From the Department of Things I Never Thought I’d Say: Watch Me Coach the Naked Podcaster

I like doing podcasts. It scratches a few internal itches that I have. They provide me with someone’s attention for an hour, help continually remind me of my battle with pornography and alcohol addiction, allow me to spread an important educational message and are the easiest way to market my books.

One of the things I don’t do enough of is talk about my advising/counseling service. I love doing it and while I usually only have 1-3 clients at any given time, it does help justify the time I spend since I get a few dollars. But, for whatever reason, I don’t promote it as much as I want and I’ve been wanting to revamp that section of my website for over a year. I wish I had 5-6 clients at a time because I genuinely enjoy hearing people’s stories and helping them.

I made a conscious effort to pull back on the number of podcasts I was doing a couple months back, which has led me to turn down a few offers and not spend very much time looking for shows that would fit my message. I used to say yes to almost everybody, but I’ll actually check out somebody’s credentials first and see what their podcast is like before agreeing to it.

There have been a few times where it’s clear I’ve been invited to a show to be attacked. They are usually shows that market themselves as “pro-healthy sexuality” but in reality they are just about justifying hyper-sexual behavior. I’m not necessarily against that if you’ve got the right partner in the right situation, but I’m always cast as the frigid anti-porn guy who just doesn’t get it. I’ve learned to spot them a mile away and pass.

Back in late December or early January, I was asked to appear on a show called “The Naked Podcaster.” I almost tossed the email before reading it, but the first line that read: “I’m not even sure that I should be writing you about this…” It was clear that Jenn Taylor had a different kind of show and that while she was naked on her end of the screen, she never showed anything and it was as much a metaphor, and marketing gimmick to gain eyeballs as anything else. I still was a bit hesitant, but realized that this was a controlled environment that would not cross any lines and would ultimately show people that pornography addiction is not about a naked person. It’s about what the mind is seeking but looking for pornography. I also knew that seeing someone from the shoulders up has never been triggering for me. I’m just not a collarbone guy.

So I recorded the show in early January, it appeared a week later and I posted it as I post every other podcast. It was a good appearance and we had a nice rapport. Sometimes people who decide to have podcasts are not good conversationalists. Lord knows why they want to be part of a project that forces them to talk. These are the shows that are tough to get through. It wasn’t like that with Jenn and I thanked her for giving me access to her audience. If you’d like to see that appearance, it’s available HERE.

About a week after it ran, I got another email from Jenn saying that she was looking to do online coaching with former guests. She was upfront with her reasoning… it provided interesting content and she gets free coaching. It reminded me of how many times I’ve written the “man goes to a spa” story in my life for various publications just so I can get a free facial, massage and pedicure. I always had to play dumb and ask, “I’ve heard there’s some kind of wax treatment for your feet?” That’s when you soak your feet in a paraffin wax bath. It feels like you’re wearing slippers for a couple days after that. Anyway, I digress.

I also knew that doing this with Jenn, while different than what I do when I’m coaching or advising someone (or their partner) about porn addiction, would give the overall feel for what I do with people. I think what keeps a lot of people away is the fear of the unknown and this shows that I’m a guy just asking questions, prompting the person to speak, and I come with no judgment and throw out some possibilities to get the person on the other end to think about once we’re done. It’s easy to do, but not easy to start.

So, here are the two coaching sessions we did, via YouTube. It’ll take two hours of your time to get through them, but I think it’s interesting and I’m curious if others will reach the conclusion I did at the end.

Here is what Jenn wrote for the introduction on the YouTube video:

It might seem strange that a porn addict is coaching The Naked Podcaster, however, when I read Josh’s book, “He’s A Porn Addict… Now What?” I realized that I have triggers from my past. 3 of my 4 serious relationships had porn as part of the mix and I became curious about how that impacted me, how I was attracting people and if I could have handled it differently. I also felt a little confused about my reaction to pornography. In Session 1 we dive into my background and set the stage for session 2. I was nervous about this discussion but excited about the possibility of learning more about myself. Welcome to my porn journey and brace yourself for session 2.

In Session 2 you will learn more about me from a sexual standpoint than you ever wanted to know.

If you don’t have the time to watch, or just want the spoilers, here is what Jenn wrote following our session:

In the end, with some great coaching from Josh, he determines that I am an open, healthy sexual person, evolved, transcendent and willing to openly discuss sexuality and I’m not in your face about it. In my mind, I feel I should have a more open, healthier attitude by LIKING porn but I DON’T LIKE IT. I don’t want to admit that because in my mind it pokes holes in the balloon of being openly sexual. My definition of being openly sexual is defined on INCLUDING porn, so because I don’t really like it, I struggle with if I can be healthy sexually when I don’t really have that openness. In the moment I wasn’t sure if that was accurate or how accurate it is, but with hindsight, I believe it’s spot on. I DO like lower-key sexual encounters in an R rated movie, but once it’s blatant, I’m actually uncomfortable. What this has meant since we recorded, is embracing that having a healthy sexual relationship does not have to be all-inclusive and that’s OK. I also don’t want to have a 3-some, am not interested in women and have never wanted to attend a sex party and those things didn’t determine feeling that I’m sexually open. We all have to determine what’s in our comfort zone. I appreciate that Josh was willing to have me as a coaching client since I”m a bit removed from my engagement with porn and to explore difficult conversations with me to uncover what my triggers are.

While I’m going to be revamping things on my advising/coaching page, if anybody is interested in my services, please get in touch with me at jshea.writer@gmail.com

Healthy Sexuality is Very Different from Total Abstinence and Self Denial

I realize that one of the things I don’t talk enough about on this site is what healthy sexuality looks like. I try very hard not to be an anti-porn crusader because I think it’s a waste of time, flies in the face of my beliefs surrounding personal freedoms (for both producers and consumers) and it’s ultimately not the way that we get a handle on porn addiction in this world. If you want any proof that banning pornography would be a pointless waste of time and resources, read up a bit on how America tried to outlaw alcohol early in the 20th Century.

So, while a pornography-free life is the best choice for me, much like an alcohol-free life is the best choice for me, my battle is not with you looking at porn. My battle is with you not knowing that if there are certain factors already in place (childhood trauma, other addictions) you may be more susceptible to becoming a porn addict and the consequences that come with it.

Since sexuality is such a wide-ranging topic, I rarely delve into it beyond aspects of pornography addiction. I was not an intercourse addict, nor voyeurism or exhibitionism addict, so I can’t speak to those aspect of the umbrella “sex addiction.”

Outside the realm of addiction, I have learned a lot about sexuality, but to be honest, I’m not completely sure that there’s as strong a connection between being a sex addict and abnormal sexuality as experts think. Abnormal sexuality is a side effect of porn addiction, not a cause of it, much like I believe unhealthy eating habits are a side of effect of food addiction, not a cause of it. I think that there are people who can use pornography in unhealthy ways that don’t rise to the level of addiction, and I believe there are many people who see any use whatsoever as addiction.

In doing the research for my latest book, and in doing some marketing since, I spent a lot of time on blogs and in online forums, like those you’ll find here on WordPress or on Reddit, learning from female partners of porn addicts. Simply reading their stories taught me so much, and at least here on WordPress, you know who you are. Places like Reddit are a bit different. There are a lot of women who confuse their disgust of pornography with usage that rises to the level of an addict. Removing any moral argument of whether they should or not, is it possible for a man to look at pornography once, or look somewhat regularly without becoming an addict? Statistics, history and facts lead me to say yes. I’m not endorsing it, I’m just saying as a scientific fact, it seems like it’s possible.

Despite one being morally opposed to it, their partner may use it and not fit the definition of an addict. However, if that partner’s use is harming the relationship, and is causing a disturbance to their sex life, I would argue that it is an instance of unhealthy sexuality. If he removes the porn immediately, but nothing changes when it comes to this couple’s communication, aren’t they still living in a world of unhealthy sexuality?


Healthy sexuality is a very individual thing, and it’s something that needs to be defined as a unit if you’re part of a couple. My wife and I would never participate in BDSM or be part of swingers’ groups, but if you’re part of a couple that wants to do this, likes to do it and it has no negative bearing on your life, is it unhealthy just because it’s out of the mainstream? I don’t think so.

I think if what you’re doing sexually is legal, you enjoy it, feel it is a natural extension of how you express yourself, it doesn’t make you feel bad about yourself, you’re not forced into it, it doesn’t have a negative effect on your day-to-day life and you’re not forcing anybody else into it, then it really can’t be unhealthy, even if it’s outside of societal norms.

We judge so much of this world on what we feel is normal and average. I believe most people want to fall within the 40th and 60th percentile of almost everything so they can feel like part of the larger flock. One of the ways of being part of a majority is to rail against a minority. I really try not to do this when it comes to pornography.

I’ve mentioned on here before that there are anti-pornography arguments that have been spewed since the 1950s that clearly don’t work. If it’s anti-woman, why are more women watching than ever before? If it degrades its participants, why is it becoming a huge work-at-home industry? If it’s only for those on the fringes of society, why do statistics suggest that the majority of men under 60 watch? If it’s a sin, why are usage numbers by the religious higher than that of secular society?

I can apply a moral filter to viewing pornography, and for me personally, I have one now that I didn’t have before entering recovery. I know it’s not as strong as many people’s, but I also don’t scream and yell about it the way some do, yet then don’t apply that filter to themselves. My moral issues with pornography have nothing to do with the arguments I listed above, and I don’t make them part of my presentations and rarely talk about them here because they cloud my overall theme that education about pornography addiction needs to be happening in this world.

That education should be part of overall healthy sexuality for everyone because I believe with knowledge usually comes health. Beyond that education though, it’s not up to me to tell you what to do with it and it’s not up to me to determine what is sexually healthy for you or not. Would I ever watch porn with my wife? No. Is porn healthy to watch with your spouse? Well, statistics show that married couples who watch porn get divorced at higher rates than those who don’t. That said, there is truly not enough data that you can extrapolate watching porn together equals doomed marriage. Are there couples who watch porn together and have happy marriages. Yes. Their healthy sexuality is not mine, but it’s also not mine to judge or infringe upon.

If you’re asexual, you’re asexual. If you want to change your gender, or dress up like a different gender or whatever, that’s fine with me as long as it’s safe, legal and consensual. Be gay, or straight, or celibate… just be genuine to who you are in the healthiest way possible. Most people who try to eliminate sexuality as part of their life as a function of recovery end up in the camp of “sexual anorexia” which is just the other side of the spectrum of unhealthy sexuality.

I don’t talk a lot about healthy sexuality on this site because it looks different for every person out there. What you may see as one person’s repression is totally their comfort zone and vice versa. I’m not here to dictate to you what is healthy sexually within your life or your life as part of a couple. I’m here to say if pornography is part of it, it may lead to other problems, or it could exacerbate problems that already exist, as it did in my personal case. What I am here to say is that both of us need to continually define healthy sexuality in our own lives and continue to strive for it, without judging others.

Questioning the Changes in My Attitude Toward Healthy Sexuality

I’m anti-pornography, but I’m not militant about it. I understand that pornography has been around as long as man could draw on the wall of a cave, and getting into a battle you can’t win seems like a waste of time, energy and resources. There’s also the civil libertarian in me who doesn’t want to tell you how to live your life because I don’t want you to tell me how to live mine. But, yeah, I’m anti-pornography.

When you’re a heroin addict, a gambling addict, an alcoholic, a video game addict, a cocaine addict, etc., the goal is clear in recovery: Stop using or stop behaving that way. My goal was clear, too; stop using pornography. But, much like with food addicts still needing to eat, a further goal for a sex or porn addict is that they are supposed to develop healthy sexual habits and attitudes. Moving completely away from sexuality is known as being a sexual anorexic and that can be just as unhealthy as being an addict.

Without going into too much intimate detail, I feel like I’ve achieved much healthier sexual habits, but I’m wondering if my sexual attitudes, which were once “anything goes between two or more consenting adults” have swung too far in the other direction.

In researching several podcasts that I’m going to be on, I have spent a fair amount of time being exposed to the titles and icons of a lot of sex-based podcasts out there. Some pitch themselves as lurid (usually hosted by someone in the adult entertainment industry), others as health-based (usually hosted by someone with real credentials, or some sort of “sexual shaman”) and there’s a segment that just seems to treat it as matter-of-fact (usually a couple of friends just talking about sex.)

I’ve looked at the descriptions of some of these shows, because they seem like perfect places for someone like me to warn the masses about the potential dangers of pornography. I mean, I’ve got a pretty good story and I’ve got a ton of statistics on my side. I don’t see myself as a missionary, but you go where they need you – even if most reject you.

Further, I’ve been connecting with a lot of people on LinkedIn lately, mostly medical professionals. I have stumbled upon many people who fall into that “sexual shaman” category where they may have some degree they earned in the 1980s, but they’ve taken a New Age approach to sexuality. I tend to not connect with these people.

Frankly, what a lot of these podcasts and alternative sexual healers are pushing scares the hell out of me. I don’t think it would have 10 years ago. Back then I probably would have wished I had gone down their road of openness and experimentation. Today, though, I’m kind of repulsed.

I’m not sure that should be my reaction. If you and your partner (or partners) decide to embark on a journey that is far more kinky than anything I’d be comfortable with and it’s consensual, or you’re able to talk communicate about sexuality on a level with a frankness most people can’t muster, is there anything wrong with that?

I’ve never been a BDSM guy, but 10 years ago, I was a live and let live guy. If whips and chains do it for you, just have a safe word and don’t hurt anybody. Today, I tend to gravitate more toward a “they are deviants” point of view. Nothing changed with them. It changed with me.

I’ve been to red light districts in a few major international cities and I’ve stayed at a clothing optional resort in the Caribbean. Those places now seem gross and I really don’t want to judge the people buying or selling the sexuality, but I can’t help it.

Maybe I’m just getting more conservative with age. Maybe all of the fallout of my recovery has caused this shift. It could be I’m just a hypocrite and dismissed that extreme sexuality before because I was hoping to be a part of it. Something has caused a change in my attitude toward what “healthy sexuality” means.

Objectively, I still say if it’s between two or more consenting adults and you can keep it behind closed doors, I really shouldn’t have any input into your sexuality. I also respect the First Amendment enough that I’d stand next to these people and fight for their right to say whatever they want on their podcast. Nobody should ever dictate Free Speech.

Subjectively, none of it’s for me and I wonder if going that far in the other direction, unintentionally or not, is a good thing.