So how does pornography fit into this paradigm? Again, survival strategies play a part. Procreation insures the species will continue and sexual curiosity is part of Nature’s plan. Most porn use begins innocently, i.e. with normal curiosity. But drawing the line is difficult because pornography has its own form of seduction. Nowadays you don’t even have to pay for it; it’s everywhere. YouTube and chat rooms have made a lethal slash into the porn business—a modern day version of “why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?” Millions of ordinary people are willing to put modesty aside for their fifteen minutes of fame by revealing themselves in the most intimate sexual acts. Not too long ago, to see anything resembling porn you had to leave home, go to the other side of town, face real people and risk being seen before you could even view the goods—then pay money to experience it. Now it’s available just about anywhere, anytime, and is (mostly) anonymous. So what’s the problem?
The nature of porn, and what separates it from a nude Leonardo da Vinci painting, is the intent to produce sexual arousal. Unlike art which inspires appreciation and awe, porn elicits sexual stimulation and craving. A habit that begins with YouTube clips can lead to gateway sites that offer free peeks to grab your interest and then require payment for the next level of titillation. Viewing sexual stimulation recalibrates your sexual set point; i.e. once your mind forms a picture or has a new sexual experience, this becomes the norm. To get another thrill you need something even more exciting. This is how porn use can destroy your interest and attraction for your mate. Repeated pornography use numbs normal sexual drives and deadens your desire for a real person/partner. In addition, bizarre as it may seem, the more shame you feel about your guilty pleasures—the more you resent your partner! We don’t like people who remind us of our bad behavior. When you violate the lines of your own commitment and values you actually end up looking for faults in your partner to alleviate your guilt. “Well, if he/she were more (fill in the blank) I wouldn’t be doing this.” And the guiltier you feel the more vulnerable you become to the escape of a sexual high. Millions of people are currently caught in the excitement cycle of porn use or an affair, either online or face to face. And if you think it will stop where it is, research proves you very, very wrong. Relationships which begin in cyberspace eventually meet face to face in some way, shape or form.