The Boys' Growing Up in the Lord

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Question

Hello,

I need your guidance I've been having this problem for two years. I always say I will stop it or control it but I can't. My problem is that several years ago I was watching a normal PG-13 type of movie, so it wasn't for adults, but in a scene there is this guy with a briefcase on the Metro when suddenly the briefcase opens up and on the inside of the briefcase there was a gay porn magazine. At that time I hadn't thought about the existence of gay porn, and I think that before then I hadn't had gay kind of thoughts, so the day after I saw that movie I started asking myself about gay porn, so like a curious kid I look for it online. At first I thought I'd hate it but then I started to look at it. I kind of got really turned on and masturbated to gay porn and gay thoughts, but I know I'm not gay, I just like gay porn. I don't know why this is, but since I have done this for like a million times and a lot of times I think I am going to stop with this but a week later I end up masturbating and watching gay porn. I've prayed and I'm still praying a lot for help because you are the first person that I've talked about this problem. The thing I hate the most about myself is that I have sexual thoughts about men, so I really need your help because I really don't want to be gay. I want to follow God's example of living. really need to stop this problem because it's almost all I think of. It makes me feel awful about myself but, most importantly, about what I've done to my relationship with God. It also makes feel less of myself, so could you please help because you are really the only person that I've had the courage to ask for help.


Answer

I certainly can point you in the right direction, but ultimately the decision has to come from you. If you don't want to change, all my encouragement will simply fall on two deaf ears.

Let's start with a basic fact. You are a male. That penis between your legs proves that point. Teenage males get turned on by anything, everything, and nothing in particular. Eventually we train ourselves to focus on certain particular things. At a critical point in your life, you were introduced to pornography that dealt with homosexual sex. It was stimulating because of several things:

  • It depicted sex, something you think about but haven't experienced, so it was exciting to see.
  • It was a type of sex that you knew was off limits, so it added to the excitement.
  • You don't want others to know about it, so you hide it -- another form of excitement.
  • And at first, there is the thought that since it didn't involve girls, then it was "safe."

Solomon pointed out that the immoral woman's "come on" line is, "Stolen water is sweet, And bread eaten in secret is pleasant" (Proverbs 9:17). Your body responds easily to thoughts of sex in any form and adding the excitement of doing something forbidden just makes the heart beat faster and the body respond more strongly to sexual ideas and stimulation.

Of course, what you didn't see was the hook. Pornography in all its forms is a trap. In this case, you've conditioned yourself to ejaculate to thoughts of men being sexual with each other. It doesn't take long before you begin to be convinced that the only way you can ejaculate is to pornography. The catch is that your body needs to ejaculate to get rid of excess semen. The average young male ejaculates twice a week and during some periods of adolescence it can be daily. Thus, your body's desire to get relief drives you to what you are more familiar to gain that relief.

This leads to the mistake that many young men make. They know it is wrong to masturbate to pornography. It is easier to focus on the action than the thoughts, so they think they can overcome the problem by not masturbating. It works for a short while, but eventually the body's need to ejaculate drives the young man nearly nutty and instinct takes over. Barely thinking of what he is doing, he is wildly driven back to pornography. Once he ejaculates, reason takes back over and he berates himself for his weakness. He tries harder, but it happens again. Over and over it happens. Eventually the young man is convinced he is worthless because he has no control.

And the problem all stems from the fact that he tried to control the symptoms and not the problem itself. The problem is the pornography and the lustful thoughts. "For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God" (I Thessalonians 4:3-5).

You are not a homosexual. You are a young man who is being severely tempted to give in to homosexuality. "No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it" (I Corinthians 10:13). The problem is that if you don't take care of this problem quickly, you'll be vulnerable to getting into actual sexual sin and not just thinking about it.

So here is what I've told numerous young men to do to break the cycle, and it does work.

First off, plan on the fact that you need to ejaculate. Trying to not ejaculate will only increases your temptation. Put it off long enough, your body controls you instead of you controlling your body. Therefore, give yourself permission to masturbate or have wet dreams or both whenever it is necessary.

However, the second piece is that you are not allowed to look at any form of pornography to get you stirred up. If you can't ejaculate, then obviously it isn't necessary at the moment. If the temptation to look is hard to resist, then limit where you allow yourself to ejaculate. It has to be in a place that is private and where you don't have access to pornography. I usually suggest the shower.

Once you realize that you can ejaculate without looking at porn, then the next step is to start getting control of your thoughts. That is a bit harder and will take effort over time, but again it is doable. The trick is to wait until the need to ejaculate is strong. Then when you take care of the matter, you end up ejaculating quickly and without much thought. If you find yourself drifting into forbidden territory, stop, and wait another day.

Notice that this method is the same no matter what kind of pornography a person gets caught up into. What you are doing is controlling your body's need to ejaculate by giving it an outlet that you control and that doesn't involve sin. You are control your body instead of your body controlling you.

You know, you truly helped me, and I really can't express how thankful I am to you because you not only helped me, you also made me feel good. For the first time in a very long time, I feel secure about myself and that everything can be fixed, so thank you. You gave me hope to change and to be a better me. And it is really good to know that I can count on you to help with any aspect of my life. One of the things I admire about you is that you don't judge other people; instead, you help them to live better and happier. I will be writing to you to tell you about my progress.

Excellent! I look forward to hearing from you.