Storytellers of a new generation
“I Even Recommend Pornography As A Treatment Sometimes.”

“I Even Recommend Pornography As A Treatment Sometimes.”

We met a shrink to talk about sex-addiction and porn.

As a de-addiction expert, do you meet many sex addicts?
“I wouldn't say many, but yes, I have seen a few sex-addicts in my practice. They mostly present with compulsive masturbation, erectile dysfunctions, premature ejaculations and personality disorders. Interestingly, sex-addiction is almost always an incidental finding. Very few people come to you for that alone.”

Guys mostly? Do you get women too?
“Oh no! Women too. Absolutely. This stereotype that only men are sex addicts is very repressive. In fact, this repressive society is the basis of most sexual disorders.”
 

He doesn't seem too affected by #PornBan

Speaking of repressive, the govt seems to want to ban porn every few years. What's your opinion?
“Well, it's not a dictatorship, is it? If someone is over 18, they have the freedom to watch whatever they want. Also, looking at pornography as an industry, it follows a supply and demand chain like all other industries. I think banning pornography is more of a political step than a moral one.”

And your medical opinion?
“Pornography is one of the few mediums of sex education in a country like India where sex is never talked about openly. Pornography also leads to many misconceptions related to sex... but I still think its existence is required till we find a better solution.”

When was the last time you watched porn?
“Let me ask you this – what is pornography? If you mean it's an adult film with sexual intercourse, then that's an old definition. Pornography is the use of any media (sound, visual, pictures) to attain sexual gratification. Most of today's Bollywood songs fit that definition, don't they?

Nothing to see here, move along now.

There's some really nasty porn out there. The sick stuff deserves the #PornBan, certainly...
“To each his own. I mean there are very weird things that people eat all over the world that you and I might find disgusting. But there it is. Don't like it, don't eat it. I think it should be the same with pornography. Banning this and banning that is not the answer. It will only cause more repression and a more regressive society.”

Sexual perversion and pornography. Is there a link?
“Difficult to say what came first. I mean there are some perversions which are a way of life but don't affect anyone. Then there are others which could be promoted by pornography and have criminal implications.”

Like rape?
“An individual who is sexually-charged due to pornography could be involved with rape, but that is a very minor factor. Rape is always multi-factoral. There could be other psychiatric disorders, environmental factors too. On the other hand, pornography could also also draw a person away from rape. People usually relieve themselves while watching pornographic videos. Saying pornography leads to rape is like saying video games lead to murder. Does it sound right to you?"

Getting naughty. Image source: Naughty America

Do you think readily-available pornography has an undesired effect on children today? Porn does give them an unreal, instant, sexual gratification that the real world won't provide. How will that affect them in the long run?
“In the long run, regular watching of pornography has proved to lead to sexual disorders like arousal disorder, premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction.”

Yes, too much anything is a bad thing. Is a daily viewing of porn too much? (Asking for a friend)
“Everybody has a different sexual drive at different age with different environments. An average though is 2-3 times a week.”

Is this your average?
“It's the Indian male's average.”

When did you first watch porn? When did it become a habit?
“All boys are exposed to pornographic material in school. Hormonal influences and curiosity of body is the underlying motivation. It is absolutely normal and in fact, one of the essential stages of sexual development. At this time, correct information regarding sex leads to a happier future sexual life. It's why we always tell parents to talk about sex openly with their children after they attain puberty.”

Doctor, when did you first watch porn? When did it become a habit for you?
“In high school, I guess... who remembers now. And I don't think it ever became a habit. I watch some porn occasionally.”

And the wife? Does she mind?
“Not at all.”

Does pornography take the romance out of a relationship?  Does it make love-making a lot more mechanical, methodical? Can it affect a healthy relationship?
“You could say so. If pornography becomes the only means for an individual to attain sexual pleasure then yes, of course, it will affect the relationship and it will take the creativity out of love-making. But that's an extreme case we're talking about. Pornography is also used as a turn-on for some couples, as an aid for couples with sexual problems, a tool to fuel foreplay. If used correctly, I don't see why it wouldn't make the relationship healthier.

Image source: Carnal Skin

The sex-addicts you treat. Just how addicted are they?
“Patients with compulsive masturbation could go up to 25-30 times a day, at the glimpse of the even the least sexually-provocative impulse. I know of a patient who is the complete opposite too. His job involves censoring videos and making them more 'society-friendly'. He suffers from erectile dysfunction.”

Any chance pornography made them this way?
“Maybe. But I'm sure it was not just pornography. Please understand, pornography isn't evil. There are times when I have even recommended porn as a treatment and therapy.”

Porn therapy? Is this just YOUR way, or do most other psychiatrists also do the same?
“Yes. Pornography is a recommended form of treatment for erectile dysfunction. And it's not just my way of treatment. Masters & Johnson studied ways to treat sexual dysfunction in the US in the 70s. They are like the authority on sex, and they too recommended pornography as a rational form of treatment!”

So pornography should at least be available for medicinal use. You know, like medical marijuana?
“Haha! Yeah, why not? Banning cannabis, pornography, beef, alcohol seems purely political. It's moral policing.”

Given the circumstances, can you write me a prescription for porn?
“No.”

Please?

(If you have a question for Dr. Panchal, contact him at alpes@thefreemindinitiative.com. He'll reply as soon as he's done with his occasional pornography.)


Cover picture source: lovethispic.com
Photography: Avijit Pathak