Defeat Lust & Pornography
Defeat Lust & Pornography 4 minute read

Men Overcoming Homosexual Pornography: Rooting Out the Source of Temptation (Part 2)

Last Updated: February 21, 2014

Continued from Part 1

“Envy Him”: Unfulfilled masculine development

The means by which a man struggling with same-sex attraction can begin to reduce his level of addiction to pornography is by identifying what qualities he finds attractive in other men. Those qualities are parts of the attractive man that the struggler is attempting to claim for himself via his attraction.

I find most men wanting the characteristic of confidence. The scene often described by my clients is in a restaurant where a man and woman are sitting at a table enjoying themselves. My client is attracted to the man who is calm, easy-going, and confident of himself enough to be with a woman. He relates to the woman as she admires the attractive man and seeks his undivided attention.

The goal is to identify these characteristics that the struggler wants for himself and realize that these represent very real unmet needs. For example, to be attracted to a confident man is to desire our own personal confidence. Personal confidence or masculine confidence is the need. In other words, we can say our needs are being expressed through our attraction. The reduction of pornography can be achieved when we identify our root need and learn to have it filled in a healthy way. A healthy fulfillment is to be in inclusive, accepting, and uplifting relationships that are non-sexualized.

Same sex pornography is the fantasy of a man needing an attractive man to complete the user of pornography as a man. I often ask these men what they enjoy most about pornography. Their answer is that when they view pornography they feel accepted. They feel they are in the company of someone like themselves, someone who truly understands them and therefore feels acceptable.

The root of this need to be accepted as a man begins in childhood. While I will not delineate the causations of homosexuality, a large percentage of men were rejected by their father at a young age. That rejection created a wound that these men have been attempting to heal through the approval and love of other men since childhood. When we can reconcile the issues that caused a boy to be rejected and therefore stuck in his development stage as a boy, then we will often see the need for pornography to decline. This is truly dealing with the roots of pornography.

What is reconciliation? Reconciliation takes on many forms. Sometimes it is talking about the pain for the first time to a trusted person, forgiving someone, confronting a father with the way he has wounded his son, etc. Reconciliation is different for each person.

Going beyond Addiction

Men go beyond addiction when they make a conscientious choice to move from the addictive cycle that repeats itself to deliberate choices to develop their masculinity. Take confidence or example. When we grow in personal confidence our draw to men will be reduced and the need for pornography will be reduced.

But how do we grow in confidence? One can often go back into the past of men and ask “what were the experiences of life that deflated my confidence?” One man told me that whenever he attempted to help his father mow the lawn, his father criticize him if he did not complete the work perfectly. After several occurrences the son lost his confidence in his ability to please his father. At that point he gave up on pleasing men because it seemed to be impossible. He generalized his experience with his father and concluded that all men would be impatient with him, and he would be unable to please them. For this man, he needed to speak with his father about how hurtful this situation was and forgive his father. He needed to forgive himself for not being able to perform to the standards of his father, which were unrealistic to begin with.

Another means by which a man can grow in confidence is to place himself in the company of men who will show him acceptance for who he is. The church is the intended environment God has established for this support. Unfortunately, the success of men in the Church (in caring for one another) is sparse at best. We need not throw the baby out with the bath water and give up, but rather choose men who are mature enough to be patient with the struggler and will focus on who he is rather than how well he performs. This can occur in less obvious contexts as well.

I had one client who had been trained as a culinary chef in New York. His culinary team of men was very inclusive and accepting of him, always encouraging him as part of the team. The team produced good work in a very stressful environment. This man concluded (at the end of his experience) that these men really cared for him, and he began to grow in his confidence as a man. This is real healing, and a great emotional memory to continually return to.

Healing takes on a new level of responsibility for the individual. Growing up and maturing means that we take responsibility to work toward resolving the damage done to us by others in our life. No one is going to come to us and make this happen, especially our fathers. While dad may be responsible for our pain, we are responsible to engage the process of being free from it. The struggler is the only one who can take control of change for himself. At this point we are then co-laboring with Christ to seek healing.

Read Part 3

. . . .

robertbrennanThis post is by Robert Brennan, the director of Apokata Psychotherapy Services which is a professional network ministry of Exodus International and a professional psychotherapy service for those struggling with same-sex pornography and opposite sex pornography. He is a graduate of Western Seminary in Marriage and Family Therapy, and he regularly speaks to churches about recovery from same-sex attraction. He practices in San Francisco and Fremont California.

  1. Fantastic Site! I wanted to ask if I could site some of your pages and use a couple of items for a term paper. Please email me if that would be fine. Thanks

  2. Man

    I agree that it would be good to have some generalizable statistics to back up some claims, but not all claims need (or are able) to be substantiated by numbers.

    Another way of establishing the credibility of a theory is to ask people to what extent the stated theory resonates with them or is useful for them.

    I certainly find this series to be useful and many of the ideas mentioned resonate with my own life at a deep level. And I know many of my friends dealing with same-sex attraction will attest to it as well.

  3. Matt

    Can any peer reviewed publications be cited along with this blog in the third part that support the efficacy of the program or underlying causes?

    This seems like a good series of posts, but it seems like there needs to be more background evidence to support a lot of the statements to be taken at face value.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related in Defeat Lust & Pornography

Editor's Picks

A teenage girl alone at night on her phone.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

I Clicked on a Link

Living with integrity in this world is quite difficult because our culture…

3 minute read

Read Post

Editor's Picks

A solitary man on a scenic hike.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

My Journey and Liberation from Pornography

Many men and women struggle nowadays with addiction to pornography. Almost all…

3 minute read

Read Post

Editor's Picks

A young man with his friends.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

Transparency: Tough But Always Worth It

Whether I care to admit it or not, porn is a big…

4 minute read

Read Post

Editor's Picks

Young man wearing a hoodie praying.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

From Hopeless Addict to Follower of Christ

The journey I have embarked on to quit porn has been long…

2 minute read

Read Post

Editor's Picks

A young man looking into the distance.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

All You Need for Quitting Porn (And for Everything Else)

What do you need to quit porn? 2 Peter 1:3 says “[God’s]…

6 minute read

Read Post

Editor's Picks

Silhouette of a young engaged couple.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

How I Found Freedom From the Binge and Purge Cycle of Porn

Since the age of 11 years old, I have struggled with pornography…

4 minute read

Read Post

Related in Defeat Lust & Pornography

A teenage girl alone at night on her phone.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

I Clicked on a Link

Living with integrity in this world is quite difficult because our culture…

Living with integrity in this world is quite difficult because our culture is so against it, but as a Christian God has called me to be different, and striving for integrity plays a key role…

3 minute read

0 comments

A solitary man on a scenic hike.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

My Journey and Liberation from Pornography

Many men and women struggle nowadays with addiction to pornography. Almost all…

Many men and women struggle nowadays with addiction to pornography. Almost all were exposed at a young age through no fault of their own and now seek liberation from pornography addiction. I was one of…

3 minute read

0 comments

A young man with his friends.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

Transparency: Tough But Always Worth It

Whether I care to admit it or not, porn is a big…

Whether I care to admit it or not, porn is a big part of my life. It seems shameful, but that’s the reality I live in, for better or worse. I have learned many lessons…

4 minute read

0 comments

Young man wearing a hoodie praying.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

From Hopeless Addict to Follower of Christ

The journey I have embarked on to quit porn has been long…

The journey I have embarked on to quit porn has been long and arduous. In fact, I don’t think it’s over. Covenant Eyes has been a significant part in helping me overcome my addictions and…

2 minute read

0 comments

A young man looking into the distance.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

All You Need for Quitting Porn (And for Everything Else)

What do you need to quit porn? 2 Peter 1:3 says “[God’s]…

What do you need to quit porn? 2 Peter 1:3 says “[God’s] divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness.” That’s a verse that makes me pause for a minute, especially…

6 minute read

0 comments

Silhouette of a young engaged couple.

Defeat Lust & Pornography

How I Found Freedom From the Binge and Purge Cycle of Porn

Since the age of 11 years old, I have struggled with pornography…

Since the age of 11 years old, I have struggled with pornography and purity. I Was Trapped in a “Binge and Purge” Cycle I can still vividly remember the day that my innocence was stripped…

4 minute read

0 comments