#5 Don't assume he's got it under control.
If he had it under control, he wouldn't be breaking your heart with his confessions right now. One of the worst things you can do for your husband is be naive. He needs you. Pornography addiction is a big deal. As much as society wants to down-play its effects by making it the butt of every joke on television, pornography warps your mind and is a very serious matter. Your husband will not be able to beat this by simply saying “I don't want to do this anymore.” Again, if he could, he would have. He will need help. God delivered my husband from his 16-year addiction to pornography. But it wasn't something that just happened overnight. We prayed. Alot. And we went to counseling and support group, set up internet accountability and filtering, read lots of books. And prayed some more. It was a process and it took a lot of effort. Purity demands a lifetime of diligence.
#4 Don't assume this is your fault.
Most wives take pornography personally. As a personal attack on their beauty, intelligence, and sexuality. This is completely understandable and yet totally false! Your husband's pornography addiction has less to do with you than you think. In fact, it's a good chance this is something he's dealt with since adolescence. Even if you are drop-dead gorgeous and sexually available to your husband day and night, odds are that he would still look at porn. That's because it's not an eye issue, it's a heart issue. Pornography is a sin of the heart. Where are man has let his heart be consumed by selfish, cheap, false intimacy, usually to medicate a wound. I'm not saying that you're perfect, but I am saying that your husband's addiction to pornography is NOT your fault.
#3 Don't assume you need to be a porn star in bed.
This is very common because as women, we tend to take on the responsibility of completely satisfying our husband's every want and need- emotionally, spiritually, physically, and sexually. And when you discover your husband's addiction to pornography, you may assume that you need to act like a porn star in bed in order to achieve this. But here's the thing, “God didn't create you to be a “do-girl” to satisfy your husband's every want and need. He created you to be a helpmate for your husband. To stand by his side and be there for him through thick and thin (and right now things are pretty thick!). He created you to respect your husband and to show him the love of Christ through your actions and your words. He created you to enjoy companionship with your husband and to enjoy sex with him as well. Your sex life was not meant to be a check-list of all the things you need to do in order to satisfy his every lust. That's not a relationship. That's not a partnership. God created you to compliment your husband (not as in flattery but as in complete). Together you compliment each other. Where he's weak, you can be strong. Where you're weak, he can be strong. And you both should find your strength in Christ. God created the wife to be a wonderful gift for the husband to treasure, love, nurture, and take care of; not use and mistreat. And He created the husband to be a wonderful gift for the wife to treasure, love, respect, and help; not disrespect and demand. It's supposed to be a relationship that works together but depends fully on GOD” (excerpt from "What's so Wrong with Me?").
#2 Don't assume he doesn't love you.
Remember how I said that your husband's pornography addiction has less to do with you than you think? I wasn't kidding. Just because your husband has struggled with pornography doesn't mean that he doesn't love you. Unfortunately, most porn addicts have intimacy issues and a difficulty showing love to their spouse. This usually begins as woundedness from the past but grows exponentially because of the effects of porn. Pornography breeds a selfish, cheap, shallow, false sense of intimacy that isn't conducive for showing and receiving real love. So in essence, even though your husband does love you, he probably doesn't know how to show it. Literally. Once he has repented from his addiction and you are on the journey towards healing and restoration, there's a process of learning how to love each other. It's like starting over. And while that can be a scary thought, it's also an exciting and wonderful experience to have the opportunity to renew a love that is centered on Christ and truth, and no longer stifled by lies and addiction. This part of the journey is the fun part. Amongst the painful and often exhausting late-night conversations, there should be date nights where you pursue each other and just enjoy getting to know each other again. He loves you. He just has to learn how to show it.
#1 Don't assume restoration is hopeless.
I haven't met a woman yet that didn't say, “I feel like this is hopeless” when she discovered the depth of her husband's addiction. When faced with the truth and you finally understand the totality of what he's actually done, it may feel like there's no hope. You're so heartbroken, the lies run deep, and his addiction is real. This has turned out to be so much more than you thought when you found that inappropriate search in the history. You've discovered that this has been going on for years and years, and you can't breathe. I know, I have been there. But THERE IS HOPE. God can deliver your husband from this addiction. God can heal your broken heart. God can restore your marriage. I know, I have seen Him do it in my own life! My husband was addicted to pornography for 16 years, 8 of which while we were married. I was completely devastated when I discovered the truth. I thought it was hopeless. I didn't know how I would ever forgive him or trust him again, and I didn't know how he was going to overcome this stronghold. But through this journey I learned that there is no man beyond the grip of God’s grace. There is no sin beyond the power of God’s forgiveness. There is no marriage beyond the tender mending of God’s mercy. And there is no broken heart that His wounds can’t heal. And that is an encouraging thought.
Tags: addiction pornography assumptions healing confession blame bed porn star love hope
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