Fighter & Recovering Porn Addict
Trigger Warning: Trigger warning: Graphic descriptions of sex acts and porn videos are discussed during this conversation.
Sebastian is a Fighter from Madrid, Spain, who has been struggling with pornography from a young age. He was eight when he was first exposed to porn when he and his friends searched for it out of curiosity, and by the time he was 12 years old, it became a compulsive habit that escalated into more hardcore genres. Sebastian discovered that he was struggling to perform sexually with partners in real life without porn, so he started to research how pornography affects the brain and sexual performance. In this episode, Sebastian talks about how he’s tried to break free from pornography several times and how he’s still actively working to break free completely. Listen to Sebastian give his honest (and, at times, triggering) account of how porn has negatively impacted him, and how understanding the research on its negative effects and the industry’s ties to sex trafficking has helped in his ongoing battle to quit porn for good.
If you or a loved one is struggling to break free from porn, you’re not alone. Check out our friends at Fortify, an online science-based recovery platform dedicated to helping people find lasting freedom from pornography. Connect with others, learn about your compulsive behavior, and track your journey all on Fortify’s online platform. Join tens of thousands of users around the world who have found healing and recovery with Fortify. Get started for free at ftnd.org/fortify.
FROM THIS EPISODE
- Check out our documentary series “Brain, Heart, World”
- Get involved in #NoPornovember
- Article: Why Consuming Porn Can Be an Escalating Behavior
- Article: How Porn Affects Sexual Tastes
- Article: How Porn Changes the Brain
- Article: Why Porn Leaves Consumers Feeling Lonely
- Article: How Porn Damages Consumers’ Sex Lives
- Article: By The Numbers: Is the Porn Industry Connected to Sex Trafficking
Fight the New Drug Ad: How can pornography impact you, your loved ones and the world around you? Discover the answer for yourself in our free three part documentary series brain, heart world in three 30 minute episodes. This docu-series dives into how pornography impacts individuals, relationships and society with witty narration and colorful animation. This age appropriate series shines a hopeful light on this heavy topic. In each episode, you’ll hear from experts who share research on porn’s harms as well as true stories from people who have been impacted personally by pornography. Stream the full series for free or purchase an affordable screening license at brainheartworld.org
Sebastian: I just started to do it more and more often, you know, and suddenly I was doing like a five, six times per day, and that’s when I felt like.… You know, like this is really changing me.
Garrett: My name is Garrett Jonsson and you’re listening to Consider Before Consuming a podcast by Fight the New Drug. And in case you’re new here Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography, by raising awareness on its harmful effects, using only science facts and personal accounts. We want these conversations to be educational, uplifting, and hopeful. As we sit down with experts, influencers, activists, and people with personal accounts, we cover a wide variety of topics that may be triggering to some, you can refer to the episode notes for a specific trigger warning- listener discretion is advised.
Today’s episode is with Sebastian. He’s 21 years old lives in Madrid, Spain, and he’s a Fighter. He first sought out porn at eight years old, within a few years, he noticed that his porn consumption had escalated to more and more often. He wanted to quit, but couldn’t, he almost gave up, but didn’t, and that’s one of the powerful takeaways from this episode. It’s about progression, not perfection with all that being said, let’s just jump into the conversation. We hope you enjoy this episode of Consider Before Consuming.
Garrett: Let’s just jump into it then. Sebastian, technically I should, I should say Sebastian, right?
Sebastian: Yeah. I mean, it’s fine. Most people called me Sebastian because at work I work with a English speaking persons, so I even present myself as Sebastian it’s all right.
Garrett: Okay. Well, Sebastian, we want to thank you for, um, being willing to join us and record a conversation for the podcast.
Sebastian: You’re welcome.
Garrett: Um, first of all, I think it’d be interesting to kind of get to know you a little bit better, Sebastian.
Sebastian: Of course. My name is Sebastian. I am from Madrid in Spain. Uh, I am a 21 year old guy and well, I’m basically here to share a little bit of my personal account with a porn addiction.
Garrett: Well, can you share with us Sebastian, something that you’re proud of, like a big accomplishment that you’ve achieved in your life?
Sebastian: No, I think, eh, when, when you send me the questions and I was reading them, these ones, uh, actually the typical question that you think, “How should I say here?”
Sebastian: You know, and I come to the realization, you know, that the, I think the thing that I’m most proud of is how, how I’ve changed and how I’ve mature, you know, during the, I don’t know, since I was 15 and just how I’ve changed, how lately I’m becoming more and more, you know, loving more of myself, eh, having more introspection, being able to look back at the past and just be okay with it. And I think that’s something that I’m really proud of.
Garrett: I like that. That’s true success, you know, I think it’s, it’s easy to look at some of the things we’ve done, the, whether it’s a goal or a status that we’ve reached or a job that we’ve earned or something that we’ve purchased and those things, I don’t know if they’re true happiness. I think what you’re talking about awareness and acceptance and presence. I think those are where true happiness lie. So that’s cool. I’m excited for this conversation. Um, I think it’s kind of interesting because as we plan for this conversation, it’s been maybe a month or so maybe two months since we kind of initially connected, is that correct?
Sebastian: Yeah. Something like that. Maybe a month and a half.
Garrett: And recently when I reached out to you, you said that you’re like, “I don’t know if I’m ready to do this because I recently had a relapse.”
Sebastian: Yeah, that’s true. Yeah.
Garrett: And I, I hope are you okay if I shared that?
Sebastian: Yeah, for sure.
Garrett: Yeah. The reason why I think it’s cool to share that is because I think it’s important to know that, um, the goal isn’t perfection, it’s just about progression and learning and, and awareness. Um, so I think that’s cool that you’re here, even though you just had a relapse.
Sebastian: Yeah. Uh, it was a bit of a tough moment for me because it had been already one year, more than one year since I had not watch any kind of porn, but it, well, you know, something that alone I’ve learned along the journey and during the last year is that you have to keep going and have to be honest with yourself and with others. And that’s the only way you can really learn of your mistakes and, and truly, you know, get better every time because it’s really difficult, you know, to not relapse.
Garrett: Right. And I love that perspective going into your personal account with pornography, um, before we jump in and talk about how you have been impacted by pornography, I wanted to get a sense of what type of conversations you had around the topic of pornography as you grew up, whether it was in your home with your caregivers or your friends. Can you talk to some of those conversations if they, if there were any?
Sebastian: Yeah, I mean, it’s going to be pretty quick because there weren’t any conversations really, you know, like, uh, when you were growing up, everybody used to do told us, you know, like “drugs are bad.”, “Cigarettes are bad.”, “alcohol is bad.”, but really nobody did talk about porn, um, with my friends. Uh, we, I think we, once that was also probably the first time I watched porn, even though I didn’t , because I think it was like eight years old. And we were just curious and search for like woman licking dick online. And with, we thought it as, you know, just like curiosity, nobody had warned us about it.
Sebastian: We never talked to anybody about it. Not even later, you know, when, when you are 13 and then you are already watching, then nobody else will gives you any talk. It’s just like normal.
Garrett: Right. And going back to that first experience, when you guys searched online, out of curiosity, um, can you remember back to the feelings you had when you were first, when you first consume pornography?
Sebastian: For that first time it was actually just like a quick look. You know, we, we were, I think I was eight years old, so I really didn’t feel anything out of like a, you know, we’re, we are doing something wrong here and let’s hope nobody got us like the real time. I first watched pornography. I dunno, I, I guess I liked it. You know, I, if I felt like I was doing something wrong, but it suddenly, it had like a world of endless possibilities in front of me.
Garrett: Interesting. And from that first experience with pornography at eight years old, did porn become an escalating behavior for you in any way?
Sebastian: It actually did. You know, I really truly started to watch porn to when I was at 12 years old, 11, 12 years old. And, you know, I’m a pretty, I am a guy that whenever I try something that I like, I give my hundred percent to it. So when I first tried porn, you know, I think a deescalation in terms of a, the things I was watching, eh, when really quickly, you know, like I was maybe watching vanilla stuff, eh, can I talk about this here? So I don’t know, maybe I was watching vanilla stuff, or then suddenly, you know, I was a 12 year old, eh, looking videos of grannies of 70, 60 years old woman, you know, eh, then I was 13, you know, looking at gang bangs, reverse gang bangs, hardcore, you know, and then it escalated. I was watching transsexual and homosexual gay, you know, and that was like a kind of escalation into categories.
And then I could, in the things I was watching, and then I could also realize that it also escalating in the way it was affecting my mind and the way I was thinking and the paths that were being created in inside my brain, you know, like a, I was always super friendly with everybody. I had tons of friends, I love to talk to anybody. And, you know, my mind really became impacted. Like a, I stopped talking to any females. Suddenly I had no female friends whatsoever because all I do was fantasize with them. You know, I sexualized everybody, you know, my teachers, the most of my friends, you know, and it may sound cliche, but, but it was not funny, you know, because she really didn’t allow me to be myself. So like I had this thing inside my brain that was hitting me, wouldn’t allow me to, to feel and, and think normal.
Garrett: What age did you start recognizing some of these negative impacts that you’ve talked about regarding not the categories, not the escalation of categories, but more regarding being more introverted?
Sebastian: I think I probably started to feel it around when I was 15 and it was over all, because at that time I like porn. Yes. Completely took everything from me. You know, like, eh, I was doing a change here and I had my own room. So I was able to kind of like have a lot more private, private, privacy that I was used to. And so I just started to do it more and more often, you know, and suddenly I was doing like a five, six times per day. And that’s when I felt, you know, like “This is really changing me.” I stopped talking to everybody. You know, I had already realized since before that, I wasn’t able to hold a conversation with a female, but I just thought, you know, “Maybe I get nervous or something?”, but that’s when I realized, you know, like this is happening to me, you know, like I’m changing.
Like, eh, whenever I tell this to my friends, you know, they always laugh, but I was really good at basketball. I was really, really good. And I truly believe that if I would have kept going, I would probably have make it to the pros. I’m not talking NBA, that’s big stuff, but maybe, you know, the leak here in Spain or some league in Europe and I loved basketball. Like I had the talent, I had the commitment to it. I loved it. And suddenly, you know, I, I didn’t love it anymore. And I only could do you know, was watch porn? You know, I would go to high school, not talk to anybody, you know, just be in my own mind. And that’s when I started thinking, you know, like I may have a program, you know, I was like the first time, you know, that I realized, and that I got the clues, you know, like a, maybe this is happening because of porn.
Garrett: Right. Well, I have a lot of questions because you’re giving out so much good information. I think that your personal account just, I think it’s more common than we think, unfortunately. Um, and I think that you addressing some of these things is going to be very, uh, cathartic for other people. So I just want to say thanks for, for mentioning, for being vulnerable, for being strong. Um, and, and talking to some of these experiences that you had, um, where do I start? I have a few questions. One of them is regarding the escalation of, of your consumption. Um, can you remember looking back, can you remember that a time when you stopped enjoying pornography, but you still craved it?
Sebastian: What do you mean? Like I wanted to stop, but I couldn’t?
Garrett: Yeah. Cause there’s a difference between liking or enjoying and wanting. Right. So can you identify a point in your life when you stopped? Cause you mentioned that when you were eight years old with that first experience and early on in your porn consumption, you mentioned that you liked it to us in a sense, right?
Sebastian: Yeah. Yeah.
Garrett: But was there a point where you stopped liking it, but you still craved it?
Sebastian: Yeah. I mean, when, when all that, when elders, those things were going on, you know, and, and I realized that a, I was, I was having a problem. It took me a bit to link it, to burn, you know, because at the time there was, there wasn’t much information on the internet, or I guess maybe there was, but I just didn’t want to look at it.
Sebastian: But it was at the moment, you know, when I, when I truly, you know, like put the pieces together and I realized that like, porn is really affecting me, you know, like porn is changing me, like look way back, you know, just, you ha I was 15 years old, you know, at the time I thought I was super mature and an adult already, you know, but I was a kid, you know, and just look back three years before that I was even more a kid and I had changed so much for the wrong, you know, and, and that’s when I really realized, you know, like “This is disgusting.”, you know, like “The things I’m watching, the things I’m doing, this is, this is just not who I am.”
And that’s when I wanted to stop. And that’s when I realized I had a problem because I couldn’t, I literally could. And, you know, like, it’s like, I don’t know how to describe it. You know, I, I remember one of the times, you know, that I tried to quit and this is it’s really sad, you know, for me. But I remember what I think I had a really masturbated that they like 10 times imagine that, you know, 10 times. And I think he was like the 10th time that I was masturbating watching porn. And I knew like, I didn’t want to, I truly didn’t want to, I was crying while I was doing it, but I couldn’t stop. And I, I felt so I felt so fragile, you know, that I said, you know, F*ck it. I cannot resist this. You know, like this urge is bigger than myself. I cannot fight it. It’s so painful to fight against this that I, I just got to let myself go. Even if this is also painful.
Garrett: Wow. Thanks for sharing. That was, that was that the first time that you, when was the first time you tried to quit? Was it before or after that experience?
Sebastian: No, that was before that experienced that, that was the day that I failed my first relapse and it was a heart relapse.
Sebastian: That had been 20 days, you know, trying to quit. And then I just couldn’t.
Garrett: Gotcha. Um, another question that I had going back to your comments regarding that you were exploring different categories. Um, I just want ask you if it’s okay. Once again, only answer questions that you feel comfortable with, but are you heterosexual, homosexual, bisexual? What do you identify as?
Sebastian: Well? I consider myself heterosexual. You know, I have a, a lot of love and respect for the LGBTQ community and my whole life, you know, I’ve been, uh, surrounded by people, you know, here in Spain was one of the first countries to legalize same-sex marriage. So I I’ve always been taught to accept everybody. And, and yeah. You know, when I started to, to escalate my personal consumption, you know, I was actually watching same-sex porn and, and that took a bit of me, you know, because at the time I, I felt so confused. I, at first I was at, at shock, you know, and then I thought, “Well, if I’m watching this…”, you know, “The link was that if I’m watching this, then this must mean that I’m bisexual.” And I identified myself as bisexual, uh, for a long time, you know, eh, I even told, you know, my closest friends identify myself as that.
Um, but the problem was that I was, I was still not sure, you know, I, I talked to so many people, you know, from the community, I am a really curious person and I asked questions and, and I tried, you know, and I still didn’t didn’t know for sure. You know, and, and it took a lot of time for me to realize that. And also a lot of learning to do for me to realize that the porn you’re consuming that’s define your sexuality because there’s so many people suffering from porn addiction and so many homosexual persons, for example, that are masturbating to hardcore lesbian sex, even though they are homosexual. And I think it took really, you know, a lot of learning, learning how the brain can be malleable, you know, how can it link certain things to, you know, new experiences, if this is now new, you know, it makes you feel even better, you know? And it took a lot of time to learn, you know, and it was a lot of, you know, uh, I don’t know, like peace when, when I truly, you know, like a said porn, the porn I’m watching the porn. I’ve watched that’s undefined my sexuality because that’s yes, fantasy, you know, porn is not real. It is not sexuality. Porn is not love, you know, what I think a sexuality’s love and sexuality is intimacy and porn is nothing of that. So that cannot define who you are.
Garrett: I love that. That’s a great perspective. Thanks for sharing that. You’ve talked about how the, how pornography can impact the brain and how you’ve learned some of these things. When did that education about some of the harmful effects of pornography begin for you?
Sebastian: I think, uh, the first time that I truly started to research on it, uh, was probably when I got a girlfriend. Um, and first things that I researched wasn’t the like mental health or how the brain can be malleable, not the first thing I researched was about, uh, erectile dysfunction, um, um, coming really fast, you know, uh, I had my hair, my first girlfriend when I was 16. And, and I remember the first, the first time I was going to, to have sex in my life with her, you know, and, and I just couldn’t get hard. And then after that, for the rest of the relationship, I, I probably couldn’t get hard half of the times. And the other half I came like after one minute, you know, and, and that’s when I started first to research, what is the physical impact on the body, which also happens to be mental.
And then the, when I started to get more scientifical was probably when I was around 19 years old. So last year when I started to really, you know, quit porn and the,… one of the methods that I found more useful for me to stay out of porn is to be constantly learning about it, learning about its harms, learning about everything. So I used to read anything, you know, with scientific research of how porn can affect, you know, a lot of online forums where there’s a lot of personal accounts that really looked like mine, you know, and really started to put the pieces together. You know, like there’s so many people that has happened. That’s how I had gone through the same. I’m not alone. You know, this, this is not some casualty, this has to be going, this, this cannot be coincidence. You know, this has to be something.
Garrett: Right. Question for you. Did you ever, cause you mentioned that with your partner at the time with your girlfriend, that you engage with her about half of the time, is that correct?
Garrett: Did you experienced that same thing with pornography consumption?
Sebastian: No, because whenever I couldn’t get hard, I just went for something more extreme. So, you know, there was endless novelty when watching pornography, there was endless things to watch, you know, for sure one of them would get me hard. And I think that’s also one of the problems of pornography.
Garrett: So how did you do, how did you address that with your partner, with your girlfriend? Did you, were you open with her and said, “Look, I’m, I’m struggling in this, in this way.”, or did you try to hide it?
Sebastian: I didn’t, I didn’t talk at all. I mean, that, wasn’t a love, you know, that was a toxic relationship and it’s true, you know, that the hurt people hurt and also that hurt people, you know, they, they joined together. Like they find a way to connect to each other and then they hurt both of them. And that was in love, you know? And I never really addressed that. You know, I, I always thought that, uh, this is my problem, you know, and I know that this is because of porn, but I couldn’t stop it.
Garrett: Gotcha. So that relationship ended.
Sebastian: Yeah. Eventually it ended. It was, it was a hard moment for me, you know, but it was also a kind of a relief because I was being selfish, I don’t know, was not 18, no 19 when it ended, it lasted for like two years and eight months. And what, you know, I mean, who do everybody who has had a toxic relationship? You know, I think they know they know what it is, you know what I mean? It was, I was pretty toxic. You know, I born made me a liar, me a cheater, you know, I never actually engaged in sex, but I did engage in sexual activities. And I, I dunno, I lost the times of how many lost the count of how many times I cheated on and everything. Then one thing, you know, that, that born male being, you know, at around that time is that during the whole relationship, you know, I never enjoyed sex. I was always afraid of it. I never really saw it as an enjoyable thing because I was afraid.
Garrett: Wow, that’s powerful, man. I, I really do look up to you. I admire that. You’re so aware. And I think your experience is more common than we think. And so I don’t think many people have the awareness to talk about it, but you do. How did you get that awareness?
Sebastian: You know, as I said, I didn’t didn’t enjoy sex, but I did enjoy porn, you know, so I, I lied to myself and I kept going, you know, and it was later when I started to really truly, you know, get into the learning. And, and also after hitting rock bottom at the rock bottom, when, when I, you know, I was able to look back and really connect the pieces and become aware, you know, and really try to put into perspective why everything happened and what was behind everything.
Garrett: Right. Well, one question that I have, as you’ve talked to, there’s one phrase that stood out to me and you said you were consuming “more and more often”, and I wanted to better understand your level of consumption. How often were you consuming porn, um, at some of these peaks where you were consuming it the most?
Sebastian: You know, at the, at the pigs, that would probably be the biggest would probably be after a failed two, three days, attempts of quitting, you know, and the peaks would probably be, you know, six, seven times per day. And then they usual during that time, I was probably around four times per day. But the thing, what the thing was not the times, you know, the thing was also the time I, I spent in it because at first, you know, it’s really easy, you know, you go online and bim bam boom, but then, you know, I, I was freely, you know, like opening, I don’t know, like 30 tabs, you know, and like playing like a game of discarding, you know, to really like trying to get the perfect, because I needed more and more, you know, and that was really consuming, you know, I was even sometimes frustrating.
Garrett: Right. Can you remember, what’s like the longest you spent in duration and in one of these sessions?
Sebastian: Probably was when I was 15, you know, and I, when I, after I became aware and I think one day I came home from high school, pretty feeling pretty down, you know, and I started to open a lot of tabs and, you know, I said, “I’m not going to slip the other ones, all of them.” And I think I was for like the whole afternoon, you know, maybe eight, nine hours just doing that, doing that and crying.
Garrett: Wow. Thanks for sharing that. So yeah, you definitely experienced a lot of escalation in your pornography consumption. Um, did you find that your pornography consumption had negative impacts on your ability to think clearly?
Sebastian: I… I’m sure of it, you know, um, w what really porn did to my brain, you know, I really don’t don’t wish it to anybody because first of all, you know, I had a low self-esteem at the time. And even though I was, you know, a nice kid, I was good-looking till, you know, but I had really low self esteem. And, you know, the first idea that porn put into my, my mind, which is still even like, it’s still there even today. You know, like sometimes now with my current girlfriend, you know, who I really appreciate, you know, and I truly love, uh, but you know, now I get this like, rushes of like a fear of commitment, you know? And, and, and that’s what porn told me, you know, like “The more, the more woman you get, the better you are.”, “The different you are, you know, the different they are, the better you are.”
And, and that, you know, that really changed my mind. I couldn’t walk. I was walking in the street, you know, like, thinking whom I would f*ck and whom I wouldn’t. And I would f*ck 90% of the people that walked by, I didn’t care. And I just put, you know, all those, I was like working, you know, and like creating all these scenarios, you know, in my head. And, and I mean, obviously, you know, like that’s not normal. I was, you know, like 14, 15 year old kid, you know, like, I, I’m not violent. I’ve never been in a fight. I, I ran, you know, if I’m in a fight, but, but you know, like a porn normalizes, some, so many things, you know, like
It’s really hard what it, what it does to your brain, you know, the way it changes it, the way, you know, you, you start to see everybody as subjects. I, especially woman, you know, but I saw the much as hope teacher, you know, I, I could never stop and think, you know, like, eh, “Maybe this girl, you know, like, uh, some, some dreams, you know, for the future or something.”, you know, not just see her as somebody, you know, and a nice body or not, you know, and I don’t know, you know, I, it also made me a liar in my relationship. It made me a cheater. I was constantly cheating. You know, even though they were maybe like kisses, maybe they were like a yes. Foreplay, but I was constantly cheating, you know? And it, it was a, a world of pain, you know, like my mind was suffering so much from it.
You know, like I truly thought I was sick. Like, it’s f*cking scary, you know, to, to really feel that you are sick, that you are sick, that you go out and I’ll use this woman, or you care about this woman, or you care about, you know, is your fantasies, you know, and everything. And I’m not, I I’ve never crossed the line. I never wanted to cross a line, you know, but just the thought of, of, you know, like being with, with everybody, you know, and, and that’s, that’s f*cked up, that’s f*cked up, you know, I, I was feeling like I was not normal. Like I was sick, I guess something was wrong with me. It was really bad.
Garrett: Well, I’m, uh, I’m sorry that you had to experience, um, some of these negative impacts of pornography. Um, but I’m glad that you have pressed forward. Um, you mentioned that your current girlfriend, I think if I’m remembering correctly, you used the term “true love.”
Garrett: And I just wanted to get your take on that. Um, how long have you been with your current partner for?
Sebastian: I’ve been for a little over nine months.
Garrett: Well, congrats.
Sebastian: Thank you. And you know, this is also the reason why I went, I am opening up here and it’s because I’ve talked to her about this stuff, you know, the other day, when I, when I said to you, you know, “I’ve, I’ve relapsed. I don’t know if I’m the right person for this episode.” You know, I also said to her that’s, that was unthinkable for me, you know, that was unthinkable for me to go there and open up about something so personal. And so, I mean, I don’t see it as a shaming, you know, but everybody looks at, it, looks at it as a shaming. I open with her about everything because I, I found, you know, that the true strength, you know, is in counting with the ones that are next to you and, and getting yourself to help you need when you need it. And also helping the ones that are around you. And I don’t know, you know, for the first time in my life, you know, I think I’m experiencing, you know, what, what love is, you know, that that’s not so something selfish there, there are no lies. I don’t have to be living a secret life. I don’t have to be worrying about, I don’t worry about anything. You know, it’s so good. It’s social sometimes I don’t even believe it.
Garrett: [laughter] I love that. That’s cool. Um, going back to her, um, when you mentioned that you talked to her about your relapse, how did that conversation go? Can you talk to that a little bit?
Sebastian: Well, and I had talked to my girlfriend about, you know, my, my struggle with porn and I had also tried to educate her on it and she knew a bit already, you know, but I was actually really good, you know? And, um, and would that have been, you know, it took her by surprise because she w it was the last thing she expected, you know, but I was afraid I can tell you, I was afraid, you know, but, but I, I, I saw, you know, like this is something, you know, what Fight the New Drug says, you know, Porn Kills Love. So if I was at burn, you know, I’m, I’m killing this relationship and theater person deserves to know it. And the chefs to make an educated decision on my actions, because my actions have to have consequences. And I was afraid of what could happen. You know, I knew she was going to be there for me deep down, because I knew she believes in me. And I know, you know, that, uh, that I was doing the right thing, you know, by opening up and by not keeping lives and keeping secrets, but I was afraid, you know, I was, I was deeply afraid and I was terrified to open it up to somebody and until her that, you know, and, but it, it went fine.
Garrett: What were you afraid of?
Sebastian: Honestly, you know, I was afraid of what she thought of me because so many times, you know, I’ve thought of myself as sick and as somebody disgusting, and I was afraid, you know, that she would see me the way I’ve seen myself for so much, for a long time, because I had done that. Like a, maybe, you know, the person who she had fallen in love. Wasn’t my true self. You know, maybe, maybe I was just putting a mask or something, you know, I was afraid, you know, that maybe she would see completely different than I’d see what I used to see in me when I was watching.
Garrett: That’s powerful. What advice would you have for someone else who wants to share and be open with their partner, but has some of those same fears?
Sebastian: I think, I mean, I don’t know what advice I can give other than just be honest, because like really telling the truth and asking for help to somebody that you love and that loves you. It’s amazing. And I think also, you know, it, it really isn’t worth it to lie. It is not, you know, I was lying for two years, two years, eight months. It’s not worth it to, to live a lie because he, it starts small, but he will eat you from the inside. And, and, you know, you, you, you will live in hate yourself more and more every day. It’s not worth it. If you love somebody, as I said, your actions have consequences and porn kills love. So you have to let also the other people, the other person know, you know, in order for them to have the right, to make an educated decision on whether they want to help you, whether they want to get some time or whether they don’t want to do anything else with you. I think the first thing first fair thing to do.
Garrett: I like that. That’s great advice. Um, you you’ve mentioned Fight the New Drug a couple of times, and you’ve mentioned one of our taglines Porn Kills Love. Um, when was the first time you heard about Fight the New Drug?
Sebastian: Probably the first time was around a year and a half ago. I first heard about Terry Crews, you know, and that was really powerful. It was like, how can somebody this famous be talking about this? You know, like this guy has literally millions of followers. How is he not ashamed of talking about this? You know, and well, you know, I, I started to research, you know, he was eh, with Fight the New Drug and everything, and, and it became, you know, one of my, one of my, you know, resources to keep myself informed on everything. Uh, I’ve watched the documentary and I loved it. I think it’s, it’s great. You know, like the first time, you know, that I’ve watched something and it actually, you know, like gave me hope after, after watching it. And I think it’s a really powerful thing what you guys are trying to accomplish.
ggWell, um, we appreciate that. You’re part of the movement. Um, we have millions of Fighters around the world and that’s, that’s how we continue to educate each other and help each other. So you’re a, you’re a big part of the movement. We appreciate you. Um, Sebastian, I have to ask out of the documentary, the three-part documentary Brain Heart World. Do you have a favorite episode of the three?
Sebastian: I think, eh, my favorite episode probably was The World because I already knew a bit about how porn of it it’s the brain and the heart, but I was completely unaware of how like the, the business that’s behind it, the trafficking, I was not aware, you know, I, even though when I became aware of the harms of it, I was not aware of that part. And for me, it was truly, you know, like a, an awakening moment. I was talking the other day, you know, for example, to, to a friend. And he was, I was telling him about this, you know, like “Man, I didn’t know about this, but it turns out that important. There is a lot of people that are trafficked and I had never thought of that.” And I told my friend, you know, and he was like, Well, you know, but a, a woman that does a gang bang with five guys, you know, she obviously has to enjoy it. Uh, she always has to a bit slutty, you know?”, and that shocked me, you know, I was like, “I mean, this has to change.” Like I know my friend, you know, he’s a good guy and he, he, he’s thinking this like, how, how is this happening? This has to change. You know? And I think that that was a powerful thing to do because it, it also educates about the people that are suffering from porn, not only the users, but also the people that are dragged in, in order to get, to get the business growing.
Garrett: So Sebastian, the way that we got connected was through social media. And you mentioned that, I think if I’m remembering correctly, you mentioned that you wanted to share your experience.
Garrett: Why have you come to the conclusion that sharing your experience and being open about this is the right thing to do for you?
Sebastian: Just because, you know, I’ve, I’ve made peace with a large part of what I’ve done and everything, and, and I want to help others. And, you know, inside that, helping others, there’s a bit of a selflessness there because also when I help others, I help myself. You know, when I, when I spread hope to others, I give hope to myself, but it was just, you know, I, I, I listened to all the podcasts, I think in like two days or something. And I just came to the conclusion, like I have to do something, I have to make a difference. You know, if I can change so much life, you know, like I wish I had heard all the podcast when I was 13 years old. I wish somebody had told me, you know, like, “Hey, yo kid don’t do that because you’re going to get in trouble.”
And I wish somebody had educated me about it. And I just thought, you know, like it really, you know, was what’s the rush because I really wanted to do something, you know, suddenly I wasn’t really afraid of speaking up, you know? And, and since then, you know, not only here, you know, but I’ve been trying to speak up, you know, to, to my friends, you know, and like most, most of them, you know, already knew a bit, a bit of my struggle from before, but it’s amazing, you know, that when you open up and when you become vulnerable in front of others, they don’t see you as, as fragile, you know, they see you as a strength and, and it was so powerful, you know, to open up and realize that I have actually a couple of my friends, you know, who, who have a bit of the same problem problems.
Garrett: That’s powerful. I, my question is now that you’ve become educated about porn’s harms, what aspects of your life have improved?
Sebastian: I think you, I’m not going to say, like, whenever you go in line to do any page, you know, it says, you know, like, “Eh, stop watching born and you will get a super powers”…
Sebastian: [laughter]… or something like that. And I mean, it’s not true, you know, like, eh, you don’t suddenly become Superman because you stop watching porn. But, but I think it gives you, it gives you many, any bright moments, you know, like, eh, I think it’s, it just gave me so much that so much energy, you know, and, and, you know, it might not give you super powers, but truly it gives you, it gives you energy, you know, the energy you spend doing that, you know, and you can spend doing anything else. If you really focus and focus all that energy into something more productive and something better for yourself. I mean, I lost like 15 kilograms. I don’t know how many is that in the U S weight system, but I lost like 15 kilograms in the last year, year and a half, which is amazing, you know? And, and if you think you have a problem, you are listening to this and you think you have a problem, you don’t lose anything, trying not, staying out of it and becoming educated and, and making an educated decision.
Garrett: What, um, you’ve talked about how learning, how seeking education is one thing that really helped you. Um, what other activities that you’ve have you turned to since not consuming pornography?
Sebastian: Honestly, you know, I guess started to do the things I liked and I hadn’t done for a long time. You know, I am going out to the, to the nature very frequently, um, hitting the gym, I’m trying new sports every day. Um, I don’t know, you know, I just, we focus all that energy into, into train everyday to improve a little bit myself. And I cannot tell you any recipe or, or something just that I try to do the things I enjoy, that I know they are good for me.
Garrett: I like that. Well, um, we would love to hear your advice Sebastian on what resources, uh, you think would be valuable for our listeners.
Sebastian: Usually I think, as I said, the documentary is, it’s also, you know, like it’s something that you can play for yourself. You can play for your partner, you can play for your friends, you know, it’s, it’s truly awesome. I send it to all my friends, you know, and I, “Hey guys, look at this, you know, because it’s not a boring us documentary, it’s actually pretty fun. And I’m for sure you will learn something.” And then there’s just so many, you know, uh, articles in online, eh, in the Fight the New Drug and, and other places online, you know, where you can really, you know, investigate and, and read science on what, what is it, you know, that, that you’re going through. And, and also, you know, if you seek for, for other people that are like you, you know, Fortify, for example, the app, I mean, it’s a great app, but it’s developed by Fight the New Drug. Right?
Garrett: Yeah. It’s a separate now, but originally it was part of Fight the New Drug, but we’ve separated it.
Sebastian: I don’t know if I should have mentioned, Oh, no,
Garrett: It’s okay. Yeah. We, we, we love what Fortify is doing. So we’re glad you mentioned that.
Sebastian: Well, yeah, it’s important to realize that you are not alone and that there is everywhere, you know, people that are willing to share with you and to be there with you.
Garrett: Absolutely. What do you think our listeners can do to be part of the solution?
Sebastian: I think when one of the things that are more significant that you can do to be a part of the solution is speaking up, speaking up, you know, whenever you hear some, I mean, don’t be a wise, you know, but whenever you hear somebody talking about porn, really, you know, like, you know, why don’t you give your based on fact to opinion? Why don’t you tell a little bit your personal account, why don’t we start to stop shaming, you know, this, this thing. And, and they start to recognize that we have a problem that, that it’s getting out of control everywhere. You know, like porn is becoming a problem. And, and if we don’t really normalize the conversation, if we don’t really try to make people educated about the terms, then you know, nothing, nothing matters. We’ll have to, we have to do to have to change the conversation.
Garrett: I just want to, once again, say thanks to you, Sebastian, because you are doing that, you’re helping change the conversation, you’re doing your part. And, um, it’s just a powerful thing. So props to you.
Sebastian: Thank you. Um, I thank you for also all that you’re doing because it’s amazing.
Garrett: Yeah. It’s fun to be part of the movement, right?
Garrett: Well, um, we would like to leave you with the opportunity to leave the last word today. Sebastian, is there something that you would like to leave our audience with?
Sebastian: I would just like to really relate to the people and especially the teens and kids that are going through the same thing I went, and I just want to tell them, you know, really don’t stop seeking help, and don’t be hard on yourself if you relapse, you know, don’t be, don’t be hard. Yes. Learn from it and really become educated and, and seek help if you need it. And really you’re not alone, you know, and you are not sick and nothing is wrong with you. And it probably, you know, it’s not your fault that you got addicted to something so powerful. And so just, you know, don’t quit.
Garrett: That’s great advice. Well, Sebastian it was a pleasure, man.
Sebastian: Yeah, for me too. Thank you very much for having me here.
Fight the New Drug Ad: Looking for a way to spread awareness on the harms of porn. Why not rep the movement in one of our conversations, starting teas with over 20 tees and various designs and phrases, you’re bound find something that speaks to you and will spark conversations with others. Plus because we’re a 501C3 non-profit, there’s no taxes on your purchase. And the proceeds helped him mobilize this movement. Get your gear today at ftnd.org./shop that’s ftnd.org/shop.
Garrett: Thanks for joining us on this episode of Consider Before Consuming, Consider Before Consuming is brought to you by Fight the New Drug. Fight the New Drug is a non-religious and non legislative organization that exists to provide individuals the opportunity to make an informed decision regarding pornography, by raising awareness on its harmful effects, using only science facts and personal counts.
If you’d like to learn more about today’s conversation, you can check out the links attached to this episode.
Again, big, thanks to you for listening to this conversation. As you go about your day, we invite you to increase your self awareness. Look both ways, check your blind spots and consider before consuming.
MORE RESOURCES FROM FTND
A three-part documentary about porn’s impacts on consumers, relationships, and society.
Fifteen research-based articles detailing porns negatively impacts.
Tees to support the movement and change the conversation wherever you go.
Successfully navigate conversations about porn with your partner, child, or friend.
A database of the ever-growing body of research on the harmful effects of porn.
An interactive site with short videos highlighting porn’s proven negative effects.