Porn Addiction Masquerading As A Game—Chatroulette

Type the address. Load web cam. Drop pants. And click go. That was the norm for me on a site known as chatroulette.

bigstock-Conceptual-photo-of-a-young-ma-14491154I discovered the site in the most innocuous way. A few guys were on it at work. I went on it with them and we started joking, talking, socializing, and trolling with the random people on the net. It was quite simple really. We were randomly matched up, via web cam, with a stranger from anywhere in the world. I didn’t think anything of it. I certainly didn’t think of it as leading to porn addiction.
The idea was developed by 17-year-old Andrey Ternovskiy from Russia. Probably started out innocently as a new and fun way to socialize with people from all different walks of life. In practice, the content of the site became very insidious. This is my story of it.

I found the site over two years ago and at first, it was repulsive. I’d sign on and my chatting partner turned out to be a guy holding his penis up to the web cam. I’d quickly click next and more often than not, I’d find another penis. I’d keep clicking the “next” button and quickly learned that this site seemingly had an infinite number of penises to show me. Within a few minutes, I was thinking that I was ready to leave and never come back.

However, every once in a while, a girl would show up. Seeing a girl on this site was like finding water in the desert. In an endless sea of dicks, all of a sudden, there was a girl. It was at that moment that chatroulette wasn’t an insidious joke, a social experiment, or just something to check out. It became a game. And the object was simple: talk to a girl and get her to take her clothes off. I realize how counter intuitive this goal sounds as naked girls are easy to find on the Internet, but porn was easy. Chatroulette was a challenge. The fact that there was an army of cock you’d seemingly have to wade through didn’t seem quite as disgusting, it was just an in-game obstacle.

Each time I would log on, I was chasing the illusive “naked girl” on chatroulette. I’d sift through the hordes of guys starring blankly into their webcams, exposing their junk, likely looking for the same thing I was looking for. It is impossible to determine the guy-girl ratio of the participants, but it was undoubtedly full of guys—and girls were scarce. Even so, every single race, ethnicity, age group, and creed seemed to be represented in this chase for the naked chatroulette girl.

Hours would disappear on this site. I would go without food and without sleep as I kept clicking like a slot-jockey in a casino, waiting for that pay out. I couldn’t give up now. A ready and willing girl might be next. Do I really want to pass that up? I’ve been on here, wading through sick images of guys masturbating; I don’t want that to be all I’ve done today. I find her. I’d make it worth it.

Whenever a girl popped up, I’d feel the dopamine rush through my head. I’d barely be able to contain my excitement. Most of the time, she’d just click “next” and I was stuck waiting all over again. But if I started to flirt, a few would start to flirt back. Sometimes the girls would tease. Enticing me. Suggesting and saying, “I’ll show you mine, if you show me yours.” I’d play the cat and mouse game of web cam seduction and once in a while, I’d win the game. Every girl was always new, spontaneous, ethnic, and different. I’d always give the girl a fake name and develop a fake personality.

Win or lose, it seemed like that chase never stopped. I came to realize that it wasn’t just the naked girl I was chasing. I wanted the interaction. I could see Asia Carerra or Jenna Jamieson naked whenever I wanted, but she couldn’t see me. She couldn’t tell me what turned her on, share her stories, her experiences, or her life. I was craving a quick shot of intimacy, flirtation, and affection. The worst part was, that I could have gotten it from my girlfriend. I remember seeing a smiling picture of her in my webcam feed while on the site. I’d justify my chatroulette activities by saying we weren’t touching, it was just a chat site, it was just on a screen, she was probably in a different country. But I knew it was wrong. My porn addiction didn’t care.

I’d get desensitized and impatient, I’d start to converse in similar ways with guys. Starting to experiment with them in subtle, but less rewarding ways. I could feel my brain chemistry starting to shift. I could hear my conscience screaming in my head, “Close the laptop!” My porn addiction didn’t care.

I was used to watching porn. Looking for more interesting, exciting, shocking and specific scenes. Although I never wanted to cheat on my girlfriend, chatroulette bridged some terrible gap between these two vices. It was like I was interacting with my porn, like I was starring in my porn. I was living in my porn.

I’d have sobering moments at times. I’d find myself talking to a stranger saying, “What am I doing on here? This site is addictive for all the wrong reasons. I’m wasting my time.” I even came across a cop. He identified himself as Special Agent Rodriguez and held up a badge to the web cam. He showed me a picture of a young male with dark hair and asked if I had seen him.

I started to realize what it all was. It was a cesspool of illegal activity. The channels were hardly moderated. Users could report each other if they broadcast offensive material, but often they weren’t reported… and the punishment was usually just an IP address ban for a few minutes. There was no membership, no names, no traces of who each participant was. It was easily a haven for cybersex with minors and though the site recommended their viewers be 18, no one was making sure of it.

I started to notice the age of some of the participants on the channels. Groups of teens, sexually curious and unaware, started to show up on the site more and more often. All the vices started to multiply and build up and I started to see for it what it really was. It wasn’t a game. It was people, willfully engaging in despicable, illicit, and potentially illegal behavior. But, as you may have guessed, my porn addiction still didn’t care.

After being caught by my girlfriend and nearly losing her, I left the site behind for months. I thought I was in the clear, but somehow, I decided to play the game once more. I wanted to see if I could still win. After an hour, a girl came onto the screen, she seemed open and willing to participate. She was 15. My addiction didn’t care.

It was almost like the phrase “age 15” was without a meaning. I was high on myself and the moment. We talked about a little about sex and our turn-ons. A moment after I exposed myself, I slammed my laptop shut. I immediately felt sick. I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror. My brain felt like it was on fire. I knew this was it. I felt paranoid, sick, and disgusting. I started visualizing what would happen to me if the authorities found out—asking myself, “what if a moderator was watching?” Unable to comprehend how I let myself commit this indefensible act.

Minutes later, I googled “sex addiction hotline.” I couldn’t live this way anymore. I never wanted to hurt anyone, but I knew I needed help. That was when I found Compulsion Solutions . I believed they saved me from myself. I knew wasn’t a pedophile. I knew this wasn’t the life I wanted to live. I knew that intimacy, sex, and fulfillment was not on a computer screen. It was right in front of me all the time. It was in the real world that I had isolated myself from. I am responsible for my actions, but I am not my addiction.

If this is you, find help before it’s too late. My addiction may not have cared, but I do. I will no longer trade my life, my relationship, or my love for any insidious website.

— by Compulsion Solutions client, Ian

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