She showed me her brother’s stash. I wasn’t interested. I thought it was kind of disgusting.
Later she suggested that I get a stash of my own. I didn’t want to at first, but eventually I found myself in a magazine shop downtown.
I developed a pattern. I’d buy several Playboys, then after a few weeks or months I’d get disgusted with myself and throw them all away. This went on for years.
I discovered internet porn. I never got into the really hard stuff, nothing that looked like abuse. I couldn’t stomach that. Just stuff I thought looked like regular sex.
Then I decided to go back to church. After a while the bishop called me into his office to get to know me. I spilled my guts. Eventually I was able to take the Sacrament again. I even had a temple recommend. I went with friends to do baptisms for the dead a couple of times. But it didn’t last.
I fell back into my old habits. I’d buy porn DVDs from stores. I’d usually try to go to a male cashier. One night there was only a female cashier available. She was cute and she was friendly to me. Then she saw what I was buying. I felt awful, but that didn’t stop me from watching the DVDs.
Eventually I met my wife. I didn’t watch porn from the time we were married until after our first son was born. A few months after he was born she started going over to her parents’ house after he fell asleep. She’d go there every night and play video games. I didn’t want her to go, but I never told her. He’d usually wake up a little while after she left, and I’d take care of him by myself. After a while he’d go back to sleep, and I’d get lonely. Rather than telling her I was struggling, I started watching porn again. I went back to my old pattern of quitting for a while, then watching porn.
I few years later I went to our bishop. I told him about my porn addiction. He told my I needed to tell my wife. He also offered to pay for counseling, which I took him up on.
The night I told my wife about my ongoing porn addiction was one of the longest of my life. She could tell something was wrong, but I couldn’t bring myself to tell her. For hours we sat there, her asking what was wrong. I was mostly silent. Eventually I mumbled, “It’s porn.” She had lots of uncomfortable questions, but after I’d answered them it seemed like we were closer than ever.
I avoided porn successfully for a few years after that. Eventually being left home alone for several hours while my wife and kids were visiting her parents took its toll. Once again I was in the grip of porn. I’ve been struggling with it on and off since then.
For several months I kept it a secret from my wife. Id lie to her about it when she asked if I’d been watching porn. When I told her the truth she became really upset and went into a deep depression.
After several months my wife told me she wants to separate. She hasn’t filed yet, but it’s just a matter of time now.
If anyone reading this is tempted to watch porn, don’t do it, you’ll regret it. Maybe not now, but someday. If you already do watch it, get help. There are people and resources out there for porn addicts. Here are a few: