Brett.Ullman

The Porn Project: Reboot Challenge

Anonymous male on a laptop at night

Porn: So much struggle and addiction and so little answers, solutions and freedom. One of the best discussions for those of us coming from a Christian Worldview would be from a blog from Tim Challies called 7 Reasons to Stop Looking at Porn Right Now. He goes through each of the reasons below

  • The Cost to your Soul
  • The Cost to your Neighbour
  • The Cost to your Family
  • The Cost to your Mission
  • The Cost to your Witness
  • The Cost to your Saviour

The only one I might add to this list is the Cost to your own BodyAs I am working through my research for a talk on pornography called “The Porn Project” I have been fascinated to find an entire online community (not faith based) equipping, supporting and empowering people (men and women) to stop watching pornography. It is often called the “NoFap” movement which is not a Christian movement at all. In case you are wondering what Fap is, it is a bit of Internet vernacular for the act of self-love (masturbation). So the NoFap movement is asking people to stop looking at all forms of porn and stop masturbating. People often say to me that their porn addiction is not hurting anyone. From Tim’s blog it is hurting some of the largest areas of our life. What seems to be missing along side these thoughts in our Christian community is the realization that there are also physiological issues with long term masturbation to pornography from Porn Induced Erectile Dysfunction, Sexual Exhaustion etc. Many people I talk to seem to think that these physical issues are a joke and are not true.

Below are a few videos for you to watch. It takes such courage to open up and speak as these people do about such a private struggle. Please remember this are not Christian groups so you may find some rough language.

As I travel I talk to men and women nightly who talk about addictions to porn.  I have hundreds of emails of people struggling in their Christian faith due to issues with porn. I have heard from a over 100 women who have told me that their marriages were destroyed from their husbands addictions to pornography. Pastors tell me it is an epidemic in their youth groups and throughout adults in their churches.

While I am finishing my research on this talk I thought it would be interesting to see if I could find 100 people who would want to take part in a small experiment. Rather than talking about all the ways porn has hurt us I would love to see how getting rid of porn in our lives helps us, especially those of us coming from a Christian Perspective. I am open to people who are not faith based to take this challenge. Love to here your thoughts as well.

So here is the experiment:

I am looking for 100 people who are interested in taking a 60 day (2 months) challenge to be completely porn free in your life. 

To some of you 60 days might seem like an eternity. I would respond and say that if you cannot go 60 days without porn or sexualized media in your life than you probably can at least acknowledge that you are struggling with this. Also, during this journey if you fail, then try and think why you failed (were you alone too much, tired, angry etc). learn from your setback, and try and get back to the journey.

This video gives some great advice on how to do this.

Practical stuff: I will NEVER be posting your names anywhere ever. I am interested in your journey goes:

If you are interested in being part of this journey you just need to let me know. Send me an email to brettullman@me.com or hit me up on any social media. Then as you are going through your journey keep a small journal. Write down anything you think might be interesting. Some questions are below. You can send me thoughts at the end or anytime in the middle. If anyone worries that someone might see your email. It is only going to me and I will never share this information with anyone. If you are really worried make a fake gmail account and email me from that. The goal is not to shame anyone but to look at a journey like this together.

Here are some questions I would love to know. You can add any more you like.

  1. How hard was the decision to stop? Where you able to stop? Did you relapse?
  2. What kinds of things did you have to change?
  3. Did you have any withdrawal affects? What were they? When in your journey did you have them?
  4. Thinking of the areas that Tim talked about in his blog. Tell me how if affected your: Soul – did your faith change?
  5. Neighbour – Did you thoughts change about the people in the videos? Your neighbours? Did you look at woman (or men) different when you saw them?
  6. Did it change your engagement at church?
  7. How did the reboot affect your relationship with your family? As a parents did you feel freedom that your family would not find pornography on your computer etc?
  8. Did you find you engaged more with the areas you feel called to be involved in? Volunteer?
  9. Did you find that your witness changed? Did you feel like less of a fraud?
  10. If you are married how did your relationship change with your wife or husband?
  11. Anything else that you found in your journey to be noteworthy.

So what does this journey include. Anything sexual. That includes looking at sexualized images on social media (some of you might have to delete people you are creeping through their photos on Facebook or Instagram), all pornographic websites, TV and Movies with nudity and overt sexuality and any other areas from your thought life (fantasy or remembering past sexual encounters) to anything else that would turn you on sexually (I am not including regular sexual intimacy within marriage).

For Christians it should be enough for us to stop from a Theological standpoint (Scripture) but I think it will become very real very quick if you take this challenge that porn might have its hold on you. Many guys online (see websites #7  (Your Brain on Porn) and #8 (Your Brain Rebalanced) at the end of this blog talk about brutal side affects after Dopamine is no longer being drenched onto your pleasure centres in your brain. Many of the comments on the side effects are within just days of stopping. All I can say is why not try and live 60 days without porn and see how it goes.

During this time I would also encourage you to spend more time with God in prayer and Scripture reading. I would also encourage you to exercise, eat better and get lots of sleep. You might also need to talk to a counsellor to help you walk through this.

It would be awesome if you could share this blog around through email, other blogs or on social media. Thanks

I will leave you with this awesome poem for your journey:


 

“I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost… I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes me a long time to get out.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in. It’s a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault. I get out immediately.

walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

I walk down another street.”

Portia Nelson, There’s a Hole in My Sidewalk
The Romance of Self-Discovery


 

If you are looking for other great resources there is so much great information on all of the websites below. Please take some time to go through them. If there are any great articles, books or other resources please send them to me and I will add them to this list.

Websites / Articles / Blogs

  1. xxxchurch.com (one of the best sites. So much here) Take their 30 day porn challenge! Click Here
  2. Fight the new Drug: Dropping knowledge on the harmful effects of porn – Click Here
  3. Pornolescence (Tim Challies) – Click Here
  4. DoggieHeadTilt – Rx for ED? – Click Here
  5. Is Pornography changing how teens view sex? Toronto Star – Click Here
  6. 7 Good Reasons to Stop Looking at Porn right now – Tim Challies – Click Here
  7. Your Brain on Porn (non faith-based) – Click Here
  8. Your Brain Rebalanced: Overcoming Pornography Addiction and Porn Induced Erectile Dysfunction(non faith based) – Click Here
  9. Brain Chemicals and Porn Addiction: Science Shows How Porn Harms Us – Click Here
  10. This is your Brain on Porn (Michael John Cusick) Click Here
  11. What’s the Big Deal With Porn? (Eddie Kaufholz) Click Here

YouTube – Video

  1. The Great Porn Experiment: Gary Wilson – TedxGlasgow – Click Here
  2. Christians & PORN – Part 1 | @whatisjoedoing @chaseGodtv – Click Here
  3. Christians & PORN – Part 2 | @whatisjoedoing @chaseGodtv – Click Here
  4. The Basics of Rebooting (non faith-based) – Click Here  **blunt, rough but true language **
  5. FULL STORY: Generation X-Rated (Global 16×9) (** non faith-based) – Click Here
  6. The Science of Pornography Addiction – Click Here
  7. Why I stopped watching porn: Ran Gavrieli – TEDxJaffa Click Here

Justice

  1. The Justice Side of Porn: How porn is more than a moral issue – Click Here
  2. Defend Dignity – it is possible to end sexual exploitation in Canada – Click Here

Healing / Recovery / Solutions

  1. The Porn Free Family Plan (Tim Challies) – Click Here **this is one of the best articles on this for any parent**
  2. Setting Captives Free: One Heart at a Time  / 60 Day Free online Courses- Click Here
  3. x3pure.com – 30-day online workshops (my favourite resource here) – Click Here
  4. Valiant Man – Click Here

Filtering and Accountability

  1. Open DNS – Click Here **I use this**
  2. Covenant Eyes – Click Here **I use this**
  3. EverAccountable – Click Here
  4. NetNanny – We Protect Families – Click Here
  5. K9 Web Protection – Click Here
  6. McAfee Family Protection – Click Here

Books

  1. Sexual Detox: A Guide for Guys who are sick of Porn – Tim Challies (Amazon.ca)
  2. Pure Eyes (): A Man’s Guide to Sexual Integrity – Craig Gross (Amazon.ca)
  3. The Game Plan: The Men’s 30-Day Strategy for Attaining Sexual Integrity – Joe Dallas (Amazon.ca)
  4. At the Altar of Sexual Idolatry – Steve Gallagher (Amazon.ca)
  5. Surfing for God: Discovering the Divine Desire Beneath Sexual Struggle (Amazon.ca)
  6. Your Brain on Porn – Gary Wilson (Amazon.ca)
  7. Wired for Intimacy: How Pornography Hijacks the Male Brain (Amazon.ca)
  8. Samson and the Pirate Monks: Calling Men to Authentic Brotherhood – Nate Larkin (Amazon.ca)
  9. A Christian Woman’s Guide to Breaking Free from Pornography: It’s not just a guys problem. – Shelly Hitz (Amazon.ca)
  10. Pure Heart – A Woman’s Guide to Sexual Integrity – Shellie R. Warren (Amazon.ca)
  11. False Intimacy: Understanding the Struggle of Sexual Sin – Dr. Harry W. Schaumburg Click Here
  12. Every Heart Restored: A Wife’s Guide to Healing in the Wake of a Husband’s Sexual Sin – Fred & Brenda Stoeker Click Here
  13. Every Man’s Battle: Winning the War on Sexual Temptation One Victory at a Time – Stephen Arterburn & Fred Stoeker Click Here
  14. Every Woman’s Battle: Discovering God’s Plan for Sexual and Emotional Fulfillment – Shannon Ethridge Click Here

Redeem the Commute

For you commuters looking for something to do on your commute.

Redeem the Commute is a mobile app and web site with audio and video content to help busy, commuting people invest in their relationships, family or spirituality, even while on the go.

Click here or the screenshot below for their website.

Masterminds and Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope with Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, and the New Rules of Boy World

9780307986665

This goes along with my blog from yesterday. This is a book for those of us with sons. Awesome book.

Here is a landmark book that reveals the way boys think and that shows parents, educators and coaches how to reach out and help boys overcome their most common yet difficult challenges — by the bestselling author who changed our conception of adolescent girls.

Do you constantly struggle to pull information from your son, student, or athlete, only to encounter mumbling or evasive assurances such as “It’s nothing” or “I’m good?” Do you sense that the boy you care about is being bullied, but that he’ll do anything to avoid your “help?” Have you repeatedly reminded him that schoolwork and chores come before video games only to spy him reaching for the controller as soon as you leave the room? Have you watched with frustration as your boy flounders with girls?

Welcome to Boy World. It’s a place where asking for help or showing emotional pain often feels impossible. Where sports and video games can mean everything, but working hard in school frequently earns ridicule from “the guys” even as they ask to copy assignments. Where “masterminds” dominate and friends ruthlessly insult each other but can never object when someone steps over the line. Where hiding problems from adults is the ironclad rule because their involvement only makes situations worse.

Boy world is governed by social hierarchies and a powerful set of unwritten rules that have huge implications for your boy’s relationships, his interactions with you, and the man he’ll become. If you want what’s best for him, you need to know what these rules are and how to work with them effectively.

What you’ll find in Masterminds and Wingmen is critically important for every parent – or anyone who cares about boys – to know. Collaborating with a large team of middle- and high-school-age editors, Rosalind Wiseman has created an unprecedented guide to the life your boy is actually experiencing – his on-the-ground reality. Not only does Wiseman challenge you to examine your assumptions, she offers innovative coping strategies aimed at helping your boy develop a positive, authentic, and strong sense of self.

Click here or the screen shot below for the Amazon.ca link.

Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and the New Realities of Girl World

Screen Shot 2015-03-18 at 8.54.15 AM

One of my favourite books for those of us with daughters.

When Rosalind Wiseman first published Queen Bees & Wannabes, she fundamentally changed the way adults look at girls’ friendships and conflicts–from how they choose their best friends, how they express their anger, their boundaries with boys, and their relationships with parents. Wiseman showed how girls of every background are profoundly influenced by their interactions with one another.

Now, Wiseman has revised and updated her groundbreaking book for a new generation of girls and explores:

•How girls’ experiences before adolescence impact their teen years, future relationships, and overall success
•The different roles girls play in and outside of cliques as Queen Bees, Targets, and Bystanders, and how this defines how they and others are treated
•Girls’ power plays–from fake apologies to fights over IM and text messages
•Where boys fit into the equation of girl conflicts and how you can help your daughter better hold her own with the opposite sex
•Checking your baggage–recognizing how your experiences impact the way you parent, and how to be sanely involved in your daughter’s difficult, yet common social conflicts

Packed with insights about technology’s impact on Girl World and enlivened with the experiences of girls, boys, and parents, the book that inspired the hit movie Mean Girls offers concrete strategies to help you empower your daughter to be socially competent and treat herself with dignity.

Click here or the screenshot below for Amazon.ca

Cyberbullying: Kids read mean tweets and it’s heartbreaking

You’ve probably seen Jimmy Kimmel’s hilarious segment “Celebrities read mean tweets.” It’s hard not to laugh at the outrageous things people tweet about celebs. Now picture kids reading mean, degrading, abusive tweets from other kids. It’s absolutely heartbreaking

Powerful video of what many students have to deal with daily. ** Rough (but real) language.

Below is the Youtube. If you want to see the article from Today’s Parents click here

Great Books: Forgotten Ways, The: Reactivating the Missional Church

9781587431647

Alan was one of my profs for a class I took at Wheaton Grad School. He was amazing. This book is my favourite of his. Such amazing material here.

Alan Hirsch is convinced that the inherited formulas for growing the Body of Christ do not work anymore. And rather than relying on slightly revised solutions from the past, he sees a vision of the future growth of the church coming about by harnessing the power of the early church, which grew from as few as 25,000 adherents in AD 100 to up to 20 million in AD 310. Such incredible growth is also being experienced today in the church in China and other parts of the world. How do they do it?

The Forgotten Ways explores the concept of Apostolic Genius as a way to understand what caused the church to expand at various times in history, interpreting it for use in our own time and place. From the theological underpinnings to the practical application, Hirsch takes the reader through this dynamic mixture of passion, prayer, and incarnational practice to rediscover the dormant potential of the modern church in the West.

Please click here or screen shot below for Amazon.ca page

Great Books: Sticky Faith Guide For Your Family: Over 100 Practical And Tested

The_Sticky_Faith_Guide_1

This is one of my favourite books for parents. So many practical ideas here.

The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family addresses one of the top current concerns about youth and the church: the reality that nearly half of all young people raised in Christian families walk away from their faith when they graduate from high school. That’s the bad news. But here’s the good news: research also shows that parents are one of the primary influences on their child’s faith. This book arises from the innovative, research-based, and extensively field-tested project known as “Sticky Faith,” designed to equip parents with insights and ideas for nurturing long-term faith in children and young people. Because of the Fuller Youth Institute’s six years of research with more than 500 young people, 100 churches, and 50 families, four of this guidebook’s unique qualities make it a “must have” for families eager to point their young people toward long-term faith First, it’s grounded in sophisticated, academically verified data. While Dr. Powell is a parent of three children who authentically weaves her own experiences throughout the book, the chapter topics correlate with parenting principles proven in national research. Second, it is positive. Amid gloomy and theoretical resources, this book leaves parents empowered and hopeful that even little tweaks to their family rhythms can make a big difference. Third, it is practical. Readers get what they want most: more than 100 ideas from other parents they can try today, this week, or this month. Fourth, its “guidebook” format is accessible. For busy parents who don’t have time and inclination to read, this format is a welcome resource that they can return to time and time again for fresh ideas and inspiration.

This is the Sticky Faith Family website – Click Here

Here is a link to the book on Amaaon.ca – Click Here