Posted by Julia Daniels | For Families, For Men, For Women, How to
Reading Time: 14 minutes

Regrets and guilt? These two emotions are fruits of our own actions and choices. That’s why there’s a huge #noregrets movement. In contrast to this, we experience disappointment and shame due to things that have happened to us. Circumstances beyond our control are part of the dance of life. 

So many have expressed regret and guilt over porn use. We don’t have to live there, though. Battling porn successfully IS possible. Regrets can be transformed into a learning experience. The good news is that we can fight back and make new choices. Let’s. Do. This!

Why Battling Porn Actually Matters To Everyone

Battling porn matters to everyone, because most people have seen and have been affected by porn. Even if you never view porn personally, someone you know and love has or will struggle with porn use. 

In fact, it feels like the porn industry has taken over the world. Our porn statistics research shows significant global porn consumption, even on inhabited, remote Pacific islands like Fiji where porn is a rampant problem. 

If we battle against porn, we believe it will make a huge difference for individuals, our children, and our society as a whole. First, we’ll address some reasons why fighting porn matters. Then we’ll offer practical steps for battling porn effectively, so you can leave regrets and guilt behind.

Fighting pornography matters to society as a whole.

As a society, our brains are being rewired by porn, affecting how we think, feel, and behave towards one another in public and private.

Battling porn use matters to you as an individual. 

When you and I firmly plug into why battling porn matters so deeply, then we will have genuine hope of progress. Think about what happens when societal effects of porn consumption trickle down to you personally

How does porn influence you and your own family? Maybe your marriage is on shaky ground due to porn. Or perhaps your teenage daughter has been the frequent victim of sexting or other forms of sexual harassment – or worse.

Perhaps you’ve even been guilty of sexting and are dealing with a load of guilt and regrets. 

If you consume porn, have you considered why you personally would like to quit porn? Ask yourself some questions and put your thoughts down in writing. 

  • Is quitting porn important to you for the sake of your present or future marriage? 
  • Are you concerned about your children or the future generation and the influences of porn?  
  • Do you have big goals and accomplishments you’d like to reach for? 
  • How is porn hindering you from reaching your highest potential?
  • What if you’re turning to porn as an escape from unaddressed inner wounds?
  • How is porn affecting your view of women or other people? 

Finally, have you considered that you’re hurting other women by funding porn? Porn actors are someone else’s sisters, wives, daughters, and granddaughters. Many of them are trapped in a job that makes them feel degraded and even suicidal. Even worse, there are clear ties to porn and the sex trafficking industry.

What Are 5 Major Challenges of Battling Porn

starry night sky battling porn

What is your personal relationship to porn? Are you the person consuming porn? Or possibly you’re the spouse or concerned partner. Maybe you’re trying to protect your kids from porn.

No matter your “why” for being proactive against porn use, understanding some of your unique challenges of battling porn is an important step. After we address these, we’ll offer helpful tips. Here’s what you are likely to face battling porn. 

1. Mindset and mental health challenges

For personal growth to happen, first rid yourself of a fixed mindset — a belief that you are who you are, and you can’t change.

Instead, cultivate a growth mindset full of hope and belief that you can change. 

Porn use can be linked to a unique cocktail of underlying mindset challenges. There’s the cycle of shame over porn use, an attempt to quit, and then the return to porn to medicate feelings of shame. Sometimes this underlying shame is due to abuse, or other past issues such as deep grief or personal losses. Porn consumption eventually shapes how you think and perceive yourself. 

Improving your mindset and mental health is entirely possible. However, you may need help to get out of your own head and to reach the goals important to you. Accountability and mindset growth goals form a great partnership! We’ll explain in more detail in our steps to battling porn. 

2. Physical challenges

For those with a partner, losing enjoyment of real sex is significant for both parties. Mounting evidence points to a new phenomenon of young men experiencing early-onset erectile dysfunction — tied to porn use. 

For some, a significant loss of sleep over time occurs when porn consumption has become a compulsive sexual behavior. Sleep deprivation affects a person’s ability to function well on so many levels. 

3. Relationship challenges

Most porn use happens in secret. Since porn use can become compulsive over time and foster shame, both factors lead to isolation and loneliness.  

Unfortunately, the disconnect between real life and the super stimulus of porn also undermines personal relationships. Porn harms marriages. Porn fuels unrealistic expectations for real-life, partnered sex. It encourages violent sexual behaviors and destroys real intimacy.

4. Vocational challenges

Many people are working remotely due to the world-wide pandemic. Working online in the privacy of your home makes accessing porn is easier and more convenient. If you’re trying to be more productive, finding a way to limit your access to porn should be a high priority.

There are also true stories circulating of people losing their jobs due to viewing porn at work. Sneaking into porn at work might mean that your porn habit is spiraling out of control, too. 

5. Lifestyle challenges

Temptation to use porn is not limited to visiting porn sites.

Certain movies or music, erotica, and most especially social media platforms are gateways to be tempted back into porn use.

Or you may have that one friend who doesn’t have a filter. Just hanging around them leads your mind places you can’t afford to go. That’s why identifying your specific challenges prepares you for the next steps toward success in battling porn.

“Identifying your specific challenges prepares you for the next steps toward success in battling porn.”
man on a mountain battling porn

How To Effectively Fight Your Personal Porn Battles

Fight porn with all your might. 

How committed are you? A warrior who plans to win a fight must be “in it to win it”. Are you willing to give 100%?

If you’re not certain that quitting porn is that important, you’re going to stay stuck in unhealthy patterns.

Take a look at our books on porn list for inspiration and motivation. Don’t just take our word for it. Why not study how porn affects you and those you love?

Put living a porn-free life on your long-term goals list. Just like anything else worthwhile, reaching this goal could require strenuous effort.

 Like the famous Teddy Roosevelt stated:

“The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly…”

And if you’re a person of faith, you’ll also ask for Divine strength and wisdom, while putting feet to your prayers.

Look at the big picture and create a long-term battle plan.

Envision world peace starting in your own backyard. Can you picture the best version of yourself? What about your ideal family life? Successful people take time to think, plan, and dream. 

Quite possibly, you and your family collectively struggle with porn use. First, let’s tackle personally battling porn. Then we can address helping your children battle porn, too. After all, you’ll want to be their role model in the fight against porn.

Identify your personal porn challenges.  

First, make notes on the enemy within. 

When you’re battling porn — or any of life’s harder challenges — it’s a journey of self-discovery.

Make notes on your personal challenges by asking yourself good questions like these:

  • What are your personal strengths and weaknesses? 
  • What are your unique temptations? Do you turn to porn when you’re bored? Stressed? We tend to call these triggers.
  • Where do those temptations commonly sneak up on you? Is it your phone? For most of us, it’s a deadly combination of easy access and a trigger. 

Everyone’s battle against porn looks a little different. So everyone’s personal battle plan will be a bit different. Maybe you don’t need to take your bedroom door off its hinges or throw your computer in the dumpster. Then again, maybe you do!

Prepare for attacks from the enemies without. 

The porn industry is a relentless and exceedingly well-funded foe. You will be targeted. You’re going to have to put up strategic walls of protection for self defense. Battling porn’s attacks calls for a strategy session.

So begin by listing the places and scenarios where you are most likely to find yourself tempted porn. Then list every single way you’ve accessed porn in the past.

What times do you find yourself alone and vulnerable? Is it on breaks at work? Or is it when you go to the gym?  Do you have a recurring pattern of reaching for your phone in the middle of the night?

Then come up with a plan specific to each time and place.

Create a specific, daily “skirmish” strategy — the daily battles.

Your main source of attack is probably your smartphone. Forbes magazine recently noted that smartphones are where at least 80% of all porn is being viewed.

However, in a weak moment, you might go scrambling for another device to view porn — even your kids’ device. Do you have accountability software active on all of your devices? Make sure every device in your house is protected with filters, blockers, and accountability software. This is a proven way to fend off porn. 

Using accountability software is like donning your protective body armor before going into battle.

If your gaming system is a temptation, for another example, make a plan for gaming only to be accessible in the most public place in your home. Perhaps put the  gaming controllers in a locked box and give the key to someone else. 

Take another bold step of courage — your smart defense strategy. 

Choose to be accountable to a personal accountability partner. Our customers say this is the “hard initial conversation that leads to freedom.”  We know this requires courage. But joy and freedom is possible on the other side of that hard conversation. Having someone believe in you makes a world of difference.

“The factor of having a trusted accountability partner is a game changer, it stops me on a daily basis. So glad this exists.” — Anthony, customer of Ever Accountable

Accountability helps you break free from that fixed mindset and adopt a growth mindset. When you have trouble believing for yourself, your accountability partner can hold on to hope for you. 

Go even further. Consider sharing your goals to quit porn with more than one person. 

You’ll need just a few faithful friends who have your back and hold you to your goals. You don’t need to fight alone! Accountability is a weapon that has proven to be highly successful.

Once you’re on a good path to recovery, helping someone else to reach their goal to quit porn is further motivation to stay porn-free. You could even accomplish this by being mutually accountable! Being an accountability partner is an amazing gift to someone.

Seek inspiration from fellow warriors who are succeeding in battling porn.

“Find people that you can talk with about how they achieved their goals and seek out and surround yourself with positive people.” — Lifehack.org

For sure, there’s someone near you who is battling porn and succeeding! You need a band of positive brothers or sisters who will encourage you on your bad days and cheer you on your good days. You can find a group online by checking out places like Celebrate Recovery or even Sexaholics Anonymous.

Mindset also matters to anyone who is serious about accomplishing goals. That’s why successful people hire coaches and personal trainers! A core strategy is to work on your mindset with accountability.

“Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” — Teddy Roosevelt (Again, I know, but too good to pass up.)

Accountability to positive people helps you stop being “your own worst enemy”.

Often we’re the most unkind and unforgiving of ourselves. Anyone who has faced a porn slip-up or relapse knows how hard it is not to beat themselves up. But if you’re honestly and truly acknowledging your failures, you’re already on the road to recovery.

Positive accountability and inspiration will feed your success mindset! You’ll feel legitimately good about passing your values on to the next generation, too. Your life will match your words.

Ways To Battle Porn With Your Children

Protect your childrens’ hearts with love.

We connect with our children through face-to-face conversations and time spent interacting with them. T-I-M-E!

There’s simply no other way to keep the heartstrings between child and parent healthy and strong.

Spending intentional, repeated, quality time with our children opens doors to have repeated conversations about sex and porn. As they grow, the conversations will morph to fit their understanding. 

The emotional effects of porn on children still needs much careful study and research. However, the damages over time are now obvious. Perhaps now the research needs to focus on how to repair longer term damages of early and repeated childhood exposure to porn.

Bringing this back to full-circle, though, there’s no replacement for love. Did you know we’re each wired to give and receive love in different ways?

Here is a short, practical video to consider how to show your child meaningful love. No matter their age, it’s not too late to impact their lives with love.

Guard their developing brains.

If you’re parenting young children, being forewarned is to be armed and ready to fight porn. Great resources and information are available for parents. In addition, we’ve created resources about protecting children against porn on both Apple and Android devices. Setting the standards and safeguards now normalizes accountability.

For parents of teens, Culture Reframed has put together a wonderful free course that we recommend. Porn’s ability to rewire the brain is especially potent during the teen years. A teen’s reward system is hypersensitive to dopamine highs that porn delivers.

During this pivotal time easy access to porn is much harder to guard against. Open conversations on this topic are still crucial. Educate your teen on the damages of porn to themselves and others! 

Choose to be mutually accountable, too, as you model good digital citizenship.

Even if you have safeguards set up, your teen is highly likely to see porn on a friend or family member’s phone. When porn and peer pressure join forces, they are a powerfully destructive force to be reckoned with.  Battling porn with your teens takes great awareness and sensitivity.

Is it worth the effort? According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), “The predictive effect of pornography on sexual behavior in adolescents has also been demonstrated.” The battle is worth it if you want to rear a mentally, physically, and sexually healthy and wholesome person.

Nurture our children’s respect for their own bodies.

Every day find ways to affirm your children. Look for ways to genuinely encourage them. Even the greatest Teacher said, “Fear not. You are of more importance than many sparrows.” 

Negative influences such as social media and porn are enemies that damage our young people’s developing sense of self worth. 

Instead of teens and tweens simply comparing themselves to their classmates, social media’s “toxicity comes from the very nature of a platform that girls use to post photographs of themselves and await the public judgments of others.” — Jonathan Haidt, social psychologist and author of The Righteous Mind

How many judges does a young girl need? Why should she be trained by porn to try to meet a certain standard of beauty? Tell your children that their bodies are special and important — just as they are.  So is everyone else’s body. 

Since childhood is a time of developing identity and self-image, porn’s harms to the child psyche are probably vastly underestimated. 

Instill respect for every person.

Porn doesn’t just steal love, harm our children’s brains, and hamper their self-image.  Porn also fosters an attitude of sexual entitlement and disrespect for others. Sadly, childhood sexual abuse is semi-normalized by the childlike figures in popular anime-style porn.

Consider another little-known, but growing problem — child on child sexual abuse. Robin Reber, who has talked to hundreds of parents facing this reality, says, 

“Children simply do not just wake up one day and go touch another child sexually – it’s introduced, taught, learned and then explored. They are doing exactly what a child’s brain is set up to do–imitate. Except now we have an additional addictive component fueled by easy access to pornography that can inhibit normal sexual development in children.” 

Even more telling is the testimony of a sexual assault nurse examiner Heidi Olson who works with children who have been sexually assaulted in a large children’s hospital in Kansas City, MO. She notes that the average ages of young perpetrators are between the ages of 11 and 15.

As Rachel Denhollander, author of What Is A Girl Worth, so eloquently says, “Who is going to tell these little girls that what was done to them matters? That they are seen and valued, that they are not alone and they are not unprotected?”

Porn also harms our young men by fueling disrespect for women. Young men’s unhealthy expectations of — and a sense of entitlement to the female body — robs him of his future happiness in relationships. 

Instead of modeling joyful relationships founded on true intimacy, porn promotes fake, violent, unrealistic sex

Even worse, it can lead to a rape culture by creating a complete inability to understand consent in a sexual relationship.

Enable your child to break free of porn.

Once again, shame will rear its ugly head if you’ve discovered your child is viewing porn. While being upset is understandable, take a step back before responding.

If you feel shame, imagine what your child might be feeling. So many former porn users express that viewing porn created so much shame for them, especially for young women.

“For six years I had this deep dark secret that I hid from everyone. I thought I was the only girl in the world who had this problem, and if anyone ever found out they would think I was a freak.”  — “Jennifer” from Dirty Girls Come Clean, by Crystal Renaud

So be careful not to crush your child with words or emotions. Porn is the enemy, not your child. 

Author and parent Barb Winters is right “on the money” when she says that love, not shame, is the only way to fight porn when your child has been viewing porn on a regular basis. 

“Shame feeds into their belief that they are unworthy and unlovable. They don’t want to admit their faults and insecurities to us because they don’t want us to see them as failures.” — Barb Winters

So what can you do to help your child battle porn?

First, stay calm and start a conversation about porn use. Ask for honesty, but speak with great kindness. Tell your child that you understand porn use is a growing problem, because it’s so easy to access. 

Next, ask them to become accountable together with you. If your child is 16 or older, you can install accountability software on their phones and devices. Allow them to see your reports, too. Talk about how to handle slip-ups, or getting asked to view porn on someone else’s device. 

Also, try role-playing with your teen. Start by walking them through scenarios where they are likely to see porn — such as the school hallway on someone else’s phone, the locker room, or over a friend’s house.  Brainstorm good responses to these temptations together. 

Talk about how to handle sexting, too. Remind them that inappropriate photos can live forever on the internet. Unfortunately, sexting is wide-spread. This WILL happen, so help your teen prepare. One teen I know didn’t want to “rat out” her offending schoolmates, so she decided to save the pic of an animal’s rear end on her phone to text back. Stroke of brilliance! The sexting advances stopped coming. (It also saved her parent from being tempted by the sin of murder.)

talking to you kids about porn infographic for battling porn

We believe you, your family, your relationships, and your future are worth the fight!

We’re here to support you and your family as you’re battling porn. Fight for love. Fight for each other. Fight for your own future, too!

 

Fight Song

Rachel Platten – Wildfire

This time this is my fight song

Take back my life song

Prove I’m alright song

My powers turned on

Starting right now I’ll be strong.

I’ll play my fight song.

And I don’t really care

If nobody else believes

Cause I’ve still got

A lot of fight left in me

A lot of fight left In me.

Source: MetroLyrics

 *”Ever Accountable’s blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, or therapy, though we often link to medically reviewed studies.” 

14-Day Free Trial

Protection From Pornography

Change your habits, change your life: Start our 14-day free trial to help get rid of pornography for good.

Shield
Shield