PORNOGRAPHY ADDICTION – my relationship with a screen
This is from treymorgan.net……
(The following is a post I asked my friend Daniel to write about his battle with pornography).
“My marriage almost ended four years ago when my wife found out that I was looking at porn — lots of it — and had been doing so since before we met, while we were dating, and all through our first five years of marriage. Caught you a little off guard there with the “p-word?” Make you cringe a little? Sorry about that, but bear with me. It’ll be worth it.
When my wife found out about my use of porn, she recoiled in disgust. At the same time, learning about my use of porn helped her begin to finally make sense of some troubling aspects of our relationship: the disconnection, my inability to “finish,” and my lack of interest in working on and being proactive in our marriage. We’d pretty much become roommates, mostly because of how I related to her.
I had to stop rationalizing about my behavior and begin to see how disconnected I’d become. It helped me to understand that it wasn’t possible for me to look at all that porn and also have an intimate relationship with my beautiful wife. I had to choose.
Picture two dressers in the middle of a room. One has all the drawers open, the other only one. The drawers represent the thoughts being processed by two individuals at any one time — a male and a female. Can you guess which is which? Women can process multiple thoughts at once, in contrast, guys open one drawer and then close it when they move from one thought to another. So it’s no surprise that when porn is involved in a marriage there’s a distraction and disconnect, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
The moment my wife found out about the porn, the truth set in. The little bit of trust that we had at the time, trust that had been built over the course of years and years, was gone in a few minutes. Just like that, gone.
Having a partner who’s addicted to porn and sexually compulsive behavior is the worst betrayal a woman can encounter. With alcohol and drugs there isn’t a direct correlation to the woman, but with porn and sex it’s different. The wife sees it as a full on assault to her physical nature. She starts asking herself questions like, “Am I no longer attractive to him?” Women have enough of an issue with body image, especially with the culture we live in. The realization that your husband is spending hours looking at naked women having sex can be earth shattering. A wife’s self-esteem can take a major hit, even though it rarely actually has anything to do with her. I know that’s hard to believe, but I also know that it’s true.
Porn use often leads to acting out sexually in other ways as well. It did for me and eventually my wife discovered these too. The bottom dropped out. I ended up standing in my living room with my wife telling me, well actually yelling at me, that the marriage was over, that she would be filing for divorce in a few weeks. Mind you these were not idle threats of anger and hurt, but rather a declaration of war, one that I was going to lose. As an addict I tended to think that I had everything covered and together, but nothing was further from the truth. Very quickly that false reality came crashing down. I had two options, accept that my marriage was over or try to get REAL help before I lost everything. With grace I chose the later.
Somehow I convinced my wife to give me a month to show her I could change. She miraculously agreed. I started with a local family therapist and after telling him what I struggled with, he told me he dealt with the same thing and had yet to beat it. Wow. I realized that the “family doctor” wasn’t going to work, and what I need was a “spine surgeon,” a specialist who had precise and skillful approaches to dealing with and getting rid of this affliction in my life. Nothing against the family therapist, but I’d been dealing with this since I was eight; yes eight years old, and like I said I needed a specialist.
God willing I found George Collins at Compulsion Solutions and started what would be a one year journey towards recovery. My wife saw changes in the first month and gave me another month, and then another and so on for a year. The most rewarding part of my entire journey came after about seven months of treatment when my wife told me she felt like we were actually married for the first time in five years. The joy, oh the joy I felt was beyond anything I can describe to you.
My marriage, yes MY marriage is incredible. We just celebrated nine years and my beautiful bride and I are doing amazing, but let me tell you what’s really changed, our intimacy.
Porn inevitably rewires the brain and your view of intimacy. Sexually compulsive people focus on the act of sex, and suppress or altogether ignore the emotional side of sex. You’ve probably heard the saying “foreplay starts outside the bedroom.” That’s not the case with porn. There isn’t a nice date night, or long intimate and engaging talks. It’s just straight to the act of sex. What does this tell your brain? Why do wives feel so unfulfilled after having sex with their porn viewing husbands? I can tell you, because I’ve been that person, the sex is devoid of any real intimacy. A lot of guys that deal with this type of compulsive behavior actually have no idea what real intimacy is. I didn’t.
To have a relationship that is more than sex, understanding that intimacy is not defined as sex, brings you to a level or connection you’ve never thought possible. It’s the design that was intended for us by our creator. A connection so deep and built on all the right things. Any married couple can have sex, most do, but to be vulnerable, opening yourself to be totally discovered by another human being that you’re completely dedicated to is the dipping of your toe into the sea of true relational pleasure. The potentials and possibilities of your marriage relationship are endless and limitless, just as your relationship with our Father is.
I’ll bottom line it for you: If porn is present in your marriage, it won’t survive, not long term anyway. It’s like termites to the structure of a house, slowly and quietly eating away the beams until one day it completely collapses and you’re standing there wondering what happened.
I’m now a full time counselor with Compulsion Solutions and have dedicated my life to getting others free of sexually compulsive behavior. If it’s something that is present in your relationship, I encourage you to free yourself from it. There’s so much more waiting for you”.