“You are addicted.” These were the most shocking and eye-opening words I had ever heard since walking into counseling for help dealing with pornography. Questions raced through my mind: “Addicted? How can I be addicted?” It’s just a little porn. Never mind the fact that “just a little porn” had controlled my life for 12 years.
What I didn’t realize in the moment was that taking a step out of my own little world of impurity and darkness to seek out a counselor was actually one of the healthiest steps I would ever take in my recovery from a pornography addiction. I met a guy name Anthony who helped not only to identify that I had a serious problem, but also helped me to explore a lot of what was going on inside of my mind, my heart, and my life prior to walking into his office that day. Today, Anthony has become a friend, and most likely, a life-long friend.
To some, admitting to themselves that they have a problem that they can’t control is the scariest thing ever. To admit to yourself that you are actually NOT in control of your life is frightening. What I found through my times of one-on-one counseling with a therapist who understood what I was walking through was that I wasn’t alone. I wasn’t the first person who ever struggled with pornography and unfortunately I wouldn’t be the last.
One of the realities many people point out is that counseling can be expensive. While I would agree that it can be, the question would always linger in my head: What’s more valuable for me at this point in my life? A person who can help me walk through the process of healing from a sexual addiction OR 90 bucks?
I would encourage anyone reading this who is struggling with a porn addiction or any other sexual addiction to really consider this question: Do you think you can beat this thing on your own? Because for 12 years of my life, that’s exactly what I thought. But day after day the cycle repeated itself. It wasn’t until I broke the silence that my journey towards freedom had started.
A qualified therapist — specifically one that has training in sexual addiction therapy — can do wonders to help the man or woman caught in an addiction. Why? Because many who do this type of counseling understand the workings of the brain, understand how important it is to look deep within for wounds and for traumas, and know the long-lasting effects that stuff like pornography can have a upon a person’s life.
For me, it took hearing those words: “You are addicted” from a person who not only had the specialized training but who had once walked in my shoes. Today, I don’t see Anthony on a weekly basis like I used to. I don’t know that counseling for a sexual addiction is meant to be long-term. But as I began meeting with Anthony and exploring the addiction I had with him and talking through so much in my life, I found new strength and healing. This was the beginning of my journey towards purity. And it can be for you today too.
Find someone in your area who is specialized in sexual addiction therapy. I promise you it will be one of the best decisions you will ever make.
“The heartfelt counsel of a friend is as sweet as perfume and incense.” (Proverbs 27:9)
Frank Honess hosts a weekly podcast, the PureLifePodcast.com, which can be heard on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, & the website which he runs, PureLifePodcast.com. Frank is married to his wife Tracey & lives in Seaford, Delaware.