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What’s Wrong with a Little Porn When You’re Single? – Book Review

Last Updated: February 21, 2014

Luke Gilkerson

Luke Gilkerson has a BA in Philosophy and Religious Studies and an MA in Religion. He is the author of Coming Clean: Overcoming Lust Through Biblical Accountability and The Talk: 7 Lessons to Introduce Your Child to Biblical Sexuality. Luke and his wife Trisha blog at IntoxicatedOnLife.com

This week we are reviewing What’s Wrong with a Little Porn When You’re Single?published by Harvest USA.

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We write a lot about how porn damages marriages…and for good reason. Often, a major catalyst for a person’s desire to change is the recognition that their porn use has sabotaged something in their marriage.

But what about single people? Is a little recreational porn use okay?

A new minibook from Harvest USA addresses this question head-on. What’s Wrong with a Little Porn When You’re Single? sets up the nature of the question singles often ask:

“Christians can easily conclude that pornography is wrong for married people. They know that pornography use destroys the relational intimacy that God intended for marriage. But does that really apply to those who are single? Perhaps you wonder if you will ever find someone to marry. Or maybe you are still in your teens, just entering adulthood. The prospect of a wife or husband seems distant. Can pornography be an acceptable means to sexual fulfillment before you get married, especially if it’s occasional and temporary?”

Three Reasons to Avoid Porn

The book offers three reasons to avoid pornography as a single person.

1. Pornography isolates you from healthy dating relationships. Porn makes sex all about you: your fantasies, pleasures, and desires. Porn trains us to think more of our own desires and less of the desires of others, and this is toxic to any relationship. Real relationships require an investment in others, and porn cripples our abilities to develop genuine affection for a prospective girlfriend or boyfriend.

2. Porn sabotages your future marital relationship—before you’re married. Porn offers the illusion of an easy life, a way to medicate pain in life. And when you are married and disappointments arise, instead of working through issues with your spouse, turning to porn will be your reflex. You will hate it when the joy of real sex is robbed from you by years of false expectations of fantasy.

3. Sexual addictions: I can quit anytime…right? Slavery to sin is a universal human condition, but when we become enslaved to a particular sin, our lives can unravel. The downward spiral of porn addiction for some is unavoidable: images, videos, risky online encounters, cyber sex, strip clubs, anonymous encounters, and the list goes on.

Seven Ways to Avoid It

The book also offers seven practical steps to fleeing porn. All of these steps come with detailed explanations.

1. Honestly face the damage that porn has done, but hope in something better.

2. Confess your sin to God.

3. Embrace the forgiveness that can be yours through the cross of Jesus Christ.

4. Look deeper at the sin beneath your sin.

5. Make yourself accountable to a mature fellow in Christ.

6. Block the doors to porn.

7. Be honest with the person you are dating.

I highly recommend you check out this resource. It makes an ideal freebie to give away at your church or in your counseling office.

  • Comments on: What’s Wrong with a Little Porn When You’re Single? – Book Review
    1. sapphire on

      all i could say, is 2 Chronicles 7:14–we are at the door, of losing our nation….!

      Reply
    2. Mark Henry on

      I am single and I must confess that Porn has become a need for me…it numbs me of life’s pains disappointments and frustrations. These days its difficult to sleep without taking a dose of this medicine that has become a necessary evil that I cannot just quit yet.

      I think I am even scared of getting into a real relationship cos that might just be a place to experiment with Sex (don’t wanna hurt God and a lady at the same time). Makes me think loneliness is a better option and when I am lonely, once again I need porn to come to my rescue so I don’t loose my mind from all the stress and challenges I have to face all by myself.

      I know I have tried installing Covenant Eyes once. Quite honestly, It helped me stay pure for a whole month but after a while I had to let it go cos it blocks almost all multimedia websites I access and it was beginning to make work difficult for me.

      Its a downward spiral I have tried for ages to combat…its reaaly a painful one cos this very thing is my purpose in life…”Restoring Men back to Purity via media”…maybe that’s why my case is so slippery.

      Mark

      Reply
    3. Ellen Dykas on

      Harvest USA is excited to now to publishing mini booklets via New Growth Press. Our ministry seeks to encourage believers how to apply the gospel of grace to sexuality and relationships…and are so thankful for Covenant Eyes and this blog too!

      Reply
    4. Nicholas Black on

      Hi:

      I’m the author of this mini book, so thanks for recommending it! However, the mini book is from Harvest USA, not CCEF. Would you please correct that misunderstanding? Harvest USA has also published another mini book on porn for parents: iSnooping on Your Kids: Parenting in an Internet World.

      Reply
      • Lisa Eldred on

        Fixed. Sorry about that!

    5. Rocky on

      I don’t think they made their case, whether for singles or porn, to eschew porn. Obviously, if a couple each enjoy it and have their own agreement, then that cancels most problems on that front. The reasons given for Singles only work with qualifiers added. Add different qualifiers and they become moot. For example:

      Reason 1: First of all, it’s obviously not true. Multitudes watch porn and still date. Porn doesn’t teach us to only care about our own sexual needs; it trains viewers in ways to serve the sexual desire of male and female partners. The writers are putting out the same old spiel that they read from some angry feminist or other myopic source. There are hazards yes. Usually when people, esp. males fall in love, their testosterone drops so they will have a natural decrease in interest in porn anyway.

      Reason 2: Only true if a person is quite immature. Why would you marry if you didn’t value the relationship enough to work out problems? The last sentence says: “the joys of real sex” …”will be robbed by years of false expectations of fantasy” ?! How? Masturbation can’t compete with sex unless you’re a girl. It doesn’t take a lot of intelligence to realize that porn “actors” are pros and have many advantages over the normal humans among us. A wife who has viewed porn may be expecting her husband to last 20 or 30 minutes so she can have multiples, but she will be lucky if he lasts two minutes, then falls asleep…

      So, yes there needs to be significant legitimate sex education before marriage, and hopefully people realize that porn isn’t necessarily accurate in portraying “normal” sex, unless there is an effort to portray such, as with the new female oriented porn and with amateur porn. By the way, the way to not be “robbed by years of fantasy” is to start having sex when you’re young instead of watching porn, like they did in the Bible. God does not approve of young people living in celibacy, unless He has called them to that life. He commanded marriage, not celibacy, as the norm once one is a young adult, say 16, ready to have sex. A person who is called to singleness, celibacy, doesn’t “burn”.

      3. Reason 3: You might get addicted. True, but you can learn how not to get addicted.

      As you can see, the reasons were lame. Better reasons to not look at porn are:

      1. You are taking pleasure in evil, sexual sins, for which people will suffer in eternity for having amused you.

      2. Jesus said that we are not to lust for a woman that we may look upon, and that is the whole point of porn, in direct opposition to the Lord who bought you.

      3. If you would be ashamed to tell your mom, your dad, your preacher, your girlfriend that you watch porn, you ought not do it, perhaps? If you cause a weak believer to stumble in their faith, or a sinner to stumble and refuse Christ because of your hypocrisy, their blood is on your hands.

      4. You waste a lot of time browsing and looking at porn, and God says to “redeem the time.”

      (I don’t agree with these either, but I would be more challenged by them.)

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        Rocky, before you critique the book as a whole based on a brief summary found here, I recommend you read it in its entirety.

        I like your reasons as well. Thanks for posting them!

      • Keiko Homura on

        What if I don’t lust over real women or mentally? I only use hentai, the real stuff disgusts me

        Also I feel like I feel guilty because I’m constantly told that it’s bad

        The other two reasons, I feel, aren’t exactly reasons, just you saying it’s bad or whatever without actually explaining why

        Do you have any other reasons for me, I’m just highly curious

    6. Rocky on

      * whether singles or *married I meant to say. Remind me to proofread

      Reply
    7. doctor silas on

      I believe if there’s something wrong with watching porn then they shouldn’t make it and if there a problem with watching it then . There is a problem with the person saying its wrong we are human and the same thing thats on porn video is the same thing we see and live whit every day we are human once again . And some people over exaggerate about porn . I believe if. Something is wrong with it they wouldn’t make it and if something is wrong with watching it they should close all the strip club s dow. Amen over and out.

      Reply
      • James E Pettitt on

        “If It Is Wrong They Wouldn’t Make It” is a most foolish argument. Wrong-doing will happen in countless areas of life as wrong-doers PROFIT from it all. Like prostitutes, it is wrong by any moral standard, regardless of debate, regardless of women profiting financially. Do you know that the majority of strippers suffer immensely in trying to enjoy actual sex? Their pleasure, or ‘high’, comes from their dancing. When a man is caught masturbating, he commonly feels guilt and shame– and that is the norm even without any religious upbringing; it is inbuilt. Any time a mature husband pleasures himself it means (likely) he’ll have little to offer his wife should she need a bit of love. Hot/lusty/gorgeous women portrayed in media are difficult for most woman to compete with. And why does any man feel “dirty” after a porn session, same as after cheating on her? Maybe because the two events are similar? These reasonings are incomplete without frank Biblical teaching, but every man stands to suffer from porn addiction. But it takes honesty and intelligence to understand that, qualities severely lacking in the current “Me” Generation.

    8. Keiko Homura on

      For the first two, I don’t want to be in a relationship. Ever. So those don’t apply to me. I’m not really addicted to open, I don’t even read/watch it too often, though the longest time in between for me has been one or two months. I won’t ever go to strip clubs, because the only porn I watch is hentai, which is anime/animation, and so I’m not attracted to real bodies. I hear you can’t lust over woman, but I’m a female who is not homosexual. I don’t lust over women, and I don’t lust over men, so can anyone give me any other reasons to why I shouldn’t watch porn? I feel like it is a bad thing, and I shouldn’t, but I’m just really curious as to why I shouldn’t

      Reply
      • Chris McKenna on

        Hello, Keiki – you’re asking a good question. You say, “I feel like it is a bad thing, and I shouldn’t” – why do you think that is? Dig deep into that question.

      • James E Pettitt on

        KEIKO, we all have ‘relationships’, even if they are not sexual. How one relates to others can be quite affected by our sexual mores– especially what we hold in secret. What do you mean “not addicted to open”? You mean ‘porn’? For sure, hentai also dulls the brain towards real-life sexuality; by anyone’s standards or viewpoints you do not have the normal attitudes and practices of the everyday man. Not saying it is wrong; just being honest, ok? Should you ever find a potential life mate, they’ll be challenged to meet your expectations sex-wise. Porn is a ” bad thing” according to many studies, sort of a train wreck (in the long term) for the emotions. As far as religious views, if you are not a woman of faith nor a believer in the Hereafter, forget that and enjoy life as you prefer it– because the pleasure you have here and now (however brief!) is all you can have. And God bless you, period!

    9. Rolanda Slidell on

      Im an older woman 50+ I have been single for over 7 years. I don’t date I’ve not met anybody that I wanted to date. I’m a very outgoing person I go to church and I love the Lord . But I do have sexual desires and rather not fornicate so I don’t understand why is it wrong for me to masturbate while watching porn between 2 consenting adults? Just normal sexual activity. I have watched it before with my x- husband and without him. For me it has not become addicting to me. I don’t watch it on a regular basis. Maybe 5 or 12 times a yr. So all the reasons why you say you shouldn’t I haven’t so why is it wrong?

      Reply

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