12/20/11

the women who love men who love porn

Let's be real. Everyone's uncomfortable right now. I know, and I'm sorry. But the purpose of Fearless has become to talk about the things that no one will talk about. So let's do this. Deep breaths.{disclaimer: this isn't about my relationships. k? I don't want this to look like I'm dragging anyone's personal struggles through the mud. read it objectively.}

I remember the first time I encountered porn on the internet. I was the tender age of 9, & it was in a pop up as I was searching the internet for pictures of my current hero, Tara Lipinksi {ice skater. anyone? anyway..} It scared the hell out of me. I had no idea what I was looking at, but I knew it wasn't okay. I quickly clicked out of it, shut the computer down, and walked away. I didn't talk to anyone about it...I didn't know it was, so I didn't know what to talk to them about. I wouldn't have any further contact with porn outside of the occasional pop-up {which still gives me heart palpitations} for the years to come. And for that I am thankful & blessed.

There are plenty of women out there who struggle with porn, even though it's heavily considered a man's world. But that's not really something I can shed a whole lot of light on. What I can talk about is the effect porn has on the women who love men who look at it. Let's just cut straight to the chase, it wrecks women.  I'm not usually a big statistics spitter, but in this case, a few seem necessary. In 2011, porn was a 13 million dollar industry. An average of 260 new sites go up daily. Every second, 28,258 people are watching porn online. And this is the one that makes me feel like I'm going to throw up: on average, boys start watching porn at 11. Eleven.

So if you start watching porn at eleven, and enter your first serious relationship at say, 20, you have 9 years worth of degradation of sex and women under your belt already. Because that's what porn does. It takes a beautiful, God-created thing and demeans it to a simple act for your viewing & self-satisfying pleasure. And deny it all day, but it changes the way you look at women. It turns them into worthless play things, useful for only one thing. It wrecks you, and it wrecks the woman who loves you.

Every woman I've ever talked to that found out their significant other was looking at porn has said the same two sentences. "I feel like I got cheated on", & "I feel like I'm not good enough, I'm never going to look like those girls".

"I feel like I got cheated on"
Because you did. Maybe he didn't go out to a bar and hit up some girl and then take her home, but he may as well have. He found pleasure from a woman that's not you {if you're not married, that's not your job yet either, but that just means it's no one's job at the moment}. And regardless of if he's your boyfriend or husband, it's going to be really hard to shake the reality that now, any time things do get intimate, he's got some other female's body in his brain. Very few men I've encountered really understand the tenuity of a woman & her sexuality. I know some of you girls are going to want to drop kick me for this, but we're rather delicate creatures. Hell yea we're strong & hard workers & capable of doing life right along with you, but we're not quite as hard as the rough-and-tumble men we love. So this crap devastates us. And it breaks us. And it makes us not trust you. And it makes us feel cheated.

"I feel like I'm not good enough, I'm never going to look like those girls"
But you are. You are good enough. And no, you probably don't look like those girls, but that's so more than okay. In actuality, it's preferable, isn't it? As if my heart didn't already break enough for the women caught up in the porn industry, the realization that it's unlikely that very many of them look anything like their real selves anymore is so saddening. Pumped full of silicone & fillers, these women are shadows of the people they used to be, in both the emotional and physical. So no, your measurements aren't 36DD/22/30, but you know you're beautiful. And whole. And loved. You can't let your partner's mistakes destroy who you are as a person. Plus, if you're in a truly loving relationship {because I can't find it in myself to say that because your partner struggles with pornography you have no hope and are doomed}, your external beauty isn't the only thing that draws your man to you. It's your genuineness, your faithfulness, your laugh, your oddities, your fire. Those are things he's never going to find in the women behind the screen. He loves you more than he enjoys the feeling those women give him. Now he needs to prove it.

Today, porn gets chalked up to just something dudes do. Like it's just normal & okay. I know I thought that way for a long time. But as God redeemed my views on sexuality, He also redeemed my view of our culture's mastication of it. We are a desensitized society, proficient in the ways of that's just how it is. But it's not. Or it shouldn't be. There is redemption at hand. There is a revolution taking place of men relearning how to be men. I can feel it and it's exciting. And they need their women to be rallying behind them, just like we need them behind us reminding us that we are not of this world, but of Christ. Moving forward from a partner's pornography habits is hard, but it's possible. It takes a lot of forgiveness and prayer and allowing yourself to feel hurt, but not staying there. Refusing to allow your identity tank, but instead choosing to place your existence in your Savior rather than the man you love's mistakes. It takes change on his part, it takes the reestablishment of trust {which is so hard, but worth it}, and most of all it just takes Jesus.

"And through Him to reconcile to Himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of His cross. And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, He has now reconciled in His body of flesh by His death, in order to present you holy & blameless & above reproach before Him." -Colassians 1:20-22

8 comments:

Kristen Soileau said...

Preach it sister. I love your posts, full of truth!

Carmen Myer said...

"There is a revolution taking place of men relearning how to be men. I can feel it and it's exciting."
Love this and love your insight Blake!

Chris Cole said...

I'm very glad this was written. This perspective is often one that is ignored when it comes to the taboos of lust and porn.

In the spring, I had the huge blessing of leading a study on battling lust and we had an entire week on the false idea that lust and pornography is a victimless sin. Lust is a very easily justified sin because we often see it as not affecting anyone besides ourselves. But that is obviously not the reality.

Thank you for raising awareness to the other side of sin struggles. No matter marital (or dateital?) status, if you are living in community, you sin always affects someone other than yourself.

aleisha said...

i just came across your blog as i was blog hopping. and i really appreciate this post. i don't think men or women understand the seriousness of this issue and i think you did an excellent job on discussing such a difficult topic. thank you!

Jon said...

Stumbled onto your blog. Good read. Good thoughts.

Just a note though that you need to replace the "m" with a "b" when talking of revenue from all aspects of porn in the US. It is a $13 Billion industry and growing. It generates more dollars than the NFL, MLB and the NBA combined. It truly is scary in it's scope, power and influence.

@Carmen, let's bring on that revolution!

Loanhead Lass said...

This article is excellent, so good in fact that I linked it to my blog - morvensblog.com - and have encouraged my readers to read more on your site. I'm a counselor whose private practice is a women's center, and pornography - and the effect of it - is a subject discussed almost every hour of every day the doors are open. Thanks for writing this ... keep up the good work!

emilyschubert said...

1. The timing for me to read this was absolutely perfect. (God's pretty incredible that way.) It's nice to have some validation for what I'm feeling.

2. On a lighter note, I also loved Tara Lipinski. Named my imaginary friend after her and everything.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.