Frequently Asked Questions.
In the past month I found out that my husband lied that he had overcome his porn addiction. We are newlyweds and he told me when we first started dating that it was no longer an issue for him, and I asked him countless times throughout our dating relationship and engagement regarding this. I eventually caught him, unfortunately. We are seeking counsel from a godly couple who went through this and the proper restrictions have been put on our devices.
So I was talking to a close friend, whose husband also struggles with porn, and she suggested that I ask my husband what fantasies he has, so that we can perform them and I would be the replacement of whatever we would watch. My gut feeling initially was that it is a bad idea. If the fantasies are degrading in anyway, I would not want to do them. But if they could be performed in a loving and/or playful way, is it bad? Could this be helpful for my husband as he tries to rewire his brain? Or would this do the exact opposite?
Respectfully, I disagree with your friend.
I am going to elaborate based on your declaration of being Christians. You’re never going to rewire your husband’s brain. His brain is already wired and can be transformed through the word of God not through acting out his sinful fantasies with his wife. You can do what you can to learn more about the natural wiring of men’s brains and how you can respond to that but I would not recommend role playing the fantasies that were a part of his addiction to pornography. I think you are opening both of you up to potential disaster and more heartache.
I do think you can spice up your own sex-life in a healthy way. And I would definitely recommend taking a look at strongermarriages.com – the blogs and the variety of workshops available there.
I think you’re already on the right track with this other couple that you’re seeking godly counsel from. Stay close to one another and keep short accounts with GOD.
So I am 22 and I am engaged to be married in June of 2016. Me and my Fiancée have found it really tough to be sexually pure together. I have been able to be honest with her about my struggles with porn and haven’t struggled with it since becoming accountable to her. We have however done stuff together. I guess one of my main questions is “are we virgins if we have had ‘dry sex’ together?” I know it’s the heart matter and I don’t want to be doing that stuff before we’re married but I still have that question.
Recently one of my friends challenged me to put £5 (like $7) in a jar for every day that we don;t mess up or I don’t masturbate. If I do either of these things I have to give the whole jar away. This is really helping but I still find the smallest things on-line really tempting ( i.e. Buzzfeed articles or movie trailers).
Do you guys have any tips for moving forward from here
I guess one of my main questions is “are we virgins if we have had ‘dry sex’ together?” I know it’s the heart matter and I don’t want to be doing that stuff before we’re married but I still have that question.
Indeed it is a matter of the heart and what concerns me more than the actual question is the motivation behind or the reason for the question to begin with? If I were to say “Of course you’re still a virgin” then what difference does that make on the issue of purity that is found in the heart? If I say “Nope, you’re not still a virgin” then does that entice you to a place of saying “Well we might as well go all the way then!” ? So what I am hearing is a trick question that I just don’t think I feel comfortable answering. 😉 Instead I will point you to two different places. 1. The Bible and 2. A Dictionary. You choose where you want to define virgin. 🙂
Do you guys have any tips for moving forward from here
I think it is great that you are convicted and you have the desire to honor God, your fiancé and yourself. I would say that you need the basics in place which for a believer should be the following:
1. Accountability (preferably this includes several males and not just the fiancé)
2. Plan of action (for times of temptation)
3. Life Goals
4. Area of service (In serving others we take our eyes off of ourselves and our desires)
Best wishes to you and your fiancé!
What support do you offer to the spouses of sex addicts who chose not to confess? What support is there for spouses of sex addicts who pretend to confess but only do so in words and not actions? I am finding that all the women who come to me have a similar experience…This addiction is causing a very narcissistic personality to emerge….or the narcissistic personality is what led to the addiction in the first place. How are you addressing the problem of guiding wives through how to know if their husband is repentant and working toward change or if he is simply sorry for getting caught and trying to build another new persona who is hiding behind a guise of getting help and will hurt her again and again?
What support do you offer to the spouses of sex addicts who chose not to confess?
We do not differentiate in support of one spouse to another. The support remains consistent whether the spouse is honest or not. We have an entire section for spouses on the main site. There is also a Start Here section for the spouse and if you download the “more resources” PDF there are more details there about the scenario you depict.
How are you addressing the problem of guiding wives through how to know if their husband is repentant and working toward change or if he is simply sorry for getting caught and trying to build another new persona who is hiding behind a guise of getting help and will hurt her again and again?
If we look to the bible (as Christians this should be our primary source of counsel) we are guided in how to spot a false confession or even false humility that another believer conveys. The answer is in “fruit that remains” which can be found in Scripture and usually it takes T I M E to witness such for two reasons. 1) for something to remain there has to be a measure of time and 2. because most are not going to just have an instantaneous turn around while still living in this world in a body of flesh. See Galatians 5:17
In Mathew 13 Jesus gives a parable saying that our fruitfulness would depend on the soil of our heart. He gives four examples and only one of them is one that actually cultivates what we hope for (a repentant heart).
I don’t think the questions you are posing that ask: “what are you doing about…” are really the right questions to get the answers that I think can actually help a spouse in this situation. I think the question I can answer more fully would be: “What support do you offer to wives whether or not their husband’s ever repent or break free.”
To that I would say:
We have an entire section for the spouse at XXXchurch with many resources. We also offer X3groups for spouses and many of those groups have wives that are married to men who have yet to break free. It is not our goal to focus on the spouse but rather on ourselves through the eyes of Jesus. It is our desire that each spouse find a support that lets them know they are not alone and that peace is possible in the midst of a spouse’s ongoing addiction. We have staff members who have walked this out with their spouse or are still walking it out and we have staff who are divorced. The world we live in is broken and so are the people in it but together we try to build one another up and sojourn the path to wholeness.