How do I know if I'm addicted to pornography?

The following questions are excerpted and adapted from Hope and Recovery-A Twelve Step Guide for Healing From Compulsive Sexual Behavior. These questions do not constitute a standardized test designed to diagnose addiction. Those who answer yes to many of these questions will find that they have common experiences with pornography addicts. Those who do have concerns about their sexual thoughts and behaviors need to know that they can get help and support. If you would like to learn more about overcoming your addiction, read Ten Keys to Breaking Pornography Addiction and participate at our “Support Board.”

 Yes No

 

   

Do you sense that your sexual thoughts and/or behaviors are causing problems in your life?

   

Have sexual thoughts interfered with your ability to function at work or at school?

   

Do you worry that your sexual thoughts and/or behaviors are more powerful than you are?

   

Do you sometimes think that you are the only person who has certain sexual thoughts or engages in certain sexual behaviors?

      

Do you fail to meet commitments or fail to carry out responsibilities because of your involvement with pornography?

   

Do you struggle to control or completely stop your thinking about or viewing pornography?

   

Do you view pornography in order to escape, deny, or numb your feelings?

   

Do you think about sex more than you would like to?

   

Do you spend more money than you can afford to spend on pornography?

   

Does it seem as though there is another person or force inside of you that drives you to pornography?

   

Do you have two standards of fidelity -- one for yourself and one for your spouse or partner?

   

Do you feel empty or shameful after viewing or masturbating using pornography?

   

Have you ever promised yourself that you would never again view pornography?

   

Do you use pornography to deal with, deny, or avoid problems in your life?

   

Do you risk legal problems in order to view pornography?

   

Do you anxiously anticipate or fear trips out of town because of what you think you might do sexually while you're away?

   

When you have child care responsibilities, do you put a higher priority on masturbating or being sexual than you do on the welfare of the child(ren) in your care?

   

Do your sexual thoughts and/or behaviors interfere with your spiritual or religious life? Do your sexual thoughts and/or behaviors cause you to believe that you don't deserve to have a religious or spiritual life?

   

Have you lost a job or risked losing a job because of your involvement with pornography?

   

Do you scan printed material (novels, newspapers, magazines) or change channels on the television set just to find something that will stimulate you sexually?

   

Do you regularly view pornography or engage in fantasies involving self-abuse or other kinds of physical abuse?

   

Do you dig through other people's garbage to find pornography?

   

Would you rather masturbate than be sexual with a partner?

   

Do you drive around unfamiliar neighborhoods (cruise) hoping to find places where pornography is available?

   

Do you look at pornography or masturbate while driving?

   

Have you replaced a collection of pornographic material after destroying one collection and vowing never to purchase pornography again?

   

Has an important relationship in your life ended because of your inability to stop looking at pornography?

     
If you find yourself answering Yes to more of these questions than you would like, please be aware that there is hope. As a starting point, you may want to read “Ten Keys to Breaking Pornography Addiction,” or join our free Support Board.