Getting at the Naked Truth


My boyfriend of almost a year is addicted to porn. It’s all over his room, and he loves to talk about it. His addiction concerns me, since that seems to be the only thing on his mind. How do I get him to stop and notice me? -Ignored Girlfriend

If he’s truly addicted to porn — and, yes, such an addiction does exist — then it will be difficult for you to do anything about it alone. Like any compulsive behavior grown out of control, there are biological, emotional and cognitive aspects of it that usually can’t be tackled by sheer willpower (or nagging).

He needs to recognize that there’s a problem, and no amount of “Stop it!” will cut the mustard. The fact that he loves to talk about it might mean that he’s not necessarily motivated to cut down on it (or that he’s not particularly secretive about it, as people who are consumed with sexual addictions often are). There’s also the possibility that this isn’t an addiction but milder dysfunctional behavior, or representative of some sort of conflict between the two of you. The only path out of this is for you to begin an honest conversation with him. More info about the signs and symptoms of porn addiction can be found at Sexualrecovery.com.

See Spot Appear At Every Event

One of our friends takes her dog everywhere. My friend hosted a lunch, and this friend brought her dog. Reluctantly, the hostess said OK but was not crazy about the idea. It’s not that any of us dislikes the dog; we just feel that the dog shouldn’t go to every event. Even when we all go to a restaurant, she will bring her dog and leave it in the car. That’s inhumane. I suggested that she leave the dog at home, and she told me that the dog wants to go out with her all the time. Geez! -Help

I never particularly loved the advice-column cliche of telling the letter-writer to show his or her letter to the person he or she wrote about, but in this case, it seems like a plausible solution. That can open a dialogue with her, so you can determine how willing she is to see that the status quo is not in anyone’s best interest.

I’m no canine expert, but it’s clear that being trapped in a car — or being an unwelcome and involuntary party crasher — is not an ideal situation for a dog. It’s clear you care for your friend and are fine with her dog, so don’t do a complete embargo. Throw her the bone (sorry!) of offering to have occasional activities where the dog is welcome.

Dr. Andrea Bonior writes Express' advice column, Baggage Check.
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