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March 23, 2023

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JAugust 24, 2020

Thank you for not walking away!! We addicts truly love our Heavenly Father and love the atonement, it keeps us going through the hard times. I know my Father in Heaven loves me despite my weaknesses. Sadly, my ex spouse chose not journey with me, and I don't blame her. I am grateful there are those who will journey with us rather than relegate us as damaged goods. I'm grateful your husband is honest and willing to do the work. I do not regret my decision to repent and do the work even if it cost me my marriage.

LexaGraemeAugust 6, 2020

Bless you both.

DGAugust 6, 2020

Has your husband tried indexing? https://www.thechurchnews.com/members/2020-02-18/pornography-addiction-family-history-indexing-healing-blessings-174645

TeresaAugust 5, 2020

Thank you so much for this follow-up article. I read the original article 2.5 years ago and it helped prepare me for a couple weeks later when a guy I was dating disclosed his pornography addiction. I knew I needed more resources and help to navigate through the situation, so I reached out to the Hope and Healing LDS Forum that had published the post. I got connected with SA Lifeline and I cannot tell you how important that was for me. The relationship did not survive, but the introduction to 12-step healing for anyone (not just addicts) has changed my life. Your original story was a big part in kicking that off for me. Thank you for sharing. ♥️

CharlieBrown2292August 4, 2020

You are such a beautiful individual and so is your husband. Despite the challenges, you also have a wonderful marriage that will turn them into a blessing through the Lord's atonement and grace.

RLLAugust 3, 2020

Great share. I hope you are attending LOTS of S-Anon meetings. It will help your efforts be even more effective, and to see "your side of the street." Also, the post about Dr. Amen is spot-on. His testing is pricey, but worth every penny.

ShaunaAugust 3, 2020

Addiction of any kind is painful for the one addicted and for those that love them. Wishing you and your husband the best in overcoming this monster.

Stephanie GibsonAugust 3, 2020

I love your outlook and faith. I also agree with the honesty part. It really is the only way to walk this difficult path. I realize addicts think hiding addictions will help everyone, but having had relationships with addicts I can tell you that the only reason that these ended were due to dishonesty. I loved them with all my heart and wanted to work together on our problems. But by sweeping them under the rug there wasn't a way to work on them. Thanks for your honesty in sharing your struggle. I'm sure it will help someone.

annblackAugust 3, 2020

Thank you for coming back 5 years later to update, so many partners experiencing this progress just kind of disappear as things improve in their life and you have lifted many hearts with this article. It was beautifully written. I also married a man with an addiction and a record - hardly the returned missionary Eagle scout I expected I"d find when I was growing up. In every way but the addiction and his ADHD complications he is a wonderful partner and has the strongest testimony of any one I've met. He still hasn't kicked his addiction after 15 years which brings in the no control of the timeline that you talk about - but I stick around because he's transparent, humble, and he's trying. So often I feel helpless and like to slip into victim mode but I like what you said here, "Either way, I’ve come to learn that I am in a position of power in his fight and I have to be loving and deliberate (and brave) with how I use it." This is going to be my motto for the next stretch of my life. Thank you!

ElizabethAugust 3, 2020

Thank you for the update. When I read your first article, I had recently broken up with someone who struggled with porn addiction. Your article made me feel horrible about myself because I felt like I should have been more like you. I now realize that this kind of situation is complicated and personal, and only the person in the relationship can decide what to do. My ex was working hard to overcome his addiction, but there were still too many red flags for me: he frequently objectified me and tried to persuade me to lower my standards. It just didn’t feel like he respected me. At the time I saw porn addiction as the reason I broke up with him but now I realize that the problem also had a lot to do with his attitude towards sexuality in general and the way he rationalized his behavior. I’m now happily married to someone else. My husband doesn’t have any issues with addiction but he struggles with some serious mental health issues, and a lot of the lessons we’ve learned together are similar to what you’ve written about here. I think your approach to his addiction is both Christlike and practical. It sounds like you and your husband are both great people and it sounds like you are letting the hard things bring you closer together instead of separating you. Thanks for sharing your story!

ChrisAugust 3, 2020

Thank you for sharing your story. Your husband is so very fortunate to have your continuing support and love...that doesn't always happen, even when a husband is working recovery. What's awesome is your, and his, opportunity to experience Grace and the Atonement in ways that many never get to experience, and to share with others who struggle. I'm in recovery from both porn and sex addiction, and the recovery journey both my wife and I are on is amazing! Your opportunities to share and to love are limitless...

Karen SmithsonAugust 3, 2020

Thank you, thank you for sharing all you've learned. I cried through the whole thing because I've walked your road like you have and learned all the same things you have. It is clear you are married to a great man with a with a weakness, as are we all...just different weaknesses. My husband had the same weakness but was also a very, very good man! I don't even know where to begin with my thoughts, but would love to talk with you, and maybe even your husband, to share my understanding and ASSURANCES that I have received since he passed away. I LOVED this article and admire both of you for your righteous lives. I'm including my email if you would like to contact me.

ChrisAugust 3, 2020

I have never seen the topic treated better. Thank you for writing this, and sharing. This is blessing lives! I think people spend entirely to much energy thinking what they are dealing with is more shameful than what others are dealing with, and judging others for sinning differently than they do. Addiction is HARD; it's addiction! Lust addictions are harder because you carry the "substance" with you, it's in your brain! However, these distinctions do not separate these sins from others, in terms of our universal desperate need of the atonement. We need both the redeeming AND the enabling power of Jesus Christ in our lives. And we all need it(.) You have treated this topic with such light, love and clarity as to humble me. I appreciate so much your courage, and example. Thank you!!! God bless you both!!!

LeslieAugust 3, 2020

My friend's brother struggled with pornography addiction for many years. He did a couple of expensive cognitive therapy type treatments but kept relapsing. Finally, out of sheer desperation he went and saw Dr Daniel Amen. Dr. Amen studies the brain and does special scans of the brain. He told him that his brain was actually damaged, worse than a heroin addict from the addiction. Dr. Amen said that pornography is one of the worst drugs out there. He put him on medications-one that blocks the pleasure center in the brain-this is often used for chronic smokers, alcoholics etc, and then he put him on two other medications to correct serotonin levels and anxiety. He is now been a few years out without a relapse. Of course the therapy, a great wife, supportive family, and the atonement helped him, but this is so much more than that-it's medical for serious addictions and needs to be treated that way so that they can finally find the success they are seeking. I love the things you have learned and that you are sharing. You might consider looking into healing the brain as well,if you haven't already, and that combined with what he is already doing will hopefully bring him and you more years of peace.

L.S.August 3, 2020

Thank you for sharing. I recognize the road you're walking and I know how difficult it can be. Supporting my struggling spouse through many years of marriage has taught me that recovery is an active thing, which is why addicts are referred to as "recovering" rather than "recovered." Keep doing what you're doing to love and support your husband. The Lord knows his struggles, and He knows yours, and He will strengthen and support you both as you rely on His grace.

AnonymousAugust 3, 2020

I am so impressed with your faith in your husband. You are right that he struggles more than you do. I have to share that I am a woman that struggled for years with pornography. It was around me growing up and I couldn't shake it. About 15 years into my marriage I was so filled with shame and regret that I couldn't stand it one more second. I decided to pray, which I had done before. But this time I really prayed. I shared everything. I pleaded and begged. I kept getting distracted. Satan didn't want me to pray that prayer. But I was finally able to really pray. After some time I had the most incredible experience. It was the grace of God. I actually felt the Lord's arms come around me and just hold me. I no longer needed to have porn in my life. However, I have to be careful what comes into my view and run from it if it pulls at me. I have been blessed in this. I pray for you and your husband to conquer this demon. Thank you so much for sharing. More people need to come out on this topic. Although, I was into the hard core stuff I want to warn women that many romance novels and even some musicals and operas are pornographic, and they need to realize that it is an addiction. It doesn't have to be blatant to be pornography!

BrianAugust 3, 2020

Christine, what a wonderful article. Thank you for sharing your perspective about pornography addiction. I think it's helpful to not only those who struggle with porn but for those close to them. There is a new approach to overcoming pornography addiction that many are having success with: Power Over Pornography. It is a very different approach that uses advanced cognitive behavior methods and gospel principles, so that willpower and white-knuckling are not required. Your husband and others may benefit from its methods. You can check it out on Amazon or get a complementary copy at freebook.poweroverpornography.com. I hope it's a blessing to your husband and others who struggle with a porn habit.

One who knowsAugust 3, 2020

In my experience pornography addiction is just a symptom of much bigger problems. It also causes its own problems. As with any addiction it is a coping mechanism, usually employed to deal with some sort of trauma, but also just stems from one’s inability to self-regulate which can be caused by other mental illnesses such as aspergers, ocpd, narcissism, or just undiagnosed anxiety disorders among others. If the trauma is properly dealt with, often with professional help, healing is more likely, but will still require constant vigilance because those neural pathways will always be there. When a person is dealing with even a high functioning mental disorder, overcoming it is slower. They may be able to stop with the pornography, but will often just find another more socially acceptable addiction to take its place. Sexual compulsion might still be manifest and they’ll look to sexual partners to help them self-regulate which even if it doesn’t lead to infidelity can put the wife in a managerial position and will undermine true intimacy. Not only will the relationship suffer because of that, but if there has been secrecy or dishonesty that is a form of betrayal that is very difficult to heal. It takes hard work and dedication to rebuild trust. Whether it’s a symptom of a developmental delay or simply that time spent in addiction causes the addict’s emotional development to be stunted, often the biggest red flag of an addiction is one’s inability to have empathy. Addicts are notoriously selfish—even if they seem generous it can be in self-serving ways. And they can be very good actors, becoming exactly what you want in order to earn your love and approval. They can even become experts at addiction-recovery as long as it gets them the validation they crave because that is very regulating for them. One of the few waysto know if healing is happening or possible is the addicts‘ ability to connect in empathy and authenticity with other people and to self-regulate regardless of the actions or emotions of those around them. The opposite of addiction is not sobriety, it is connection. True healing is possible, with God’s help nothing is impossible, but unfortunately it is rare and takes a lot of work, a lot of help, a lot of humility, and a lot of patience. So don’t ever encourage someone to step into or stay in a relationship with an addict, even if they are actually up front about it. Encourage people to first get educated about the realities of it, and above all to get their own revelation about it. It’s their only hope of surviving the hell that is being married to an addict.

BrianAugust 3, 2020

He is so blessed to have you. I struggled for many years. This can end and will end through the power of Jesus Christ. It can't be done any other way. Don't give up. There's a way out and a way up. Give yourselves completely to Him and I mean COMPLETELY. He changed me. The Lord will change you. I've been free for over 13 years. Best 13 years of my life.

An encouragerAugust 3, 2020

I remember reading the first article you shared, when I was living with the impacts of pornography myself. And I have learned a lot since then. An expert in pornography addiction personally told me that recovery looks like Mosiah 3:19. Another said that it looks like honesty, humility, and accepting responsibility. From everything you shared, I would absolutely think your husband is actively working recovery. My situation didn’t work out so well because that was totally absent. There were words, but patterns of behavior never meshed. 2 other friends had a similar situation as you and have healthy marriages of 15-20+ years because of the honesty, humility, and responsibility. I appreciate your perspective and willingness to share your own experience because this is such a pervasive issue - far more than I ever would have guessed. You were very vulnerable and honest in what you shared - and that has the potential to help a lot of people. I have seen a huge variation with this issue, and I just want to say, this is a great example of a healthy recovery and relationship and applaud you both!! Unfortunately, there are so many who don’t have that, and it feels very different than your experience, so you get plenty of naysayers. Which is hard for them and for you. The only other thing I would personally say, which it sounds like you are doing, is to work your own recovery and support him in his. I know a lot of people who want to work the addict’s recovery for them and ignore their own, which never works. And in my situation, my addicted spouse ignored his own recovery and wanted to work mine. Which also never works. What is happening in your marriage relationship is actually a beautiful thing.

Jan KingAugust 3, 2020

This is stunningly beautiful! My husband and I served for 6 years in the Pornography Addiction Support Group and I hold dear the experiences I had there. I led the family support piece while my husband led the addict's meeting. I saw wonderful success with husband's overcoming their addiction and happy marriages moving on. I saw wives and girlfriends realizing "I didn't cause this and I can't fix it". I saw women in long term marriages being beaten down after being told it was their fault that "they weren't good enough", gaining the courage to move on to happy lives. I consider them all success stories. I wish I'd have had this beautifully written story to share in those groups.

C.S.August 3, 2020

Good for you for trying. Addicts by nature are manipulators. Their partners often justify, rationalize & minimize what's going on. I wish you all the best in the years to come. Thanks for sharing.

PJLAugust 3, 2020

To start with, I want to let you know that I was married to a porn addict, but my situation was quite different. While he would occasionally admit his addiction, usually he denied it and tried to make me a surrogate for the 18-year-olds he saw on the computer. He never seemed sorry and I saw no effort to overcome it. You are truly blessed with a wonderful husband, and if mine had behaved the way yours has, I wouldn't have gotten the divorce, at least for that reason. It's so much easier to understand and be patient, and forgiving when someone is truly sorry and is doing his best to repent. While I forgave my husband, I could never trust him because he proved untrustworthy by his refusal to deal with his problems (which were many besides the addiction). I'm glad for you. As long as your husband is doing his best to overcome, that is all he can do and Christ's loving Atonement will make up for what he cannot overcome. We are all dependent on that same mercy. We do our best and Christ covers what we truly cannot do. My prayers are with you, but your love for your husband and the gospel shine brightly through you already.

JenAugust 3, 2020

Thank you for the update! That was beautifully written. We all struggle with something and as a married couple we are meant to help each other. I want to wish away many things, but try to remember that this is what will make us more empathetic to others. It's messy, complicated, and inconvenient, but it is our life to live as well as we can. Thank you again for putting this out there, you are brave and so is he. I've no doubt that you've helped many by sharing the burden.

Steve Colin ZeiglerAugust 3, 2020

I've facilitated 3 pornagraphic recovery groups and I have to tell you, YOU ARE JUST SO FULL OF AWESOMENESS!

HelenAugust 3, 2020

“ This is Still His Journey and I Can’t Force Him to Get There Any Faster” really hit home. My husband of 26 years still shows no inclination to return to the Church which he left within a year of coming home from his mission, several years before we met. Wanting him back in the Savior’s arms is nice, but it really isn’t my calling to be anything other than ready to help him when and IF he makes that choice. Thank you.

Tom KAugust 3, 2020

You are an angel and an incredible blessing in your husband's life and every single person that takes the time to read this. His grace is sufficient!

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