In this blog I’m going to discuss a school of thought that places porn addicts into two categories. Throughout our research we’ve heard these categories be referred to using varying terminology but for the purpose of this blog I’ve chosen: paralyzed and imitators.
The first category is the imitators.
This is the belief that when people watch porn, they act out the behaviours of porn in real life. This is backed up by what’s known as a “social learning model”, which is the theory that when behaviour is rewarded within a fictional reality, like porn, it is learned as acceptable by the person watching. It suggests that people who watch more sexually violent forms of pornography can be prone to re-enacting them in real life. There have been very similar arguments used against explicit films and video games to varying degrees of success.
This theory is also used to argue a positive correlation between porn and violent crime. The prolific serial killer Ted Bundy infamously claimed in his final interview before his execution that pornography had driven him to rape and murder almost 30 women. This is an extreme example of an imitator but an imitator nonetheless.
The second category is the paralyzed.
This is when people watch so much porn that they become desensitized both physically and emotionally. The paralyzed become numb. This theory can be backed up by using Gary Wilson’s interpretation of the Coolidge Effect experiment. Wilson discusses how pornography can lead to conditions such as erectile dysfunction, social anxiety and depression. An enlightening account of someone suffering with these issues is the story of man called Brian, which you can find at the bottom of this blog.
These two categories, the paralyzed and the imitators, are schools of thought. Some people believe this is how porn affects how we act as human beings. I think they both have merit but the issues itself is much more complex than these two categories.
If you’d like to see Ted Bundy’s final interview, follow this link: bit.ly/TedBundyInterview
If you’d like to read Brain’s story, follow this link: bit.ly/BriansRecovery