After 36 years of addiction to porn and lust, I never believed I would reach one year of recovery. I’m a man almost 50 years old. How will I be able to stop this grotesque compulsion after all this time? So many times I said, “This will be the last time”, only to do it again and again. I didn’t listen to God until He shoved me down a mountain one day while I was hiking alone, which caused a severe injury in my shoulder. Shortly after this, my life completely changed when my 16-year-old daughter noticed some strange texts I had been sending to a woman who worked with me. She confronted me (Thank God) and told my wife, causing my wife to begin questioning me. I lied over and over to her until I finally began to tell the truth about an affair I was pursuing and my life-long addiction to porn and lusting after women’s bodies.
Now I am celebrating one year of freedom from looking at porn! It still isn’t easy, but I celebrate every day just like it was the first! Having a supporting wife, even after all I put her through, makes it well worth the fight.
Looking back over the past year, I’ve identified the 10 most significant things, which have affected my recovery:
- Revealing every detail to my wife about my secret addiction. Every question she asked, I needed to answer. It was awful, but no longer a secret!
- I have an accountability partner I meet with in person at least once a week. I can call him for prayer during struggles.
- Deep cleansing prayer with my wife. We have prayed throughout our entire house- room by room- against the powers of darkness, lust, pornography, and lies.
- Marriage counseling with my wife and later grief counseling.
- No longer listening to certain kinds of music. I learned music was a trigger for me.
- Installing Covenant Eyes on all of my devices, set up with the reports going to my wife and accountability partner.
- Learning how porn affects the brain. I found several short articles on Covenant Eyes that explain porn addiction and how it changes the brain. I have also read books and Christian Podcasts on this topic- Jesus can restore your brain.
- Doing the 40-day challenge on Covenant Eyes, two times, back to back.
- Joining Celebrate Recovery then 180 Recovery. I meet with the group weekly.
- Daily prayer and getting into the Word with my wife.
My wife said to me at the beginning of this journey, “You have trained for and accomplished some extremely difficult physical challenges. This challenge is going to be tougher than any of those physical challenges you’ve taken on. But you have it in you and you can do it!” Those words ring in my head every day. That impact along with her continued forgiveness, compassion and love keep me fighting. To God be the glory for it all! One day at a time…