Punting, the decidedly distasteful slang term for the purchase of women for sex as a "hobby," is by no means in its infancy. It's been operating in the background of society for many years, and nothing changed when the internet was born. In fact, it blossomed, providing men with a near-infinite supply of women offering their sexual services.

But it's 2024, and it's safe to say an increasing number of men are coming out of the woodwork, talking about their experiences, and discouraging young bucks from starting the "hobby." These gentlemen say, "It's harder than quitting smoking," and discuss the drastic negative impact punting has had on their finances and mental health. They want to stop. But how?

The trick is to tackle the unrelenting sex-buying cycle like any other addiction. Putting various tried-and-true tactics in place, such as actually deciding to quit, staying away from triggers, finding helpful resources, and seeking support, prove beneficial to kicking the habit once and for all. 

There's no denying that taking the first steps is challenging. However, soon-to-be-ex punters have a full, wholly satisfying life ahead of them once they achieve sobriety.

How to Stop Punting

While the road to recovery will look different for everybody, the below steps have helped others quit their punting addiction:

#1 Understand There's a Problem

The adage, "The first step to fixing a problem, is admitting there is one," exists for a reason — it's true. Nobody can fix an addiction if they don't recognize that it's putting an incredible strain on their relationships, finances, and their overall mental wellbeing.

A mission statement (i.e., a summary of the reasons for fighting the addiction) can help here. Some common reasons for starting the journey include:

  • I'm quitting because I want to repair my mental health.
  • I'm quitting because I want to fix the relationship with my spouse.
  • I'm quitting because I don't want to contract an STD.

#2 Get Professional Help

Psychologists, family therapists, licensed clinical social workers, and psychiatrists are among the most beneficial professionals to speak to when wanting to quit punting, especially those who have experience helping other punters move away from the lifestyle. 

CBT (otherwise known as cognitive-behavioral therapy) is generally the treatment method offered. It's a short-term goal-based treatment, utilizing a practical approach to solving the issue. Therapists change thinking patterns/behaviors with the goal of transforming mental health and, in turn, lives. 

#3 Seek Loved One's Support

Quitting can be lonely. Despite the lack of emotional connection in punting, many miss the physical closeness. As such, spending time with understanding loved ones proves vital.

#4 Journal

Recovery can begin without professional help. Many ex-punters started their quitting journey by journaling. Writing about the harmful effects of the addiction is cathartic, providing a safe space for emotions to be felt and moved on from.

#5 Remove Triggers

Those who are constantly surrounded by things, people, or places that remind them of their past endeavors are more likely to slip back into old habits. Blocking sites and numbers connected to punting is one of the best ways to leave it firmly in the past.

Escorting: An Enriching Way to Move Beyond Addiction

Contrary to popular belief, escorting is the exchange of money for someone's time or a date, not sex. Therefore, diving into the escort world can be a wonderfully fulfilling alternative to punting.

People often start paying for sex due to a deep desire to be close to somebody or feel connected; escorting satisfies this understandable need without the pain. Social connection is imperative, and escorts offer it in a professional yet personal way.