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“To Masturbate or Not to Masturbate,” that is the question!

Masturbation is an extremely controversial topic these days; one that elicits a lot of heated debate. This is especially true when an addict spouse engages in masturbation alone and separate from his spouse. Here's what one PBSE listener had to say about this— Hello Mark and Steve- I want to say thank you so much for your weekly podcasts. I am a former client of Steve’s, and I still listen to the podcasts weekly. I am so grateful to you both, for your conversations. I listed to your most recent episode, #123, and at the end of it you mentioned the topic of masturbation. I’d love to hear your thoughts on it, as it relates to porn addiction or attachment, and the dynamic that all of this involves. My partner believes that masturbation is natural and something all men do on a regular basis. That there is nothing unhealthy or damaging about it. I believe there can be balance in all things, except when there is porn addiction or serious attachment to porn, involved. My partner has admitted that it is very hard for him not to watch and/or masturbate, but he only needs help in blocking apps, etc. I’d love your thoughts on this. Thank you so much. - We are NOT here to talk about masturbation from a moral or religious perspective. We invite PBSE listeners to address this aspect from their own tradition and perspective. - Masturbation activates the body's most power "biological reward system"— HOW can this become an unhealthy "crutch/form of self-medication"? - Masturbation and the "biology of connection"—climax can "weld" you to fantasy or reality; to self-sex and solo-connection or to a deep, "we" connection—"I" vs. "Us"—which one do you desire most? - What you repetitively "connect to" builds a "pattern of connection." What you "attach to" in the fantasy world "detaches" you from the real world. A partner CANNOT compete with a diverse fantasy world that is consistently rewarded and reinforced by sexual climax. - How masturbation coupled with fantasy can trigger the brain's "habituation mechanism" and become "insatiable." A "holistic" love and connection in a committed relationship does NOT follow this path nor create this "trap."

Learn more about Mark and Steve's new online program—"Dare to Connect!" You have live access to Mark and Steve three times a week--addicts, spouses and couples! Visit— Find out more about Steve Moore at: Ascension Counseling

Learn more about Mark Kastleman at: Reclaim Counseling Services Here's an article about how to deal with a porn addict gaslighting you—

Here's an article regarding how pornography can create a "drug-like-dependence"—

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