Loved Ones

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I just discovered that my spouse has been viewing pornography for years.  I had no idea!  I’m shocked, angry, and ashamed.  I need help!  I don’t know where to turn…


3 Reasons It’s Not Okay to Use Porn to Spice Things Up in the Bedroom

Straight Talk to Husbands Who Watch Porn

Help, a loved one


Learning about your loved ones addiction has many of the same elements associated with suffering a great loss. It has recently been compared to what individuals suffer when they have ‘Post Traumatic Stress Disorder’.

The same emotions present in the “stages of grief will occur:

  1. Disbelief, shock and denial
  2. Pain and guilt
  3. Anger and bargaining
  4. Depression, loneliness and sad reflection
  5. The upward turn
  6. Reconstruction
  7. Acceptance and hope”

These feelings will not necessarily occur in this order and you may not experience them all to the same degree or length of time. This is particularly true if the breach of trust is discovered by you, rather than your spouse, family member or associate confiding or confessing to you. The closer and more intimate the relationship, the more intense these emotions are and the longer it takes to move through them. Often when the addict comes to you and there is open dialog, it is because he/she is looking for help and needs your support to begin recovery. It is surprising that even when the relationship is more distant there is still a period of ‘processing’ which takes place after learning about an associates addiction and involves some of these steps. Those who have successfully been able to work through the stages of grief report that there can be complete resolution over time, even to the point that while they remember each phase, it no longer triggers the emotions associated with them. It is possible to feel whole again, regardless of the path the addict chooses to take.

There are specific things you can do to help this process of healing for yourself. Listening to uplifting music, taking care of yourself physically (sleeping, eating and exercising regularly), confiding in a trusted friend, family member, physician and clergy who can help keep things in perspective and encourage self-care, visiting with a therapist who specializes in sexual addiction recovery, and attending 12-step recovery groups all are valuable tools for your well being. It can be especially difficult to know where to start or even make the simplest decisions. Involving someone else in your recovery often needs to be the first step.

If you or someone you know is addicted to pornography, reach out now to get started on the path to recovery.