Camp for Teen Pornography Addicts

Aug 08, 2012

Tags: ;

An epidemic is a widespread occurrence of something negative affecting a large community. A pandemic is an outbreak across an entire country or world. I dare to say that pornography use and addiction are at a pandemic stage.

Thousands of pornography users are confessing that they simply can’t stop. Of these self-confessed addicts, devastatingly, many are teenagers. Some are as young as 12 years old.

Because the issue of pornography addiction is prevalent in treatment centers for troubled youth, Utah therapists and counselors were inspired to create academies solely for treating school-age boys with pornography addiction. Stephen Schultz developed Oxbow Academy and in the last year added Mount Pleasant program due to the rise in demand for treatment.

The cost per month for treatment at one of these academies is over $6,000. If you discover or are told your child is addicted to pornography, would you be unwilling to pay for treatment?

One teen said: “I was in a state of torment. I knew I needed to stop. It was horrible. I couldn’t stop. I didn’t have enough self-control to tell my parents or to get myself help.”

Most arrive at the centers having already accepted their addiction. They typically say: “I have a problem. I don’t know what to do and I can’t control it. I can’t quit.”

Easy access to pornography is one of the major causes for addiction. Because it is so readily available online, teens have constant access--especially if they own a smartphone.

One teen said this about his addiction: “What’s weird is I can operate off two hours of sleep and not look like I’m tired. Whenever I was around [my parents], I was ‘playing games’ — they thought I was just doing it to have fun.”

Once a person begins looking at pornography, his or her dopamine and other natural pleasure chemical levels skyrocket. The viewer is left with a rush of adrenalin (excitement) and natural pain-reducing chemicals flowing through the bloodstream. When a viewer sees pornography often, these levels increase and the body builds a tolerance. Once the tolerance is set, the body requires a higher level of chemical flow in the body to achieve the same “rush.” This is why these teens struggle; their bodies crave the natural chemical high. The body tells the brain that it must have the chemicals in order to survive.

Addiction programs are designed help teens overcome addiction. The principle is that outdoor exercise and academic learning are the best distractions. Activities include camping, fishing, art classes, sports, and mandatory equine experiential therapy. Participants interact with horses in a confidence-boosting exercise.

The goal is simple: help teens overcome pornography addiction.

“We’re not trying to attack the porn industry itself,” Olsen said. “We respect First Amendment rights and understand that people have to right to view it and produce most forms of it. We just feel that more people would avoid it if they knew what it was doing to them.”

I believe parents can help best by having open dialogue about Internet use and by using parental control solutions, if warranted.

I work for ContentWatch and all opinions expressed here are my own.