I stumbled upon this site a few days ago and found it answered a great many questions for me. I started watching porn at about age 16. I quickly became addicted to it and would skip school just to sit at home all day watching it.
After some time the material I was watching began to have less of an effect on me and I quickly began watching more hardcore material. I'd tried to quit many times between the ages of 16 - 19 for religious reasons, but to no avail. I just felt guilty and disgusted with myself. My self confidence began to decrease and I became very anxious and a lot more reclusive. At around age 19 I lost my faith and since then have been what you might call an apatheist - I lost interest in questions that could not be answered.
Since then I've used porn to medicate my anxiety. I often find myself viewing it even when I'm not in the mood to do so, simply because I feel I need to in order to function.
Now, during this time, it wasn't just porn that was affecting my outlook on life. I believe caffeine played a part in it for me as well. I loved my coffee and had been drinking it long before being hooked to porn. I noticed all the anxiety issues arise before porn as well... and I can see now that the two habits were reinforcing each other. With every coffee came a jolt of stress hormones, which lead me to porn in order to sedate them. And I've been caught up in this viscious cycle ever since. Caffeine and porn causing a dopamine rush with hang over effects.
I've tried to quit both of these influences before. After a week I noticed a great change. I noticed I was more sociable and less anxious, better able to concentrate, more reliable energy throughout the day. But it's so easy to fall back into the old habits.
Thanks to this site, I've tried to quit both of these influences again. I'm on day 5 without caffeine, and it must have been a week without porn.
Being a single male who's never had a romantic relationship, my only concerns at the moment are where this leads. Is it really healthy to deny myself sexual release until I find a partner? And forgive me if this offends but, isn't denying oneself sexual release partly responsible for the attrocities commited by certain members of the Catholic clergy?