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When I came home from my mission, I had no idea the challenges I would face with dating. I have exclusively dated several good guys with strong testimonies. Unfortunately, these serious relationships haven’t worked out because of problems with pornography. This is one of the most dangerous tools Satan is using today, and no one is immune from possibly falling into the trap. So many of us have been exposed to pornography in some way. Some are in the bonds of pornography use, some are recovering from use, and some of us are being affected by someone else’s pornography use.

While sharing my experience, I am going to use the pronoun he because my circumstances have been with several males. However, both men and women struggle with pornography. So here are four things I have learned (and wish I would have known sooner) about dating those with pornography problems.

1. Understand the Problem

In my experience, most of the guys I have dated didn’t disclose the full extent of their pornography use at first—just that it is something they struggled with. I know now that it’s important to understand the depth of the problem to know if the relationship is safe or not. As prompted by the Spirit, or when you are considering becoming exclusive or are already exclusive in dating, you may feel impressed to discuss this topic. Here are examples of questions that can help you discover the nature of his pornography use:

  • When was the last time you used pornography?

If he considers his issues with pornography to be in the past, you can ask questions such as:

  • Is it still a problem? What do you do to overcome the temptation?
  • Have you discussed it with your bishop?
  • How are you healing and recovering from the effects of it? Where are you in the healing process?
  • Do you feel you have both repented and recovered?
  • What safety plan do you have to keep pornography out of your life or our home if we get married?

If he has viewed pornography more recently, consider asking questions such as:

  • How often do you look at pornography?
  • What have you done to address this problem?
  • Are you working with your bishop?
  • Do you see a therapist or attend addiction recovery meetings for help with this? If not, do you think you need to?

2. Know That It’s Not Your Problem

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