Terry Crews: If He Can Admit His Porn Addictions, So Can You!

One of the biggest foes faced by sufferers of porn addiction is the media. The very idea that someone could be addicted to porn is easily and often dismissed in news stories, op-eds, and even joking tweets. This kind of rhetoric is damaging in many ways, not the least of which being that it prevents addicts from coming forward and getting help.

 

12743955_1091805944173097_3893187281023577788_nThat’s why I was so impressed to see a video from actor and former NFL player, Terry Crews posted to his Facebook account earlier this week. If you haven’t gotten the chance to watch this video yet, I highly recommend it. What Terry offers in his video confession is validation, reassurance and hope to others who might be struggling with addiction themselves.

 

How Do You Know If It’s An Addiction?

One of the questions I often get is “How can you tell the difference between a normal appetite for porn and an addiction?” I think Terry does a great job of explaining the difference. One quote in particular stood out to me. He said, “If day turns into night, and you are still watching, you’ve probably got a problem.”

 

What he’s talking about here is the tendency for addicts to prioritize porn above all other things. This might include relationships, friendships, career, school, or even hobbies and recreation. It begins to take over your life in a way that non-addicts may not understand at first.

 

Addictive behaviors are often hidden. Addicts feel a sense of shame regarding their actions and therefore don’t tell anyone about them. This reluctance to speak out can contribute to the confusion surrounding the issue. If you never hear anyone around you talking about their porn addiction, it becomes easy for you to write it off as fiction.

 

However, staying silent also has other repercussions. As Terry explains, “I didn’t tell anyone. It was my secret, and that allowed it to grow.” Silence also perpetuates the addict’s personal struggles.

 

The Impact of Addiction

Terry speaks openly about the marital strife caused by his addiction to porn. He describes a moment when his wife told him “I don’t know you anymore,” and this is something that partners of porn addicts can relate to. In fact, Terry’s wife initially distanced herself from him as a result of his behavior.

 

In my book, Breaking the Cycle, I talk about the tendency for addicts to begin viewing people as sex objects, and Terry openly admits that the same thing happened to him. With an outlook telling him that his wife or his friends were objects and things to be used, it created a lot of interpersonal difficulties for him, just as it does for thousands of other addicts.

 

Watching porn occasionally doesn’t ruin marriages and friendships. Addiction does.

 

Breaking The Cycle

For Terry, his rock bottom moment was when his wife threatened to leave him. For other addicts, things have gone even further. I myself lost two marriages to porn addiction before I was able to break the cycle, and free myself from my own addiction.

 

One of the first things all addicts must do on the road to recovery is admit that there is a problem. As Terry says in his video “If you put it out in the open, it loses its power,” and he’s absolutely right. In my practice, I work with addicts to help them realize that they are not powerless against their addiction. They have a choice, and can stand up for themselves.

 

Hearing someone like Terry Crews speak out about his own personal struggles with porn addiction is heartening, because it will hopefully lead more people to realize that there is real help available. We can and do help free people from their porn addictions every day.

 

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