October 19th, 2020

College hosts workshop on sex, porn addiction


By Kalinowski, Tim on November 26, 2019.

Tim Kalinowski

Lethbridge Herald

tkalinowski@lethbridgeherald.com

Sex addiction and porn addiction are becoming growing problems in society as people get exposed to unhealthy online sexual images at a younger and younger age, says Lethbridge College psychology instructor Marie Damgaard.

“I am not here to be the police about people’s sexuality,” Damgaard says, “but when they come in and say, ‘I want to have a relationship. I want to be engaged sexually with my partner, but I physically can’t unless there is porn in the room.’ I think there is an issue with that.”

Damgaard hosted a free workshop entitled “Sex and Porn Addiction: Myth or Reality” at Lethbridge College last week to try to give students perspective on the issue.

“I will be talking to students about sex addiction,” explained Damgaard, “and how we determine what an addictive process looks like, and how this impacts the post-secondary population.”

Like many addictions, classic sex addiction is normally driven by childhood trauma, says Damgaard, but the digital age has created a whole new type of sex addiction based on people being exposed at a young age to pornography.

“For individuals 30 years or younger, they have grown with digital technology, and a lot of them have grown up with pornography available all the time,” she says. “You can just sort of imagine how that wires the brain around what they see and enact, and how they express their sexuality. I see a lot of 20-year-old men, for example, who have porn-induced erectile dysfunction. They are unable to get an erection without pornography. I have seen young women who consume pornography have porn-induced impotence. They are unable to get aroused without pornography, and they actually have a lower sex drive unless they are looking at a screen.”

Damgaard hoped her workshop on Thursday would open up conversations about the issue, and help those attending begin to make distinctions between healthy and unhealthy expressions of sexuality in their own lives.

“It’s about helping them identify what healthy or unhealthy sexuality looks like, the impact of pornography on sexuality, and the consequences of sex addiction and porn addiction,” she said.

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marileetherapy

Excellent and balanced article on a very complex topic in our world. Glad to know that there are therapists and resources discussing this in a professional, non blaming, non shaming, non sex negative manner. Well done!