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Emotional escape, no matter how it is induced, is the goal with all addictions.

The high of sex and porn addiction comes from fantasy and anticipation more than actual sex. For an analogy, consider a cocaine addict on payday. After receiving his check, he runs to the bank to exchange it for cash, then dashes off to his dealer’s house to buy drugs with money that he actually needs for food, rent, childcare, and the like. As he approaches the dealer’s house, his heart races, he’s sweating, and he is so obsessed and preoccupied with using that he doesn’t even notice the police car parked a block away. He is so completely focused on cocaine that the day-to-day world, with all of its problems and obligations, has temporarily receded. Is he not high already, even with no drugs in his system? He has escaped from his life, his decision-making is distorted, and he has lost touch with reality. It doesn’t matter that there are no actual drugs in his system because his brain is pumping out dopamine, adrenaline, and other addiction-related neurochemicals as if there are. This is the exact same anticipatory high that sex and porn addicts experience.

Task for Today
Pay attention to your desire to emotionally escape. Does that feel like the real goal of your addiction?