Advice Hijack – My Boyfriend Is Addicted To Porn So I Left Him

An occasional column where I get so annoyed by other advice columnists that I try and give better answers (it’s not like I have enough to do) …

I am 17 years old and I broke up with my boyfriend a few days ago because I noticed on his laptop that he looked up a lot of porn. He told me he was addicted to it. This broke my heart. It made me feel like I was being cheated on because he was looking at all the other girls on the porn sites and getting turned on by them. When I broke up with him for this, he acted like he didn’t care, and now I feel very insecure. Do you have any advice? (original advice here)

Hey

Sounds like you’re having a rubbish time, so first thing I’m going to do is to *send you some sympathy vibes*. Break ups can feel really difficult. Even though you broke up with him you may still feel sad and feel a loss as well as feeling very insecure. This is OK. You’re allowed to feel these things and there’s nothing I can say that is going to make you feel better instantly so I’m not going to try.

I think the best thing to do in situations like this is to say to yourself “OK I’m feeling a bit sad. I know this will go away at some point [it will, it really will] but in the meantime I need to look after myself. Do the basics (eat/drink/sleep/look after health). Hang with friends. Do things that I enjoy. Give myself time and don’t be hard on myself.” If your sads linger for ages and feel like they aren’t going at all then you could consider talking to someone about it (trusted family member, wise friend, school/college counsellor, youth worker etc).

As well as all of this I would advise you to pay attention to you a bit more and less about what other people might think. Also try not to compare your insides to other people’s outsides – you have no idea what your ex is feeling and the chances are he’s feeling a bit rubbish too (inside).

Then once you’re feeling a bit less sad, and a bit more like you can deal with things, you can think about what you can learn about you and your future relationships. You might want to think about your views about porn, your feelings about you, what you want from relationships and what you think about cheating and faithfulness.

You’ve discovered that you really aren’t into your partner looking at porn. That’s cool. You could make it a hard limit for your future relationships that you really wouldn’t like your partner to do that. Many people aren’t really into porn – so that is doable. However, this might be something that your future partners might have a problem with because even if they are not into porn everyone does have their own private thoughts, fantasies and desires (sexual or not).

It’s not possible to get inside someone’s head and look at all the things they might find sexy, to look at what they are seeing every second of the day, to live in their erotic dreams. This might be something that you could think about for you too – think about what you are into, how much of that can you share, how much stays in your head?

[bishquote]We can’t meet all of our partner’s sexual needs because we don’t know what they are but also because one person can’t meet all of our needs full stop.[/bishquote]

It might be hard to think about someone thinking sexual thoughts that aren’t about you but it doesn’t mean that they don’t fancy you any less. When your ex was looking at porn he probably wasn’t thinking that they were more attractive than you, but it might have been really hard not to think that.

I think most of us have insecurities about us sometimes (I certainly do). It might be about our bodies, or our personality or how original we are or how smart we are. These things start at an early age and we can carry them around with us for life. Our insecurities are heightened by comparing ourselves to ‘perfection’ in media, advertising and also the outsides of others (thinking about what they have and what we don’t).

The thing with insecurities is that they are just a story that our brain has made up. They don’t help us and you don’t have to believe in it. Try and write new ones about you that are useful. Remember that you are a 3D actual live person and thus more interesting, exciting, sexy, challenging and fun than any 2D image your ex may have looked at.

 


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