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How a Wife Responds to Her Husband’s Porn Addiction

For over a year now, I avoided writing this post. I felt this nudge telling me to write it, and I ignored it. If I’m being honest, I’d rather be doing a million other things than this. But here I am, sitting in front of my computer about to share some information I believe someone needs to hear.

Let me explain. (Because let’s be real, my husband is the gifted writer in our family. No worries, I’m not trying to take over.) Here’s the most recent statistics according to Covenant Eyes:

Fifty-five percent of married men say they watch porn at least once a month, compared to 70 percent of unmarried men.

Sixty-three percent of adult men have looked at pornography at least on time while at work in the past three months; 38 percent have done so more than once.

Sixty-four percent of self-identified Christian men and 15 percent of self-identified Christian women view pornography at least once a month (compared to 65 percent of non-Christian men and 30 percent of non-Christian women).

Thirty-seven percent of pastors said viewing pornography was a “current struggle.”

Seventy-five percent of pastors said they do not make themselves accountable to anyone for their Internet use.

Seventy-nine percent of 18- to 30-year-old, 67 percent of 31- to 49-year-old, and 49 percent of 50-to 68-year-old men say the view pornography at least once a month.

Seventy-six percent of 18- to 30-year-old, 16 percent of 31- to 49-year-old, and 4 percent of 50-68-year-old women say the view pornography at least once a month.

Over a year ago, my husband blogged about overcoming his addiction to pornography. I knew the statistics. It wasn’t easy for us to share our struggle, but I knew the information would benefit someone. What I never considered was the response I, the spouse, received from that post.

There’s another side to the pornography epidemic no one talks about.

When I discovered pornography on my husband’s computer, I had NO CLUE what to do. Along with every insecurity you can imagine, I felt totally unequipped to respond. Please understand, I don’t write this claiming to have all the answers, nor do I claim to have handled everything the right way. I’m just a wife who walked the road millions are walking.

I don’t have five easy steps to heal your relationship. I don’t have one revelation that will make this go away. I only have insight into some ways to respond when you realize your spouse is addicted to pornography.

1.) Seek God.

Psalm 121 says, “I lift my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”

If you skip this essential truth, there is no foundation for healing in your marriage. It’s easy to keep your eyes fixed on the hurt, the pain and the brokenness. Keep your eyes fixed on the Healer if you want to walk down the road to healing.

2.) Get a grip on this statement: It’s NOT your fault.

If I were thinner. If I were more attractive. If I would have been a better wife. If I would have lost that baby weight faster. I probably deserve this because.

Satan LOVES to fill your head with insecurities. Seriously, he delights not only in destroying your marriage but destroying you as well. Your spouse’s struggle is NOT because of you, and honestly, it’s not about you. Any book you read, any counselor you go to, will confirm this. Don’t multiply Satan’s attempt to destroy your family with pornography by allowing untrue insecurities to consume you.

3.) Even when you are hurting, respond in love.

This is an emotional time for your family. It’s painful beyond imagination. And you’ve heard the saying: The people we love the most are the people we hurt the most. The saying is true. If your spouse is addicted to pornography, the most important question you will ask is, “How will I respond?”

Consider the radical teachings of Jesus. When He came, He gave us this new way to respond to people who hurt us—even the people we love the most and the people who hurt us the most. When I found pornography on my husband’s computer, the love that Luke 6 talks about was NOT how my flesh wanted to respond. When I finally responded with the love of Jesus, the journey to healing and restoration began.

If you’re wondering if you’re responding to your spouse with love, here’s a good litmus test in Scripture.

1 Corinthians 13 shows you how LOVE responds: with patience and kindness, not envy or pride, not arrogance or rudeness, not insisting on your own way, not irritable or resentful (OUCH!), not rejoicing in wrongdoing, but rejoicing with the truth.

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