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Sexual Addicts



It is important to understand the difference between a sexual addict vs. a Predator, as a significant number of Predators will play the "addiction card." Both will be found to be involved in online pornography, but the underlying dynamics will be very different.
An Addict is someone who has become ensnared and caught up in pornography, but struggles against it as he knows it is wrong. As a result, he experiences a sense of guilt and shame for what he is doing, and usually has tried unsuccessfully on multiple occasions to stop giving in to its temptation and pull. Because he still has a conscience, he has not progressed into the type of darkened material, which is identified by it's deviant, degrading, twisted, aggressive, or violent scenes, where others are violated, and ages decrease into "barely legal" (which is the gateway into child porn). He fears his sins will be discovered, as he then will be exposed. 
A Predator, however, is different by nature, as he has morphed into the realm of a darkened conscience (referred to in Psychology as 'psychopathy'), with his appetites and interests becoming deviant, twisted, aggressive, degrading, younger and/or more vulnerable, more debasing, and trauma-producing. A Predator has internally become incapable of human relationships and intimacy, and therefore his interests invert from sexual attraction into a lust for seeing another human powerless and in pain. He experiences no guilt, no remorse, and no empathy. He has no sense of shame, so his only concern is ensuring that he is able to hunt without being hindered or stopped. 
Once caught, each will sound very similar in terms of their reactions and excuses. However, their attempts at resisting full disclosure stem from two very different things: the Addict is ashamed of his actions and the pain it has caused in the lives of those who trusted him, a Predator feels no shame, and simply tries to avoid as many consequences as possible.
Once he has been found out, the sexual addict will demonstrate a desire to change, to ensure he does not repeat his past behaviors. A Sexual Predator's only concern is how to "fake it to make it," to appear less psychopathic than he actually is, in order to avoid prison or to complete treatment as quickly as possible, as he has no interest in changing... only in ensuring that he improves his ability to avoid detection once he can resume perpetrating.

Characteristics of Sex Addicts

Briefly put, someone who is a Sexual Addict:
(1) has a sense of shame, 
(2) is humble upon disclosure,
(3) knows he needs help and is actually eager to have someone else help him with a plan of intervention and accountability,
(4) is willing to be 100% open with his use of technology, his whereabouts, and his expenditures, (5) still evidences having a conscience,
(6) would not think of transgressing or violating another person's personal boundaries,
(7) and is willing to accept whatever boundaries or limits might be established by those holding him accountable,
(8) willingly and completely accepts responsibility for his planning and behavior, and
(9) accepts any and all consequences that might befall him as a result of his actions. 
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Characteristics of Sex Addicts
To those who have become addicted to porn, the following exchange on Twitter and advice will prove both informative and useful. It is imperative to understand that Sexual Addiction is unlike any other addiction in the world. How so? As powerful as the range of addictive substances can be, once clean and sober, the addict can live without the former substance. However, it is impossible to go through this life without being constantly bombarded with sexual images. In fact, you don't have to go looking for them, they will come to you. Whether it is simply turning on the TV, computer, or phone, or watching a sporting event, or even commercials, visual temptation is not only a reality, but is presented to trigger the imagination. 
For those who wrestle with "disordered eating" (which would also include emotional eating and the range of eating disorders), you wrestle with the second most difficult issue, as you can't simply remove it from your life. You must deal with your source of temptation and struggle every day. So, you can appreciate the battle for those who have become pulled in by sexual temptation.
However, unlike anything else on earth, pornography is the most direct means of opening one's self up to a very dark and active spiritual realm, which is always seeking to tempt, to lure, to draw and pull a person in and take them over the falls, down into a realm of darkened deviance from which they may never return. This realm will not only change them from within, but will very likely morph them into someone they would not even recognize, capable of doing very harmful and illegal things. If you doubt that, it is because you have not spent sufficient time treating incarcerated sexual offenders. For it is in that context where you hear the stories and see the unnecessary damage which porn has produced in so many lives. 
In the following, listen to the pain and struggle of a man who was willing to post (for all the world to read) the extent of his pain and internal battle, all because he allowed porn to get a foothold. Once that happens, especially for a man, it becomes a horrible task master.
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When Darkness Sets In

When Darkness Sets In
The process by which porn takes hold is little understood, as few men are willing to allow themselves "to be studied" in the right way (observed 24/7 with outside information being given to the researcher), to enable an outsider to dig deeply enough, over a long enough period of time, to truly enable someone to discern the dynamic effects of porn, and the various levels through which a person descends as porn takes hold. It is invisible to the eye, as it happens on a moral and spiritual level. But, under the right conditions, these dynamics clearly become manifest.
That is what makes the following  information so powerful, as SurvivorSupport's founder, Jon K. Uhler, MS, LPC, shares his insights from his 11+ yrs treating approximately 4000 incarcerated sexual predators in both High & Low Intensity Sex Offender Treatment, within both General Population and long-term Solitary Confinement. In fact, having been the one who was recruited to create the nation's first intensive treatment program within long-term Solitary for inmates deemed to be "Intractable to Treatment" (aka "the worst of the worst"), he had the unique opportunity to spend more time in such confines than any another 
clinician in the US, spending not just hours but months (sometimes years) treating serial murderers & rapists (even a cannibal (nicknamed "Hannibal").
It was during those years that Jon knew he had been given an unheard of opportunity to do a deep dive into the criminal mind... into the minds of profoundly darkened psychopaths. It was from those years of intensive analysis, derived from complete and unfettered access to such inmates that his material was developed.
Among his most important findings was the extent to which porn factors in to heinous crimes. Few would know, as it would take the inmates divulging that information. Ted Bundy was willing to during his interview with Dr. James Dobson, but, interestingly, the majority of people refused to listen to the words of a man ready to be executed  for the many women he raped and murdered. 
Since that interview, a number of "experts", who supposedly gained more in-depth insights from spending time with Ted, have written about the "real reasons" for why Ted did what he did. Yet, it is telling that those same supposed experts never send hours with Ted back in Solitary, back at his cell door, talking with him for months-on-end. They knew about Ted from their interactions with him, but not from what he he disclosed in unguarded or unscripted moments. The fact that Ted Bundy contacted only one person to give his only interview is significant. He reached out to Dr. Dobson to disclose the real secret, the real force that "got him started." Unless you've worked with "Lifers" up close and personal for years, you wouldn't know how rare that is.
The truths and insights gained by Dr. Dobson from those few short hours spent with Ted Bundy were profound, as the nation heard from the source, a first-hand testimony, of what contributed to his morphing into a heinous serial murder. Yet, with such original source material, why did most dismiss the interview as merely a stunt, and Dr. Dobson's findings as uninformed. Because the findings spotlighted a very real danger inherent in porn. Why would that be son controversial? It is not intellectually controversial. It is morally convicting, because, sadly, so many people (especially men) secretly consume significant quantities of porn, have become addicted to it, have progressed in their use of porn, and have become darkened on the inside. That is why they emotionally react, and reject the findings of knowledgable professional with first-hand knowledge and experience, as it hits a little too close to home. 
In the following, you will find some of his work showing the downward progression experienced by those who consume porn. Though not all will go on to commit heinous acts, one thing is certain. To the extent they continue to consume porn, they will change in terms of their morals, their character, their values & appetites, their relationships, and their spiritual state. And, interestingly enough, it is their reaction to this reality that shows you just where they are at on their descent down porn's slippery slope. Those who react the most are those are in what Jon Uhler has labeled the Zone of Twisting. That is simply another way of describing what is found in the Old Testament book of Isaiah, Ch. 44:18, and in the New Testament book of Romans Ch. 1: 18-32. The old fashioned term is "reprobation." The modern term for that process is psychopathy.
As you study the following charts, then read through the interactions Jon has posted between himself and people (inevitably men) who react to the prospect that porn causes people to descend into darkness, notice how they will throw up all sorts of things to negate that truth. However, it is interesting to keep in mind that not one of the critics have ever worked clinically with serial murders and rapists.
These are presented in hopes of opening the eyes of people (especially men) to the reality of porn's very real slippery slope. It's dynamic is real, and those who chose to ignore their conscience will inevitably wrap what they sow, and invite unforeseen things into their lives. As Jon has said on more than one occasion as he speaks to men about porn, "I never heard from a single serial rapist/murderer that they intended to become they way they became... something took hold one they took the bait, and they never looked back."
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Characteristics of Predators

Characteristics of Predators

The following brief assessment is offered to help with discerning the difference between a Sexual Addict and a Sexual Predator.
  • If the person has used manipulation or has acted aggressively, he has become a predator.
  • If his choice of porn involved deviance, degradation, children, and harm to others, he has already begun morphing into Predator.
  • If he paid for porn in any fashion or if he found his porn by means of a Virtual Private Network, he has likely moved well within the realm of a Predator.
  • If he used the Dark Web to seek out porn, he is already well within the realm of a Predator.
  • If he viewed or downloaded porn involving pre-pubescent kids, he is a Predator.
  • If he has illegal porn on his electronics, he has become a Predator.
  • If he does not take full responsibility after being exposed for his actions, he is either an unrepentant addict with no intention of changing (soon-to-become a Predator), or a Predator. Either way, he is not to be trusted. 
  • If he does not intensely seek out "no nonsense" help (which includes 100% transparency and accountability, run by people who require 100% abstinence & truthfulness), then he cannot claim to be addicted.
  • If he doesn't hate what his sin is doing to those closest to him, then he is either an insincere addict or a Predator. As such, he is to be viewed as a probable Predator. 
  • If he is not intensely focused on conquering the evil he has invited into his life, which has now latched onto him, he must be viewed as a Predator-in-waiting.
  • If he does not exhibit a healthy fear of television and electronics/computers, and if he has not cancelled all cable service for himself, he cannot be viewed as an addict, but as a deceptive Predator.
  • If he is not ready to give everything up to save his marriage and family, and rebuild his reputation, then he is likely not addicted, but instead a Predator who is invested in fooling those around him.
Distinguishing Characteristics

Distinguishing Characteristics

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Sexual Predator Commonalities 

Once "busted" by law enforcement for possession of illegal pornography (which will always include charges of possession & distribution of child porn), the guilty party will inevitably plead not guilty, claiming to not know how the porn made its way onto his computer or other electronic devices.
The Most Intensive Embedded Qualitative Forensic Research of incarcerated sex offenders and Sexual Predators (approximately 4000 over 11+ yrs) found that 100% of all incarcerated sex offenders had become increasingly saturated in progressively harder pornography prior to their arrest, with the majority having made the viewing of porn a constant and consistent part of their daily habits for years. Additionally, it was found that the majority of offenders had been arrested for offenses against minors, with the pornography found on their computers to match the ages of their victims. However, very few of those offenders were found to have started with child pornography. This speaks to the trend of progression downward in terms of the ages of the focus of attention  
A sex addict will finally come clean in humility. A Predator will never fully admit the extent to which he was involved. And, to the extent that he does admit, he will begin looking for ways to minimize his culpability, and the extent of his criminal liability. 
The following represent fairly common things you will see and hear from a Sexual Predator: 
Sexual Predator Commonalities
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Some Key Differences

Some Key Differences

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The following serve to highlight some key differences between the Sexual Addict and the Sexual Predator
The Sexual Addict:
(1) will have a demonstrated history of attempts at stopping his behavior, as he knows it is wrong; 
(2) will evidence a low level of sophistication in terms of "covering his tracks" (as he is being driven by an emotional need, and has therefore not spent time working on his ability to deceive others);
(3) still experiences a sense of shame at what he is doing;
(4) will never actively violate the rights of others; 
(5) will not derive pleasure in taking advantage of another person sexually, or watching another person do so;
(6) will not be interested in images of pre-pubescent girls, and will be repulsed ay images of children;
(7) will not be interested in anything beyond "soft core" porn, or anything involving exploitation, degradation, coercion, harm, or violence; 
(8) will not have to be told about the meaning of, or definition of, "consent";
(9) will not let himself off the hook by referring to his behavior as "acting out";
(10) will not be confused between consensual vs. nonconsensual;
(11) will not make excuses for deviance. 
The Sexual Predator:
(1) will be found to have progressed in his porn viewing from photos to videos, and eventually live stream hard-core porn, which involves themes of degradation, exploitation, farce, harm, violence, pre-pubescent youth and/or children;
(2) will be found to be aroused by that which is deviant, degrading, debased, twisted, extremely objectifying, and injurious to the other person;
(3) has lost interest in "normal sex";
(4) is not only disinterested in anything that has to do with normal relationships, and healthy sexuality where the partner's satisfaction is a primary motivator & concern, but actually views that as unappealing;
(5) finds satisfaction in viewing scenes where someone is subjected to emotional trauma and physical pain or worse;
(6) has experienced changes within his brain that have:
     (a) eliminated any interest in normal human relations and normal sexuality,
     (b) produced an increasing appetite for twisted, depraved, and darker material,
     (c) permanently transition the capacity for human connection into only a capacity for conquest, dominance, and a sadistic satisfaction at seeing another person emotionally scarred and traumatized.
The following posts will focus on the primary differences noted between the Addict and the Predator when it comes to the issue of conscience:
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Assessing Validity of Change
Assessing the Content of the Porn

Assessing Validity of Change

Since it has been shown that pornography effects the the brain in much the same way as crack cocaine, and given that it opens the door to a very dark and malevolent force deep within a man's soul, and considering that porn is mental infidelity, nothing short of radical dedication to change will work and nothing else should be deemed acceptable to loved ones who are impacted by porn's darkness.
A man cannot compromise in his approach to this issue, as nothing short of radical soul surgery will do in the fight against such spiritual, emotional, mental, and psychological darkness.  If he is not 100% serious about change, he is only fooling himself and others, and must therefore be viewed at the very least as a deceiver, and more than likely morphing into a Predator.  
Since "talk is cheap", are their some telltale signs that can help you discern whether a man has become serious about change... whether he is genuinely repentant and changed, or simply has no intention of letting go of his deviance, has become more adept at deception, and is simply a fake and a fraud?
The following should help:
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Assessing Validity of Change
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