Addictions can be obvious, such as someone struggling with drugs or alcohol, or they can be hidden, such as someone struggling with sexual issues.
Adam Clampet, a counselor with Safe Harbor Christian Counseling, will speak about sexual addictions and their prevalence in society at a free seminar to be held from 9 to 11 a.m. Feb. 4 at Altoona Alliance Church, 3220 Pleasant Valley Blvd.
Clampet of Huntingdon earned a Master of Arts degree in Christian studies at Crown College in St. Bonifacius, Minn., and is working on requirements to become a licensed pastor for the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church.
"It is so pervasive," Clampet said of images that have sexual connotations.
He cited statistics to indicate how widespread the addiction is. He said according to a study by Focus on the Family, 60 percent of American households are affected by pornography,
Clampet provided other statistics from the website www.archomaha.org/
pastoral/se/pdf/PornStats.pdf (from the Archdiocese of Omaha website).
n 4.2 million pornographic Web sites exist.
n Hotel viewership for adult films is 55 percent (cbsnews.com)
n More than 70 percent of men from 18 to 34 visit a pornographic site in a typical month (comScore Media Metrix)
"The fact is nobody is safe from the attacks of it," Clampet said and added that even some pastors are affected.
He said the images are everywhere, including local malls where some stores' promotional materials with sexual implications feature people under age 18.
"A growing number of families are being affected by pornography daily," Clampet said.
He said the person with the addiction hides it because of the shame, but it causes discomfort and issues of self esteem for the spouse when she or he learns about it. He said when the secret is out, it creates a lack of trust.
"The spouse wonders 'what else is he or she willing to hide from me?'" Clampet said.
He said children may think the addiction is acceptable if pornographic materials are left in the magazine rack or DVD player.
Clampet said the seminar is for anyone who wants to know more about the addiction, including spiritual leaders, teachers, spouses and the addicted.
A man who suffered from the addiction will talk about his experiences and what he has done to have victory over it. Ways to prevent pornography from being brought into the home will be presented.
"It's an ongoing battle," Clampet said, but its hold can be overcome by "the power of Jesus Christ."
Safe Harbor Christian Counseling, with a regional office in Chambersburg, plans to offer several free seminars in the upcoming months. It has 70 locations in several states, said Michael Linn, regional director, and offers counseling with or without spiritual guidance.