I want to write to you frankly and honestly from a wife's perspective. A wife who has seen her porn addicted husband delivered and her marriage restored. A wife who has endured the brokenness of this kind of betrayal and experienced the healing, redeeming power of Jesus Christ. I want to give you hope. So let's start at the place where most husbands addicted to porn eventually find themselves........
You've been caught. Your wife now knows your secret.
Instead of asking those questions, think about these....What will YOU do now that you have been caught? What will YOUR response be? Will you blame your wife? Will you deny the severity of your addiction? Will you continue to lie and live in shame and guilt? OR will you make the tough decision to do whatever it takes to be FREE from the bondage that you are in? Think about it.
Maybe you are like my husband...you never expected for this to go as far as it did. You never set out to be held captive by this addiction and now, you hate it. You never intended to hurt your wife . You regret what it's done to you and now what it has done to your wife and marriage. You hate the thought that there is a possibility this could rip your family apart.
If you love God, love your wife, and you want to be delivered please continue reading. Now is NOT the time to be defensive, prideful, and act like this porn thing is no big deal. Just the opposite is what is necessary. Repentant....humbled.... broken. That's what you need for yourself and what your wife needs you to be. Anything less and you will stay on this pathway of destruction.
If you're not there yet... just look into the eyes of your wife, I mean really look. See the tears, feel her pain. Look into the eyes of your children, and those closest to you. Would they be hurt if they knew? What is this addiction really going to cost you? Will it be worth it to continue? How has your relationship with Christ been? Are you tired of having to cover your tracks? Now is the time to consider these things. Please understand, this selfish lust for pleasure will only lead you to a deeper pit. Farther and farther away from what is Truth and what is real. Now is your chance to be FREE...to turn from this way of life and move forward to the satisfying life Christ offers to you. Don't live the rest of your life bound and held captive. It's an intentional choice only YOU can make.
I am not going to go over all the steps a man needs to take in order to be delivered from this addiction. There are lots of resources at http://freedombeginshere.org/ that can help you. I encourage you to seek those out.
I will tell you, IF you are truly repentant.... your life can be different! I have witnessed the delivering power of Jesus in my husband's life. He was bound for YEARS! What God did for my husband, He can do for you!
Your only answer...your only hope is in Jesus. Only he can heal you, deliver you and set you free from this addictive behavior. No matter what lies you have believed in the past, the truth is you were CAUGHT because you have a Father who loves you so much. He has seen your shame, your guilt, your hidden actions and He loves you anyway. You are His son. He has plans and purposes for your life. He comes to you as a loving Father, ready to forgive and to take what the enemy meant for evil in your life and use it for good. Will you allow that to happen? Dear brother, turn from your sin, surrender your messed up life to Him and watch what He will do. You were created for more than this.
Seek Godly counseling! If you want freedom, the worst thing you can do is continue to hide behind your mask...to think that nobody needs to know. Don't believe the lie that you can do this alone. That is exactly what the enemy wants you to think. You cannot do this alone. My husband and so many others have tried that...it does not work. You will need accountability in the days, weeks, and months ahead. Don't ask your wife to keep your secret either...you both need to reach out and seek Godly counsel. It's a life or death choice. Choose life for you and your marriage.
What about your wife?
I am not going to candy coat this. The truth is.....you have crushed the heart of your lovely bride. I am not saying these things to try to somehow make you feel worse. I am only writing this to help you understand the severity of your actions. The truth, that's what you need to know. Your wife gave her heart to you, she trusted that her heart was in a safe place. Words cannot describe the intense pain she is feeling. I know there is no way you can possibly understand what she is going through but know that it is real and it goes deep. You were her best friend. "How could you?" She asks. The dynamics of your relationship has forever changed. EVERY thing about her is affected. The shock and disbelief leaves her in the dark. She wonders if her whole marriage has been based on lies. She wants answers, she wants the truth. She is grieving. Death to life as she knew it. She is mourning the loss of her view of how her marriage was supposed to be. She feels as though she never really new you. She feels foolish...which gives way to more anger. She voices her agony and pain and reveals her heart of confusion. The lies, the cover up, the deception, where does it end? How do I know? Because I have been that wife. We are all different...our reactions and the way we process our feelings may differ somewhat, but I know that every wife who loves a husband who is controlled by an addiction goes through similar pain and similar trauma. I don't have all the answers. There is not a three step formula to fixing what has been broken. It will not be easy but then again, anything worth fighting for never is. That's what you must do.
Fight for her. She may not say it, but that is what she wants, what every wife wants. To be pursued, to be desired, to be freely loved....by her husband. She will most likely push you away, cry at the sight of you, and be very angry. She will be okay one minute and in tears or in a rage the next. Be patient. Her world has just been turned upside down. Her heart lies broken and bleeding in the rubble. The aftermath and devastation this kind of disclosure brings cuts her to the core. Fight for her. As I warned earlier, do not get defensive...stay humble. Whatever she needs....whatever she asks...do it. If she asks you to give up the TV, movies, the beach...do it. Those choices will possibly only be temporary as she processes her pain, but you will find that it will help to purify your thought life, as well. Everywhere in which the media promotes women as eye candy feels threatening to her. In our day and time it's hard to escape that kind of environment. It's everywhere you go. Try anyway. She needs to feel safe, secure. Get filters on anything that has internet access...do it without her asking you to do it. Give her time....hold her when she cries, better than that..cry with her..... Listen to her. Answer her questions. You can't put a time limit on this process. It will not happen as fast as you would like it to. Rebuilding what has been destroyed takes a man who is willing to fight for the the end result while working through the consequences day by day. Pray like you have never prayed before. Your deliverance may seem easy compared to the healing of her broken heart. Don't give up. Continue to FIGHT for all that means the most to you.
Don't be too quick to expect her to be intimate with you...this too, will take time. She wonders what you are thinking when you are with her...she believes your are thinking about the images, all those many images...not of her and her beauty. She thinks it's about her....that you turned to porn because she was not enough for you. She can't help but compare herself. As she sifts through the rubble of her pain, and reaches out to try to understand this addiction, she will come to know the truth. The truth that your addiction had nothing to do with her, her beauty, her build, etc. Even after she understands that in her head, it will take a while for her heart to catch up. I can tell you that most women struggle with self esteem issues already and then you add a husband who is addicted to porn in the mix and it causes one mixed up, devastated, wife.
Encourage her to talk to somebody. Go with her to marriage counseling. Do WHATEVER it takes.
Stop the lies. She will be paying close attention to everything you say, not just about your addiction but even everyday things that you would not think matter too much. But to her..they mean everything . If you are going to lie about the "little" things then to her that means you will continue to lie about the porn addiction. When she asks you if you had a struggle that day..don't lie. She needs TRUTH from you. Telling lies about ANYTHING keeps the door open for satan to continue to destroy not only your marriage but your relationship with God. Your lies will give more power to your addiction. A man who desires deliverance will speak TRUTH no matter what the cost. Speaking from a wife's perspective.....most wives will be more than willing to give grace to a husband who is willing to be honest about his struggle in order to find freedom.
Brother, can you see that you being "caught" is an opportunity for you to get back on the pathway towards the destiny that God has for you? I pray you do!
Let me just say no matter what your wife chooses to do, determine that you are going to do whatever it takes to be free from this addiction. Choose to walk the pathway of deliverance because it's the right thing to do, not just to get your wife back and keep your family in tact. Those are good reasons but they will not keep you FREE in the future when temptation is set before you. You have to want this because you realize that living a life of sin is separating you from the ONE who died to set you FREE! Your motives are so important as they will determine if you remain free or bound. Choose Freedom! Surrender all of your heart and mind to Jesus! Be the man God has created YOU to be and your future will be filled with hope and purpose!
One, more thing. When the time is right........ you will know when.....allow God to use you to give hope to other men who have had the same struggle you have had. Don't let your season of darkness and captivity be wasted. Be a voice for righteousness, for TRUTH. The body of Christ needs men who are more mad at the devil than they are about worrying what others will think of them. Men that are not afraid to expose the lies of the enemy. There are many men out there who go to church Sunday after Sunday that are bound by this addiction, afraid to get help, afraid for anyone to know...so they just continue in their shame and hope nobody finds out their secret. All the while their lives, marriage, and families are rotting from the core. The church is being destroyed from the inside out and satan couldn't be happier. These are the men that God has called to be the spiritual leaders in our homes. And the body of Christ is paying a high price. NOW is the time to stand up, NOW is the time to expose the devastation and lies of this addiction. Not only for the sake of the body of Christ but for our nation as a whole and for our children.
Porn causes us all to be victims. From the porn stars themselves to the family of an addict. No one goes untouched. Have you ever considered the heart of a porn star? They are daughters, mothers, sisters, created by almighty God. Not intended to be objectified for selfish acts of release. They have real hearts, with real lives, with real feelings. They are broken girls who have been used and abused. With every look, christian men are contributing to their prostitution and brokenness. Lord, forgive us. May God help us all to be ambassadors for Him and to be the light in the darkness that He has called each one of us to be. So, I challenge you, be courageous. Allow your mess to become your message for God's glory......show the younger men and boys what an honorable man looks like and give them an example to follow. This is a decision that you won't regret.