I have been struggling against sins of impurity my entire life. I have had impure thoughts ever since I could remember - as in I have absolutely no recollection of a time of there ever being a period of “innocence”. I have been informed that introduction to things of a sexual nature (pornography especially) at an early age has a devastating effects on young minds, causing roadblock towards the discovery of sexual maturity, self control and self mastery.
I have found some clarity recently. It has come through a combination of the Sacraments (spiritually, helping strengthen relationship with God), therapy (helping strengthen relationship with self, and dealing with childhood trauma) and a twelve step program (helping strengthen communion with others, in union with God), and going after them whole-heartedly, leaving little time to “be alone” or with others who could lead you astray. Sacraments (frequent confession, and daily mass) COMBINED with a good twelve step program I would suggest at a minimum, especially since some therapy can be just plain harmful. (I personally recommend the Alpha Omega clinic (aoccs.org/) -simply excellent.) I am learning to accept myself as human only, and to reach out and be more open about things that really bother me. Through self discovery, I have found it amazing how anxiety, stress, anger can come out in the form of sexually compulsive behavior. The struggle is still there, as temptation tends to rear its head a bit every day. But please remember the good news - there is HOPE!!! I know what it is like to fall often. But keep picking yourself up. There is tremendous grace through humility, and understanding we do not have all the answers - rather the only truth is the Divine Truth, and all Truth comes from God. I am learning how true this is, and am finding that now Joy is finally growing in my heart! (Believe me, when I tell you how I know what despair is - I have certainly been there.) As hard as you are on yourself, you will find Divine Mercy.
Keep seeking it!!!
One last word… twelve step programs (Sexaholics Anonymous, Sex and Love Addicts anonymous), like therapists, can also be tricky. You may run into those who, not knowing Christ, do not know Him as Catholics do. This may sometimes be discouraging. Please keep in mind that all of us - Catholics and non Catholics alike - are God’s children. He is reaching out to all of us, bringing us closer to Him. Remain strong in your faith. The ambiguity used in the wording of “Higher Power” is a generic term used to help non-believers find help also (they, we must remember are our dear brothers and sisters, who may in many ways need help more than we do). The twelve steps actually began as a Catholic means towards peace and salvation, as Alcoholics Anonymous.