Why You Want Porn, And Don’t Recognize Its Effects – Gary Wilson

In response to Philip Zimbardo’s “The Demise of Guys?” TED talk, Gary Wilson asks whether our brains evolved to handle the hyperstimulation of today’s Internet enticements. He also discusses the disturbing symptoms showing up in some heavy Internet users, the surprising reversal of those symptoms, and the science behind these 21st century phenomena.

This presentation by Gary Wilson, who admittedly is not a psychologist but instead a physician, is very well laid out and explains the naturally reasoning behind the fact that essentially every guy with an internet connection has had experience with porn.

Gary Wilson is host of www.yourbrainonporn.com. The site arose in response to a growing demand for solid scientific information by heavy Internet erotica users experiencing perplexing, unexpected effects: escalation to more extreme material, concentration difficulties, sexual performance problems, radical changes in sexual tastes, social anxiety, irritability, inability to stop, and obsessive-compulsive symptoms.

As a physiology teacher with a particular interest in the latest neuroscience discoveries, Gary Wilson was aware that their symptoms might be the result of addiction-related brain changes. Applying the website’s concepts of brain plasticity, many former users have braved withdrawal, reversed their symptoms and restored normal sexual responsiveness.

The site has been linked to from hundreds of threads in forums from over thirty countries, with posts numbering in the thousands. Gary Wilson blogs for “Psychology Today” and “The Good Men Project” on the extreme plasticity of adolescent brains, the evolutionary context for today’s flood of novel cyber “mates,” and the neurochemical reasons why superstimulating Internet delivery has unexpected effects on the brain.

This may not sound like a big problem, except that we cannot deny it has effects. Likely due to the type of content routinely presented, exposure to online pornography among minors was connected to a 650% increase in the likelihood of them reporting sexually aggressive behavior (Ybarra et al, 2011).

The-Great-Porn-Experiment---Gary-Wilson

As something that impacts so many people, and alters their perception of love, respect, and even what it means to “be a man,” this problem is not just found all over the web, but even as close to home as facebook. Porn is something we absolutely have to talk about. Keeping it in the dark: undiscussed, illegal, or unaccountable, only generates more victims. Transparency, responsibility, and open discussion are more in order than any knee-jerk reactions.


This article was chosen for republication based on the interest of our readers. CSGlobe republishes stories from a number of other independent news sources, and are not produced by CSGlobe. Any views or opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author/source presented below, and do not necessarily reflect the position of CSGlobe or its staff.
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