Study Debunks Claim of Link Between Porn Viewing, Mental Issues

LOS ANGELES—With online porn viewing up sharply during the global coronavirus lockdowns, the backlash against porn also appears to be ramping up. Last month, The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops sent a letter to Attorney General William Barr calling on the Justice Department to crack down on porn. The bishops claim that porn viewing “harms families and communities in perceptible ways.” But an extensive new research study of approximately 15,000 self-reported porn viewers conforms the results of several previous studies, that the supposed “harms” of porn are largely non-existent. Published in the April edition of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, the study titled “High-Frequency Pornography Use May Not Always Be Problematic” found that only between three and eight percent of self-reported porn viewers said that they felt their use “has become a problem.”  And even among those who say that their high-frequency porn viewing is a “problem,” their issues stemmed not simply from their viewing of porn, but from interaction between their own personality traits and the social context in which they live, according to a summary of the study by the University of Montreal, where the study’s lead author Beáta B?the is a postdoctoral researcher. The finding is similar to the results if a 2018 study in which researchers found that porn users with deep religious backgrounds were much more likely to describe themselves as “addicted” than frequent porn users who did not grow up in “religious, sexually conservative households.” In the University of Montreal study — which also involved researchers from Concordia University, Yale University and Stanford University, and covered three separate surveys — between 68 and 73 percent of respondents said that they viewed porn only “infrequently,” and experienced now psychological problems. But between 19 and 29 percent called themselves high-frequency porn consumers, but also said that their porn viewing caused them no mental health issues — that’s between “three and six times as many people” as say that frequent porn consumption is a problem. But those “problem” porn users also reported that they also experienced a wide range of psychological issues, including “hypersexuality, depressive symptoms, sensitivity to boredom, feelings of discomfort about pornography, lower levels of self-esteem, and less satisfaction of their psychological needs related to social belonging, sense of competency and overall autonomy,” according to the study. Photo By Andrea Piacquadio / Pexels   

written by: Michael French

source: Study Debunks Claim of Link Between Porn Viewing, Mental Issues | AVN