The Anti-Porn Movement Detrimentally Affects Porn Addicts

May 7, 2020 Amanda Richardson

In recent years a bold movement has come out against the porn industry; this might sound like a win for recovering porn addicts like myself, but that isn't always the case.

The anti-porn movement is commonly characterized by more conservative ideals, pro-marriage concepts, and sometimes encompasses the infamous "true love waits" motto. In all honesty, I sympathize with those who are downright opposed to pornography consumption, because as a recovering addict, I understand more than anyone just how detrimental pornography can be. However, I cannot support every method the anti-porn movement uses to convey their strongly held beliefs.

Positive Impacts of the Anti-Porn Movement

Needless to say, those who openly oppose pornography consumption appear to have honorable intentions. In my experience, overexposure to pornography can lead to interpersonal relational issues, decreased self-esteem, failed romantic relationships, and countless triggers that can impact your daily life. Many recovering porn addicts have shared similar stories that could be attributed to their porn consumption, so of course, there is good reason to limit porn exposure to some good degree. 

Limiting pornography exposure would certainly have positive effects on our society, especially in cases where vulnerable children unknowingly stumble upon adult material online. Anti-porn activists often argue that strongly censoring potentially pornographic content could prevent more porn addicts from forming. Similar to the argument that prohibition was intended to limit alcohol intake and in turn, alcoholism. While the intent behind this movement is wholesome, there are definite flaws that our history has proven.

The anti-porn activists are seeking a world with less openly explicit activity, but in some ways, this goal appears unattainable.

Negative Effects of the Anti-Porn Movement

As a recovering porn addict with friends on both sides of this pressing issue, I have witnessed plenty of valid arguments from each of these strongly-opinionated folks. Unfortunately though, some of the anti-porn activists go about fighting for their cause in a less than compassionate manner. 

From simply scrolling through my newsfeeds and timelines, I am often bombarded with blaming, shame-filled, and hateful content from those who oppose pornography. The problem is that so many of my anti-porn friends seem incredibly detached from the issue at hand. They might feel strongly about pornography, but it appears that many of them lack the empathy that's necessary to consider an opposing point of view.

It's easy to disagree with porn enthusiasts from a moral argument, but you can only impact the cause so much if you approach it from such a closed-minded perspective. What these anti-porn activists seem to misunderstand is that so many of us recovering addicts didn't necessarily choose the life of porn addiction and it's quite unfair to have this level of shame thrown in our faces every time the argument is brought up.

My Opinion of the Anti-Porn Movement

I understand that many of my anti-porn activist friends mean well. They want the best for our society and they feel that a porn-free world is the only way to guarantee complete morality. However, if you ask me, seeking a world free of porn is the pipe dream equivalent of wishing for a world without alcohol, drugs, nicotine, or even caffeine. It is blatantly ignorant and simply not possible.

So many substances and activities in our world today can be categorized as addictive. If we outlawed everything that's potentially addictive, we would be living in a world without coffee, cigarettes, food, sex, the Internet, gaming, gambling, and much more. There is absolutely no possible way to remove every potential addiction from a person's life.

I personally believe that addiction awareness and education are much more productive and efficient tools for fighting debilitating addictions like pornography, sex, drugs, and alcohol.

Insisting not only that pornography is bad, but collectively implying that everyone who consumes pornography is inherently bad can be harmful to so many members of society, especially those of us who struggle with addiction.

Naturally, I want the porn industry to have rules and regulations just like anything else that might be potentially harmful. Of course, I want to ensure that children don't accidentally stumble on such things, and I definitely want to do everything in my power to raise awareness about the potential dangers of porn addiction and sexual exploitation in the adult industry.

However, I also want to protect the shamed, brutalized, and blamed individuals in society. Those of us with a history of addiction or compulsive pornography use do not deserve to be defamed every time someone makes an anti-porn post on social media. I get it, you want to speak loudly and boldly about your cause, but you should never speak in a way that inflicts shame to those who are already suffering.

Pornography addiction is so complex and after nearly 10 years of struggling with compulsive sexual behavior, I certainly wish there was a way to prevent potential porn addicts from developing. With that said, my heart will always be for the recovering addicts like myself. We deserve grace and compassion. We deserve love, too.

So if you are a porn enthusiast or a porn hater, I want to encourage you to consider the viewpoint of someone like me, someone who never asked to be in this ethical debate in the first place. Consider the opposing side and above all else, consider those of us who are hurting. In my honest opinion, that is the only chance we have at finding a viable solution for this deeply complicated issue.

APA Reference
Richardson, A. (2020, May 7). The Anti-Porn Movement Detrimentally Affects Porn Addicts, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, July 13 from

Author: Amanda Richardson

Amanda is a professional health and wellness writer who specializes in creating content tailored to the female audience. She is especially passionate about social injustice, mental health, and addiction recovery.

Find Amanda on Facebook, Twitter and her personal blog.

For more information on Amanda's professional writing services, be sure to check her out at Richardson Writing Influence.

Cody R.
May, 15 2020 at 8:43 pm

i disagree that we cannot reduce and inhibit all of those addictive industries, however, i love your view that we (#meto) do not deserve the hatred and ridicule that come at us when we divulge or don't divulge the fact that we have this addiction, but instead are found-out. I have an addiction to a very specific variation of pornography, and it does not define me, it defines what i saw as a 10 year old boy.
thanks for giving a completely valid, though depressing/ potentially negatively impacting (in that we cannot reduce all addictive behavior), view of addictions.

August, 8 2020 at 9:27 am

Did you know that prolonged exposure to internet porn can ruin your life? Result in impotence? Demeaning attitudes, including feelings of potentially murderous hatred toward women in real life? Excruciating, low self esteem? As the partner of a long term recovering porn addict, I would interested in joining an anti internet porn movement. If anyone has information on such an organization, please share.
While we will never see a world 'free of porn', or any other drug, hopefully we'll see less generations deeply marred by an exploitative internet industry via an EDUCATIONAL movement.

November, 13 2021 at 4:58 am

I agree with this 100 percent! Just hoping that we could get more legit studies on how it is detrimental to your mind and the health of your relationships.

Leave a reply