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A Letter From the Wife of a Porn Addict

Lotus Carroll

Aggie Catholic - published on 05/04/14

A must-read for all husbands.

This letter was passed on from a priest who received it from one of his parishioners:

Dear Father,

I write to you in an anonymous fashion because if I were to tell you who I am, I would be ashamed to come to the confessional, to Mass, to the place where I am gratefully being nourished. I thank you for the wonderful priest you are and for the pastoring you provide to all of us. 

Anonymously in your pews are women holding families together against the destructive forces of pornography on our husbands and sons. We are hurting and ashamed, tolerating – not enjoying – marriages and dealing with our inadequacies and depression. Personally, I feel like the 15 years of my marriage before my discovery were one big lie; that I have been “duped” by an otherwise faithful, church-involved, Knights of Columbus husband. In the three years since my awareness was heightened, I have come to believe that an affair would have actually been easier to tolerate; for perhaps I could compete with flesh and bones, but not with this. That pleasure and satisfaction can come to my husband from something so 2-dimensional has shaken me to the core; my very sense of who I am and what I am worth is utterly destroyed. My world was turned upside down and I know if not for our children, I would have left the marriage. Unbecoming of me, I daydream about that day when I might still. 

I am certain you are hearing it in the confessional from the husbands; my own husband has now been forthcoming in his challenges with pornography and about his frequent confessions of the sin. He initially felt great relief that I knew and somehow thought that my knowing would give him greater resistance against the temptation. Unfortunately, I think it just makes him deceive and “hide” more. If this doesn’t destroy our marriage, I fear my “response” will. 

The other side is the woman’s side: our sin is the profound anger and inability to forgive because it doesn’t stop; how do we trust it even would? Some husbands regret their failure to stand up against this temptation; many do not even think there’s a problem, but it has them held captive. I have heard another woman say she would rather her husband were doing drugs; at least there are programs to get past that demon. I am confident this is affecting my husband’s ability to do his job, and I imagine it is threatening the security of his employment. My now sinful thoughts and giving in to anger; my energy expended trying to keep our home free of the temptations that come with every latest technology; my “revengeful spending” – these are not what God has called me to. I constantly replay Jesus on the cross saying “Father, forgive them, they don’t know what they do,” but I answer myself with a “but, no one told Jesus they would love him and honor him all the days of their life.” 

I have sons who serve at the altar, and I fear for them and their futures; for their future wives. I try to teach my teenage boys about purity, the value of their sexuality, and the Theology of the Body, but they know the magazines and websites of their father, who is a “good man” and “receives the sacraments”—so I am just the “old-fashioned” prude of a mother. I feel constantly under attack, and it doesn’t seem there will be an end to my hurting. 

I wish there were a support group for the women suffering this way, but we are all so ashamed that we can’t satisfy our husbands enough, and afraid to make it public and destroy our husbands’ reputations, that none of us would come. We simply suffer and die inside alone. I am not offering any advice or asking you to do anything about this. Perhaps you can just say a prayer now and then for the wives in your parish trying to hold a family together. Thank you for tolerating my rambling here. 

Thank you.

Courtesy of Aggie Catholics

Tags:
MarriagePornographySexuality
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