I do not have any great accolades behind my name. I am not a counselor or psychologist. I am simply a wife, mother of five, and a follower of Jesus. I am a woman whose heart has been broken because of my husband's addiction to pornography. If you are reading this, your heart has probably been broken, too. From my heart to yours, I am so sorry. I understand. Betrayal hurts. Just to say it hurts doesn't seem sufficient for the pain I know you are feeling. It goes deeper, way deeper. From a woman who has been where you are now, please believe me when I say there is hope and healing for your wounded heart.
My husband and I celebrated twenty-seven years of marriage this past July. That sounds all wonderful and I am thankful but can I share with you that twenty-five of those years he battled an addiction to porn? Being married to a man with an addiction to porn isn't my idea of the life I would have planned for myself. What about you? There have been so many times that my husband's choices left my heart broken and my hopes crushed. I lived a life of shame and secrecy for years to hide the pain I felt. I felt so alone. His secret was my secret. After all, I went to church; I was a “Godly” woman. NOBODY could know the truth of what was going on. What would they think?
I am sad to say that I know there are MANY women who are sitting in our churches Sunday after Sunday hiding behind their own masks. I know this, because, as I shared, I used to be one of them. I know all too well the uninvited thoughts and feelings that can consume and control a woman who has been wounded by this kind of betrayal. Some are thoughts that are too shameful to admit. We hide behind our own shame, our own toxic thinking all the while hoping that nobody can see the pain in our eyes. That is one reason I want to join you here, on your journey to healing.
It is my heart’s desire to expose the lies that we believe when it comes to this addiction. These lies have the potential to paralyze us and keep us from fulfilling the plans and purposes God has for us. The Truth is what will set us free but we must know the truth and believe the truth for it to have a lasting impact on our hearts.
I can tell you that I have not always handled the situations I have faced in my marriage with grace and wisdom. I have failed too many times to count. Just as my husband was held captive, I too, lived a life of bondage. I was held captive by fear, suspicion, jealousy, and insecurity. I put my husband on the throne of my heart instead of God. We were two people both in need of transformation.
I am so grateful that even though there were so many times when I wanted to give up, God’s gracesustained me. God saw my future and knew what I didn't. He knew that ONE day, my husband's deliverance would come. He knew that we would have a "story" to tell that would influence others for good and bring hope to those whose marriages have lost hope because of this addiction. Today, my husband is walking free and helping others to do the same. I say that behind tears and a heart full of thankfulness. God is so faithful!
Through it all, I have learned a lot about myself and about my relationship with God. I am still not where I want to be but I am so thankful I am not where I was. My life has been messy but God is creating a tapestry of beauty from the brokenness. The marriage I once had has died and Christ is resurrecting a new one, day by day. I have a heart covered with scars but those scars serve only as a reminder of God's amazing grace and faithfulness.
I do not have all the answers but what I do have is a heart that desires to encourage women who are hurting and broken due to their husband’s choices. My prayer is that you find significant meaning in your suffering and a deeper, more intimate relationship with God. I want you to know that you are not alone and there is healing for your broken heart. No matter what your husband chooses to do, God desires to heal you totally and completely. His plans for your life aregood and have not changed because of your husband's choices. God is your healer. You are extravagantly loved by the ONE who is enthralled by your beauty!! Believe it, my friend!
If you are looking for a great resource, Vicki Tiede's book titled When your Husband is Addicted to Pornography-Healing Your Broken Heart will help you so much on your journey to healing. I have read many books on this subject and I believe this is one of the best ones available. If you haven't yet got a copy, I would encourage you to do so. I am so thankful for Vicki's ministry and the opportunity to be a part of what God is doing here at FBH. I believe both will be used mightily to bring hope, healing, and deliverance to the lives of many.