Donny's Ramblings


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Highs & Lows

High:

Seeing an old friend walk in the door.

Low:

Feeling as if I messed up the conversation, even though my intentions were good and I’d had a lot of time to think about what I wanted to say.

High:

Seeing my son and his girlfriend for sushi after that conversation.

Low:

Leaving the restaurant not knowing when the next dinner together will take place.

High:

Coming home to a cat that is truly happy to see me, jumps up on my lap, and licks my nose a lot.


Is male menopause a thing? I’m not used to so many mood changes on the same day.


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On Speaking Again, Taking Responsibility, Learning to Say ‘No’ and Things I’ve Learned

It’s been almost 7 years since life started getting really, really tough. I made some pretty significant mistakes and entered a dark time in my life. Counseling was never offered or required of me, but I sought it out on my own. I’ve been going to counseling for years now, and have learned very much about myself. I presently see both an MFT and a Psychiatrist, and both of them have helped me enormously.

It’s not always easy to face what lives within. It hasn’t been for me. The truth is this: for much of my life, I felt as if the rules just don’t apply to me. I’ve felt as if I’m special, and can decide for myself what I’ll do and won’t do. I’ve learned, the hard way, that I’m very wrong about that.

I have also been self-centered for a good part of my life. When life hit rock-bottom, I couldn’t comprehend how many other people were impacted by the fallout. I did comprehend, rather well, how things impacted me and a small handful of others, but there are friends in my life who were also hurt. I was angry with many of them until a wise man that I know brought to my attention that others lost ME.

Others Lost Me? Huh?

It is my opinion that inside any person who publicly displays a large ego is a man (or woman) who actually has very low self-esteem. Admittedly, I only say this because it’s true in my case. I’m not saying that I have no confidence in myself, because there are certain things in which I feel very confident, such as the work I do for a living. I’m good at what I do, and have a lot to offer to customers. But overall, I’ve often felt as if the glass of what I have to offer others, in my personal life, is not even half-full.

When I looked across a table at a man verbalizing the friendship that others lost when my life turned dark, I was surprised. He mentioned a close friend of mine, who hasn’t spoken to me in awhile. The man in question is a leader. He’s someone I greatly respect. In the past, I held him up on a pedestal and felt that I was always learning from him, even when I didn’t choose to follow his advice.

But I never once thought that man needed me in any way. I never once felt as if I offered anything to his life. I felt like a taker and almost like a charity case.

The man across the table told me that simply wasn’t true. He’s known the person in question for many years, and put proof in front of my face that I did indeed offer quite a bit to this great leader.

Tears came to my eyes. I suddenly knew that what he said was true. And I felt sorrow that this person lost a friend who did indeed contribute to his life. I felt sorrow that I’d never realized this before.

Saying No Isn’t Easy For Me

I recently learned to start saying, “No.” That’s been so very difficult for me. For many years I felt as if I could save people, but I can’t. I just can’t. I finally realized that when I try to save others, it’s often me who’s brought down, rather than others raised up. That does nobody any good at all.

So I learned that there are a few people I have to cut out of my life. Not because I wanted to do so – I don’t like it at all – but because I needed to do so. When I had them in my life, I wasn’t able to raise them higher. When I tried to do so, my efforts failed.

Letting go is one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. I don’t like it at all. But I see, through counseling, that it is sometimes the right thing to do.

And I’m listening, for once, to those who see things more clearly than I see them.

Taking Responsibility

Long ago, I thought I’d taken responsibility for all of my actions. In some ways, I’d definitely done so. But there are levels to “taking responsibility” and I’ve lately leveled-up a few.

Counseling… is… amazing. But only if a person is willing to get really, really honest… and to listen, even when it hurts. It’s been hurting a lot. But when the pain goes away, something better remains. Something that feels liberating and pure and makes a person feel as if some of the pieces of the inner being are being put back in place.

Speaking Again

I’ve recently been asked to speak again, and feel as if I’m ready. The message is going to be quite different this time. The topic won’t be singular. A lot has happened, and the God I know can use all of it for his good.

Education

Along with life lessons that have been pounded into my brain, formal education has been a huge blessing to me. I’ve obtained two degrees in the last 2 years and am presently working on a Masters in Business Administration, with an Enterprise Information Systems specialty. Surprisingly, it’s a course that challenges me and forces me to study harder than I have in any other academic endeavor. I’m loving it (and my grades are good – WOOT!). What this does for me is something that I can’t put into words quite yet, though I’m sure they’ll eventually come. It’s a very positive experience.

Help Me Become a Good Man, Father

This is my prayer. I want to be a good man. I want anything that conflicts with that goal to be rooted out, even if the process is painful. I just want to spend the rest of my life being a decent human.


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Psalm 51

You are a good God.  You bless me even when I don’t deserve it.  When I fail so greatly, you remain faithful.  You let me suffer for a season, and then you had mercy and ended it.  My life is so blessed, even though I don’t deserve it.  You’ve begun to restore.  You are an amazing, loving Father.  But still I pray:

Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.

Wash away all my iniquity
    and cleanse me from my sin.

For I know my transgressions,
    and my sin is always before me.

Against you, you only, have I sinned
    and done what is evil in your sight;
so you are right in your verdict
    and justified when you judge.

Surely I was sinful at birth,
    sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
Yet you desired faithfulness even in the womb;
    you taught me wisdom in that secret place.

 

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean;
    wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
Let me hear joy and gladness;
    let the bones you have crushed rejoice.

Hide your face from my sins
    and blot out all my iniquity.

 

Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Do not cast me from your presence
    or take your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore to me the joy of your salvation
    and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

 

Deliver me from the guilt of bloodshed, O God,
you who are God my Savior,
and my tongue will sing of your righteousness.

Open my lips, Lord,
and my mouth will declare your praise.
You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.

My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart
you, God, will not despise.

 

You’ve given me the intelligence to offer something of value.  You’ve given me much to steward, and I have taken it for granted.  You slapped me down to teach me, and for that I  really am thankful.  I never comprehended how good things were for me, and I likely don’t now.  But still you are faithful.  You discipline those you love.  That being the case, I  feel very loved right now.  I smile and laugh as I write that.  

Your discipline, however, is just.  And, God my God, you don’t leave anyone in despair.

You’ve even given grace to the few who have chosen to extend their hand to a man who doesn’t deserve it.  I don’t need many people in my life, but I do need some.  For so long I felt almost entirely abandoned.  And then, as I was about to throw in the towel, you brought others into my life to help.  You promised never to give those you love more than they can bear.  That applies to those with self-inflicted wounds.

You keep your promises.

For that I thank you, my Father.


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A Walk to Remember

My “Walk to Remember” was intended to be a bike ride.

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As I’ve mentioned before – many times – I’ve lost quite a bit of weight, going from 300 lbs down to 170-something:

Donny Pauling - Before and After Pic

The “before” and “after” pic. I went from 300 lbs to 170-something pounds.

For the most part, I lost the weight by walking and jogging.  Today, I decided to also incorporate biking into my exercise regime.  I intended to ride my bike along a 19 mile section of the Sacramento River trail, between Caldwell Park and Shasta Dam.

The first 11.2 miles were great.  There were challenges, for sure, but I was up for them, and it made me proud to be able to climb Heartrate Hill, which is a notoriously challenging climb.

Other climbs were nearly as difficult, especially after I’d been riding for awhile.  I decided not to hurry.  I wanted to stop and enjoy the scenery, and to take photos.

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Along the Sacramento Trail, between Keswick Dam and Shasta Dam

Here’s where things changed:

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I took that screenshot right after my tire went flat:

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I was already 11.2 miles into the ride and in the middle of nowhere. At the least, I faced a 9 mile walk to Shasta Dam, or I could go back 11.2 miles along the path I’d already traveled.

I decided I still wanted to reach Shasta Dam, even though I now had to walk and push a bike along.

The views made it all worth it.

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After 9 miles, pushing a bike along the Sacramento River Trail and up the steep road to the top of Shasta Dam, I finally made it to Shasta Lake City, where I caught a bus home.

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Between the Bike Ride and the walking, I put in 20.45 miles today, and burned more than 1,500 calories.

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Taking The Long Route

Walking from my mother’s house to church takes 45 minutes via main roads.  But that’s the boring route. Let me show you the 2 hour route, which is not only beautiful, but it’s a great walk to take with God in prayer. 

(some of the pics are panoramas, and must be clicked on the fully appreciate)

Which would you take? The long and boring route beside highly trafficked city streets, or the slow and scenic route through nature?


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How Porn Affects Us: A List of Peer Reviewed Studies, as well as Magazine Articles

I’ll be sure to add more articles and research as I come across it, most likely in the comments area of this article.

 

First:

Peer reviewed studies in summary form so you can easily get the point, but with references to the study so you can look it up yourself (the summary is listed first, then the reference to the study).  If you so choose to look it up, simply go somewhere like Google Scholar and copy/paste the reference into the search bar:

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As a result of viewing pornography women reported lowered body image, partner critical of their body, increased pressure to perform acts seen in pornographic films, and less actual sex, while men reported being more critical of their partners’ body and less interested in actual sex.

Albright, J. (2008). Sex in America online: An exploration of sex, marital status, and sexual identity in Internet sex seeking and its impacts. Journal of Sex Research, 45, 175–186.

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Exposure to “massive pornography” leads to changes in beliefs and attitudes. For example, reduced support for the women’s liberation movement, reduced belief that pornography needs to be restricted for minors, reduced recommended jail sentences for rapists, increased callousness toward woman, and beliefs of increased frequency of pathological sex (such as sex with animals, and sex with violence).

Zillmann, D & J. Bryant. (1984). Effects of massive exposure to pornography. In Malamuth, N and Donnerstein, E. (Eds), Pornography and sexual aggression. San Diego, Academic Press.

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The strongest predictors of use of cyberporn were weak ties to religion and lack of a happy marriage. However, past sexual deviance (e.g., involvement in paid sex) was also a strong predictor of cyberporn use. Persons ever having an extramarital affair were 3.18 times more apt to have used cyberporn than ones who had lacked affairs. Further, those ever having engaged in paid sex were 3.7 times more apt than those who had not to be using cyberporn. Overall the model explained 40 percent of the variance in porn use on the Internet.

Stack, S., Wasserman, I. & Kern, R. (2004). Adult Social Bonds and Use of Internet Pornography. Social Science Quarterly, 85, 75-88.

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Women who were exposed to pornography as children were more likely to accept the rape myth and to have sexual fantasies that involved rape.

Corne, S., Briere, J. & Esses, L. (1992). Women’s attitudes and fantasies about rape as a function of early exposure to pornography. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 7, 4, 454-461.

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Male domestic violence offenders who utilize the sex industry (pornography and strip clubs) use more controlling behaviors, engage in more sexual abuse, stalking and marital rape against their partners then males who do not use the sex industry.

Simmons, C. A, Lehmann, P & Collier-Tenison, S. (2008). Linking male use of the sex industry to controlling behaviors in violent relationships. Violence against Women, 14, 406-417.

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At the 2003 meeting of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, a gathering of the nation’s divorce lawyers, attendees documented a startling trend. Nearly two-thirds of the attorneys present had witnessed a sudden rise in divorces related to the Internet; 58% of those were the result of a spouse looking at excessive amounts of pornography online.

Paul, P. (2005). Pornified. New York: Times Books.

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In a sample of 30 juveniles who had committed sex offenses, exposure to pornographic material at a young age was common. The researchers reported that 29 of the 30 juveniles had been exposed to X-rated magazines or videos; the average age at exposure was about 7.5 years.

Wieckowski, E., Hartsoe, P., Mayer, A., and Shortz, J. 1998. Deviant sexual behavior in children and young adolescents: Frequency and patterns. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, 10, 4, 293-304.

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Juvenile sex offenders were questioned about their use of sexually explicit material. Only 11% said they did not use sexually explicit material. Of those who used the material, 74% said it increased their sexual arousal.

Becker, J. V. & Stein, R. M. (1991). Is sexual erotica associated with sexual deviance in adolescent males? International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 14, 85-95.

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Male and female students and non students were shown videos for one hour each week for six weeks. Half of these subjects were shown pornography which was non violent and included common sexual practices. Half of the subjects were shown videos that had no pornography, no violence and were innocuous. Two weeks after they stopped seeing the videos they were all given an opportunity to watch videos in private. Those who saw the pornography were significantly more likely to pick harder core pornography which included sex with animals and sex that included violence. Those who had seen the innocuous videos were unlikely to pick the pornographic videos to watch. They were especially unlikely to pick the hardcore pornographic videos to watch.

Watching pornographic videos increases the interest in watching pornographic videos that are more hardcore and contain unusual and/or pathological sexual behaviors.

Zillmann, D. & Bryant, J. (1986). Shifting preferences in pornography consumption. Communication Research, 13, 4, 560-578.

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Almost two thirds (67%) of young adult males find pornography use acceptable while 49% of young adult females find it acceptable. More young adult males use pornography (87%) than young adult females (31%). While 31% of males use pornography never or less than once a month about 5% of males use pornography daily or almost daily. Young adult females use pornography infrequently; 69 % never use it, 21% use it less than once a month and only .2% use it daily or almost every day. For males, more pornography use is correlated with more sex partners, more alcohol use, more binge drinking, greater acceptance of sex outside of marriage for married individuals, greater acceptance of sex before marriage and less child centeredness during marriage.

Carroll, J. S., Padilla-Walker, L. M., Nelson, L. J., Olson, C. D., Barry, C. M., & Madsen, S. (2008). Generation XXX: Pornography acceptance and use among emerging adults. Journal of Adolescent Research, 23, 1, 6-30.

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Males who are involved with interpersonal violence in their relationships and who use pornography and go to strip clubs use more controlling behaviors with their partners. These males engage in more sexual abuse, stalking and marital rape than abusers who do not use pornography and go to strip clubs.

Simmons, C. A., Lehmann, P. & Collier-Tennison, S. (2008). Linking male use of the sex industry to controlling behaviors in violent relationships: An exploratory analysis. Violence Against Women, 14, 406-417.

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Forty percent of abused women indicated that their partner used violent pornography. Of those whose partners used pornography, 53% of the women indicated that they had been asked or forced to enact scenes that they had been shown. Forty percent of the abused women had been raped and of these, 73% stated that their partners had used pornography. Twenty-six percent of the women had been reminded of pornography during the abuse.

Cramer, E. & McFarlane, J. (1994). Pornography and abuse of women. Public Health Nursing, 11, 4, 268-272.

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The likelihood of sexual harassment is significantly correlated with volume of past exposure of sexually explicit materials.

Barak, A., Fisher, W.A., Belfry, S., & Lashambe, D. R. (1999). Sex, guys, and cyberspace: Effects of internet pornography and individual differences on men’s attitudes toward women. Journal of Psychological and Human Sexuality, 11, 63-92.

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There was an increase in attitudes supporting sexual violence following pornography exposure. Violent pornography increased these attitudes even more than non violent pornography.

Allen, M., Emmers, T. M., Gebhardt, L., & Giery, M. (1995). Pornography and rape myth acceptance. Journal of Communication, 45, 5-26.

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High pornography users were higher in rape myth acceptance, acceptance of violence against women, adversarial sex beliefs, reported likelihood of rape, reported likelihood of forced sex acts and sex callousness than low pornography users.

High pornography users who were shown nonviolent dehumanizing pornography showed higher scores in reported likelihood of rape, sex callousness and sexually aggressive behaviors than high pornography users who weren’t shown pornography.

Check. J. V. P., & Guloien, T. H. (1989). The effects of repeated exposure to sexually violent pornography, nonviolent dehumanizing pornography, and erotica. In D. Zillmann & J. Bryan (Eds.), Pornography: Recent research, interpretations, and policy considerations (pp. 159-184). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

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Males who were high in hostile masculinity, sexual promiscuity and who used pornography frequently were significantly more likely to have physically and sexually aggressed (7.78) than males who were low in these factors (.4).

Malamuth, N., Addison, T. & Koss, M. (2000). Pornography and sexual aggression: Are there reliable effects and can we understand them? Annual Review of Sex Research, 11, 26-68.

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Adolescents exposed to sexually explicit websites (SEWs) were more likely to have multiple lifetime sexual partners, to have had more than one sexual partner in the last 3 months, to have used alcohol or other substances at last sexual encounter, and to have engaged in anal sex. Adolescents who visit SEWs display higher sexual permissiveness scores compared with those who have never been exposed, indicating a more permissive attitude.

Braun-Courville, D. & Rojas, M. (2009). Exposure to sexually explicit web sites and adolescent sexual attitudes and behaviors. Journal of Adolescent Health, 45, 156-162.

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Citation Information:

A Love That Doesn’t Last: Pornography Consumption and Weakened Commitment to  One’s Romantic Partner

Nathaniel M. Lambert, Sesen Negash, Tyler F. Stillman, Spencer B. Olmstead, and Frank D. Fincham

Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 2012 31:4, 410-438

We examined whether the consumption of pornography affects romantic relationships, with the expectation that higher levels of pornography consumption would correspond to weakened commitment in young adult romantic relationships. Study 1 (n = 367) found that higher pornography consumption was related to lower commitment, and Study 2 (n = 34) replicated this finding using observational data. Study 3 (n = 20) participants were randomly assigned to either refrain from viewing pornography or to a self-control task. Those who continued using pornography reported lower levels of commitment than control participants. In Study 4 (n = 67), participants consuming higher levels of pornography flirted more with an extradyadic partner during an online chat. Study 5 (n = 240) found that pornography consumption was positively related to infidelity and this association was mediated by commitment. Overall, a consistent pattern of results was found using a variety of approaches including cross-sectional (Study 1), observational (Study 2), experimental (Study 3), and behavioral (Studies 4 and 5) data.

Read More:

http://guilfordjournals.com/doi/abs/10.1521/jscp.2012.31.4.410

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Does Viewing Explain Doing? Assessing the Association Between Sexually Explicit Materials Use and Sexual Behaviors in a Large Sample of Dutch Adolescents and Young Adults

Gert Martin Hald PhD1,*, Lisette Kuyper PhD2, Philippe C.G. Adam PhD3,4 andJohn B.F. de Wit PhD3,5

Article first published online: 26 APR 2013

DOI: 10.1111/jsm.12157 © 2013 International Society for Sexual Medicine

Issue The Journal of Sexual Medicine

The Journal of Sexual Medicine

Volume 10, Issue 12, pages 2986–2995, December 2013

Abstract

Introduction

Concerns have been voiced that the use of sexually explicit materials (SEMs) may adversely affect sexual behaviors, particularly in young people. Previous studies have
generally found significant associations between SEM consumption and the sexual  behaviors investigated. However, most of these studies have focused on sexual  behaviors related to sexually transmitted infections or sexual aggression and/or failed to adequately control for relevant covariates. Thus, research more thoroughly investigating the association between SEM consumption and a broader range of sexual behaviors is needed.

Aims

The study aims to investigate SEM consumption patterns of young people, and to assess the strength of the association between SEM consumption and a range of sexual behaviors, controlling for a comprehensive array of variables previously shown to affect these relationships.

Methods

Online cross-sectional survey study of 4,600 young people, 15–25 years of age, in The Netherlands was performed.

Main Outcomes Measures

The main outcome measures were self-reported SEM consumption and sexual practices.

Results

The study found that 88% of men and 45% of women had consumed SEM in the past 12 months. Using hierarchical multiple regression analyses to control for other factors, the association between SEM consumption and a variety of sexual behaviors was found to be significant, accounting for between 0.3% and 4% of the total explained variance in investigated sexual behaviors.

Conclusions

This study suggests that, when controlling for important other factors, SEM consumption influences sexual behaviors. The small to moderate associations that emerged between SEM consumption and sexual behavior after controlling for other variables suggest that SEM is just one factor among many that may influence youth sexual behaviors. These findings contribute novel information to the ongoing debates on the role of SEM consumption in sexual behaviors and risk, and provide appropriate guidance to policy makers and program developers concerned with sexual education and sexual health promotion for young people. Hald GM, Kuyper L, Adam PCG, and de Wit JBF. Does viewing explain doing? Assessing the association between sexually explicit materials use and sexual behaviors in a large sample of Dutch adolescents and young adults. J Sex Med 2013;10:2986–2995.

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Now for the articles:

 

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/i-can-relate/201403/it-doesn-t-hurt-look-does-it

“The Result: The people who eliminated or significantly reduced their viewing of pornographic material were significantly more committed to their relationships than those who continued to view the material. These results held true for both men and women.”

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http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sex-lies-trauma/201107/effects-porn-adolescent-boys

Between the ages of 12 and 20, the human brain undergoes a period of great neuroplasticity. The brain is in a malleable phase during which billions of new synaptic connections are made. This leaves us vulnerable to the influence of our surroundings and leads our brains to be “wired” around the experiences and information that we receive during that time period.

When an adolescent boy compulsively views pornography, his brain chemistry can become shaped around the attitudes and situations that he is watching. Sadly, pornography paints an unrealistic picture of sexuality and relationships that can create an expectation for real-life experiences that will never be fulfilled.

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Huge Amounts of Data:

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/love-and-sex-in-the-digital-age/201401/is-male-porn-use-ruining-sex

It includes discussion of interest in real partners, erectile disfunction, etc.

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http://www.phillymag.com/articles/the-sorry-lives-and-confusing-times-of-today-s-young-men/?all=1

Something, it seems, is sucking the life out of guys quite literally. One-third of male college students say they’ve experienced erectile dysfunction. Leonard Sax, a family physician for nearly 20 years who authored the book Boys Adrift, saw more and more of them in his Maryland office, asking for Viagra and Cialis. Constant access to porn has desensitized them; they can’t get it up with live girls. “We’re seeing the replacement of penile sex with oral sex,” says Sax, “with the girl on her knees, servicing the boy. Boys and girls both end up losers.” One in five men ages 18 to 25 are now classified as “sub-fertile” because of low sperm count and quality, both of which have been dropping in the developed world for the past 50 years. Curiously, 50 years ago, around 64 percent of all college students were male.

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Porn Induced Erectile Dysfunction in Young Men:

http://yourhealth.asiaone.com/content/pornography-can-cause-erectile-dysfunction-young-men

More Interesting Articles:

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fixing-families/201212/porning-too-much

http://nsbnews.net/content/409829-sexual-dysfunction-escalating-price-abusing-porn

http://sydney.edu.au/news/84.html?newsstoryid=9176

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/therapy-matters/201205/does-porn-contribute-ed

http://yourbrainonporn.com/middleburry-college-physician-sees-rise-ed-blames-porn

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/repairing-relationships/201111/why-does-he-prefer-porn-over-me

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What Porn Does to Intimacy:

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/tech-support/201407/what-porn-does-intimacy


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The Story of A Girl Whose Life I Ruined

I must warn you that what I’m about to share with you is very dark.  If you are in need of a “picker upper,” this story is not for you.  For some, this article might be quite depressing.  For others, it might be a wake-up call, causing them to think of a side of pornography they’ve never before considered.  The latter is my intent.  There’s not much light at the end of this particular dark tunnel.  Also note that I have Mindy’s permission, and indeed encouragment, to share her story.

When you tell a person what they can’t have, they’ll often try to convince you that you’re wrong.  This is especially true for the college aged who have recently left the safety of the nest to try their wings out on their own for the first time.  When recruiting new porn actresses, I understood this very well and used it to my advantage.  Often working from a nice home, I let the house and our lifestyle do the selling for me.  A new prospect would arrive after having driven through one of the better neighborhoods in town and, prior to sitting down to interview with me in my home office, would be shown around the property like a valued guest.  My girlfriend and I had things the interviewee didn’t have, the photos of us were taken at vacations spots where she likely hadn’t been, the “famous” people with whom we posed were people she’d recognize but likely hadn’t met.

There were psychological reasons for this:  I not only wanted her to feel comfortable in a warm, non-threatening environment, but I also knew she’d start painting herself into the picture.  “Porn can give me this lifestyle?” she’d ask herself.  “No, dear girl, this lifestyle isn’t for you,” I’d verbalize, “You can’t handle this business.  What if your dad finds out you’re working for me?”  The more a college aged girl was presented with questions like this, the more she’d argue that I was wrong and this life was something she could handle.  When her life began falling apart, I could pat myself on the back for having warned her against getting involved in the first place.

One December day a girl named Mindy arrived at my house.   She’d turned 18 barely a month before her interview.  I wish I could deny playing the part I played in her story.  For a long time I either didn’t want to talk about it, or I’d mention small bits of information.  Mindy is the reason my cell phone number has never been changed.  She has it memorized, and to this day she’ll call when she’s at her worst and has nowhere else to turn.

Back on that first day, I knew I had a money maker.  I verified the age on her ID because, well, isn’t it obvious by looking at her pictures?  She looks really young.  I’d already been in the business four years by this time, so I had a pretty good handle on the demands of the market.  I knew men would go crazy over this girl.

I initially emailed samples to clients who owned websites.  Every one of them either matched their largest order size, or ordered more of her than they had of any other model I’d submitted.  One client who specialized in the “teen” niche – which requires a model to be over 18 but look younger – started asking if I’d be willing to partner with him on solo-girl website.  Such a site features one girl, rather than a variety of girls.  We made a proposal to Mindy:  she’d receive 25% of site revenue, I’d receive 25% and my new business partner would keep the remaining 50%.  His portion was larger because he would be responsible for all website development, hosting and promotions.

Mindy was the easiest model I’ve ever worked with, at least when it came to porn production.  She had a natural charisma, beautiful smile and a melodic laugh.  She loved life, and enlivened any room into which she walked.  At the beginning of her “career,” she could have been the poster child for “bubbly personality.”  The second a camera was pointed at her, she’d just start posing.  She didn’t need to be directed.  I couldn’t press the shutter release quickly enough.  For the most part, she’d pick out her own clothing and props, and she didn’t care where we shot, from rolling around in the dirt of a dry field to posing on railroad tracks, from taking over an aircraft hangar – and using the aircraft within it as her own personal props – to breaking into an abandoned sawmill, Mindy was up for anything.  When it came to videos, no script was needed because you could be sure that whatever Mindy came up with would be something her “fans” enjoyed seeing.  The one thing she didn’t want to do, however, was touch another person.  I honored that… for a while.

I believe that into every woman is built a need to be desired.  This desire can be used for the purposes of manipulation by guys like the one I used to be.  With Mindy, we flattered her and praised the things we loved about her.  Prior to the launch of her website, her fan base had already exploded due to the release of thousands of images of her on other popular sites.  The feedback she received was shared with her.  We used it to inflate her ego and prod her along.  Her “fans” needed her, after all.  With that positive reinforcement in mind, she was under the impression that she was going to become a celebrity once her solo-site launched.  She told everyone about it.

When an 18 year old girl begins making $10,000 per month, she more than likely isn’t going to know how to handle that amount of money.  Mindy was no exception.  She wanted to take care of people by giving them money and buying things for them, and she wanted to have fun.  Not being promiscuous by nature, she wouldn’t go home with fans, but she could be found passed out at parties.  She was raped several times over the years. Sometimes I’d immediately be told about these rapes, and other times I would not, only having them brought up months later.  I encouraged her to speak to police, but she never wanted to do so.  I asked local law enforcement if there was anything I could do, and was told she had to be willing to talk about it herself.  By this time, she felt as if all she was good for was to serve as an outlet for the “needs” men thought they had, either by entertaining them on her website, or letting them get away with taking what they wanted from her when she was passed out.  The lifestyle I had saddled her with had drained all light and sparkle from her eyes.  They reflected a soul that had died inside.

Where once a girl existed who would light up a room just by being herself, now there was a girl who would often literally begin a sentence laughing and end that same sentence in tears.  She once broke down on a sidewalk after we’d gone out for pizza and loudly cried about how her website was destroying her life.  Another time, I shot scenes with her in a hotel room at a local casino, and in between scenes she passed out on the bed.  I let her sleep for hours, but by checkout time I still couldn’t get her to wake up.  I had to call security to see if they could help, because God knows I didn’t want to pay for another day, and ended up witnessing a room full of hostile men badgering a naked young girl who was quite angry at having been forced awake, trying to dress and gather her things as strangers screamed at her that she had to leave.

The first time Mindy told me she’d given her life to Jesus, I was actually happy to hear it.  The things I’d seen in Mindy’s life didn’t make me feel very good because I knew a big part of the blame was on me.  Built into her contract was the requirement to keep producing new content if she wanted to keep receiving her percentage of sales, and I knew that she’d have quit early on if she could have just walked away while keeping residual royalties.  Jesus entering her life meant I was going to lose one of my best-selling models, but at least I wouldn’t have to keep looking into those haunted eyes when she was around.

More than anything, I was a hate-filled, selfish man.  My hatred was fueled by the hypocrisy I’d witnessed within the church during my teen years, as well as the perceived ongoing hypocrisy of Christians who would lecture me about the life I was living, yet want to see what new pornographic content I’d produced.  While I was happy to see the lights return to Mindy’s eyes, I was not happy to be on the receiving end of her attempts to save my soul.  She definitely wasn’t prepared to discuss such matters with me.  Had she not decided to witness to me, I might not have made such an effort to drag her back into porn.  But since the church ladies who met with her on a regular basis had encouraged her to “plant seeds” into my mind, I in retaliation decided I’d try to remove Mindy’s faith entirely.  Already, she was having a hard time making ends meet, as income no longer came in from the site (remember, it depended upon her willingness to add new content).   I asked her if she understood that old religious men were the ones who had made up the moral rules prohibiting her from participating in her website, which was still able to provide very well for her financially if she’d just give up the crazy religious stuff.  I began pointing out inconsistencies in the Bible.  I asked her what loving God would command that unborn babies be ripped from their mother’s wombs, as is mentioned in the book of Hosea.  After having spent so much time with her – at one time she even lived with me – I knew how best to manipulate her into seeing things my way.  She’d come back to the lifestyle every time, initially insisting that she’d only shoot lingerie at most, but quickly jumping back in full bore.

But now I told her she needed to do more.  First we started with girls, then later with boyfriends.  Eventually, I had her take on both visiting male friends and myself, often at the same time, although we’d film it so that it could technically be called a porn shoot rather than prostitution.  The difference between legal prostitution and illegal prostitution is just that the former is labeled “pornography” and involves a model release and a camera of some sort.

Because someone she thought cared for her was now using her as a prostitute, she started identifying as one.  Drugs had never previously been part of her life, but they became part of it now.  I guess they made it easy to do what she was doing.  I’d often pick her up for shoots from hotel rooms where it was apparent she’d been selling herself to others.  She bounced from house to house, living with random older men who’d use her for a time and then send her on her way.  She has no idea who her son’s father might be, because she didn’t know any of the men who were present the night she was impregnated while passed out at a party.

I wish there was a happy ending to Mindy’s story, but there’s not.  Not many months ago, she called in tears, begging me to adopt her two kids.  The state had taken them one time too many, and they were now no longer eligible to be returned to her.  Her social worker had informed her that a close friend or family member could be given priority, and she wondered if I would be willing, as the rest of her family was not.  I gave it thought and prayer, but realized I’m not equipped to take them on.

I’ve now known Mindy for almost 13 years, and there is far more to this story.  I could write more than one book about her life alone.  What is important for you to know is this:  when I led her into pornography, her life was forever changed.  Every single time I see her, she tells me that the website we created of her still impacts her life to this day.  Random strangers still recognize her and make assumptions about her.  She fights hard with the mental illness that was brought on while dealing with the numerous issues that have arisen from working for me. She is very paranoid most of the time, thinking people must be stalking her.  When she is noticed by a man in public, she never assumes it is because he finds her attractive, but rather because he has seen her online somewhere without her clothes on.

There is nothing at all attractive about what happened to her.

I wonder if the men and women who found so much appeal in the images and video content we produced of Mindy would find it attractive if they knew what it cost her.  I wonder if there would be any arousal if the reality was shown:  often before a scene, Mindy would protest, but she knew she wouldn’t earn any money if she didn’t do it, so she’d put on her best game face and do what made her feel worthless, pretending she enjoyed it.

I put her in front of a camera and repeatedly convinced her to continue doing work that was dimming her eyes and killing her soul, but I’d like to point out that the Law of Supply and Demand means all of us who have consumed pornography are part of the cycle of broken lives, like Mindy’s, that result from this industry.  This story is not unique; it happens in some form or other every day, repeatedly.  Mindy is someone’s daughter.  What if she was yours?

While there is an enormous amount of darkness in Mindy’s life, there are also things I find encouraging.  Even though she was impregnated through rape, and even though she knew she might not be able to provide for a child, abortion was never an option that entered her mind.  Her children might not have been afforded the best life possible with her, but they do have life, and I’ve no doubt whatsoever that they prefer that to the alternative.

I also take courage in the fact that Mindy never gives up.  There are situations she has faced that are just as bad as or worse than those I’ve shared, but she doesn’t give up.  She’s never once threatened to end her life, she doesn’t whine, and she reluctantly accepts handouts.  Sometimes she goes to church, other times she does not, but she’s never blamed God for her circumstances.

What I need from you, dear reader, is a promise that you’ll pray for Mindy.  Please don’t do so as a one-time thing.  Add her to your daily or weekly prayer list.  It has been almost 13 years since porn began affecting her life, and the images and video we created together will be around until long after she has departed this world.  There will never be a time when prayers for her are wasted.   If you’d like specific things to pray for, I’d suggest praying that her mind is healed and that her children are cared for in loving, nurturing environments.  The most recent update I have of them is from a few months ago, and they were in foster care at that time.

And finally, please help share the message that pornography involves real people.  One way to fight it is to decrease the demand for it.  Let’s humanize those who are involved in its creation so that fewer consumers find it appealing.  If you’re a consumer, please do whatever is necessary to stop consumption.  Encourage your children to become warriors, fighting for those who aren’t willing to fight for themselves by refusing to ever become consumers of pornography.  FightTheNewDrug has done a great job with their marketing campaign to sell products such as t-shirts, hoodies and wrist bands that are intended to make porn “uncool” for young people.  Perhaps browse their store and make a purchase or two for the youth in your life.  Let’s work to change the way porn is esteemed, transforming the attitude that “everybody uses it” to “it’s just not cool” in ways similar to anti-smoking campaigns.  We CAN do it.

______________________________________________

As I travel to speak, I’m often asked by parents and those who wish to protect themselves if there is any particular computer/mobile device software I recommend.  It is my opinion that Covenant Eyes offers the very best software on the market, and does a fantastic job keeping it updated.  Because the quality of their work demands a full time staff to keep it updated, they do have a small monthly fee.  However, if you use my reference code, they’ll give you the first month free to try it.  Click here to check it out or go to CovenantEyes.com and use promo code donnypauling.


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This is Mindy: The Ex-Porn Star

This is Mindy: And this is how I destroyed her life by making her a porn star

Don Pauling- Confessions of an ex-porn producer

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Note: I must warn you that what I’m about to share with you is very dark.  If you are in need of a “pick-me-up,” this story is not for you.  For some, this article might be quite depressing.  For others, it might be a wake-up call, causing them to think of a side of pornography they’ve never before considered.  The latter is my intent.  Also note that I have Mindy’s permission, and indeed encouragment, to share her story.

When you tell a person what they can’t have, they’ll often try to convince you that you’re wrong.  This is especially true for the college-aged, who have recently left the safety of the nest to try their wings out on their own for the first time.  When recruiting new porn actresses, I understood this very well and used it to my advantage.

I worked from a nice home, and I often let the house and our lifestyle do the selling for me. A new prospect would arrive after having driven through one of the better neighborhoods in town and, prior to sitting down to interview in my home office, would be shown around the property like a valued guest.  My girlfriend and I had things the interviewee didn’t have. The photos of us were taken at vacations spots where the girl likely hadn’t been, and the “famous” people with whom we posed were people she’d recognize but likely hadn’t met.

There were psychological reasons for this:  I not only wanted her to feel comfortable in a warm, non-threatening environment, but I also knew she’d start painting herself into the picture.  “Porn can give me this lifestyle?” she’d ask herself.  “No, dear girl, this lifestyle isn’t for you,” I’d say, “You can’t handle this business.  What if your dad finds out you’re working for me?”  The more a college-aged girl was presented with questions like this, the more she’d argue that I was wrong and this life was something she could handle.  When her life began falling apart, I could pat myself on the back for having warned her against getting involved in the first place.

A natural

One December day a girl named Mindy arrived at my house.   She’d turned 18 barely a month before her interview.  I wish I could deny playing the part I played in her story.  For a long time after I left the porn industry, I simply didn’t want to talk about it.  Mindy is the reason my cell phone number has never been changed.  She has it memorized, and to this day she’ll call when she’s at her worst and has nowhere else to turn.

Back on that first day, I knew I had a money-maker.  I verified the age on her ID because, well, she looked really young.  I’d already been in the business four years by this time, so I had a pretty good handle on the demands of the market.  I knew men would go crazy over this girl.

I initially emailed samples to clients who owned websites.  Every one of them either matched their largest order size, or ordered more of her than they had of any other model I’d submitted.  One client who specialized in the “teen” niche – which requires a model to be over 18 but look younger – started asking if I’d be willing to partner with him on a website dedicated exclusively to Mindy.  We made a proposal to her:  she’d receive 25% of site revenue, I’d receive 25%, and my new business partner would keep the remaining 50%.  His portion was larger because he would be responsible for all website development, hosting and promotions.

Mindy was the easiest porn model I’ve ever worked with.  She had a natural charisma, beautiful smile and a melodic laugh.  She loved life, and enlivened any room into which she walked.  At the beginning of her “career,” she could have been the poster child for “bubbly personality.”

Prior to the launch of her website, Mindy’s fan base had already exploded.  We shared the feedback we received with her, using it to inflate her ego and prod her along.  She clearly believed that she was going to become a celebrity.

When an 18-year-old girl begins making $10,000 per month, she most likely isn’t going to know how to handle that amount of money.  Mindy was no exception.  She wanted to take care of people by giving them money and buying things for them, and she wanted to have fun.  Not being promiscuous by nature, she wouldn’t go home with fans, but she could be found passed out at parties.  She was raped several times over the years.

In time, the lifestyle I had saddled her with drained all light and sparkle from her eyes. Where once a girl existed who would light up a room just by being herself, now there was a girl who would often literally begin a sentence laughing and end that same sentence in tears

No happy ending

The first time Mindy told me she’d given her life to Jesus, and wouldn’t be doing porn any more, I was actually happy to hear it.  I’d seen what had happened in Mindy’s life, and I felt bad, because I knew a big part of the blame was on me.  Her decision meant I was going to lose one of my best-selling models, but at least I wouldn’t have to keep looking into those haunted eyes when she was around.

More than anything, I was a hate-filled, selfish man.  My hatred was fueled by the hypocrisy I’d witnessed within the church during my teen years, as well as the perceived, ongoing hypocrisy of Christians who would lecture me about the life I was living, yet want to see what new pornographic content I’d produced.

While I was happy to see the lights return to Mindy’s eyes, I was not happy to be on the receiving end of her attempts to save my soul.  She definitely wasn’t prepared to discuss such matters with me.  Had she not decided to try to witness to me, I might not have made such an effort to drag her back into porn.  But since the church ladies who met with her on a regular basis had encouraged her to “plant seeds” into my mind, in retaliation I decided I’d try to remove Mindy’s faith entirely.

Already, she was having a hard time making ends meet.  So I asked her if she understood that old religious men were the ones who had made up the moral rules prohibiting her from participating in her website.  I began pointing out inconsistencies in the Bible.  After having spent so much time with her – at one time she even lived with me – I knew how best to manipulate her into seeing things my way.  She’d come back to the lifestyle every time.

And as time went on, things only got worse. I made her do things that she had refused to do at first. Sometimes Mindy would protest, but she knew she wouldn’t earn any money if she didn’t do it. She started identifying as a prostitute, and started taking drugs. I guess they made it easy to do what she was doing. She bounced from house to house, living with random older men who’d use her for a time and then send her on her way. One result of this is that she has no idea who her son’s father might be.

I wish there was a happy ending to Mindy’s story, but there’s not.  Not many months ago, she called in tears, begging me to adopt her two kids.  The state had taken them one too many times, and she was no longer eligible to have them returned to her.  Her social worker had informed her that a close friend or family member could be given priority, and she wondered if I would be willing, as the rest of her family was not.  I gave it thought and prayer, but realized I’m not equipped to take them on.

This photo was taken while touring the Playboy mansion with my then-girlfriend and one of Playboy’s managers, to whom we answered and to whom we turned in the content that we created.)

Porn harms…period

I’ve now known Mindy for almost 13 years.  I could write more than one book about her life alone.  What is important for you to know is this:  when I led her into pornography, her life was forever changed. Random strangers still recognize her and make assumptions about her.  She fights hard with the mental illness.  There is nothing at all attractive about what happened to her.

I wonder if the men and women who found the images and video content we produced of Mindy so appealing would find it attractive if they knew what it cost her.  I wonder if they would be aroused if they knew the reality.

But while I was the one who put her in front of a camera, the Law of Supply and Demand also means all of us who have consumed pornography are part of this cycle of broken lives. Mindy’s story is not unique; it happens in some form or other every day, repeatedly. Mindy is someone’s daughter. What if she was yours?

At the same time, while there is an enormous amount of darkness in Mindy’s life, there are also things I find encouraging.  Even though she became pregnant through rape, and even though she knew she might not be able to provide for a child, abortion never entered her mind.  Her children might not have been afforded the best life possible with her, but they do have life, and I have no doubt that they prefer that to the alternative.

I also take courage in the fact that Mindy never gives up. There are situations she has faced that are just as bad as or worse than those I’ve shared, but she doesn’t give up. She’s never once threatened to end her life, she doesn’t whine, and she reluctantly accepts physical assistance. Sometimes she goes to church, other times she does not, but she’s never blamed God for her circumstances.

What I need from you, dear reader, is a promise that you’ll pray for Mindy.  Please don’t do so as a one-time thing. Add her to your daily or weekly prayer list. It has been almost 13 years since porn began affecting her life, and the images and video we created together will be around until long after she has departed this world. There will never be a time when prayers for her are wasted.  If you’d like specific things to pray for, I’d suggest praying that her mind is healed and that her children are cared for in loving, nurturing environments. The most recent update I have about them is from a few months ago. They were in foster care at that time.

And finally, please help share the message that pornography hurts real people. Let’s humanize those who are involved in its creation, so that fewer consumers find it appealing.  If you’re a consumer, please do whatever is necessary to stop consumption.  Encourage your children to become warriors, fighting for those who aren’t willing to fight for themselves by refusing to ever become consumers of pornography.They have done a great job with their marketing campaign to sell products such as t-shirts, hoodies and wrist bands that are intended to make porn “uncool” for young people.  Perhaps browse their store and make a purchase or two for the youth in your life.  Let’s work to change the way porn is esteemed, transforming the attitude that “everybody uses it” to “it’s just not cool” in ways similar to anti-smoking campaigns.  We CAN do it.

This article was originally written for LifeSiteNews, and posted here:
http://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/this-is-mindy-and-this-is-how-i-destroyed-her-life-by-making-her-a-porn-sta

(…Lifesitenews.com pretends I no longer exist, and this article is no longer at that url…)


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The Hardcore Truth || An Ex-Porn-Producer Reveals 10 Myths About Pornography

The Hardcore Truth | An Ex-Porn Producer Reveals 10 Myths About

By Matt Fradd and Donny Pauling.  Click the image to get your free copy!

Covenant Eyes has decided to give away the eBook written by Matt Fradd and yours truly.  In this 30 page eBook, Matt and I discuss porn in a very open way that will open the minds of many.  The short length of the book is done on purpose:  this is for someone who needs to read what we’ve got to say, but doesn’t want to spend hours on end reading a full length book.

This book is a handy resource for anyone who wants to be able to help those struggling with porn, who want to educate those who think porn is “no big deal,” or those who want weapons in their own personal arsenal when fighting an attraction to pornography.

Click here to get your free copy: Hardcore Truth: An Ex-Porn Producer Reveals 10 Myths About Pornography.