don't even have a girlfriend" and then turn to porn again?  Or, the ones who seek recovery only insofar as they think they'll be able to seize upon all of the stuff they are leering at outside of porn?  Obviously it isn't this way for everyone... for some the love of porn is so extreme that they CAN'T leer, because real people just don't compete with whatever they're looking at online.  Maybe their porn tastes became such that they don't exist in real life... hentai, shemale, whatever.

At the center of this cycle is the lie that our sexual energy is a fixed amount (very high) and it needs to be "expressed".  In the past, leering may have made you somewhat uncomfortable, and you found comfort in "getting it out of your system" with porn, which ultimately focused you on leering all the more.  This wasn't always the case for me, but it was at times.  Seeing someone you're attracted to while addicted to porn can make you anxious and depressed.  Once I got away from porn, I'm much more capable of saying "that was a beautiful woman" and moving on with my day.  The PMO following an oogling incident creates a reward system.  I was like this for a while where if I saw a trigger in the real world I'd HAVE to turn to PMO because my body understood no other alternative prior to rebooting.

Thought experiment: before rebooting, if you saw a woman in public with body type X, did your next porn session involve seeking out women with body type X?  I did this, though sporadically.  Hair colors, ethnicities, prominent features, whatever.  I sometimes sought after porn that resembled exes... yeah, not healthy.  That definitely created a feedback loop for me dwelling on past hurt and attachment.

I expect that it is an emotional trigger that everyone reacts to a bit differently.  As you've shown in your other threads Rich, some react with slut shaming and misogyny.  See an attractive porn-like (in their mind, anyway) woman in public, and label her a slut and tell themselves that she must do all sorts of awful, kinky stuff.  Men have to deal with moments of seeing attractive women that they can't pursue for whatever reason (in your case your marriage).  Real men deal with it well, boys deal with it in pettier ways.

Personally, I don't really oogle.  Yeah, sometimes the way someone dresses you can't help but "notice" as you say.  But then again, if it was a fat dude with his gut hanging down I'd "notice" that and I'd also "notice" someone rolling into Trader Joe's playing a tuba on a unicycle.  Some women's fashions are simply designed for people to "notice", though it doesn't give us license to oogle.  That is a really important distinction to make. 

I find it really helpful to mentally call out what is happening due to a piece of clothing or an extreme body shape (side bar: men with different proportions rarely have this problem since men's clothing is by design less form fitting... women just don't have this privilege unless they happen to be proportioned exactly like a clothing company thinks they should be), and realize that my reaction is simply to that.  Last night I saw several women in extremely tight workout pants, very tight by design and then a few sizes too small on top of that... a coat of paint would have revealed less!  But just by mentally acknowledging what is happening and that it will pass once I leave that place made it such that I didn't have to oogle, and the thought didn't stay imprinted with me afterward.

Reformed Fapper

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2018, 09:01:33 PM »
I never really leered, but I was into voyeur porn for a while there. I used to have a quick peek, never the `zombie stare`, it never got that creepy.
Its like looking at the sun: if you stare too long youre gonna get burned.
Nowadays, if I see a woman with a nice body, youre damn right Ill look, but I feel absolutely no sexual urges or turn ons in at all.
Un-fuck your life, quit porn now! Today!

Joshb92

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2018, 02:52:59 PM »
I'm currently in step one, rebooting. I have found myself leering and I think it relates a lot to my porn addiction in a way that I associate the women I see in videos with women in real life. It's like I can aalmost imagine what a real attractive women in front of me, would look if she wasn't wearing clothes. I BELIEVE  my brain has seen many women  in many different shapes and forms in porn videos that it has become second nature. As of today I am TRYING  so hard to not let my head wounder off into fantasy but instead to acknowledge a beautiful women in real life and move on with my life.  Anyone that can share their experiences with me and what they have done to help them, I would appreciate the feed back.

HumbleRich

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2018, 11:04:40 PM »
Hey all,

DAL, I definitely did not mean to imply that I am, in any way, thinking about cheating on my wife.  In fact, I firmly believe that, 1. porn can lead to cheating (in at least some individuals), and 2. that getting free takes away the temptation to cheat.  In fact, that is why I began my post with a celebration of me not being tempted to look at my coworker, a woman who I do find visually apealling.  I see that as a HUGE step in the right direction, that I was not tempted to look, let alone anything else.  Attractive women are just....attractive women.  I might take a quick glance, but I am absolutely not interested!

These ideas make a lot of sense.  Especially for me.  I came into contact with the really bad types of porn, and found it really disturbing, so I went back into more "girl next door" stuff, which helps to explain why leering became such a big thing for me.  I was jacking off to girls who looked just like the women I saw every day in real life. 

Hi Josh,

That is interesting.  I found that the leering stopped when I stopped PMOing.  As in, immediately!  On the first day there was virtually no leering.  Then again, I have been rebooting, with several streaks, for most of this year.  So the huge change could be due to accumulative reboots.

A lot of good stuff in here.  It feels good to be clean!

Rich

DoneAtLast

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Re: The Connection between Porn Addiction and Leering, And Recovery
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2018, 10:30:44 AM »
Oh my, I'm sorry Rich... I didn't mean to say that you were considering such a thing!  On the contrary, porn addiction is very much a Jekyll and Hyde thing for many people.  We live out things in porn that we'd never even consider in real life.  For some Hyde overtakes Jekyll (that's when the Backpage stuff comes in) but the duality is still real.  My actual point was that it could have been a release of those anxieties.  For example: You see an attractive woman, you're attracted/aroused, you don't like this feeling because of your married status, you dwell/become anxious, you "release" with porn and (according to current wisdom) solve the problem while completely faithful to your wife.  In reality, you aren't releasing but reinforcing, though we all know that now.  Of course you know otherwise too, but my suggestion (a question, really) is whether this is what was happening in porn addicted "zombie mode".  That is the chicken/egg thing I was getting at.

I can't call it a very well developed thought, which is why it is more of a question.  I've been noticing lately how, in myself and others on this board, feeling attracted to real women causes acute depression and anxiety while hooked on porn.  It is like jealousy, covetousness and self hatred are the biggest arousal markers.  Shouldn't we be happy when we see something beautiful?  The bad feelings loop back into addictive behavior.  I suppose I'm really asking if the leering/girl next door/marriage combination is a marker of this loop.

On a personal note, it is why I don't do dating websites anymore.  It blurs the lines between "real people" and porn too much.  It also is a fierce generator of those anxieties.  I don't care if it leaves me alone for the rest of my life, I'm not going there again.  For me it is like "if your arm causes you to sin, cut it off.  Better to lose your arm than your whole body."  Again, this is personal, in no way will I say to another rebooter that dating websites are poison (though they may be).