What No One Tells You About Porn Addiction

There’s a reason you’re reluctant to give your girlfriend (or boyfriend) keys to your place, and it isn’t your fear of commitment. Sometimes your porn habit is tough to think about, nevermind talking about it. You’ve been clicking through tabs and skipping to the good parts more than you’d like to admit. What kind of person lets a screen get the best of them, anyways? And despite being exhausted and ashamed, there’s still nothing you’d rather do with your time. And you’re not alone.

Forums full of people just like you are going through the same thing right now. But here’s what Pornhub and Redtube aren’t telling you. They’re tapping into an evolutionary hook nestled way down deep in that ape-man brain of yours. Let me tell you a little story about Calvin Coolidge. Baby-faced Silent Cal became the 30th President of the United States when the beloved Warren G. Harding dropped dead on August 2, 1923. Coolidge, clearly a role model for men and boys of all ages, is notable not only for his staunch representation of the middle class, but also his boredom of bedding Mrs Coolidge, night after night.

The President and Mrs. Coolidge were visiting a government farm, the story goes (I got it from Wikipedia, which cited another source, from another source), and Mrs. Coolidge noticed that a rooster was mating frequently in the chicken yard. She asked her tour guide how often the cock was getting his freak on, in so many words, and her guide replied, “Dozens of times each day.” Mrs. Coolidge, clearly a lady ahead of her time with needs to be met, said, “Tell that to the President when he comes by.” After the tour guide did just that, and gave the President information about the rooster’s randy behavior, President Coolidge asked, “Same hen every time?” The guide replied, “Oh no, Mr. President, a different hen every time.” The president then said, “Tell that to Mrs. Coolidge.”

Thus, the Coolidge effect was born (and you thought I forgot I was writing a blog about porn addiction, but have a little faith, buddy). The Coolidge effect is the biological term for getting excited by the new hot blonde in the office, even though you have a beautiful brunette waiting for you at home. Or getting off from that glowing picture inside your laptop even though your wife asked you to come to bed hours ago. Yes, everyone, there’s a biological term for that. Now you know. Novelty creates renewed sexual interest. From an evolutionary standpoint, this helps animals better mate and procreate, as males are excited by new partners. If you’re a stag and winter was rough for your herd, you best believe you need to partner with all the deer you can to make it through.

But you’re not a stag, as much as you’d like to be. You don’t need to survive by mating with everything that moves like your ancestors did. So what does this mean for you? It means that porn is all the more enticing. Because each new screen is novel, and your brain is getting a buzz on that new and never-before-recognized imagery. But it’s not only you. It’s your brain chemistry. It’s an evolutionary affectation. And although this means you are hard-wired to respond to new sexual options, it doesn’t mean you have to be a slave to porn.

Evolution defines who we are in some ways, but we’ve evolved to be more sophisticated beings and respond to our needs in a more refined and in-depth way. So while you may feel like your libido is getting the best of you, technology has presented us with better options to aid in our recovery.

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