Putting it all together and realizing there’s a problem…
Kevin* was down in his home office when he heard an odd sound coming from upstairs. He couldn’t figure it out. Then he panicked, as he realized it was 5:30 am and the sound was coming from his bedroom alarm clock. He remembered quietly leaving his sleeping wife and going downstairs. That was about 11 o’clock last night.
As his mind put it all together, he realized that he had binged on porn sites ALL NIGHT.
Exhausted, he thought about the day before him: “I have endless meetings and presentations. How will I get through it? I haven’t slept in 24 hours!!”
It was at that moment, as his wife opened the office door, he realized he could no longer control this obsession that has been taking over his life.
How do men get caught up in pornography?
Unfortunately, it’s pretty simple.
Addiction is defined as a way to escape reality. It starts out quite innocently. Nobody wants to become addicted to anything.
Often, it begins with boredom. Smartphones make it very easy to access pornography. Kevin said when his mind was in neutral, the first thing he would think about is picking up his phone.
Perhaps he wanted to catch the latest sports scores. Sports apps also have other apps on their pages that lead to pictures, and eventually he clicked onto a pornography website.
“It wasn’t my intention to go to porn,” Kevin said. “I was just looking for something to do!”
Kevin, a highly respected member of his church, was facing divorce. He called me saying he would do just about anything to “get this problem under control!”
It takes time to get to the breaking point.
It starts out as fun… something to do when you’re bored out of your mind.
But when problems begin to mount up, you remember how much fun you had with porn. Kevin realized that’s what happened to him, and his life took a dramatic downward spiral as the porn site became an escape tool.
An escape from everyday problems such as job work pressure, marital bickering, children getting into trouble, credit card debt. The list of various problems we all face can seem insurmountable.
Online pornography can provide a chance to get away from it all. And Kevin could do that. Sometimes it was just a few minutes; but after a while it required more and more time, until that morning at 6 am when he realized he had hit bottom.
Getting on the road to recovery…
It takes time to get there, but so many men whom I’ve counseled over the years end up like Kevin: lost and miserable – desperate to break the addiction of pornography. They hate what they are doing and want it over. Period!
For a while, Kevin told himself that he had the willpower to stay away from it. When he was finished with online porn for the moment, he promised himself he would never do it again. He felt remorse and disgusted with himself.
But yet again, he would always come back to it. Kevin said rather coldly, “It seemed like it was calling to me; and, worse, it was becoming my closest friend.”
I asked, “Kevin, why did it take so long to find help?” He said he didn’t want to admit it to himself. He went on, “If I admitted it to myself, I would have been in one lonely place. Helpless and out of control.”
He had his reasons to go to porn. He told me that if he got enough sex from his wife that’s all he would need to stop.
Unfortunately, husbands can’t control their wives, their boss, their job, and just about anyone else. He can’t have everything his way. The exception: He could control what he does with his eyes. He could control which videos and pictures he wanted to see. And they would never reject him.
If he could just… just get control of himself, it wouldn’t hurt anyone. Finally at 6 am, he realized he couldn’t control himself and needed help.
God does the healing. I give you the practical help to get there.
When I met Kevin at the first session, he talked about his challenges and the need to change for himself and his family. I explained addiction in general. We then got into specifics of why he started using pornography for fun and then gradually the porn changed its purpose: To escape his reality.
So we began with a list of problems he was trying to bury and forget. Together, we sorted through the problems and determined which ones we could work on immediately and others that were going to have to wait.
Kevin told me it was good to have someone who could work with him instead of being by himself and just stewing.
Some of the problems, I explained, are secrets. I explained to him that the fuel of online pornography is secrecy. “So Kevin, what are your secrets?” He knew them alright and listed each one.
All men with a pornography addiction have an excuse why they don’t need professional help. Kevin said his excuses had been his extra pressures in life and that he needed to get away from them. Other men have said their wives didn’t understand them, or they weren’t getting enough sex. And so we listed his excuses.
Gradually we saw his life had developed into a pattern of avoiding problems through the secrecy of online pornography. He realized his online use was a matter that he had thought he could control all by himself. As I talked with him about this pattern, he came to a conclusion.
It was beyond his control.
In subsequent sessions, we begin to formulate healthy tools to stay away from his cyber life and learn how to live a peaceful life without porn.
When we had finished counseling, Kevin said he had never felt freer in his life than he was at that very moment.
There is no cure for an addiction…
…but many men get to the place of recovery, and they stay there for the rest of their lives. They lead comfortable and rewarding lives with their families. And they have successful careers – once they have taken the step to get help.
You may be wondering if this is going to be a long and painful process. It is not. You will learn a lot about yourself and give you the comfort that you are now getting ahead of the problem instead of always being behind it.
Imagine being able to use your problem-solving techniques that you will learn in counseling to benefit you for the rest of your life. The same tools can be used in your career and with your family.
I can help you on this path.
I believe you know that you are ready; and it is time to call, email, or text me.
Just fill out the form below or call, and I will give you a free 15-minute consultation to see if we are a good fit: (916) 769-4673.
*Names changed to preserve client confidentiality.