We must remember that this is NOT a "his" or "her" problem. If you are married then anything that causes a problem with the marriage is a "marriage" problem. In other words it is this problem verses the marriage, i.e. the two people in the marriage. Satan is attacking the marriage and the best thing that can happen is to fight him off TOGETHER!
Men of Moroni worked for me.
This is in response to the sister who posted the original question in regards to the “Been there” post. Marital counseling can certainly be helpful when both spouses are willing to work toward goals, but please seek out counseling for yourself whether you decide to do marital counseling or not. And please do not take to heart the unkind comments made toward you in this post. You are NOT responsible for the actions of anyone but your own and it was your husband’s decision alone to disobey counsel to avoid pornography. Pornography use changes a person and he or she loses the ability to relate in the way that Heavenly Father intended for trusting and loving relationships. Abusers are adept at language that places blame from their choices onto someone else. You are 0% at fault for your husband’s use and his subsequent reactions. You are in no way bitter or over reactive; your husband created this problem and is now using his silence toward you to punish you for communicating with him about his use. This shows that he is not taking responsibility for his actions and there is a good chance that he is taking further steps to conceal his use. Individual therapy will help you learn to respond to him and protect your family.
I am truly sorry that this has happened to you. The betrayal and shattered dreams are heartbreaking and your Father in Heaven and Savior understand and are there to comfort you and guide you along this path. You are not a part of the problem and the gift of personal revelation will be invaluable to you at this time.
The timing of this feel perfect for me. I have been betrayed and I have also chosen a lens of seeing men in this way. I struggle as this wife does. Too many examples of 'hot girls' matter more than me. That has been my perspective and I am trying to grow up around this victim thinking. A few conclusions I have come to feel are true. I think the Church culture is setting up men to be conflicted around their sexuality. If we aren't careful it is easy to hear within our Church walls that sexual desire is bad and wrong. I think that if we are told NOT to eat chocolate cake it is all we want, right? Men AND women are sexual beings. It is part of who we are. I find outside the Church many men seem less compelled by a woman showing skin then LDS men and Ive been curious why? I joined the Church after high school and grew up thinking being attracted sexually to boys was a good thing. I find many in the Church seem to feel shame around their sexual appetite and I think that is what throws men and women toward porn or other kinds of objectifying. It is a way of being sexual without "really" being sexual. I am beginning to think that as an LDS woman who married young in an LDS Temple I was set up to expect a type of sexual fidelity from my husband that wasn't realistic. I am trying to see men more realistically and at times it isn't pretty (to me). I think the question we need to start asking in the Church is how can we sexually be more honest with our partners assuming that our sexuality is good and we have been immature thinking that objectifying others is keeping the law of chastity.
I am somewhat puzzled to see the word "betrayal" used as a generic word for ANY form of betrayal, as if there were no differences between a man having multiple affairs and one who may occasionally view porn.Without excusing their behaviour, can we consider that a great number of those men love the gospel, served missions, love their wives and children, and intend to fulfil their role as husbands and fathers despite their limitations.I know someone who has been struggling with porn over a lifetime, but this did not keep him from raising children in the gospel, who served missions, had temple marriages, and live fulfilling lives in the Church. Indeed, it seems nowadays that we show more tolerance for our members of the LGBT community than we do for those who have a vulnerability to porn, that has been invading every aspect of our lives for decades.So, let's minister unto them in a spirit of compassion, as President Nelson instructed us to on the occasion of our most recent General Conference, rather than making harsh jugements on them, when many have gone as far as contemplating suicide in order to escape this modern plague.
Thank you for your bravery in asking this question. You have summed up two decades of my own questioning. It’s very disappointing with what we are currently seeing in our society with pornography even among the men of the church— who have been warned multiple times throughout the years. It is apparent that pornography is horrifically challenging. I always figured that if we were counseled and warned, we saints would safeguard ourselves. Many things are challenging but we can overcome. I think it is critical to understand the “why” behind the behavior. It is in developing this understanding that one can begin to untangle addiction—and there are multiple addictions. A trained therapist can assist immensely with a variety of relational dysfunctions. Ultimately, the only hope any of us have is in a Savior who offers enabling power. If we turn our lives over to Him, we have a chance...or multiple chances as needed. I’m really sorry that you’re experiencing this challenge. I hope for the best outcome for you and your family!
Also important to realize that just because a person has had a problem with pornography, it doesn’t make them a bad person. Besides Jesus Christ, there is no perfect person; we all fall short of the glory of God. While some sins are no doubt more damaging to relationships than others, ALL sins can be forgiven through the atonement. If your husband is actively working towards being free of this sin, help him. Reassure him. That is what I craved the most from my wife during the year following our hurdle. Let him know that you love him, that you’re fighting for him, and that you want to beat it together. I largely fought it on my own and it was really difficult. I felt like I couldn’t bring anything up to my wife again or the anger and rage would just return and we would open up old wounds and rehash old conversations. But I actively fought and am actively fighting. Daily prayer and scripture study are a must, and removing any possible intrusion from pornography - wherever he struggled. Ditch internet browsers on your smart phone. Made it a lot easier for me.Don’t give up on him IF he is fighting it. He’s still a good person. He’s the same person you already know and love. He just had a few kinks to work out (don’t we all) and he WANTS to be the person that you can be proud of.
This is a difficult world with huge immoral traps to pull good men down, perhaps like never before in human history. There's a reason the Church addresses this topic so fully, offering information and support by those affected by it. The world still hasn't caught up to the dangers as the Church has, but the addiction is real. Fortunately, humans and families can heal from addiction, but because of the power and dynamics of it, it's not easy. And fortunately for us, we can recognize the power of the atonement and that Christ has already paid the price for the destruction addiction causes, leaving just the healing for us, which the Spirit can also help - if we're just accepting of it.
I've been through betrayal, and subsequent therapist-guided recovery, due to my husband's pornography addiction. It's gut-wrenching and is the most difficult thing I've been through. We are still together, but it hasn't been easy.My heart goes out to the lady who wrote this. You are not alone--there is hope and healing out there. Don't give up, follow the advice given and hopefully your husband will go to counseling with you and join you in recovery. Regardless, you've got to take care of yourself first.At "Been There"-if you've really been through counseling then I'm saddened by your comments. This is NOT a 50-50 problem and it's not ok to place the blame on a wife for her husband's inability to communicate. Pornography messes up the neurological wiring in your brain and makes the ability to have emotional connection and communication stilted, at best, if not non-existent. He probably doesn't know how to open up emotionally and might still be struggling with addiction. It is NOT the wife's fault her husband isn't speaking her. We are responsible for our own actions. You say women don't understand the pull of pornography? How about some understanding and sympathy for the horror for the suffering and emotional abuse that comes from being married to an addict? Wives in this situation need understanding and compassion, as do the husbands, not blaming accusations.
Every man close to me in my life has had problems with porn.
Please take the advice to get counseling, you both need it. I can't say this enough - I think every couple should go to marriage counseling and learn how to communicate and navigate our fixed false beliefs about what we expect from our spouse. Marriage counseling was the best thing we ever did for our marriage, and we were a model LDS couple. I appreciate Leah's comments, you have done the work, thank you.
Having been on your husband's end of this scenario I know exactly why he isn't speaking to you, you are unsafe to talk to about it. It is like he is the gopher sticking his head up in that arcade game and you bash him on the head every time he pops up, well after a while he figures out not to pop up - ie - talk to you about it. You don't understand the pull on men to view porn and you don't sound sympathetic about it. It appears that you are an over reactive wife venting anger and bitterness, why would he want to talk to you? You probably don't think you are part of the problem, but you are at least 50% of the problem, and when you address your half, your husband will feel safe to address his half with you.
I have been there, thinking men had no tender feelings. It's hard to relate to a kindly Heavenly Father without the example of kindly earth father. I was 30, having given birth to my 5th child before I got an inkling that men had a few tender feelings. It has been a long journey. I have been unkind to men all the way, causing 2 divorces, which I totally blamed on them, later seeing I may have contributed to the problems as well. Men are a unique gender, just as we women are. Through Heavenly Father's help, I have been able to learn and heal and recover. Yes men tend to have stronger sexual feelings than we women. That fierceness can serve to bind them to us and bond us to each other when handled appropriately. I love the Family Proclamation and have learned to trust and love Heavenly Father. Finally, I can see and appreciate good men in my life.
I would just like to kindly tell this sister that Yes, there are good men out there. I'm a retired 20-year military veteran, and yes, there are good men out there. Right now it doesn't feel like it, but they're out there. One of the reasons it seems that men are so prone to porn is because men by nature are extremely visual-oriented. In general, we are stimulated by what we see far more than pretty much any other way. And today's society is deliberately designed to stimulate our visual senses. I don't think women will ever understand how much the "visual" stimulates -- or dampens -- a man's thinking. To answer her very honest question, yes, porn and porn-type stimuli can be a constant, life-long fight even for the best of men in today's society. As Elder LeGrand Richards of the Quorum of the Twelve used to say, especially to missionaries, about glancing at a pretty woman: "You aren't a man if you don't look, but what you think and do after looking determines what kind of man you are." We Latter-day Saint men are always grateful to belong to a church that teaches Modesty in dress and action, because church is sometimes the only place where women aren't dressed to purposely or otherwise stimulate the male viewer. Many of us gratefully appreciate this.
You didn’t answer her question about whether all men struggle with being moral and loyal. Why not? I understand why you spent time on her healing, but you never addressed her question with even a sentence or two, like many men struggle but that doesn’t mean they will betray you. I, like countless women, have had a similar experience, but I understand that there are good men in the world, and the fact that many men aren’t just makes the good ones all that more valuable. Finding them? Not so easy. Most of them are already married.
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