She watched 400 hours of porn. Now she’s given it up completely (and helping others quit, too)
LONDON, March 10, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Admitting years of addiction to hardcore pornography and masturbation is one of the most difficult things many people could imagine. Yet a YouTube video posted by a female law student has gone around the globe, reaching more than 130,000 people with the message that there is a way out of the darkness.
The story of Oghosa Ovienrioba, a 22-year-old Coventry University student who grew up in the UK, began the way many similar tales begin: with years of sexual abuse.
Oghosa said that as a child, she was molested for years by a family friend. In time, she internalized the need for sexual contact. After her family moved, she began to act out sexually by masturbating.
“When I would feel depressed, or when something bad was going on in the home, it would start again and be more frequent,” she said. “Every time I did it, I just felt really dirty.”
At age 14, she discovered pornography and within a year, she was watching “every few days when I could.”
“The thing about porn is, it works on desensitizing,” she said. “It’s also delving you more and more into it, because you’re constantly looking for something that’s going to fulfill the pleasures that you’ve got or give you that kick. That’s what happened to me.”
When she turned 17, she began dating someone, and the need for sexual affirmation faded, so she stopped watching hardcore films.
Then she went into “a strange limbo” in university. At age 18, she began isolating herself in a dark room with porn videos. “That’s when I was watching porn once a week, and then it would increase to twice a week. By the time I was 21, it was almost like everyday – everyday, twice a day, three times a day.”
“If I wasn’t doing anything, it would be all the time,” she said.
She later told The Daily Mail, “I would sit in my room alone for hours, with the lights off, watching porn. … It was all I could think about.”
That hypersexuality began to change her sense of sexual attraction – and to loosen her bonds to the rest of humanity.
“When you see people, you don’t even see people anymore, like, regardless of sex – as in gender,” she said in her video. “You see them as sex objects. And the simplest thing can set you off.”
Seeing a man, or a woman, innocently unbutton a button on a shirt or blouse could trigger an erotic obsession. “Because you’ve been seeing it in porn, you can enact it in your head,” she revealed.
Then one day, a Christian friend told her that Jesus Christ wanted to have a personal relationship with her. Oghosa said she felt her soul was contaminated, as though her history of self-pleasure made her unworthy of love.
But at age 21, she accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior.
“Literally, everything changed,” she said. “From the day I was saved, I never touched porn again.”
She said in the video – uploaded to YouTube last February – that she had not come to terms with how beholden she had become to pornography until after Christ came into her life.
“I never really thought it had a hold on me until probably right now,” she said. “Sex, I feel like in a sense it stole some of my life away. It’s like you become a slave to it.”
“After I was saved, everything changed, and I felt so clean and I didn’t feel disgusting and dirty and a freak,” she said.
Embracing Christianity changed the way she lived her life and the kinds of things she put into her mind, she told the Daily Mail. “As a Christian, you have to be quite controlled about what you let into your heart, in terms of what you see and do,” she said. “So now, I don’t read sex scenes in books and I don’t listen to oversexualised music…I also try to avoid inappropriate programs on TV late at night.’
Although her 2014 vlog was marked “private,” the 15-minute video diary has gone viral throughout the world, being covered by European, African, and North American media. The video has been seen more than 138,000 as of this writing.
The statistics drive home an inescapable fact: A huge global population is struggling with the harms of unleashed pornography.
In 2012, ExtremeTech magazine estimated that 30 percent of all internet traffic is dedicated to pornography. In 2013, the porn industry made $97 billion worldwide, according to Kassia Wosick, assistant professor of sociology at New Mexico State University – approximately $10-12 billion in the United States.
Counselors are seeing porn addictions at ever-younger ages. Meanwhile, neuroscience has shown that frequent porn use makes adult male brains more impulsive and childish.
The epidemic of porn abuse has become so undeniable that even MTV has warned against the harms pornography causes its users, particularly a lack of mental focus on the job or at school.
Oghosa said she has heard from people from every corner of the earth who shared the same secret.
“I received hundred of heartwarming comments from women who were going through the same thing for years,” she has said.
“When I read some of the comments on that video, it brings a tear to my eye. People have told me how alone they felt with their addiction until they saw my video,” she added.
“Lots of people don’t think girls can suffer a porn addiction but it’s a problem for both sexes. I hope I can help others out there.”
While it is good so many are seeking self-care, she said the authorities need to arrest the problem facing the youth and pre-adolescence of the entire planet.
“It’s heartbreaking to know that children can still access pornography so easily like I did,” she said. “There are age restrictions on drinking and smoking – the same should go for porn.”
She ends her video with a simple message for those who may know someone – or are approached by someone – who is quietly addicted to flashing images of sexuality.
“That person’s got a story, and that person just wants to be listened to,” she said.
“I think the lesson behind this video is just to listen – listen to what people are telling you, not to quickly find a solution to it. Just listen.”
30% of web’s total traffic is for porn: tech magazine
WASHINGTON, D.C., April 12, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Anyone who uses Google knows that porn is all over the web. But how pervasive is it really?
After an investigation, the popular technology magazine ExtremeTech estimates that porn websites account for as much as 30% of the web’s total traffic. The largest porn sites out there outpace everything but the “Googles and Facebooks of the internet,” writes Senior Editor Sebastian Anthony.
Xvideos, the world’s largest porn site, gets 4.4 billion page views per month – about three times as many as CNN.com. But there are dozens of porn sites on the web’s top 500 destinations, writes Anthony.
And page views are only just the beginning.
“It’s only when you factor in what those porn surfers are actually doing that the size and scale of adult websites truly comes into focus,” Anthony writes.
Each of those visitors spends vastly more time on porn sites than others: an average visit is around 15 to 20 minutes, compared to three to six minutes for a news website.
And the amount of data transferred is “astronomical,” Anthony says, because while most websites are just text and images, porn sites are mostly streaming videos.
While loading a news article might involve 500 kilobytes, a video is more like 100 kilobytes per second, or 90 megabytes over 15 minutes. At this rate, considering the number of visitors, Xvideos is likely averaging around 50 gigabytes per second, or 29 petabytes per month, says Anthony. Later in the article, he admits it’s probably closer to 35 or 40 petabytes per month.
For comparison’s sake, he notes that an internet connection at home normally only transfers a couple of megabytes per second.
“In short, porn sites cope with astronomical amounts of data. The only sites that really come close in term of raw bandwidth are YouTube or Hulu, but even then YouPorn is something like six times larger than Hulu,” he writes.
YouPorn, the second most popular porn site on the web, alone accounts for around 2% of the web’s traffic, he says.
“There are dozens of porn sites on the scale of YouPorn, and hundreds that are the size of ExtremeTech or your favorite news site. It’s probably not unrealistic to say that porn makes up 30% of the total data transferred across the internet,” Anthony writes.
“The internet really is for porn.”
Just how big are porn sites?
By Sebastian Anthony on April 4, 2012
- It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a person in possession of a fast internet connection must be in want of some porn.
- While it’s difficult domain to penetrate — hard numbers are few and far between — we know for a fact that porn sites are some of the most trafficked parts of the internet. According to Google’s DoubleClick Ad Planner, which tracks users across the web with a cookie, dozens of adult destinations populate the top 500 websites. Xvideos, the largest porn site on the web with 4.4 billion page views per month, is three times the size of CNN or ESPN, and twice the size of Reddit. LiveJasmin isn’t much smaller. YouPorn, Tube8, and Pornhub — they’re all vast, vast sites that dwarf almost everything except the Googles and Facebooks of the internet.
- While page views are a fine starting point, they only tell you that X porn site is more popular than Y non-porn site. Four billion page views sure sounds like a lot, but it’s only when you factor in what those porn surfers are actually doing that the size and scale of adult websites truly comes into focus.
- We’ll start by laying the ground work, and then on the second page we have some real world figures from YouPorn, the second largest porn site on the web. If you like, take a moment to try and estimate the amount of traffic that YouPorn handles every second. Let us know in the comments if your guess is anywhere near.
- The main difference between porn and non-porn sites is the average duration of a visit: For a news site like Engadget or ExtremeTech, an average visit is usually between three and six minutes; enough time to read one or two stories. The average time spent on a porn site, however, is between 15 and 20 minutes.
- Then you need to factor in that most websites are predominantly text and images, while the largest porn sites push streaming video. When you load the ExtremeTech home page, you’re talking about a couple of megabytes, and then maybe 500 kilobytes if you load an article. When you stream porn, assuming a low resolution of 480×200, you’re looking at around 100 kilobytes per second — which, over 15 minutes, is around 90 megabytes.
- Then you need to multiply 90 megabytes by the number of monthly visits — which is around 350 million for Xvideos. This comes to around 29 petabytes of data transferred every month, or 50 gigabytes per second. To put this into comparison, your home internet connection is probably capable of transferring a couple of megabytes per second, which is about 25,000 times smaller.
- In short, porn sites cope with astronomical amounts of data. The only sites that really come close in term of raw bandwidth are YouTube or Hulu, but even then YouPorn is something like six times larger than Hulu.
- Serving up videos requires a lot more resources than plain text and images, in terms of storage, CPU cycles, internal I/O, and bandwidth.
- While it obviously varies from site to site, most adult sites will probably store in the region of 50 to 200 terabytes of porn. This is quite a lot for a website (only something like Google, Facebook, Blogger, or YouTube would store more data), but in a world where 2TB drives are cheap and plentiful, this isn’t ultimately a very large amount. Last year we wrote about a Backblaze storage pod that can store 135TB in a 4U case, for just $7,400.
- CPU cycles and I/O will be a function of the bitrate of the streaming video and the number of page views. First the porn site has to serve up a dynamic, searchable database of thousands of videos, and then, when someone clicks on a video, that file needs to be read from a hard disk and streamed over the internet. If you’ve ever transferred a lot of big files over a local network (i.e. stressed both your hard drive and Ethernet port) you will know how taxing this is.
- Actual hardware requirements are almost impossible to derive (they’re not publicized), but in the case of a large porn site we’re probably talking about racks of quad-CPU servers, gigabit switches, and load balancers. Software-wise, most large porn sites will use a very-high-throughput database such as Redis to store and serve videos, and a light-weight HTTP server like Nginx to serve up the web pages.
- Finally, bandwidth. Referring back to our Xvideos example (based on an Ad Planner estimate), a large porn site will have to have enough connectivity to serve up 50 gigabytes per second, or 400Gbps. Bear in mind this is an average data rate, too: At peak time, Xvideos might burst to 1,000Gbps (1Tbps) or more. To put this into perspective, there’s only about 15Tbps of connectivity between London and New York.
- There are only so many ways of coping with this much traffic: You set up your own data center, rent a few racks in a very large data center, or use a cloud provider like Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure.
A real-world example
The second largest porn site on the web, YouPorn, was kind enough to furnish us with some real-world facts and figures. You’ll be glad (or scared) to know that the estimated DoubleClick Ad Planner figures are actually quite a lot lower than reality.
YouPorn hosts “over 100TB of porn”, and serves “over 100 million” page views per day. All told, this equates to an average of 950 terabytes of data transfer per day, almost all of which is streaming video. This is around 28 petabytes per month, which means our 29PB estimate for Xvideos is on the low side; it probably serves 35 to 40PB per month.
It gets better! At peak time, YouPorn serves 4000 pages per second, equating to burst traffic in the region of 100 gigabytes per second, or 800Gbps. This is equivalent to transferring more than 10 dual-layer DVDs every second.
On the software-side of things, YouPorn’s primary data store is 100% Redis, with MySQL used as an admin tool to manage and add data to the Redis cluster. The site used to be primarily programmed in Perl with a MySQL backend, but in 2011 Perl was switched out for PHP and MySQL replaced with Redis. Nginx acts as the HTTP server, with both HAProxy and Varnish both used to load balance.
The Redis server deals with 300,000 queries per second, and between 8-15GB of data is logged every hour (visitor logs, behavior data, and so on). We’re told that this software stack should be capable of scaling up to 200 million views per day.
Sadly, YouPorn couldn’t tell us about its hardware infrastructure. Judging by the IP addresses of the YouPorn content delivery network (CDN), it’s probably not hosted by a cloud provider like Amazon, but rather in a large data center somewhere, with peering provided by Level 3.
To put that 800Gbps figure into perspective, the internet only handles around half an exabyte of traffic every day, which equates to around 50Tbps — in other words, a single porn site accounts for almost 2% of the internet’s total traffic. There are dozens of porn sites on the scale of YouPorn, and hundreds that are the size of ExtremeTech or your favorite news site. It’s probably not unrealistic to say that porn makes up 30% of the total data transferred across the internet.
The internet really is for porn.
MTV ran this anti-porn piece. Really??
It’s not uncommon that MTV does something I can’t believe, but it is rare when my incredulity is provoked by the network doing something good. That’s why I was taken aback when MTV published an article on its website yesterday about the harms of porn addiction.
“Is it possible that watching adult videos is why your performance is slipping from 9 to 5?” asks writer Tess Barker in her article, “Is Watching Porn At Home Making You Perform Worse At Work?” And her answer is yes.
She accurately relates the facts of addiction: Porn triggers the release of dopamine in the brain, which can flood its reward centers and lead to a need for more extreme porn to get the same “high.” Like other forms of dependence, the search for harder and harder porn can lead to the inability to concentrate.
She also includes a video clip of Gary Wilson’s TED Talk on habitual porn use. Wilson explained that porn addiction “symptoms are easily mistaken for other conditions, such as ADHD, social anxiety, depression, performance anxiety, [Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder], and so on.”
Although Barker never references it, work is not the only place porn could hurt your performance.
As of this writing, her article has already had more than 2,000 shares on Facebook.
The fact that this appeared on MTV’s website is significant. MTV has been a purveyor of softcore porn for decades, from its beach programs to the Clinton-era series Undressed to Miley Cyrus’ twerking. The fact that this warning was published in a mainstream pop culture outlet speaks to the fact that porn’s harms have become so common place that they can no longer be ignored.
What massive reversal will come next? Will MTV start playing music again?
Is Watching Porn At Home Making You Perform Worse At Work?
If you can’t focus at the office, your browser history may be to blame.
By Tess Barker 1/14/2015
Tonight on the season premiere of “Guy Code,” the cast is talking about porn. If you’re reading this post at work right now, then you obviously have other stuff on your mind besides the, um, job at hand.
Is it possible that watching adult videos is why your performance is slipping from 9 to 5? A growing number of researchers (and reformed porn addicts) say, “Yes, yes, yes.” Here’s why…
For some people, internet porn is highly addictive
A significant percentage of people with genitals and a WiFi connection can likely attest to the fact that pornography is habit-forming. And they can be even stronger than other addictions because, when it comes to sex, we have an evolutionary desire to “get it while the getting [is] good,” explains Gary Wilson, a retired physiology teacher and the author of “Your Brain On Porn,” in the TED Talk above.
Your brain gets a hit of the reward hormone dopamine when you look at new images of naked people. Excessive amounts of dopamine can lead your brain to trigger a binge mechanism called “Delta FosB.” This leads to stronger cravings, which, compounded with our modern unlimited access to porn, can allow an addiction to quickly spiral out of control.
As with any addiction, once your brain has been wired to become fixated on porn, virtually everything else becomes secondary to you — even that promotion you want but can’t seem to bring yourself to hustle for.
This impacts your brain’s ability to function correctly
Studies have indicated that “pornographic picture processing” can have a negative impact on your brain’s working memory. This is a part of the brain that, for example, helps you troubleshoot when you get that email from an angry client, or allows you to meet a deadline while successfully fielding emails.
Excessive porn use has also been linked to increased impulsivity, so if you can’t seem to muster up enough self-control to get that report written, it may be the fault of “Hot Teacher Does Oral.”
According to Wilson, internet porn addiction “symptoms are easily mistaken for other conditions, such as ADHD, social anxiety, depression, performance anxiety, OCD, and so on,” and a misdiagnosis may cause job performance issues to continue. “So, many guys never realize that they could reverse their symptoms by changing their behavior.”
Thousands of guys swear that giving up porn has made them better employees
Perhaps the most compelling evidence linking porn use and crappy job performance is anecdotal. Here’s the anonymous testimony of dudes who claim to have stopped watching clips of other people having sex:
“My writing has gotten much better…. word choice, sentence structure, etc. During my first year of graduate school (which I just finished), writing was a real chore. Now, after no-porn, it’s a pleasure. So easy and free. I have more words at my disposal, probably because my memory has improved in general.”
“I feel much more in control and calm now…My ability to concentrate and think logically has skyrocketed without the fog.”
“My concentration, my effort, my attention to detail, my memory, my recall, and my social skills have all improved.”
Maybe it’s time to give your right hand a rest?
Women can Be Addicted to Online Porn Like Men: Study
By Staff Reporter – 07 Aug ’14
Men and women who are frequent viewers of porn have equal risks of cyberporn addiction, finds a new study.
Previous psychological theories define porn addiction as a serious threat to sexual relations as porn addicts are more inclined to the virtual medium to fuel their erotic fantasies. Recent studies also hold that porn addicts are narcissists who like to take control over the entire act of cuddling under the sheets. German scientists from the Duisburg-Essen University found internet pornography is the ‘new cocaine’ and women, just like men are likely to become porn addicts.
The experts looked at the online pornographic dependency in 102 heterosexual women and almost half of these participants were regular porn viewers. The subjects were made to watch 100 images of sexual content to note their level of sexual appetite and hypersexual behaviors like promiscuity, too much masturbation and porn addiction.
“Results indicated internet porn users rated pornographic images as more arousing and reported greater carving due to pornographic picture presentation compared with non-users,” said Matthias Brand, study author and professor at the Duisburg-Essen University, reports the Telegraph.
“Moreover craving, sexual arousal rating pictures, sensitivity to sexual excitation, problematic sexual behavior and severity of psychological symptoms predicted tendencies towards cybersex addiction in internet porn users,” he adds.
However, the study observed no relation between porn addiction and participant’s relationship status, number of sexual contacts and use of internet to meet prospective sexual partners. These findings strongly point at the similarity in cyberporn addiction between heterosexual men and women.
But, the authors believe their trial had a few limitations like majority of women were aged under 30. Therefore, they add the results may be related to individuals of the same age group.
More information is available online in the journals Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking.
Neuroscience has proved that porn is literally making men’s brains more childish. Seriously.
Matt Fradd – Wed Jan 14, 2015
Two hundred years ago in the U.K., if you said you were going to a “gentleman’s club,” it was understood you were going to a private upper-class establishment where you could relax, read, play parlor games, get a meal, and gossip with others of your class. Today, in the U.S., if you said you were going to a “gentleman’s club,” it is assumed you will be paying to see a striptease in a low-lit bar.
Is this really what should typify a “gentleman”?
Pornography is often classified, along with other sexually oriented businesses, as “adult” entertainment—something for “mature” audiences. If this meant that these kinds of entertainment are “not suitable for children” then few would protest.
That said, it would be foolish to use this as an argument that pornography is suitable for adults. Heroin and methamphetamines are also “not suitable for children,” but this does not mean, ipso facto, that they are healthy for those over the age of 18.
Porn advocates are fond of saying (“fond” is an understatement—they repeat it like a mantra) that pornography is sophisticated, mature entertainment suitable for responsible adults. Porn, they will have you believe, is what true gentlemen appreciate—like blue cheese, good scotch, and Dostoyevsky. As the infamous Ron Jeremy is quick to say: “Pornography is consensual sex between consenting adults, to be watched by consenting adults.”
Which leads us to ask: What exactly constitutes “adult” or “mature” behavior? Is it merely a commentary on the age of the participant? Or is it about something more? Stipulating proper definitions is complicated because today these terms are so often used as synonyms for erotic media—which is the very topic we’re trying to dissect.
One way we use the term “mature” is when talking about reaching a final or desired state. We speak of “mature wine” as wine that has reached its peak fermentation and is ready to be consumed. We also use the word “mature” to speak of someone who has “grown up” in his or her behaviors and attitudes—they don’t display the impetuousness and naivety of youth. This is clearly what the patrons of strip clubs are doing by calling these establishments “gentlemen’s clubs”: they are insinuating that the activities that go on are part of manly, refined behaviors.
Dopamine and the brain
Ask any neuroscientist what a “mature” human brain looks like, and he or she will likely talk to you about a region of the brain known as the prefrontal cortex. It is located directly behind the forehead and serves as the managerial center of the brain. It is responsible for our willpower, regulating our behavior, and making decisions based on wisdom and principles. When emotions, impulses, and urges surge from the midbrain, the lobes in the prefrontal cortex are there to exercise “executive control” over them. By the age of 25, this region of the brain reaches maturity, meaning that our thinking becomes more sophisticated and we can regulate our emotions more easily.
Why bring neuroscience into the equation? Because fascinating research is being done looking at the impact of viewing porn on this region of the brain.
The brain is designed in such a way to respond to sexual stimulation. Surges of dopamine are released during a sexual encounter—and yes, also pornographic encounters—giving the person a sharp sense of focus and an awareness of sexual craving. Dopamine helps to lay down memories in the brain, so the next time a man or woman is in the mood, the brain remembers where to return to experience the same pleasure: whether that be a loving spouse or the laptop in the den.
However, scientists are now seeing that continued exposure to porn gives the brain an unnatural high—something it literally isn’t wired to handle—and the brain eventually fatigues. Anatomy and physiology instructor Gary Wilson notes this is the same pattern noticed when drugs are abused: the brain becomes desensitized. More of the drug or harder drugs are needed to get the same high, and the downward spiral begins. Wilson says this brings about significant changes in the brain—both for drug abusers and porn users.
One of those changes is the erosion of the prefrontal cortex—that all-important center of executive control. When this region of the brain is weakened, when the craving for porn hits, there is very little willpower present to regulate the desire. Neuroscientists call this problem hypofrontality, where the person slowly loses impulse control and the mastery of his or her passions.
The point is this: The very thing in the brain that is the mark of adulthood and maturity is the thing that is eroded as we view more porn. It is as if the brain is reverting, becoming more childlike. “Adult” entertainment is actually making us more juvenile.
Hugh Hefner’s brilliant lie
The attempt to make sexual deviancy appear gentlemanly seems to me to be nothing more than the attempt of weak men to justify shameful behavior. Since the very first issue of Playboy hit the magazine racks in 1953, Hugh Hefner’s strategy was two-fold: to distributors he would market the magazine as soft-core porn, but to the target audience he would market it as a men’s “lifestyle magazine” for upwardly mobile men. Sociologist Gail Dines explains how Playboy marketed itself, thus beginning the cultural change of porn’s public image:
“[W]hen the editors addressed the reader, the pictures were just one of many attractions, rather than the attraction. The reader was invited not to masturbate to the centerfold but rather to enter the world of the cultural elite, to discuss philosophy and consume food associated with the upper middle class…The markers of upper-class life, which appear causally thrown in as afterthoughts (cocktails, hors d’oeurves, and Picasso), were deliberately placed to cloak the magazine in an aura of upper-middle class respectability.”
Just as sure as Playboy would have died without the naked women lining its pages, it also would have died without its articles and advertisements, which gave permission to the self-defined middle-class American male to indulge in porn.
Why is it that Adult stores offer back entrances? Is it because their clientele are misunderstood revolutionaries who are plotting the demise of a sexually repressed society? Or is it much simpler than that? Is it because they know that such behavior is wrong?
When one considers the options, which activity sounds more “mature” and grown-up: Making love for a lifetime to one real flesh-and-blood woman whom you are eagerly serving and cherishing, despite all her faults and blemishes (and despite your own), or sneaking away at night to troll the Internet, flipping from woman to woman, from one 30 second teaser to another, for hours on end, pleasuring yourself as you bond to pixels on a screen?
No, indulging pornographic media and other forms of commercial sex are hardly befitting of the adjective “adult.” Actions speak louder than words—even when those words are five feet high, neon, and constitute the phrase “gentlemen’s club.”