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Do any of us even overcome mastruabtion before/after marriage
By moroni
3/22/2012 11:41:42 PM
1st off this post isn't about me or asking for you advice. I just want honest opinions and answers on a difficult subject about the general public.

Im starting to wonder if any of us actually overcome this fight. Is it worth it? Is it reasonable? Is it possible? How many of our bishops even think this is a serious sin. How many of us struggle with this but instead of letting it drag them down, they fight it but accept it also.

Im wondering where I would be, if I just confessed to my bishop, worked torwards goals and accepted it. Instead, I let the guilt and shame destroy me. I looked to the internet for comfort, but that is not a place of comfort. Now I have a problem with porn. There are so many young people fight this with every breath they have and put so much energy into it, thinking masturbation will make them go to hell.

I understand it shouldn't be done but how many many people on this site are fighting Porn and Masturbation. Somehow, they try to fight masturbation before porn. I have no idea how that's possible but what if we fought porn first, then focused on masturbation. How much progress could we make. We always talk about baby steps, is this not a form of that. Shouldn't we think outside the box instead of trying to take on the world at once.
1sr off I'd like to say this Post isn't about me. Its about the general public and my thought and questions on certain circumstances.


Im curious, how many of you are married and have a masturbation addiction only? Have any of you ever masturbated and got in trouble for it in the church? I doubt it, but pornography is a whole different thing is it not.

There is no doubt in my mind that I will teach my children to not touch these powers. I will step it up, unlike my parents. I have friends that never have and its not even an issue for them, they aren't tempted nearly as us. But I accidentally masturbated, and this is at a time where your whole body is changing and your sexual being is maturing. Can you really blame us as young people for the hormones and the changes we're going through? Im not asking you to judge us, their is someone else for that. We aren't off having sex or anything like that, is that not a great accomplishment in itself.

I know I'll hear a lot of, its a sin and it shouldn't be done and no matter what your sinful. But try to be realistic with me. Is it better, to focus more on the pornography addiction first, than once you have a pretty good handle on that addiction, we gradually ease off of masturbation. we need real solutions for people who's spirits are being destroyed by pornography.

For all of you husbands and even wives, how big of an issue is masturbation in your marriage. Not pornography, just masturbation. Does it have the same emotional damage as pornography? Does your spouse take it hard of/when you masturbate. What about the bishop? Does he ask you of you masturbate even tho your married?

Again, this isnt about me, I'm not trying to be analyzed here. I'm trying to have a real discussion. Please try to answer most of the questions along with your 2 cents.
What do you all think?

Comments:

Surrender    
"Moroni,

When I read your posts, I think ...here is this great guy with so much to give, he shows deep , love, concern and care for everyone here. But I also see a young man who is in deep conflict, and see's this addiction a fight. You have mentioned many times that looking at porn is worse than masturbating. I see where you are coming from and your insight and questions are very valid. But I feel that your perspective on addiction needs to change.

So many times the focus for many people, addicts and non addicts alike is on the sin. How bad is it really? Will the Bishop hand down harsh punishment? Am I going to hell for my sins? I believe this focus is another tool of the Devil to keep addicts stuck. We are often so focused on the sin, that we have missed the point.

The Lord does not want us to fight our sins. Our sins and sadness are the reason His son suffered and died for us. He wants us to surrender all that we are, all we feel, and all we know, to know Him our amazing Savior and Redeemer, our Lord Jesus Christ. He wants us to surrender, and he will fight our battles for us. We don't have to fight so hard.

It is so important to see that the Lord gave us our weaknesses so that we will find His son. Our weaknesses keep us yolked to Him, who is powerful to save. Once we surrender all we are to Him and seek him moment by moment, we will never be the same again. Once we surrender, we no longer think in terms of punishment, shame, or guilt. We think in terms of salvation and the beautiful gift of His grace. We now experience the grace we once thought we did not deserve.

Confession to the Bishop is there to cleanse our hearts from the secrets which hold us down. Taking our sins out of the darkness and telling the truth, saying it out loud is a huge step in our purification. It is the beginning of an amazing journey. There is something beautiful about transparency, being who you really are without holding back and without shame. Shame is Satan's, not the Lord's . Openness keeps us so real, so beautiful, so filled with light.

Moroni, your name says so much about you. You know who you are, and whose you are. Satan would have you operate from the standpoint of fear, but you are better than that. You know what you need to do. Now you need to ask the Lord to help you do it.

I am a wife of a recovering addict who does not mast. He has been in recovery for 2 years and guess what, it is not even about the action of if he mast or does not mast. It is about him finally after over 35 years of shame and pain surrendering to his God, and to me his wife. Finally trusting in Him and trusting me with who he really is. He is a new man, and although he was raised LDS, he never knew his Savior until 2 years ago.

Our journey is the most painful, wonderful experience you can imagine. We still face many challenges ahead, but he now knows who he is and he is finally in the process of allowing the Lord to build him into the Man he was always meant to be.

I just feel so grateful to be standing in the middle of this miracle with him. And, I too have been in a miraculous healing process from the pain and damage caused by porn and mast. We are now whole and focused on the Savior together and he is showing us things we could have never seen without this great surrender!!!He surrendered his addiction, I surrendered my pain, and we are both experiencing the beauty of forgiveness.

I wish you recovery through surrendering. He is patiently waiting and is with you always.

Never stop hoping.

Angel"
posted at 01:39:02 on March 23, 2012 by angelmom
@AngleMom Tha ks for your comment    
"What specifically is my conflict? I do t have the time to write every single thought in my brain, so you can't filly understand the reasoning behind my question single it what do you think my conflict is. Because this question isn't about me, im not trying to figure out what I should do. I know, for the most part, what I'm going to do and why I do it. Im not trying to decode whether to do what I'm suggesting above. So, I'm just wondering what exactly you think my conflict is so I can respond.

You see, I know I'm not going to hell. I dont live out of fear, I live for the hope of happiness, eternal salvation. But, when I was young, all I was afraid of was punishment, and that's why I pointed that put. Again, this isn't about me, this is more about the general public and what they can go through sometimes. Im not focusing on the sin or even the gravity of the sin, I'm trying to figure where this energy is best put First. What should we as addicts, solve first before we can move forward. I dont like this black and white outlook on life, where its like you have a problem, your a sinner so follow these steps and you should be cured in due time. We need a different way of thinking because we are each different and there is simply no magic bullet solution.

Thank you for the advice, I am working on my spiritual well being, I k ow ots been starved for a while. But id like to direct this conversation away from me, because its not about me.

Im glad your husband was successful after 30yrs. What do you think he would recommend to us, so that we can overcome this addiction that maybe he didn't try before?

I know the gospel has great help waiting for me, and I know the journey is there, I'm slowly taking it."
posted at 02:17:29 on March 23, 2012 by moroni
+2    
"I can only add my agreement to everything AngelMom said. As a wife, this is not about masturbation or porn or the other things that are the symptoms of the disease. This is about our relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. These things separate us from Them and so I'll answer your questions in perspective of that:

Is it worth it? Yes.
Is is possible? Yes.
God thinks it is a serious sin and so what man thinks/or the rest of us think doesn't really matter. I don't know what you mean by asking about getting in trouble with the church, but I can tell you that my husband has suffered deeply from every aspect of his sexual addictions and that includes times of masturbation in exclusion to any other form of acting out. It has caused him to be unworthy of the temple, callings and ultimately he has gone without the Spirit and that is the bottom line.

We must have clear perspective and humility on giving God the credit for those accomplishments and growth we have made and the strength He gives us to overcome, but I do not think we should be patting ourselves on the back for not committing 'worse' sins regardless of what the world does. Does masturbation destroy marriages? Yes. Is it a huge problem? Yes.... Because of what it is and where it comes from in the soul.

I don't know what you intend to gain from this conversation, but if feels like we are talking about the thick of thin things. I have to turn back to what Angel said, because she got to the heart of it. This is about submitting to God, whoever we are, and through whatever keeps us from Him. My .02"
posted at 08:56:12 on March 23, 2012 by maddy
I asked my husband    
"He literally tried everything he could and he said that the single most important thing he did was to finally trust God and surrender his life to Jesus Christ.

The answer is so simple most people miss it or reject it, and my husband was one of those. When we turn our will over to the Lord, he will direct us as to what we must "do" to overcome.

My husband said that he believes that the reason most men will not surrender, is because of selfish pride. And, I his wife can testify that was true about him until he finally became a humble man of God and surrendered.

Often this advice will go far beyond what most Bishops will tell you to do. But inside himself, he knew he needed to do more than the minimum required of him to just get his Temple recommend back. It is so easy to justify when answering the questions...

A coupe of weeks ago, during the Sacrament, I began to weep when I was thinking about all my Savior has done for me. Next thing I knew, my husband was weeping too, later expressing he was feeling the same thing. No feelings of righteousness, only feelings of complete gratitude.

To fully access the atonement, is to surrender. When we turn our will to the will of God, that is when he can work a mighty miracle in us. No one is exempt from this blessing. No one is to good or evil for this blessing. It is then same for all of God's children. And it brings sobriety and healing from the moment we surrender.

Hubby's 3 tips to come to sobriety

1- Be completely honest and transparent - No Secrets
2- Believe God will heal you
3- Completely surrender all you are and all you have to God.

The same answer for my husband, is the same answer for you and everyone else.

Complete surrender... No holding back...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvWK3EC0ys8&feature=related "
posted at 09:53:17 on March 23, 2012 by angelmom
We are natural men    
"Moroni,
Thanks for starting this post. There is great insight hear. I know your looking for some statistical answers. I did too for a time. And finding those answers helped me understand the natural man. I believe 100% of men have issues with the law of chastity at some point in there life. especially during there youth. As far as mast goes it is very low on the totem pole of sins. You mix in porn now your dealing with virtual sexual relationship and now becomes highly addictive. (I highly suggest reading "He restoreth my soul" written by LDS neurosurgeon. He gives physilogical and spiritual info on mast and porn. Great insight. When I was a young man I thought I was part of a few percent who actually mast. It caused me great grief. How embarrassing. As I got older I realized all men had mast and few would admit it publicly. When you are young and constantly being stimulated by your surroundings it seems impossible. I will say whatever problems you had before your marriage will also show up after your marriage. that's not just me but everyone Ive talked too. I tell you these things because once I understood every man struggles on some level with this it was easier for me to accept I could not overcome the natural man by myself. Can you imagine if you gave in to every natural man temptation what you would eventually turn into. Not a pretty thought. but that's the natural man. It's the most powerful thing all men have to learn to control. Now I know you were looking for honesty and some stats maybe that helped. It helped me in the beginning. Everyone has had great advice here in this thread.

Yes, it is reasonable
yes, it is possible
It will take time and soul searching to change your natural man."
posted at 11:35:08 on March 23, 2012 by endure
Answers: Plain and Simple    
"@Moroni: Here are the answers to your questions. As you have requested, I will not apply them to you. I am simply telling you what has worked for me.

First off, a little background about me. I started with only a masturbation problem for years. This was enough to make the Bishop take sacrament from me. Then I started lying. When I was eighteen I started into hard porn. On my mission I admitted to lying and gave up the porn but kept the masturbation. After the mission, porn was worse than ever. Then came acting out with random girls at dances, then trips to strip clubs, then acting out sexually with my girlfriend. Then hitting rock bottom by getting a happy ending at a massage.

Then I gave it all up without the program for a couple months, but turned back to porn. Then gave it up again for a couple months, repented, but still problems with masturbation, finally I turned my life over to Christ, dedicated myself to the SA program as the Spirit directed me, had one last relapse, but now I have been completely clean from the addiction for 176 days.

From that perspective, here are my answers to your questions:

Is it worth it? - YES!! Life is so rich without being enslaved to the addiction. I smile more, I feel the Spirit more, I feel like the Lord is in control of my life instead of my life being out of control. I am truly a happy, grateful, recovering addict.

Is it possible? - Yes!! I hope you can see from my history that I was hopelessly enslaved to the addiction. At its worse, I acted out for 4-5 hours each day. I consistently masturbated 3-5 times daily. When I felt godly sorrow and truly surrendered my life to the Lord, He showed me the way out.

How many of our Bishops think this is a serious sin? - I assume you mean masturbation here: I've confessed to sixteen bishops/priesthood leaders. I'm a student, and I move a lot. Only two of them thought masturbation was NOT a big deal. The other 14 thought it was a big enough deal to lose a temple recommend and the right to give blessings. Some even took away sacrament, others did not. I think that was about fifty fifty. All 16 thought porn was a very big deal.

How many of us struggle with this but instead of letting it drag them down, they fight it but accept it also. - I used to fight it and just accept that I would always masturbate sometimes. I tried not to let it drag me down, but this was impossible. When I worked with one of the bishops who thought masturbation wasn't a big deal, I gave up porn, but still masturbated sometimes. This made me feel to guilty to go to the temple even though the bishop said I could. I just did not feel the Spirit. I think Satan would like us to believe that it's not a big deal, but it is. The Lord wants us to have success. Satan wants us to resign ourselves to failure.

Im wondering where I would be, if I just confessed to my bishop, worked torwards goals and accepted it. - I think you would have a lot of hard work ahead of you, but it would be absolutely worth it. It's definitely worth it to me.

what if we fought porn first, then focused on masturbation. How much progress could we make. - From my experience, when we quit, we have to really quit. Giving up all of the addiction is the only way to go. Anything else is a half measure. Half measures availed us nothing.

Marriage questions - See the answers from the kind sisters above. I'm single and have no comment.

Please try to answer most of the questions along with your 2 cents.
What do you all think? -

I think this is a good discussion. Moroni, you're a valuable asset to this site. Thanks for bringing these points up. By answering your questions I was able to remember where I've been in the past, how I got out, why I never want to go back, and what I have to do to keep moving forward.

I also think you would do well to take what helps you and leave the rest. Everyone is different. Something I've learned at group is that most of the comments apply to me, but some of them do not. There are some people that I just don't understand, but that's ok. If they give me advice that does not help, then I just nod my head, say thanks, and forget about it.

Also, I would listen especially carefully to people who have been in your situation but found a way out. The comments from loved ones are great, and they help a lot, but there are some things that you will have to learn from recovering addicts. That's why group can help when spouses, bishops, and therapists fail.

I hope everyone realizes that this addiction is 100% curable. As mentioned above, surrender to the Lord is key. Working the 12 steps is also necessary. "
posted at 11:57:17 on March 23, 2012 by ETTE
I'm not married but...    
"I have met a lot of people who have overcome. I am overcoming right now. Longest sober I've ever been. But in my SA group, there are men who have over 5 years of sobriety. It is amazing. Our facilitator for my LDS group has 9 years. I think that's incredible. And he stays involved with our group and has no more place for the enemy of his soul.

I think for me that's the goal. It is possible. I try to get down to the root of my addiction, which I think is feeling inadequate. So much pressure to be the perfect mormon is on my shoulders. And this is my secret way of coping with that. So now when I feel overwhelmed and inadequate, I pick up an instrument and I sing about my feelings. I'm not super talented but I love music and developing my talents has filled a part of my soul that had previously been open for the enemy (natural man/lust) to attack.

Just from my own life, my Bishops took my temple recommend for masturbation. They took sacrament for porn. Of course it was different with each bishop, I have had 7 since confessing. But most of them thought masturbation was the most dangerous thing for me at the time. So of course I focused on one before the other. But it never worked. I was still caught in addiction. I think that what it says in the SA White Book captures it:

"We stop practicing our compulsion in all it's forms. We can't be "sober" in one area without acting out in another. There can be no relief from the obsession of lust while still practicing the acts of lust in any form. We stop feeding the lust."

I learned a lot from the SA White Book because it is the story of addict's through recovery. The story of what worked. And the entire thing is SURRENDER.

I try not to look at sin as hopeless. Yes, I was weighed down thinking "I'm going to hell because I do these perverted things" and I was especially hard on myself because I'm a girl. I felt alone. I had friends who were girls that would talk about guys and say "Anyone who looks at porn should have their eyes ripped out because that's disgusting". And I'd just be sitting there, in that crowd, but feeling so alone. Because I couldn't talk to them, they thought I was disgusting and should have my eyes ripped out. I agreed but I needed help. I needed hope. And I didn't want to talk to guys about it because well I think we can all agree that would be uncomfortable.

So I felt hopeless. I was a sinner and damned to hell. But then I realized something. I was a sinner and damned to hell before I even started any of this. I was a liar. "Wo unto the liars." I was proud. I had other faults. I wasn't perfect before this. But the Gospel is all about hope for the hopeless! It's all about how EVERYONE can be saved from their sin. So I realized that fixing this problem wasn't going to open the gates of heaven to let me in. Fixing this problem was going to open the gates of hell to let me out. And then surrendering and putting all my trust in God would open the gates of heaven. Because I can't earn heaven. I can't. I try to go one day without sin and I can't. I'm imperfect. Sometimes I don't necessarily commit sin. But there are sins of omission, when we fail to do things that Lord wants us to do. Sometimes I don't do my Visiting Teaching because I want to go to a dance. All of these are things we must overcome. So yeah, I'm damned to hell for my sin. All sin does that to us. Says it right in the Bible. But the various levels of sin deal with how hard repentance will be. But it is still possible. There is still hope in Christ.

Even the Church recognizes in their "A Parent's Guide" that youth will probably touch themselves during puberty as their body changes. But they urge parent's to talk to their children about avoiding it because it can cause trouble. So yes, it is a common pitfall. But youth should stop as soon as they can because scientifically mb is harmful and addictive. It is also spiritually damaging to the soul. Our soul is our body and spirit combined. When we do it, we are physically arousing empty feelings in our body and spirit. That is why we are cautioned in both the Bible and the For The Strength Of Youth to not arouse sexual feelings before the appointed time. For The Strength of Youth is nothing new. I always thought it was just what the adults think we need rules on. Nope. It's in the Bible.

But yeah, I don't know if I covered all your questions but that is my story and my opinion."
posted at 15:12:31 on March 23, 2012 by iamstrong
Yes it's possible    
"As a teen, I was addicted to both porn & masturbation. I probably acted out about five times per week on average. I returned to both addictions and experimented with voyeur activities for a time after my mission, despite my marriage. Shortly after I figured out that I truly was addicted, and that my addiction was a problem, I was able to stop masturbation. That was about 8 years ago, I don't count.

Leaving my pornography drug was much more difficult. It required turning my life, my mind, my heart, my media, including my music, over to the Lord. In the past 6 years, I bet I've looked at porn on a dozen or so occasions, mostly towards the beginning of that period.

Lately, I have come to feel that the Lord truly has set me free and made weak things strong. I still have temptations, they will probably never go away. But I have a choice now, something I did not have for many years. I am free to choose whether I want to sin again or not, and as long as I stay close to the lord, I am certain that I will choose not to sin.

I am so grateful that the freedom to choose has been restored to me again by the atonement of Christ. This is a long journey, during which the lord will change your heart, and he will restore your freedom to choose to you, if you have faith in him, and keep going.

Never give up, keep moving forward, realize this does not end in a day. Satan will not give up that easily. However, the answer to your question is

Yes there are married men who quit and who are free of these addictions. I am one."
posted at 20:49:00 on March 23, 2012 by beclean
Moroni,    
"I think I would answer your question, "yes". If it makes sense for you to quit the porn first and then work on the masturbation, then go for it. I agree with you that it is not healthy to constantly beat ourselves up for failing. We are fallen beings who will fail until Grace saves us. But it sounds to me that YOU are the one who is not ok with this strategy because you are looking for validation from outside of yourself, hence the conflict. If you are asking yourself if it's ok maybe it's not."
posted at 21:50:46 on March 23, 2012 by Anonymous
Ette,    
"I think that was 100% on."
posted at 21:52:01 on March 23, 2012 by Anonymous
Ill try to respond to each of You.    
"@Maddy: What I mean about getting trouble un church is, When you are interviews for worthiness, does the Bishop ask a husband or wife if they masturabte. Is that even considered a sin? Obviously if your spouse doesn't like it then sure or your doing it compulsively than that's a problem, but I just mean ocasionaly and your partner does not mind. Will the church punish a husband or wife like they might punish a yound adult or teenager? We all know pornography is forbidden for all, so in the end, I dont think masturbation is anywhere near as serious as pornography. Yes, I know my relationship with God important, I dont need you to tell me that I know. I've honestly never heard of moderate masturbation destroying a marriage. What I'm trying to get out of this Conversation? Im trying to clear up the air, have a real conversation about this subject. Do you really think that just saying "your a sinner and an addict, repent!" helps anybody. I mean it might make you feel like your really smart but if you want actually want to help other people than open your mind up.

@AngleMom thanks for asking your husband. I have no doubt that's part of the process, I think we all want to work towards that.

@Endure: Thank you for not being all judgemental on me and actually answering a good amount of my questions. That was my whole point of this post not advice for my own life. I agree with you on masturbation being at the lowest if the totem pole, and if you mix porn islt really starts to get serious. Your answer was good and honest, I appreciate it. I agree, a lot of it is soul aurching you do on your own and your mind doesn't cljust change because somebody told you so. Its a process.

Im gonna reply to the rest of you guys in a little bit. Thanks."
posted at 22:56:32 on March 23, 2012 by moroni
Not Fair    
"Attacking Maddy. Your post is starting to look like you want to minimize the effects of masturbation on a marriage. You attacked Maddy when she has been nothing but honest on this site from day one. She spoke from her experience and the experience of other women she knows through recovery.In any Christian belief, it is not okay to include masturbation in a marriage. Just because you want it too be okay for people if it works for them, does not make it okay with God. you blast others for judgement, but the same rules don't seem to apply to you when you want to judge others for judging you.

Do yourself a favor and visit your bishop. I think you might see things differently later."
posted at 00:20:32 on March 24, 2012 by Anonymous
Woah woah woah    
"It's all good. No hate. We love each other. Remember guys, this is our support group. We're like a family. So yeah, we'll fight but in the end we love each other and help each other.

I am going to say though that there are 2 purposes of sex: unity in marriage and procreation. If a husband or wife is mb-ing in a separate room, they're using sex wrong. They are using it for their carnal needs. They are worshiping the creation and not the Creator. Sex is for love. Not lust. I don't care if anyone is okay with it. Lust is empty love. It's fake. It's dangerous. So yes pornography does not unite a couple. It is for lust. So yeah, in marriage things are a little different.

But our addiction, at its root, is to lust. The Bible doesn't say "don't look at porn" , "don't mb". It says to not lust. Porn and mb are our ways that we act on lust. But lust, overall, is the problem.

And mb can take a terrible effect on a marriage. I don't know all of the pain that MORONI is going through. And I don't know all of the pain that these wives are going through. So let's not attack each other. None of us have all the answers.

But I do think that those who are further along in recovery should not have their advice shut down. Honesty, admitting sin, confession. Needs to happen for recovery to start."
posted at 00:37:25 on March 24, 2012 by iamstrong
You are in High School Right?    
"You said, "'I've honestly never heard of moderate masturbation destroying a marriage". Well that might be because you are a kid and you know nothing about marriage. And for the record, the church is not about punishing people for sin, it is about saving souls and leading them to repentance.

You have a lot to learn and life will teach you. You don't know what you don't know."
posted at 00:39:32 on March 24, 2012 by Anonymous
Jeez lots of negativity in the air    
"Definitely feel like everyone is trying to put me down for putting up an issue that most guys probably think of. I mean I'm not requiring you guys agree with me, I'm not necessarily putting a position out there, most of my post are questions and then a discussion from those questions. But, I guess some of you guys are offended for me trying something different instead of preaching, because I'm in no portion for that. Im honestly calling out to you people with experience, I wan tto know what you guys think of each of my questions and how it can apply.
Ette thanks again for answering my Post so well, I appreciate a lot, especially after some of these negative comments.

I'll finish my reply to some of the others.

@Ette: Well, I appreciate your comments and trying to keep me out of this. I definitely see that danger of starting off with masturbation and eventually breaking chastity. i think its very real, that's why I'm going to be talking to my kids about it, I'm definitely not gonna be scared to talk about it to them. from what I've been through and have heard, I don't want my children to have to go through that.
I agree, as a person I dont want to be addicted to anything. Coffee in the morning to an energy drink in the afternoon or Nyquil at night, I dont want any of it. It makes us healthier people to be free of all addiction.
I get what you mean by giving up all the addiction, but dont we also encourage baby step, one step at a time. So isn't solving the porn addition first then mast next a way of doing that?
Thank you, for finding value in my Post. If everyone commented like you said I think less people would be offended, and in the end I think more people could just get other peoples opinions. That's true, sometimes its better to nod because some people do not like to be questioned, even if we dont quite understand their statement. "
posted at 03:44:10 on March 24, 2012 by moroni
I gotta make seperate comments lol    
"@IAmStrong True, each bishop is different. Maybe one doesn't understand a person situation completely or another might be too harsh. I simply dont know and it depends. I think it's great that some people can be completely sober when it comes to masturbation. But does that really happen with all of us, will it happen. You mentioned that this is a common pitfall for youth, and sometimes I just get worried that we arent approaching this better cause the issue isn't improving and youth are having a hard time just quitting. Its definitely not as easy as it sounds But I think I might e asked too many questions and simplified it, I feel like people are attacking from all corners for my questions, but I think your were fair and answered a few.

@BeClean I think you bring up a good point about us getting our agency back. Sometimes I get scared because a lot of people say we are addicts for life and the thorn will always be in our flesh, but I like the way you put it. We will always have to be working towards God and doing that gives us agency.

@1Anonymous with "Moroni": Im honestly not questioning myself. This is just a discussion. But I'm glad you kinda see what I'm saying, about getting one thong figured out at a time. Thanks.

@2Anonymous with "Not Fair": I wasn't attacking Maddy. If you want to read attacks read some of these Anonymous comments. But I was trying to figure out why she was writing the stuff, they weren't sarcastic questions they were literal. And the last part about people being to preachy and less understanding want really meant for her, it was more for the general population that does that. So I apologize for that, but not for defending myself.
I am not trying to minimize it, I'm asking you guys. Sex, married people have sex no? So, do you think that its possible that sex replaces a lot of the desire to masturabte, I think so! Not all, but a lot I'm sure. I haven't had a lot of married couples comment so I can't say, but its common sense. (This isn't about pornography different issue). The church, has said that its up to a married couple to decide what's acceptable within their sexual lives. This was on a talk about what's acceptable, but masturbation wasnt the worry, couples were talking about oral and other sexual acts. Im not trying to push anything, again, just want a conversation but its difficult..
How am I judging others for judging me? Does that even make sense. Calling someone out on that doesn't mean I'm judging them, I just dont think an Addiction Recovery site is the place for judgment, and I definitely feel a lot of that towards me for thinking differently and asking different questions. I like how you feel free to really say I have a lot to learn and i dont know what i dont know. Since when is it ok to say that to someone? I haven't said anything terrible.

@ some of the Anonymous commenters, if your going to be so bold and direct with your statements, at least have the courage to put a name under you. Its easy to hide behind that tag and say whatever you want without worry of reprocusion. Thats not really fair, I own up to what I say.

Thanks everyone."
posted at 04:23:37 on March 24, 2012 by moroni
another comment    
"Speaking as a married person, and with the experience of my father and my brother and my brothers in law, who are also married people, I can tell you that being married and having sex does not eliminate or even substantially reduce the desire to masturbate. There is a possibility that having sex with your spouse increases the desire to masturbate, if you are driven by sex.

Turning your life over to god in every way is the only way to eliminate that desire, and it is the only way to eliminate any sinful desire that we have, and it is the only way to eliminate any pain others have caused us.

It is certainly fine to ask the question whether masturbation is acceptable or sinful. I believe the way to obtain the answer is to list out all the reasons it could possibly be good and all the reasons it could possibly be bad. Then, take those reasons to the scriptures and to the lord in prayer, and figure out what he approves of. You cannot determine whether something is right or wrong by taking a vote. So, what are all the reasons that masturbation is right, and what are all the reasons that it might be wrong?"
posted at 13:27:38 on March 24, 2012 by beclean
Awsome    
"You answered some of my questions. That's all I wanted, its not a vote but I wanted to hear your personal experience. Thank you. And I raise my glass to you for talking to your brothers, brother in laws, and even father about masturbation and its role in marriage. I think no matter what you should submit to God, so that's kind of a given no?
You want reason for why mast is right and wrong um. I've honestly never thought about that never listed it out. Idk, I couldn't tell you, I dont think it matters does it?"
posted at 01:53:04 on March 25, 2012 by moroni
Perfect Answer BeClean    
"BeClean,

That was the perfect answer to the question. Listing pros and cons, searching the answer in the scriptures and on bended knee and not relying on a human being for the divine truth would be the way to know God's will for your situation.

We are all given the light of Christ. We all have it inside of us to know the truth. Listening to that truth may be the tricky part. But when we listen, The Lord will absolutely bless us with peace in our soul and a beautiful eternal life!

Your answer can be applied to all situations we may find ourselves in.

I wish you all a blessed Sabbath day!
Angel"
posted at 08:10:56 on March 25, 2012 by angelmom
i don't want to know...    
"I don't need a list of the reasons masturbation may be right or wrong. It's not for me I asked for a list. I already asked myself the question of when and if masturbation is right, I made a list, and I took my answers to the scriptures and the Lord.

Can I be blunt and honest with you, Moroni? I like you and your individual, intelligent, questioning mind. I just can't figure out why you are here on this site. You ask all kinds of questions that seem to others of us who have been fighting (and winning) this battle with addiction to be a vague attempt to excuse or justify your actions. Then, when we tell you 1) the actions are not justified, 2) they can be overcome, 3) here are suggestions to help, 4) think, pray, and try these things for yourself, you respond as if you were completely unprepared for the answer. You become defensive that anyone would talk directly about your addiction, you refuse to try what has been suggested, you defend your life and your choices as if they need no adjustment, and you refuse to think seriously about the answer that has been provided to you by those who have gone before. If anyone makes a suggestion you may need to change your actions or your attitude, you become very defensive and almost angry. This quickly makes people not want to talk to you.

Almost all of us are on this site because we realize we are sinners, and we have things to improve. We know we need to change our actions and our attitude, and we are very willing to do it, if we could just figure out how. We're trying to get help from each other. We do not want to justify our actions.

We are all a little bit rebellious, that's why we're in trouble, but we want to learn how to overcome that. Are you in the same situation as the rest of us? Do you have a desire to change your actions and your attitude? Is that why you are here? Or, do you believe your life is just fine as it is, and you have no need to change?

If you want to continue to converse with people on this site, I invite you to take to heart the recommendations and thought that they express. Stop becoming defensive, and seriously consider whether their suggestions apply to you. Try not to defend any action or attitude that the prophets and your church leaders have said is wrong. Instead, consider that they are not trying to control you, but they are trying to keep you happy and safe. Ask yourself, why might those actions be wrong? Come up with a list of reasons, and then ask the lord if that is correct.

I care about you. I care about others on the site. I know that others on the site care about you, 2. I hope you can figure out how to respond with gratitude and careful consideration to the suggestion that they make."
posted at 10:48:00 on March 25, 2012 by beclean
BeClean thanks    
"I'm not trying to offend people or make this site a debate. If I'm coming off in the you describe me as I'll lay off more. The only thing that frustrated me on this post was that people were turning to me instead of the Post itself. Each question I asked, are not questions I'm having trouble with personally. I was thinking that a good amount of young people out there have these exact same questions and hopefully if they come to this site they can see what you guys thought. I appreciate all you comments, I like them, but when I ask a question on one of your advices, its not to say its not legitimate. Im hoping that If a person reads your advice, and then has this same concern about ur advice, its answered. Im hoping to leave no stone unturned and every doubt vanquished. I want people to get better, i don't want people to be addicted to anything. My writing is a little different and i guess it hasn't grinded well with most people, and i apologize if i offended anyone.

To answer your question, I do want to become better. But I honestly have trouble expressing my personal emotions and problems. Im good at thinking about things, but I'm not very good at talking about my own problems and feelings about them, that's why I usually dont make a lot of Posts about my own problems. The "Masturbation and Marriage" post i tried to let you guys know it wasnt about me or my concerns.

I am going to be off of both Porn and masturbation. I want to, i want to go on a mission and get married in the temple. Its all in my sites, those are my plans. I hope none of you think that i dont appreciate your advice i do.

Thanks everyone. I hope you dont mind BeClean, but I'm going to make this a Post, so other people can see why i talk the way i do and as an apology to anybody ive offended in the past."
posted at 14:22:24 on March 25, 2012 by moroni
my 2 cents (if you're lucky) - PART I    
"I hope there is something worth 2 cents in all this rambling. As always take what you like and round file the rest.

That is an absolute YES, YES, YES we can overcome sexual addiction through the grace of God. I know a man with decades of freedom, a couple with ten years and others with 5-8 years. They range from those who only acted out with pornography and masturbation to registered sex offenders and all points in between. I know of at least one woman as well who had a masturbation problem in her youth who has been clean for decades. While I don't yet have what I would call years of sobriety my level of recovery is miles beyond where it was 12 years ago. I experience a lot of joy and peace now. God even took my addiction away on March 7th 2009 at about 11:30. Yes I do know exactly when and where it happened. It was that miraculous. Unfortunately I figured it was a one time deal and relaxed. I quit being vigilant with my dailies and let go of my desperate need for God's grace.

Is it worth it? Another resounding YES! I have never achieved what I would call years of sobriety, but still the 11+ years since I got into recovery are so much better than the depression, despair, hopelessness and spiritual turmoil that was my life before I started working with the first bishop that understood and stepped into my first 12 Step meeting. Just from my personal experience the new relationship I have with my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ was worth every effort. Even if I could never put together long term sobriety. My old Heavenly Father (in my mind) was so disappointed in me that He had given up on me being anything but a failure. Now I know that He loves me beyond my ability to comprehend even though I have children of my own. He will do anything I allow Him to in an effort to save me. And no matter what I do in this life His hand is always stretched out towards me waiting for me to take his hand. I blogged my full feelings on that subject a few years ago. I think the title was “His Hand is Stretched Out Still”. Was not giving up worth it? Twice in the 14 years of marriage before recovery started my wife considered leaving seriously enough that she prayed about it. Both times God told her no. He knew I would eventually find help. I am glad I never quit trying.

Just accepting this (acting out in one way or another) as a part of life? I used to wish that my two sides could get along. It never worked. Jack (that's Jack Hyde my addicted personality) would always spoil John's ability to feel the Spirit and his effectiveness in church callings and efforts to do the Lord's work. John would always spoil Jack's ability to fully enjoy sexual misconduct. “It isn't hurting anyone, why does he have to make me feel guilty about it.” OK that was a lie, but Jack believed it. I could never find peace and happiness. The two would never leave each other alone. Acceptance never worked for me. I have an ex-brother-in-law that decided to just accept it though and outwardly seems to be OK with it. Unfortunately his wife couldn't accept that he was born that way and that sexual acting out would always be a part of who he was. He willingly (almost gladly) gave up a twenty-year temple marriage and six kids to continue in his addiction. He moved to Vegas where probably nobody makes him feel guilty for his lifestyle. He also changed his religious beliefs. When he stated one time that, “God loves us too much to judge us,” I knew that he had something he couldn't overcome and was tired of feeling guilty about it. He also said that he saw no scriptural basis for the judgment. He had obviously quit reading them! He eventually decided that a male God was too stern and decided to remake God in an image that appealed to him. He claimed a female god who was more loving and accepting of who he was. From my personal experience and observations never accepting leads to eventual happiness and peace while acceptance is a downward spiral where at some point we quit working on it. It also appears that I would have to give up way to much to make acceptance work.

Porn vs masturbation? It doesn't make much difference to me. Lust is my addiction and that is what I claim when I introduce myself in 12 Step meetings. I will say that I was always more ashamed of masturbation. I thought it was the worst of the two. I eventually realized that porn was more offensive to my wife although it is only slightly more offensive. She can't compete with porn and doesn't feel she should have to, it is a mental affair, it is demeaning to women etc. etc. etc. Also I feel viewing porn in my home opens up an avenue for Satan's spirit to enter my home. I am welcoming him in. We had a long discussion on her feelings regarding masturbation but I will attempt to give the Reader's Digest version of her feelings: sexuality is something that should only be between the two of us and something that brings us closer together. When I masturbate it makes her feel like a tool that is only used to meet my needs. I don't need her or if it isn't convenient I can take care of it myself. It makes her feel that I only need her to cook meals and wash clothes. It makes her feel like chattel. What is a holy and sacred part of our marriage covenant I have reduced to a base desire. Say you take the religious background out of it. I still feel that once one partner is acting out on their own it is no longer a bonding thing. They are just producing a desired feeling; feeding their lust. It is no longer love. If it is something that they can take care of on their own when it isn't convenient it is that much easier to take care of it with someone else if the opportunity arises. It is so easy when one feels resentment towards their spouse to justify acting out sexually. At that point it definitely drives a wedge into the relationship.

It doesn't matter how my lust is manifesting itself, if I am feeding my lust I am wrong. At one point I realized that there was too much lust for me in my relationship with my wife. I was hanging on from one sexual encounter with her to the next. I decided to go into self-imposed celibacy and fortunately my wife had just had a baby so she was OK with it. I ended up going for 6 months and it was a good thing. So I believe even if there isn't a physical manifestation of sexual addiction, lust can be dangerous and that is why I keep an eye out for it. That is also why I have such a strict definition of pornography: it is anything that stimulates me. During the warmer months I can sit on my front-room couch reading and be consumed with lust; watching women walk or run past my house and waiting anxiously for the next one hoping her attire will be even worse. I can come out of a three hour block of church being sexually drunk as a skunk. BTW wives hate the turn of their husband's head when a female goes by; another wedge. I have to be wary of the “lust early warning signs” because so many times they have led me down a dark and sorrowful road if I don't catch them in time."
posted at 14:02:10 on March 27, 2012 by justjohn
My 2 cents worth (if your'e lucky) PART II    
"Even lust is a manifestation of deeper issues. If I take care of those deeper issues I won't feel the need for lust to make me feel better. I don't feel that worrying about all manifestations of lust is taking on too much at a time. I work on recovering and my sobriety will be the end result. I try to be as patient with myself as God is with me when I want to get frustrated about lack of sobriety, and it gets very frustrating at times. At times I have recognized that my recovery is better than my sobriety would indicate. With all this I have never given up on permanent sobriety as an eventual goal. The Atonement provides complete healing, so if I am not sober I still have things that I need to apply the Atonement to. Just for reference I am currently 68 days sober which a better period than I have had for a while. In a couple of years I hope I can say it has been two years and 68 days. My sobriety date gets reset anytime I go looking for something. That is what I can live with and have a clear conscience before my wife and my God.

As far as what bishop's think is a problem and what isn't, I have seen a wide range since talking to my first bishop in 1977. I think a lot depends on the attitude of the individual and inspiration received for a given situation. I think sometimes personal perspectives of the bishop does get in the way. One time I had a recommend interview with a bishop who already knew of my problem. When he asked, “Do you have sexual relations with anybody besides your spouse?” I answered, “With myself.” He simply repeated the question. I said that I had a problem with pornography and masturbation. He kept repeating the question. He never would elaborate. I figured I was included in the group of “anybody besides my spouse.” I finally answered “no” and we moved on. I left his office in complete frustration and didn't talk to another bishop for seven years. During that time I had a bishop who felt that if you were into pornography, you were a lost cause. He had a brother-in-law who went off the deep end. I held what might be considered an important calling in the ward and he was sure I was the right man for the position. It would have been interesting to see his reaction if he found out about my long term problem. My wife was the one that knew of his feelings and she never told me until years later when I was in recovery.

I for one will not give up. I have seen too many benefits to question whether it is worth it or not, but I don't fight temptation when I am smart. It isn't much of a struggle when I use His power. When I don't it is hell. I will literally ask him to take the thoughts from me when I get fixated on some of the daily porn that happens to walk by. Then the biggest trick is to let go of them. When I am able to see enough in my peripheral vision to warn me and I don't look at all, I will sometimes send Him a “thank you”. When I get out of the way and let Christ take the fight it is literally like those cartoons where one character grabs the other by the ankles and bashes them around like a club. Satan doesn't stand a chance, but he beats me every time I try to take him on. That doesn't mean I don't put some effort into it. Prayer and scripture reading are life support for me. I attend church and my 12 Step meetings (more than one a week), read recovery literature, reach out to others in recovery, get on here occasionally and continually try to work the Steps. I try to attend the temple at least once a week. But all those things are self-improvement things. Some of which are specific to recovery. Of my real success I would say 5% is me and 95% is the Lord.

The worst day in recovery beats the best day in addiction!"
posted at 14:03:17 on March 27, 2012 by justjohn
Here    
"So here is my two cents, concerning the order of things when it comes to breaking free from the bondage of addictions. Masturbation and pornography, I realized, were just symptoms in my life. I came to understand that the thing that was the root of all of my troubles was lust. Now, to give you a breif background of my ‘escapade’… Well, it was full of victories and losses, treaties and bloodsheds, decepetion and enlightenment, prayers and answers. It is something I don’t think about unless I feel prompted to. I was an addict for over nine years, experimented w/ porn, mast., in private and unfortunatley in public. I’ve tried a lot of things, 12 step, praying, fasting, building relationships, filters, councelors, therapy, compartmentalizing, limitations, planners, keeping myself busy, being around people, confession, etc. I can’t think of all of them. But to get to my point, I think one thing that was the key to my success and recovery was seeking for answers, searching for knowledge, lol. I never stopped, I read book after book, asked question after question. My brain was like a sponge, absorbing everything. God answered my prayers through a good friend I met through business, he became my mentor and coach in life… and it wasn’t easy telling him my struggles, for fear of losing his companionship. BUT, I did… because I was running out of excuses for my lack of performance, AND.. I was desperate. So I told him and he didn’t take it like I thought he would, he was very much like the bishop of my Church, caring. The only exception was that, how understanding was he! Not only did he tell me about how he was, (let me tell you, you haven’t heard anything like it!) his confidence in his ability to help me was startling. He gave me some books and sermons I’ve never heard of, which have helped him out, he also gave me some websites to go to.
Now, the books and the sermons are what everyone else has been saying so far EXCEPT that you need to learn how to control where your eyes look, you can receive sexual gratification from looking at something, as you’ve realized, you need to abstain from any object that gives you sexual gratification by bouncing your eyes away. Also, any and every thought that comes to you, if it’s sexual. Read 2 Cor. 10: 5. That’s all I will say."
posted at 21:33:52 on March 27, 2012 by Anonymous
LUST    
"I have needed the comments this thread this evening.
I stopped using substances of a physical sort. I have recently given into the natural man.

I need help. The comments on this post have helped and confused me. I could re-read them and see if I can make heads or tails. I will instead be brief and admit I am addicted to LUST. I have tried to rationalize my attraction as "natural" then isn't that the point. I was not created natural, I was born natural. I was created to be eternal. I have sinned in my lust and know that the sin has put in jeopardy my eternal nature that the Lord can only save me from.

I know the steps of repentance and will have to start all over again. I am writing these down in order to gain the courage to go talk to the bishop... again. Master. and porn take me away from the promptings of the spirit. I agree very strongly that it effects the whole family. As father of this home I am under strict responsibility to protect my family from the forces of Satan. If my guard comes down I am not on watch. My wife and my relation will need repair as I will not be sensitive to her needs. My relationship with the father and son is separated, and I have faith that all this is temporary while I start a journey of repenting and healing.

I am not reacting to any comments just replying that this is my current journey and my battle to fight.

I am also committing publicly to comment once daily as a reprieve that I cannot do this with Jesus Christ.

Pray for me, I know it helps and I will for you as I hope to get to know you all better.

J"
posted at 02:16:47 on September 1, 2012 by sobermind
You can    
"I have not done it for almost 4 years. It's honestly not even a temptation. Just keep trying. It's not as difficult as it may feel to you right now."
posted at 04:50:03 on September 3, 2012 by BillW
Lol    
"The good ol' days. Ya its easy not to masturbate when you get to have sex. And I disagree with people saying "that's a common misconception that singles have it harder" I mean come on, your having sex. And this only applies to masturbation in my mind. Porn, adultery, etc is not the same.

But, people will usually not see any way buy black and white."
posted at 01:37:23 on September 12, 2012 by moronidenovo
Yes, maybe so, Moroni...but    
"there is a whole new level of chastity that is heaped on you once you are married. This is one of the cruel ironies about being an addict and getting married. The addiction does not get easier but instead gets incredibly harder to deal with. I would guess that every married addict on here was quite surprised to discover that the frequency of their masturbation did not diminish with marriage. And there is the added dimension of guilt that does not exist when single.

It's just one of those things that you will find out when you find out."
posted at 08:31:55 on September 12, 2012 by Anonymous


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"If it were possible to make your road very easy, you wouldn’t grow in strength. If you were always forgiven for every mistake without effort on your part, you would never receive the blessings of repentance. If everything were done for you, you wouldn’t learn how to work, or gain self-confidence, or acquire the power to change. "

— Richard G. Scott

General Conference May 1990