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here we go again
By chiswright
9/3/2013 6:02:07 PM
I messed up again, just like normal, 5 days clean, and blew it, as always. This seems to be a reoccuring theme with me. ive tried to counter this day when it comes, but i just end up somehow finding myself slipping up again. So i wondered, what do you guys do when you find a pattern in your cycle that ends it? i also found the prominent source of my reason for my mb, which is stress.

Now for story time: i am turning 16 on thursday, and i went to my bishops interview (again, my bishop is my dad, who ive already talked to about my problem 2 times in one year after he thought i was clean, and he currently thinks i am clean) and i lied through my teeth throughout the entire interview, from talking about my "previous" problems, to lying about being honest with all men (as a side note, i feel terrible about this, and i know this is not only very shameful, but also illegal, but i freeload off of my neighbor's wifi using my phone since my parents have never let me use our own wifi...again, i feel terrible about this, but i think i am also addicted to having the internet on my phone when i am not supposed to...if you comment on this blog, please include a section about this, on how i can fix this or stop or what i need to do). anyway, i am getting ordained to the office of a priest on sunday, and i am definietly not worthy. i want to tell my dad and get this over with again, but the last two times i have, i can tell he ends up dissapointed and almost "threatens" to take away my sacramet privliges and priesthood duties, making me want to lie to hom to make him not worry as much, and so i can keep cleansing myself. guys, i need help. i would tell him again, but i dont want to make him dissapointed, and i dont want the people who are invited to my ordiniation to get suspicipus that i am doing something wrong, as i want this to be between myself, heavenly father, and my parents.

please guys, comment if you pass by, as i need serious help with my problems.

Solemnly,
-chis

Comments:

Some advice    
"I am also an addict with that issue. You need actual help. Some ideas: Read the worth of a soul by Steven A Cramer. He was addicted to pornography and mb and it's his story of how he conquered it. Your dad, as a bishop, should read it as well. Talk about it together. There is an Addiction Recovery Handbook. Ask your dad for one and ask for a referral to a LDS Family Services counselor. You cannot fight this alone. I know. You need to the Lord. The handbook will help you through steps to recovery and so will the counselor. There is a right way to do this. Yes, you will not be able to take the Sacrament or do priesthood duties for a period of time. But you will feel great joy when you are clean. Many have the same problem you do, but many have overcome. Get help."
posted at 20:44:51 on September 3, 2013 by Anonymous
Hello Chris    
"I am so sorry that you are having such a hard time. And I will pre-apologize while I go off on this subject.

What I am going to tell you is not going to be the answer you want to hear, but you must let your dad know the truth immediately. There are so many at such a young age that are burdened with this addiction. My sadness with all of this is not only do you have to deal with your weakness, you also have the added pressure of having to feel that you need to please the people around you more than you need to please your Father in Heaven. Many have been trained by the culture of the church (not the gospel, but the culture) to lie. From what you have said on this post, it sounds like your dad is trying to control your addiction with fear and / or guilt, and you are falling right into line.

Your addiction is not just for you to learn to overcome, but for those around you to learn how to help people with addiction as well. I am a wife and mother of addicts and I started out like your dad... Obviously without the Bishop title. But I thought I could threaten, coerce, bribe, guilt, and shame them into changing. I was wrong and what I did was directly contribute to making my addicted loved ones better liars. And the price that everyone has to pay is never worth it.

If you are not worthy to advance in the priesthood, please don't. By going through the motions, you are perpetuating a lie by pretending to honor God. When we tell lies so that we can look good before men or avoid their judgement, we are telling that lie in God's name. And by doing that we are only serving Satan 100%. The adversary is thrilled right now because by lying to your dad (the Bishop) has you where he wants you.

Please honor the Lord by being completely honest with your dad. It will be your dad's choice as your Bishop to honor God and not place guilt or shame on you, but to help you overcome your addiction. You need help. I am afraid that some Bishops treat this addiction as a passing thing, and for many it is anything but.

We are turning our young men into better liars by shaming them and placing them in an almost impossible position. We need to help them with whatever is needed to recover at a young age. The first step is to remove the shame. This addiction is everywhere and we have to stop pretending it is not. It sickens me that we do not help you when you are young. In so many cases we wait until you have lied yourselves through a the remaining ordinations, a Mission, Temple marriage, baby blessings, baptisms, etc... I cannot express to you how many women are married to men who have been living a lie since they were children all because we send the message of "worthy" is the only answer and "happy" is the only emotion. Too many marriages and families are destroyed by the lies fed by the devil himself and endorsed by us the members of God's true church. If I was Satan, I would be dancing the happy dance right now.

I pray that I have not hurt you with my words, but I testify that they are true. There are few things that get my blood boiling, but I see so much of this happening all around me.

Our husband's, son's, daughter's or anyone else's addictions are not necessarily meant to be shared over the pulpit, but it is so important that we stop living a lie and help our families and ourselves to turn to the Lord. We cannot lie or pretend our way back to heaven.

Please do the right thing. I can see that you are a very sweet young man who is just trying his best in this situation. I see the solution as starting with step one: HONESTY! If we cannot be honest about something as important as this with our spiritual leader ( even if he is our own father) we are turning our church into a fraud.

For those who have known me for a long time on this blog, it is rare that I go off like this, but I am crazy in the brain over what we are doing here. I try my best to help others, especially wives and mother's of addicted loved ones. I and my loved ones live in this world 24/7. I see the pain caused by addiction and codependency. I seek the Lord daily for you and for myself. I love my Savior with all of my heart. I am a sinner and do all I can to repent and where I fall short in my life, and I am grateful for ahis amazing grace.

Chris the Lord loves you no matter what. the guilt you feel is a good thing. It is telling you to turn around, be honest, and get help. You are young and will overcome this monster, but not until you start with absolute and complete honesty! I am praying for you and will place your blog name on the Temple prayer roll."
posted at 20:45:40 on September 3, 2013 by Angelmom
Thank You Anonymous    
"For beautifully saying very important things. I am sure Chris's dad is a good man that just does not know any better.

Can anyone please tell me why we still have Bishops who know nothing about the ARP program?"
posted at 20:49:44 on September 3, 2013 by Angelmom
Hey man,    
"I think you probably know there is only one way out of this. Honesty really IS the best policy. Not because it's what you should do but because it's what you can do to relieve yourself. Honesty about everything. The wifi the lies. Anything that weighs on your conscience. My whole life I was always lucky in that regard. I spared few the gory details about questionable things I would do and feared just about nobody finding out if they didn't already know. However, I went through a period as an adult where I was hiding. Keeping many secrets. To be short, when I finally told everyone (my bishop, wife, etc.) it was hard. There was a certain amount of shame that I had to work through. One cool spring morning I remember getting on my bike to head back to work from an early lunch. I was feeling the weight of the fact that "everyone" knew all the terrible things I'd done in my life. Things that hurt them personally. It pained me. I believe I even thought out loud to myself "man, this is rough.". Then a peculiar realization/feeling came over me as I was riding through the out door mall pondering it all. Peace. I felt peace. All though I felt the intense shame and pain and heavy burden of wishing certain people didn't have to know the truth about me or rather my behavior I realized I felt peace at the same time. It was a paradoxical feeling. In that moment I realized another thing; though the pressure I was feeling was intense and real it paled in comparison to the pressures of living a lie. There was no doubt in my mind as to which life was more difficult to live. I decided then I would run head long into being honest even if it killed me and hurt tremendously those around me and people I love rather than ever live a lie again. I've never regretted living up that decision. Though it hasn't always been easy.

"I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear." ~Nelson Mandela"
posted at 21:01:53 on September 3, 2013 by they_speak
Forget about the interviewer    
"If your interview wasn't with your father, but instead was with the Savior, would you be as concerned about the Savior taking away your sacrament privileges and priesthood duties?

What if the Savior asked you to wait a little while before your next Priesthood ordination... would you be concerned with the Savior asking you to do that?

Some of these things are for your own good. When kids come in for dinner after getting filthy playing outside, is it a punishment when the parents ask them to leave the dinner table to go wash up? Are the parents trying to deny the child the privilege of eating dinner? NO! The parents are simply asking the child to go properly prepare themselves to feast at the table. In a similar way, sometimes we need to go clean up ourselves before feasting at the Lord's table, but it's always for our own good.

I can certainly appreciate your not wanting to disappoint your father, and I can appreciate you wanting to keep this between you, your parents, and Heavenly Father. I'm also very sorry that this is an uncomfortable situation for you. But for heavens sake, please don't mock God by not honoring his Priesthood. It's always possible that your father will recognize your righteous desires to repent and that things will go in a direction you don't expect, but that's really his call as a Judge in Israel... not yours.

I really wish you the best of luck. I can tell you feel like crap over your mistakes, and I really don't want you to add another big issue that will weigh down on your conscious.

Go talk to Heavenly Father, and pray the most fervent prayer that you've ever prayed in your life. Then wait, and just listen for a bit. Then go talk to your dad."
posted at 21:09:21 on September 3, 2013 by rmww
Alma 24    
"There is nothing more than I can add to the advice you've been given. Everyone above is right about you needing to get this taken care of asap....but what I do want to say that if you were my son, I would be very, very, very proud of you.

This is such a terrible burden to carry and you are asking and searching for a way to turn this over to your Savior...you are just a little scared to actually do it. That is understandable and everyone here feels a ton of compassion for you. It is time for you to be stronger than your fears. I feel like I should suggest you go read Alma 24. Think about what weapons you've used? How are you like the Anti-Nephi Lehi's?

If stress is one of your triggers then it is time to lessen the stress...get it over with. Talk to you Bishop. Talk to your dad. I don't know in which order, but tell him which one you want to talk to in the moment you are in. I promise that honest will bring a relief from many of the stresses you now carry.

I don't want to write too much because if you are reading this then you are using your phone and on your neighbors wifi, which you are right, is tangled in your addiction cycle. Who knows....maybe wanting the internet is part of feeling "In control" of your life. Or it is your subconscious holding onto the means to porn. Or something else all together. It doesn't matter right now. As you work the steps of recovery you'll get insight into the WHY you do what you do. The bottom line for today is you know it is wrong. Trust that the answers will come as you take your journey towards recovery.

Just remember how loved you are. We can all hear the courage in your voice and at such a young age too! I've met addicts 4 times your age that don't have what you have.

Now....get off the internet. Go and 'bury your swords' that you've been using to feed your addiction. You can do this! You have our prayers."
posted at 21:36:13 on September 3, 2013 by maddy
Thanks Maddy    
"Thanks for what you said. It may make my crazy to see all the pain addiction causes, but I feel great hope because of everyone who comes on here not willing to give up!!! And that includes Chris.

Can I just say that I hate Satan? Okay I feel better now..."
posted at 22:28:43 on September 3, 2013 by angelmom
Something that will Help    
"Communicating about this problem is a huge step... good job! I must say I'm extremely suspicious of this Internet in the Pocket trend with smart phones. I simply CANNOT have the internet in my pocket! it would kill me . . over and over. I survive without it - I have a very High Tech position in my company using modern computing tools and I manage without a Smart phone. I use my phone for what it is ; communicating to others through speaking and text. I know this is extreme but I'm only saying its a worthy sacrifice to only use the internet from computers in safe places.

I think if you went to your dad and let him know you're having problems with accessing porn on your phone and that a downgraded text and talk only phone would be very helpful in your recovery, he would be very open.

I think your friends would also understand.

This challenge is incredibly difficult but we know its possible to live free of it with a lot of help."
posted at 01:01:33 on September 7, 2013 by R_Matt
chris    
"As I read your story I feel it important that I express concern over the fact that you think dissapointment is more important that acknowlegment of behavior. It is Satan that brings these feelings of shame and guilt into ones heart. I know your dad my be disapointed but as our Father in Heaven is disapointed in us at times His love is eternal. He knows of your potential as does your earthly father know. I know he will love you the same and do whatever he can to aid you in this trial. We are often given trials to cause us to find the spritual nature in which we were created, in a anti-spiritual world. When we find the cure for our trials it usually results in a higher sprituality in ourselves. Embrace those feelings of self worth and you may find for yourself a greater person that you give yourselt credit for. Find Christ in these moments of stress and you'll be surprised how those feeling of stress disapear. Don't be afraid of failure, embrace successfull moments."
posted at 14:35:27 on September 9, 2013 by bigpa
im sorry everyone...    
"Guys, the thought of my dad's dissapointment combined with the thought that this might be the first year that i didnt advance in the priesthood (combined with satan's influence) made me decide not to tell him again quite yet. Now dont misunderstand me, i feel it every day, and i feel very guilty...to the point that ive cried multiple times about it, but just cant bring my self to do it, so i end up breaking down again. and my problem has just been getting worse, as now i seem to be messing up every 3 days instead of the average 5. and like many others, i am writing this just barely after i got done with a prn/mb session.

this is terrible. utterly horrible. at times i wish i could swear just to express how frustrated i am with this. i can feel it bringing me down. i can feel it making me even more stressed and tired. i can feel it negatively affecting my cross country running, and worst of all, it fills my mind and takes away that precious spirit that we all desire to have.

Guys, does everyone have this period in their addiction where they can only last 3-5 days at the maximum? and if so, how did you get over this terrible mountain?

I truly hate this...
-chis"
posted at 22:49:56 on September 10, 2013 by chiswright
Addiction cycle    
"The more you lie and keep this in darkness the more you push away God and invite Satan in His place. That is why this is becoming stronger and more frequent. You are young and can stop this cycle. The first step in doing this is to become honest with yourself. All unchecked addicts are deceived into looking for any other plan other than God's plan for happiness. The only other way is Satan's plan for misery and that is the path you are now on. You can turn the tide by taking this out of the darkness and into the light. I am praying for you to do something now. You will need to keep telling lies to keep this lie a secret and the sadness you are feeling now is only a small sample of what is to come if you do not do this God's way. The Lord stands with outstretched arms and the moment you turn to him, he will run to you and quickly comfort you as you walk out of the darkness and into the light. What you are experiencing now is Satan at his finest. He uses guilt and shame to make you think that you could never talk to your dad. You're a Warrior. You chose God in the first great battle before you came to this earth and you can choose him again today. It is never too late. Go to your dad ASAP."
posted at 23:12:33 on September 10, 2013 by Anonymous
Agree completely with Anon    
"I especially agree with the good parts. And the part that says it's getting worse because you're lying about it, which is stressing you out even more. Go be truthful and bring it to light, then it will begin to get easier. Once it's in the light, keep it there.

And why don't you just swear? ;)"
posted at 23:46:32 on September 10, 2013 by Anonymous
How to get over the terrible mountain    
"My acting out cycles were a bit different... 3-4 times per month, 3-4 months in a row, then I'd manage to break free for 3-4 months. Then I'd start to relax, figuring I had finally beaten my "bad habit", when BAM! Repeat the entire cycle.

Step 1 in the ARP manual suggests that "individuals finally become willing to abstain when the pain of the problem becomes worse than the pain of the solution." For me, the "pain of the solution" meant breaking my wife's heart by telling her I had been hiding a serious problem from her for many, many years, and finally confessing to my bishop, knowing I might embarrassingly be released from a highly visible calling in the ward. However, this shame is nothing when compared to the pain my addiction was causing me. Addictions thrive in secrecy, so for me, getting over the terrible mountain involved bringing my addiction into the light and asking for help. The pain of continuing in my addiction simply became too great, and I had to take action.

I'll be hitting a 6-month-clean milestone in just a few days from now. Working on the dailies has really helped me a bit. For me, this includes 1) studying the scriptures every day (not just reading them), 2) deep, heartfelt conversations with Heavenly Father every day while kneeling (not just "saying a prayer"), 3) reading addiction recovery materials every day (this site, the ARP manual, Tony Lister's stuff, etc... helps me get my head in the game every day), and 4) consciously choosing to stay as far away from my triggers as possible. For me, #4 means no more aimlessly surfing the net (ever), no more visiting "gateway sites", regardless of how innocent it may seem, not using my computer when I'm bored or tired, etc.

I could possibly add a #5 to my list... don't ever let your guard down. EVER. I used to abstain for a period of time, then I'd feel good about my progress and I'd relax a little. I figured I no longer needed to pray as hard, or that I could skip a day or two reading the scriptures, or that I was strong enough to surf the Internet when I was bored. You can't let your guard down though, not even for a second.

Through it all, always keep your focus on the Savior. We can't do this without Him, and He is ultimately where our peace, happiness, and eventual freedom will come from."
posted at 00:04:44 on September 11, 2013 by rmww
thanks RMWW and doing hard things    
"This is exactly the plan both me and my hubby follow. It keeps him sober and it keeps me focused on my purpose and not on his addiction. There is not really a program specifically for wives in the church. I use the Healing Through Christ workbook ( free download or purchase at www.healingthroughchrist.org) and attend either s anon meetings or Healing Through Christ phone meetings. My life and relationships have improved dramatically in the past f.ew years by staying close to my savior through daily devotion. My understanding of addiction and empathy towards those suffering with it has taught me more about my own brokenness and His Grace through the atonement that heals any soul who will come unto him.In essence, coming to him seems sooooo hard.... until you actually do it!!!. And once you turn to Him, you quickly realize how simple his way really is.
It is the little things we do daily that make the biggest difference.

I'm praying intently today especially for our young men on this site who are caught up in guilt and shame. I am focused on them as a pray that they may see the liberty that comes with truth.I am a mom of boys your age and I don't have to know you in person to say that I love you. I tell my children and I will tell you, that you can do hard things. On your own, you do not stand a chance, but with God by your side (even, and especially while in your sins) you can and will do all things. I testify this to you in the name of our amazing Savior, Jesus Christ ...Amen"
posted at 11:09:55 on September 11, 2013 by angelmom
Thank you    
"Thanks you guys for all of your awesome advice and comments. however, i have a hard time staying clean for even just one or two days...i think the longest ive ever gone is 13 days, and that was a long time ago...if only i could last a month, or even three weeks...

The reason im throwing that out there is because i need your help a ton. i just screwed up again, and im wondereding if you guys ever had times where you could barely get 3-4 days without slipping, and how you got over it.

remember that God loves you,
-chis"
posted at 23:41:06 on September 25, 2013 by chiswright
My addicted loved ones    
"It is awesome you are asking this question tonight. I have people in my family who have long term sobriety and people who do not. The difference I see in the complete surrender. My son answered your question, just this evening when we were visiting with an old family friend. Read on...

You have to be so exhausted by your addiction and come to a point where you want sobriety as much as you want air. Some people figure this out early, others have to lose everything. One way or another there is no way to sidestep the path to healing. Those with lasting sobriety, real sobriety with healing ( i am not including white knuckling), you must do whatever it takes and making this decision is not easy and takes great humility. It is essential that you begin working a recovery program. LDSAR, SA, or another program that is specific to PN/SX addiction. Finding a sponsor, someone you will call every day and every time you want to act out. You must begin not just attending meetings, but actively working the program. Sincere prayer, scripture study, and cutting off all sources of triggers ( TV, Computer surfing, video games which are suggestive, eve going to the mall if necessary).

For many years my husband did not know about any of this, but he was always trying to find help. He found counselors that were recommended for this specific addiction. He found little help as even the experts at the time new little about this addiction. It was during a phone call with LDS social services that the doors began to open. I was desperately searching because my husband could not seem to stop acting out. He would have spurts of sobriety which we have since learned were just times he did it with shear will power, aka white knuckling . I was asked if my husband and myself had ever tried a recovery program ( 12 step) ? My answer was, no. He's not an addict, he just keeps messing up. LOL. Those in recovery are laughing about now. We thought addiction looked like the guy in the gutter with a needle in his arm, not like my handsome, successful, intelligent, priesthood holder. HA, my husband, he was not one of "those people". But, he ( me) was at his whits end and finally decided to look into it. That choice opened the door to his sobriety. It has not been perfect. He lasted just past 2 1/2 years at one point before a slip. He became a new man through recovery. My son worked a program and lasted 8 weeks once.

During a conversation TODAY, he was admitting his addiction to a friend of ours and he was HONEST! Maybe more than this mama wanted to hear. Our Friend was truly interested in HIM and what he feels is needed for him to stay clean. His answer was that he needed to make working his 12 steps his # 1 priority. When he placed all other interests aside and was humble enough to understand that he could not do this alone, he was able to reach 8 weeks. He has since been back to his addiction, but he admitted that he stopped working his program. Right now, It appears as though he is deciding to hop back in and work on cleaning up for a mission.

I shared our story in hopes that it will help you. Please be careful of what they call, STINKIN THINKIN. That is when you think that you are different and that recovery is not for you, or that you have a different answer. It is hard to be at such a humble place so as to surrender everything to overcome this addiction, but when you do, you will find that you are finally free! I would also recommend www.curethecraving.com. there is some great stuff in here. If you try to fix this on your own ? or in secrecy? it will not work. In 4 years, I have yet to meet someone who achieves sobriety and healing without working their particular program. There are no shortcuts!

Be humble and do all you can. It is less about what program you use and more about your level of commitment. How bad do you want it? Do all you can and that includes the casting out of evil spirits. It sure can't hurt and for some such as Kick it, it was what he needed to get on track for working his program.and staying clean The answers seem like they would be complicated, but they really are quite simple.

You can do it, I believe in you and I believe in Christ. And with HIM nothing is impossible."
posted at 01:39:49 on September 26, 2013 by angelmom
Premie?    
"Is that Premie you're talking about Angel? I liked that guy. Smart kid."
posted at 03:42:09 on September 26, 2013 by they_speak
yup, that's my baby    
"Speak, often you remind me if him. He really is a great kid.

I seems strange to some in the church how openly we talk about this stuff on our home. Of course I'm the momma so and I wound appreciate less info when he is talking about it because I still see him as my baby boy. But even still I love his complete unashamed honesty. And... I am proud of him for being real. I think he helped our friend understand this addiction. She has a hubby and a few boys and now knows where to turn when help is needed.

Gotta love that kid"
posted at 19:47:45 on September 26, 2013 by angelmom


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"In a decaying environment, the mind is the last redoubt of righteousness, and it must be preserved even amid bombardment by evil stimuli. Christ is competent to see us through, “for in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted” As promised, He will make either “a way to escape” or a way “to bear it”."

— Neal A. Maxwell

General Conference May 1987