My experience with porn started in my early teens. I liked Playboy and Penthouse and enjoyed the thrill of seeing beautiful women nude. It’s called “eye candy” for a good reason.
After I got married, I always had a couple of magazines in my nightstand and didn’t hide them from my wife. When the internet came along there was suddenly endless variety and quantity. I enjoyed it even more than the magazines and dvd’s and it was FREE! Then we got high speed internet and even more was available. Again, I didn’t hide it and wasn’t into anything really extreme. I didn’t spend long hours with it. I spent maybe 15 – 20 minutes a day… some days more, some days not at all. But even in 20 minutes, I could click through hundreds of images and videos that probably added up to thousands per month. It seemed like harmless adult entertainment. What a great thing! Right?…. WRONG! I now realize that each click was a little shot of dopamine that gradually desensitized me over the years.
At the age of 48 or 49 I started to gradually experience some ED. Eventually I had a difficult time getting an erection most of the time. I couldn’t get an erection at all a few times last year. Thinking it was just “normal” for my age, I asked my doctor to prescribe Viagra. The pills worked for me, but they were expensive and I didn’t like the side effects. I also feared they could be unhealthy in the long term. I started to Google things that might cause ED and stumbled upon this website. As I read all the information and stories, it became obvious that porn could be the cause of my problem and I can now confirm that my porn habit seems to have been the cause of my ED.
The same day I found this website, I quit taking Viagra and stopped looking at porn cold turkey just to see what would happen. Unlike many others, and lucky for me, I have had no difficulty with this. I have not had any extreme cravings or serious temptations to look at porn. After four months, I have had excellent results. I’ve also experienced a couple of somewhat intense withdrawal symptoms that I can share.
The return of my erections has been gradual with some ups and downs. I can attest to the “flatlines” that people talk about. But after four months, I now wake up with an erection most mornings even if my wife and I had sex the night before. I have not experienced this for a long time. I don’t remember how long it’s been, but I would guess between 10 and 15 years. I think my mind is still healing, but the change has already been dramatic. I no longer have any problem getting a strong and lasting erection for sex.
I believe I also had some unexpected and shocking withdrawal symptoms. The first thing that happened to me was at about four weeks I had blood in my semen, or hematospermia as my doctor called it. Suspecting epididymitis, he gave me an antibiotic for a possible infection and referred me to a urologist. I had an ultrasound of my scotum, prostate exam, PSA test, etc… all of which showed nothing abnormal. The blood in my semen went away and I would say that the consistency of my semen has changed over the months from a somewhat yellow tinged jelly, to more of a white liquid. I don’t know why or how this would happen, but I suspect that the change in my brain stimulation has resulted in some sort of physical change in the way my body is working. If not, it’s an odd coincidence that this happened during this time.
The other symptom/experience I had is something that has also been reported by others here. The Sunday I hit two months, I just felt physically bad. I had been drinking a bit the night before and was definitely a little crusty. But as the morning went on, I kept feeling worse instead of better. At around noon, my hands started to feel tingly and numb. Then the numbness started to spread up my arms and my legs also started to feel numb. I few minutes later my entire body started shaking and convulsing. Thinking I was having a heart attack or a stroke, I called 911. The EMT’s came and calmed me down. They checked me out and found nothing physically wrong with me and said it was only a panic attack. I followed up with my doctor, and it hasn’t happened again. Since I really don’t have any stress in my life that would have caused this to happen, I believe that the changes my brain was going through might have been the cause. It was almost like the sensations I that I felt were going through my body and back to my brain in a loop… like feedback between a speaker and a microphone. It was a very strange and scary experience, but I think it was part of the healing process.
I’m very grateful for the other stories and information here. Thank you for this website and thank you to everyone who has shared their stories. I hope my story will be helpful for others, especially those who are skeptical that porn may be the problem for them just because they don’t spend hours on end or all night with it. My experience seems to indicate that porn has a subtle but powerful cumulative effect on your brain even when consumed in seemingly modest amounts. I’m never going back to it.