Viewpoint: An insider’s view

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In 2007, I married my amazing husband in the Logan Temple. He had served a full-time mission, where he taught many people the gospel. We started our family, stayed active in the Church, paid a full tithe and completed graduate school at BYU.

Just before our four-year anniversary, I discovered that my husband has suffered from a pornography addiction since junior high. I was shocked beyond imagination. I was devastated, betrayed, embarrassed and sad, just to mention a few. How? Why? We had done everything right!

As I have begun to heal and learn more about this plague of pornography, I have learned that amazingly good men suffer with this addiction. They are righteous, good men doing their best — but they need help.

As a wife of a pornography addict, I have learned that I need to love him and support him. In order to do these two things ­— love and support — I first need to heal myself.

The LDS 12-step Addiction Recovery Program has been a huge resource in my healing. Along with meetings for addicts, the program offers accompanying group meetings for spouses and family. I attend weekly and am inspired by the women in my group.

The men suffering from this addiction do not want it in their lives. They are ashamed and hurt, just as their loved ones are hurt.

If you are dealing with this terrible plague in your life, know that you are not alone. Unfortunately, there are many of us who have been and are on this road. Seek us out through 12-step meetings, blogs, forums, websites, etc. Find professional counseling. Meet with your bishop and make a plan of attack to conquer the problem.

Unfortunately, pornography addiction is a hush-hush topic and hardly ever discussed openly. There are so many of us who suffer behind closed doors. Don’t do this to yourself. Seek out help and start your own healing process. I am living proof that you can heal and be happy again. My husband and I have found our road to recovery.

During the first days and weeks after discovering his addiction, I experienced the most unbearable pain ­— physically and emotionally — that I ever had felt. Today, I have a stronger marriage because of the communication my husband and I developed. I respect my husband more because of his determination to rid this from our lives.

I promise that you can become whole again and maybe even better than you were. Your husband can recover with the right help. Your marriage and family can be great again.

Pornography addiction is more prevalent than you could imagine. If you are suffering, either as the spouse or as the addict, seek out the help you need. If you have been able to avoid this in your life, congratulations — truly. Support those around you who do need help.

Support wholesome entertainment. Dress and act modestly. Be aware of those around you who may be in a deep, dark hole without showing it.

Pornography addiction recovery is possible. Both for the addict and loved ones.

To learn more about my story and to find other resources please visit me at www.wiveshelpingwives.blogspot.com.

The author’s name has been withheld due to the sensitive nature of this topic. This viewpoint represents her opinion and does not necessarily represent the opinions of BYU, its administration or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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