fbpx Skip to main content
Blog

5 Legit Reasons to Stop Watching Porn for Good, Starting Today

Every day you choose not to consume porn is a day that you are choosing health for yourself, your loved ones, and those around the world. Why not start today?

By August 26, 2021No Comments
stopped-watching-porn-never-going-back-porn-kills-love-man-tattoo-smile-happy

Can you believe that there are only a few months left in 2021?

Your start to this year probably included resolutions to improve your health and well-being. But did you stick to them, especially when the pandemic hit? Whether you did or not, we’ve got one to add to your list if it isn’t there already, no matter if you’re starting now or next January.

The fact is, a life without pornography is so much better than a life with it, and research is proving it.

If you’re finding yourself or a loved one buying into the lies that porn sells, get motivated by taking a minute to check out these five reasons why a porn-free life is a healthier life.

 1Strengthen your sexual health

Perhaps the biggest lie porn sells is that its fantasy world is filled with sex positivity: sexual education, more sex, better sex, etc. What it doesn’t mention, however, is that the fantasy world it sells can warp sexual expectations in unhealthy ways. It’s no secret that porn is wildly unrealistic and often straight-up toxic, yet 1 in 4 young adults report believing that porn is the most helpful source to learn how to have sex, according to a 2021 study.Rothman, E. F., Beckmeyer, J. J., Herbenick, D., Fu, T. C., Dodge, B., & Fortenberry, J. D. (2021). The Prevalence of Using Pornography for Information About How to Have Sex: Findings from a Nationally Representative Survey of U.S. Adolescents and Young Adults. Archives of sexual behavior, 50(2), 629–646. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10508-020-01877-7Copy 

Another study indicated that young people often reported trying to copy porn in their own sexual encounters, and that the pressure to imitate porn was often an aspect of unhealthy relationships.Rothman, E. F., Kaczmarsky, C., Burke, N., Jansen, E., & Baughman, A. (2015). 'Without Porn … I Wouldn't Know Half the Things I Know Now: A Qualitative Study of Pornography Use Among a Sample of Urban, Low-Income, Black and Hispanic Youth. Journal of sex research, 52(7), 736–746. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224499.2014.960908Copy 

Basically, porn doesn’t contribute to a healthy understanding of sex.

Related: 50 Good Reasons To Stop Watching Porn Forever

Podcast

2. Strengthen your mental health

A number of peer-reviewed studies have found a link between pornography consumption and mental health outcomes like depression,Harper, C., & Hodgins, D. C. (2016). Examining Correlates of Problematic Internet Pornography Use Among University Students. Journal of behavioral addictions, 5(2), 179–191. https://doi.org/10.1556/2006.5.2016.022Copy  anxiety,Wordecha, M., Wilk, M., Kowalewska, E., Skorko, M., Łapiński, A., & Gola, M. (2018). 'Pornographic binges' as a key characteristic of males seeking treatment for compulsive sexual behaviors: Qualitative and quantitative 10-week-long diary assessment. Journal of behavioral addictions, 7(2), 433–444. https://doi.org/10.1556/2006.7.2018.33Copy  loneliness,Butler, M. H., Pereyra, S. A., Draper, T. W., Leonhardt, N. D., & Skinner, K. B. (2018). Pornography Use and Loneliness: A Bidirectional Recursive Model and Pilot Investigation. Journal of sex & marital therapy, 44(2), 127–137. https://doi.org/10.1080/0092623X.2017.1321601Copy  lower life satisfaction,Willoughby, B. J., Young-Petersen, B., & Leonhardt, N. D. (2018). Exploring trajectories of pornography use through adolescence and emerging adulthood.55(3), 297-309. doi:10.1080/00224499.2017.1368977Copy  and poorer self-esteem and overall mental health.Koletić G. (2017). Longitudinal associations between the use of sexually explicit material and adolescents' attitudes and behaviors: A narrative review of studies. Journal of adolescence, 57, 119–133. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.adolescence.2017.04.006Copy 

These studies have found that these links are particularly strong when pornography is consumed to try to escape negative emotions, and also when pornography consumption becomes heavy and compulsive.Levin, M. E., Lillis, J., & Hayes, S. C. (2012). When is online pornography viewing problematic among college males? Examining the moderating role of experiential avoidance.19(3), 168-180. doi:10.1080/10720162.2012.657150Copy  Quitting porn can help interrupt the unhealthy cycle of escapism and mental health issues.

3. More time for productive activities

You may have noticed that consuming porn can take up a lot of your time—scrolling from page to page, switching between videos.

Aside from all its negative effects, time spent watching porn is time that could be spent developing your hobbies, achieving your goals, or nurturing your relationships with others. It’s estimated that over the course of their life, the average person spends about 3 months on the toilet, 4 months in traffic, and 9 years on their phone. How much of your life will you spend watching porn? Will it be worth it?

Qualitative research reveals that problematic consumers who are trying to give up porn often report regretting the “wasted time” they could have been spending on hobbies or other worthwhile pursuits.Copy 

Pornography is not only a passive activity rather than a hobby, but it can be a destructive passive activity. Plus, replacing unhealthy habits with healthy ones is a great tip to quit—start exercising, learn some new recipes, take up knitting, whatever!

Related: An Inside Look At The Lives Of 5 Guys Who Have Given Up Porn

BHW - The World

4. Healthier view of others

Sexual objectification occurs when people perceive others as sex objects, rather than complex human beings deserving of dignity and respect. In fact, in a review of research on sexual violence, two leading experts called sexual objectification the “common thread” that connects different forms of sexual violence.Gervais, S. J., & Eagan, S. (2017). Sexual objectification: The common thread connecting myriad forms of sexual violence against women. The American journal of orthopsychiatry, 87(3), 226–232. https://doi.org/10.1037/ort0000257Copy 

Consuming pornography is often objectification in practice, so it’s no surprise that research routinely shows that frequent porn consumers are more likely to sexually objectify and dehumanize others.Mikorski, R., & Szymanski, D. M. (2017). Masculine norms, peer group, pornography, Facebook, and men’s sexual objectification of women. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 18(4), 257-267. doi:10.1037/men0000058Copy Skorska, M.N., Hodson, G., & Hoffarth, M.R. (2018). Experimental effects of degrading versus erotic pornography exposure in men on reactions toward women (objectification, sexism, discrimination). The Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality, 27, 261 - 276.Copy Zhou, Y., Liu, T., Yan, Y., & Paul, B. (2021). Pornography use, two forms of dehumanization, and sexual aggression: Attitudes vs. behaviors. Null, 1-20. https://doi.org/10.1080/0092623X.2021.1923598Copy  Let’s be the kind of people who treat people like people.

5. Help stop sexual exploitation

There is a very real way that a choice to stop consuming can improve the lives of others around the globe.

In the porn industry, there is virtually no way to guarantee that any piece of pornographic content is truly consensual, ethical, or even legal. The unfortunate truth is that the porn industry has an extensive history of profiting from nonconsensual content and abuse, even ignoring victims’ pleas to remove abusive content.Kristof, N. (2021). Why do we let corporations profit from rape videos? New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/16/opinion/sunday/companies-online-rape-videos.htmlCopy Kristof, N. (2020). The children of Pornhub. New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/04/opinion/sunday/pornhub-rape-trafficking.htmlCopy 

According to one report, of the domestic minor trafficking victims who had been forced into porn production, the average age they began being filmed was 12.8 years old.Bouché, V. (2018). Survivor insights: The role of technology in domestic minor sex trafficking. Thorn. Retrieved from https://www.thorn.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/Thorn_Survivor_Insights_090519.pdfCopy  In order to combat child sexual exploitation, it’s important to be educated on its prevalence and be aware of the conditions that may be fueling it—including extreme pornography from the mainstream industry.

Virtually every major porn site has had issues with nonconsensual content, abuse, or child sexual abuse material (aka “child porn”). Kristof, N. (2021). Why do we let corporations profit from rape videos? New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/16/opinion/sunday/companies-online-rape-videos.htmlCopy Burgess, M. (2020). Deepfake porn is now mainstream. and major sites are cashing in. Retrieved from https://www.wired.co.uk/article/deepfake-porn-websites-videos-lawCopy Kristof, N. (2020). The children of Pornhub. New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/04/opinion/sunday/pornhub-rape-trafficking.htmlCopy Meineck, S., & Alfering, Y. (2020). We went undercover in xHamster's unpaid content moderation team. Retrieved from https://www.vice.com/en/article/akdzdp/inside-xhamsters-unpaid-content-moderation-teamCopy Titheradge, N., & Croxford, R. (2021). The children selling explicit videos on OnlyFans. BBC News Retrieved from https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-57255983Copy 

Choosing to stop the demand for sexual exploitation absolutely includes stopping the demand for porn.

Why this matters

Every day you choose not to consume porn is a day that you are choosing health for yourself, your loved ones, and those around the world.

No matter your reasons, giving up porn is definitely something you can be proud of.

Need help?

For those reading this who feel they are struggling with pornography, you are not alone. Check out Fortify, a science-based recovery platform dedicated to helping you find lasting freedom from pornography. Fortify now offers a free experience for both teens and adults. Connect with others, learn about your unwanted porn habit, and track your recovery journey. There is hope—sign up today.

Fortify

Fight the New Drug may receive financial support from purchases made using affiliate links.