[MAKE SURE TO READ THIS LINK FIRST IF THIS IS YOUR FIRST TIME VISITING ENGLISH MANIF.]
Women are politely asked not to read this post.
Well, folks, we have come to the Big Big Obstacle that is most responsible for ruining people's journey from gay to straight. Yep, you guessed it. We have to talk about porn. Just as a reminder, this week's focus is on Phase 2 (breaking away from the gay scene), and in this phase we have ten steps in no particular order:
1. Make sure this is what you want to do, and commit to it.
2. Put away the "Big Lie"--the label "gay" and all the assumptions about it defining limits of who you can be.
3. Make a plan.
4. Say your goodbyes to the people you knew in the gay world.
5. End all pornography use.
6. Reduce and cease masturbation.
7. Join the conversation with straight men.
8. Get into a daily Bible-reading program.
9. Exercise with a purpose.
10. Start opening your heart to women.
All these steps are important and they work together. But porn has a special role in all this for a few reasons. In my experience, guys who try to go straight and can't seem to do it, often wonder why, then jump to assume they really are gay. But they jump to that assumption without considering this crucial question: have you been watching porn this whole time?
If you watch porn while you are on this journey, it won't work. And the worst part is, porn will sabotage you in ways you won't be able to understand. Below I can explain why.
People often tell ex-gays to watch straight porn. It's terrible advice.
This is one of those classic urban legends that works against you. It is like telling the person who is allergic to aspirin that he should take more aspirin for his headaches. Let me share a secret I only recently learned from fellow Baptists ministering to men with sex problems: Straight men are watching a lot of gay porn. The highly charged and erotically shocking images in both straight and gay porn have a similar effect on people watching them. Whether you watch gay or straight porn, your physical motion in touching yourself is the same, the rhythm of sexual release is the same, and the effect is somewhat similar.
Basically pornography observes no sexual orientation. It is a sexual orientation in and of itself. But that is not the whole story. You see, certain dynamics of pornographic orientation mimic or echo gay orientation.
The gay male scene is very visual. Porn is very visual.
Gay sex is very masturbatory because of the anatomies involved. Porn is very masturbatory.
Gay sex feels highly detached. Porn is very detached.
In gay sex, male rhythms and sensibilities are emphasized and female perspectives are treated as less important. That's also how the pornography industry caters to its mostly male audience.
Gay sex feels very impersonal and it often involves people who do not know each other. When you are watching porn the actors do not know each other and none of the actors know you.
While straight men suffer a host of serious problems when they watch porn, you are coming to English Manif with a gay past so your problem with porn is that all porn enhances your gay past. If you watch straight porn and masturbate, you are now getting your body to associate heterosexuality with touching yourself and being isolated and self-referential, which will remind you a great deal of what you did in the gay scene.
At this stage, the priority is to purge the bad sexual cues from your gay past, not to set up straight sexual cues.
As I explain in the video below, when you are in Phase 2 you are a long way away from even knowing who your magical Mrs. is. You are only dating in Phase 4 and will only know whom you are going to marry at the end of Phase 4. You will not need to perform sexually and make love to her until Phase 5. This is all way in the future.
You do not want to build up a sexual habit where your arousal relates to images of female bodies that are not your magical Mrs. You are never going to meet any of the women who act in porn. If you coach yourself to get turned on by images of them naked, then when you meet your dreamgirl, you will have to go through a million mental hoops to transfer your arousal to her. Do you see why this does not work?
Even worse, when you watch so-called straight porn you are bombarding yourself with images of naked men. And you are doing this while you are holding male genitals (yours) in your hand and working yourself into a climax, with the same motions you used when you had sex with other men. Everything about the physical experience of watching porn throws you back to your gay past. You might as well just watch gay porn, go have gay sex with strangers, and decide you are going back to Phase 1. (That was sarcasm; don't do that.)
Here is a website with a lot of information about porn. There is a lot of science in the field of porn addiction now. http://www.fightthenewdrug.com . I cannot emphasize this enough: GET RID OF PORN. Unless you get rid of all porn, your journey is dead on arrival.
What will the world look like, once you have stopped porn?
You have to give this time, and you have to accompany your quitting porn with a huge reduction in masturbation (ideally, get to 90 days at least between times you masturbate). I hate having to share personal details about this stuff but I do this because I want to help you guys.
You will not necessarily feel the effects of quitting porn right away. But as the weeks go by, if you are also not masturbating, you will start feeling erotic reactions to the world around you rather than to things in your head. You will find yourself interacting with the world. I cannot put it into words.
I can tell you from my experience, this saved my marriage. After several weeks without any porn, I fell in love with my wife again. I started feeling excited to see her. My eyes lit up when she walked in the room. It was like I was 27 again and falling in love. I wanted to hold her and touch her. I liked to make her giggle again. My body was almost unrecognizable. I was ready for sex all the time, and I developed a mysterious patience about it. If I felt a general sexual tension I did not feel the rush to get rid of the tension by going somewhere to get rid of my arousal on my own. I just gravitated toward expressing my sexual energy with her.
I hate sharing these private details but I want you to know what a difference it makes when you quit porn. Once I quit porn I stopped saying I was bisexual. Literally all the thoughts about homosexuality disappeared. I cannot even understand why those desires used to haunt me now, since it's been a long time since I got porn out of my system.
I do not understand the science and I didn't keep a journal, so I don't know how this works. All I can tell you is that quitting porn, more than any single step, really made me fully straight. You have to quit porn.