Has your marriage or relationship been harmed by porn?


#1

I am curious how common this problem is, and what my chances are of finding a husband without this problem.

I apologize to the male posters about making a one sided poll.


#2

my husband is catholic now but before he did RCIA, he did look at it. i wasn't sure how to vote :o!


#3

[quote="Angel_Gabriel, post:2, topic:177164"]
my husband is catholic now but before he did RCIA, he did look at it. i wasn't sure how to vote :o!

[/quote]

Ah, you should vote Catholic and used to look at porn in the past. Mostly that option is to include men whose faith/marriage made them change their ways!


#4

[quote="flyingfish, post:1, topic:177164"]
I am curious how common this problem is, and what my chances are of finding a husband without this problem.

I apologize to the male posters about making a one sided poll.

[/quote]

No apologies necessary. :)

It is a common-enough problem to fall into, driven hard by the culture and the extremely easy accessibility of porn these days. It is also a fixable habit, as many CAF members can attest to from their personal experience. As humans, we all sin. I don't think you should reject a potential husband because of a porn problem in the past, but you should insist that the problem be absolutely in the past, without lingering recurrences. This will mean that you will have to be able to discuss openly this type of uncomfortable subject.

As far as finding a husband without this problem, I would recommend looking within the church for someone with strong core values in other areas, maintaining an open dialog on spiritual/moral ideas, and actively supporting the growth of the marriage relationship by Engaged Encounter, Marriage Encounter, and professional counseling as soon as problems develop.

  • curl

#5

Do you think it’s reasonable to expect the problem to be entirely in the past? As a man, do you discuss this issue with other men? Do you know many for whom this issue is in the past?

Or is it something that a man might only get to fixing once he is married and his wife objects?


#6

I'm a 30 year old single guy, and the last time I saw porn of any kind was in high school. I think most guys in high school or junior high have looked at a Playboy or something other of the sort.

I guess I am naive, because none of my friends talk about sex/porn all the time, etc. I really didn't know it was this bad of a problem.

We all have struggles with our nature, and I guess some other people struggle with a stronger sex drive. It's just never been something I dwell on.


#7

My husband was an athiest when we married. Porn was not something he considered wrong. When he became a Christian, he put that behind him.


#8

Dear flyingfish,

Sorry for the delay, but I’ve been offline for a few days.

  1. “Do you think it’s reasonable to expect the problem to be entirely in the past?” Yes, I do believe that it is reasonable that a man who has gotten over that problem can stay clean. First, in the spectrum of addictions, I think porn is much easier to overcome than physical addictions like drugs and alcohol – since we know that people can overcome those, we can expect that it would be much easier to overcome porn.

  2. “As a man, do you discuss this issue with other men?” Face-to-face, I have only discussed this with priests during confession and my own mental health professional. On-line, I have found quite a few like-minded men, and whm has recently set up a CAF social group as a support group for those of us who are recovered or in the process of recovering.

  3. “Do you know many for whom this issue is in the past?” I have quite a few on-line acquaintances for whom this issue is completely in the past. My personal experience is that temptation weakened with time – Right after I quit, I was tempted several times a day to go back to those troublesome websites, but now, not at all. In other words, as time goes on, it gets easier to stay pure.

  4. “Or is it something that a man might only get to fixing once he is married and his wife objects?” A more complex question. Almost all the voices from the culture push in the porn direction and almost none in the direction of purity. For me, I did not have any porn problems before marriage – one triggering factor was some problems that arose in my marriage. (This is why my earlier post suggested keeping conscious about developing your future marriage with Engaged Encounter, Marriage Encounter, and counseling to keep small problems small.) After I started listening to a christian radio station (evangelical), I realized that I had to stop that behavior. My wife did not know and still does not know that there was a problem of this type. Because I was not under time pressure, I was able to wean myself off over a period of a few weeks rather than go cold turkey.

In summary, I think it is a habit that one can break and then remain clean in the long-term. A single male, on the other hand, might never realize that it is a habit that should be broken until he is in a relationship where this topic is open for discussion.

Praying for us all,

  • curl

#9

Thanks, to be honest it is encouraging to hear this. :slight_smile:


#10

[quote="flyingfish, post:9, topic:177164"]
Thanks, to be honest it is encouraging to hear this. :)

[/quote]

Purity of mind, heart, and body in this culture is difficult but not impossible. (I firmly believe that God gives us the strength to live rightly, but it helps to use the tools he gave us - self-discipline, family, church, scripture, sacraments, etc.)


#11

I am a happily married father of 4 (to be 5 next year) and just wanted to weigh in on the discussion.

[quote="flyingfish, post:5, topic:177164"]
Do you think it's reasonable to expect the problem to be entirely in the past?

[/quote]

I do believe that it is can be expected for the problem of porn to be left entirely in the past. I have read many stories of men that have successfully done this in their lives. Pornography was never a part of my marriage, but it was a part of my past. Once I realized how damaging the things that I was doing was, I vowed to turn from this and to train my mind in the ways of modesty, chastity and purity. Was it easy? No. It is a constant battle, look at the world that we live in, but it is possible. I do not have a desire for porn and have not for many, many years. It is actually disgusting to me and I am ashamed that I allowed myself to fall victim to those lies in the past. Fortunately, I made the decision to walk away from that so as to not allow it to affect my wife and our marriage. I can see the damage that it would cause if it was a part of our marriage.

[quote="flyingfish, post:5, topic:177164"]
As a man, do you discuss this issue with other men?

[/quote]

If I have any discussions about porn with anyone, it is from a Catholic perspective. In talking with other family and friends (that are Catholic), if the topic comes up, we talk about the damaging effects of it. We do not focus on, nor do we talk about what we have done in the past in an offensive way. If we talk about it, we do so to give a testimony as to where we have been and the changes that we have made. I work a second job in a resturaunt and many times the "secular talk" will turn to sex and even porn, but since everyone knows where I stand, the talk like that is rarely around me. For example, if someone has some porn on their phone, a pic or something, and they are showing it to others, the will not even look at me.

[quote="flyingfish, post:5, topic:177164"]
Do you know many for whom this issue is in the past?

[/quote]

I do not know many that have struggled with this and some that still do, but thankfully they have come to realize the value of sexuality and the true meaning of it.

[quote="flyingfish, post:5, topic:177164"]
Or is it something that a man might only get to fixing once he is married and his wife objects?

[/quote]

This is something that should be "fixed" before marriage. If you are dating someone I would make it a priority for him to have the same views on sexuality and the sacredness of it as you do. I would not settle and go on a wing and a prayer, hoping that he will change once he enters marriage.


#12

My marriage was destroyed by porn. I learned in 2002 that he had a problem with it that went back to his teens. He had worked hard to keep it hidden from me. We went to counseling and he lied throughout the process. We went to Retrouvaille and at the end he told me he would not change for the sake of our family. We attempted to go through another Catholic marriage repair process and he refused to be open with me, our mediator, or his counselor. In the end we separated after three years of his sleeping on the couch and refusing to have any physical or emotional contact with me. I have been on my own with our 4 kids now for over a year. God has been my constant companion, shepherding me in a way I never dreamed of. It has been unbelievably hard and I still have flashes of anger that he would sacrifice our family on the altar of pornography. Over all the kids and I are doing well. I hope to be divorced by the end of the year and will proceed with an annulment request. I have no idea whether God will lead me to a good Catholic man or lead me to a life of dedicated celibacy. I am open to wherever he takes me. This is nothing I ever thought would happen to me but I just knew, given other situations that came to light, that I could not remain married to him while he refused to get any help for his problems.


#13

[quote="Melissa66, post:12, topic:177164"]
My marriage was destroyed by porn. I learned in 2002 that he had a problem with it that went back to his teens. He had worked hard to keep it hidden from me. We went to counseling and he lied throughout the process. We went to Retrouvaille and at the end he told me he would not change for the sake of our family. We attempted to go through another Catholic marriage repair process and he refused to be open with me, our mediator, or his counselor. In the end we separated after three years of his sleeping on the couch and refusing to have any physical or emotional contact with me. I have been on my own with our 4 kids now for over a year. God has been my constant companion, shepherding me in a way I never dreamed of. It has been unbelievably hard and I still have flashes of anger that he would sacrifice our family on the altar of pornography. Over all the kids and I are doing well. I hope to be divorced by the end of the year and will proceed with an annulment request. I have no idea whether God will lead me to a good Catholic man or lead me to a life of dedicated celibacy. I am open to wherever he takes me. This is nothing I ever thought would happen to me but I just knew, given other situations that came to light, that I could not remain married to him while he refused to get any help for his problems.

[/quote]

Melissa,
I am so sorry to hear of what you've gone through with this and your husband. There is a new woman's support group here on CAF that might be helpful to you called "Women Suffering from Unchastity". If interested, just click on the top tool bar under "Groups" then "Newest Groups". The title of the group is a bit misleading because CAF changed it from the original name of "Women Suffering While Loved Ones View Porn". They were afraid the title was not appropriate for all audiences.....
God bless you and give you strength as you proceed to the next step in your life.


#14

[quote="Melissa66, post:12, topic:177164"]
My marriage was destroyed by porn. I learned in 2002 that he had a problem with it that went back to his teens. He had worked hard to keep it hidden from me. We went to counseling and he lied throughout the process. ... This is nothing I ever thought would happen to me but I just knew, given other situations that came to light, that I could not remain married to him while he refused to get any help for his problems.

[/quote]

I'm so sorry to hear your troubles, and so angry at your soon-to-be-ex for not being man enough to do the right thing and climb his way out of the pit for his family, and lying on top of it.

Best wishes,
- curl


#15

Thank you to all who responded to my post above. I will check out the group for spouses. I also wanted to mention that I have asked St. Joseph to watch over our family as he protected the Holy Family. I have drawn great comfort from knowing that he is interceding for us.


#16

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