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Getting married. Scared out of my mind.
By johnroberts
9/20/2013 1:20:58 AM
I'm in a very good place -- I'm getting married. This woman is incredible, and she's more than I ever thought I'd ever be worthy enough to find. She's also very understanding and realistic about the challenge of porn addiction. (She dated a guy in the past who had a porn problem, and when he told her about it, she says it was like he stopped trying to be a good guy. I try very hard to treat her well and let her know she is loved daily.)

I feel confident in this decision, and I feel it's what the Lord wants for me. I also feel confident in the power I have in using my agency to continue sobriety and leaving this in the past. I've found a system that works in helping me avoid/overcome temptation early; now is the long road of careful endurance.

Here's what's on my mind. I love this woman. I respect her. Our relationship is very real, honest, open and satisfying. Even though we've had some hard times, we are both committed to the relationship and making it work because we see it (and our eventual marriage) as something greater than ourselves.

I am worried, however, of the constant threat of relapse. Just this week, one of my mission friends died of a heroin overdose. It's scared me because it's a real reminder of how vulnerable all of us are to life-destroying decisions. We're all only a few bad choices away from ruining it all.

I guess what I'm looking for are success stories. How do I make sure I continue the good path I'm on and don't go back? I'd like to leave this in my single life and not curse my family with a constant porn problem that I've seen destroy many other families.

Comments:

Congratulations!!    
"Get married. Put God first in everything. Always be honest with her.

And don't go through life worrying about a relapse. Did you tell her you'd never do it again? If so, before you marry, explain that you can't be 100% sure, because you're imperfect, and you've trained yourself to seek relief this way sometimes. Promise her instead that you'll always keep following God and that you'll always be honest. See how she handles that.

God bless you. He loves you."
posted at 02:17:16 on September 20, 2013 by Anonymous
Congratulations    
"Here is my practical advise:

Work the 12 step program like your life depended on it. Don't ever stop. Ever.

Start couples therapy, now.

Help her get involved in an ARP/Spouses ARP program, so that she is familiar with it in advance.

You didn't mention the temple, but 1. make sure you get married in the temple and 2. go as frequently as possible.

If she is close with her family, you should prayerfully tell them about your struggles, or whoever her primary support people have been in her life. Do not for ONE SECOND imply she needs to carry your burdens for you. Make sure she has a network. Do the hard part for her and YOU tell them.

I know that some of these suggestions may cause friction with people on here, especially that last one, but after decades of studying and learning about addiction, I can vouch for the healthy reasons behind each one. I 100% agree with Anon above. Don't promise her that you are never going to relapse. Most addicts will. Does that mean you should be hopeless or throw in the towel?!? NO!!! It means you cling to your Savior all the more dearly....and don't despair if you do. Set your future wife up for success. Being totally honest is part of that. I knew about my husbands issues before marriage. It didn't stop it from hurting like crazy when he crashed less than a month into our marriage. Being newly married triggered him like crazy. I have heard over and over and over that is the case for most men who have a pre-established addictions. Again, I don't want to discourage you but knowledge is power and maybe our mistakes and pain can help you....and so I'll share them. Entering into a sexual relationship for the first time, no matter how pure and appropriate that relationship is, can throw an addict into a tailspin that leads to relapse. It isn't just sex, it can be change in general, or any of the million stresses that come to newlyweds. Be prepared and be fore-armed.

You can choose to not have pornography be a part of your future. But that choice doesn't happen by simply saying "I will not look at porn any more." You make that choice by staying close to your Savior every single day...prayer, fasting, scriptures....and above all charity. Serve. Serve and serve and serve. Serve til it hurts. Serve when you can't serve anymore.

Last piece of advice:

Smile.

Be happy. No matter what. Laugh and find joy. If you mess up, well, cry and let Him dust you off and get back on your feet and laugh at what an idiot you are and be happy because of the atonement and keep going. But honestly we turn to our addictions because of hurt and pain. If everyone were always happy, no one would ever look at porn. People look at porn because they are sad. So be happy.

Again, congrats!"
posted at 07:49:12 on September 20, 2013 by Maddy
Staying Strong    
"Marriage is full of uncertainty. When I got married I stayed clean for over a decade before I slipped. If I was to do it over again I would make sure I am vigilant everyday and stay away from R rated movies. Heroin overdoes? That is awful."
posted at 16:50:21 on September 20, 2013 by matt78
Jesus Christ    
"Kick It again failed to mention him. KI said something about faith, but then his entire post was about works.

Read the hymn Rock of Ages in the hymn book. Jesus alone saves. Nothing you do saves you. You simply do it to praise him."
posted at 22:11:02 on September 20, 2013 by Anonymous
The List    
"Kick It, go back through that whole list of things you wrote that John must be doing to be saved. Were you saved from your auction because you were doing all that? Not a chance. You were saved by the grace of God alone when Jesus Christ cast out an unclean spirit. That's all.No one is saved by doing the list because no one, no one does the list. Even all the ordinances we do just remind us of what Jesus has done for us. Our job is to always remember him and receive his work on our behalf. The list is there as a guide for a happy life, but that's all. We don't have to follow it to get to heaven. We certainly don't have to follow it to get God's help. He hears us and helps us when we aren't following. But Kick It probably already knows what I'm saying. If he's a troll, he's telling us Mormons to Follow the list because he thinks it's funny we believe in saving ourselves. we don't."
posted at 18:57:29 on September 21, 2013 by Anonymous
The List    
"Kick It, go back through that whole list of things you wrote that John must be doing to be saved. Were you saved from your auction because you were doing all that? Not a chance. You were saved by the grace of God alone when Jesus Christ cast out an unclean spirit. That's all.No one is saved by doing the list because no one, no one does the list. Even all the ordinances we do just remind us of what Jesus has done for us. Our job is to always remember him and receive his work on our behalf. The list is there as a guide for a happy life, but that's all. We don't have to follow it to get to heaven. We certainly don't have to follow it to get God's help. He hears us and helps us when we aren't following. But Kick It probably already knows what I'm saying. If he's a troll, he's telling us Mormons to Follow the list because he thinks it's funny we believe in saving ourselves. we don't."
posted at 19:49:38 on September 21, 2013 by Anonymous
The List    
"Kick It, go back through that whole list of things you wrote that John must be doing to be saved. Were you saved from your auction because you were doing all that? Not a chance. You were saved by the grace of God alone when Jesus Christ cast out an unclean spirit. That's all.No one is saved by doing the list because no one, no one does the list. Even all the ordinances we do just remind us of what Jesus has done for us. Our job is to always remember him and receive his work on our behalf. The list is there as a guide for a happy life, but that's all. We don't have to follow it to get to heaven. We certainly don't have to follow it to get God's help. He hears us and helps us when we aren't following. But Kick It probably already knows what I'm saying. If he's a troll, he's telling us Mormons to Follow the list because he thinks it's funny we believe in saving ourselves. we don't."
posted at 19:49:43 on September 21, 2013 by Anonymous
The List    
"Kick It, go back through that whole list of things you wrote that John must be doing to be saved. Were you saved from your auction because you were doing all that? Not a chance. You were saved by the grace of God alone when Jesus Christ cast out an unclean spirit. That's all.No one is saved by doing the list because no one, no one does the list. Even all the ordinances we do just remind us of what Jesus has done for us. Our job is to always remember him and receive his work on our behalf. The list is there as a guide for a happy life, but that's all. We don't have to follow it to get to heaven. We certainly don't have to follow it to get God's help. He hears us and helps us when we aren't following. But Kick It probably already knows what I'm saying. If he's a troll, he's telling us Mormons to Follow the list because he thinks it's funny we believe in saving ourselves. we don't."
posted at 19:49:46 on September 21, 2013 by Anonymous
One Day At A Time    
"Luckily, we just tackle life one day at a time."
posted at 09:24:12 on September 22, 2013 by Anonymous
...?    
"Maybe I'm missing some behind the scenes stuff, but why the huge backlash against KickIt's comment? The reason we have sites and groups like this is to provide a variety of opinions, experiences and perspectives. Since there isn't any single "right'" answer that applies to every possible addiction recovery situation, getting multiple viewpoints is useful.

Besides, she/he led off by mentioning faith. Jesus Christ was implied when Kick mentioned Heavenly Father. Certain actions can help us have greater faith. Come off your high horses and don't attack someone who is trying to help. And if you do feel the need to attack someone, have the courage to do it with your real usernames instead of hiding behind cowardly anonymity."
posted at 10:14:40 on September 23, 2013 by Johnroberts
Wow    
"Kick It made some good points, I think. Thanks.

Maybe we can all look for the positive in each other, also."
posted at 12:52:58 on September 23, 2013 by Anonymous
Nice work    
"Well done - I was in your shoes about 2 years ago when I got married. Here is what I wish I had done differently: Be completely transparent - if you're having a hard time with temptation, let her know. If you make a dumb decisions, no matter how small, let her know. If you have been flying along doing great, let her know. This way, she doesn't have to guess or assume, or get blind-sided.

Relapse doesn't have to happen. True, it is a part of recovery for many if not all addicts, but it's possible. We're all just a few dumb decisions away from relapsing. You and her both need to accept that it is a possibility that it may happen... but what should never happen is you hiding things or lying to her. That you can always be 100% on. I'm on month 20 now after a couple very minor relapses since getting married - still early on and I still need my Savior and need to keep aware and vigilant daily, but I've seen some success and I'm really grateful for it.

Anyway, do everything to keep her on your team. You need her. Good luck!"
posted at 14:12:31 on September 30, 2013 by recovery.gdo
John    
"Some people go into marriage thinking it will make resisting temptation easier because they will have a sexual outlet. We all quickly learn that this is simply not the case. In fact, it can make the addiction worse because now there is another layer of guilt associated with it relapse.
As was said, please be completely honest with your fiance and yourself. Recovery is a lifelong process. Relapse really is a choice. We can stay clean if our spiritual house is in order and we are vigilant in our recovery on a daily basis. Meetings, Steps, Sponsor. Spending at least an hour a day IN recovery really makes a difference. (whether that hour is spent at a meeting, talking with a sponsor, doing Step work, or reading recovery literature)
It CAN be done, bro. Don't let an addiction scare you out of getting married. Let RECOVERY from addiction give you the confidence to get married."
posted at 08:44:40 on October 2, 2013 by Anonymous
oops my bad    
"I've never read that verse before. thanks for quoting it. I guess I need to do all the work and hope it's enough.

Or maybe your reading it wrong and putting too much stress on the wrong parts. BY GRACE WE ARE SAVED after all we can do. that's like saying my parents bought me a piano after I learned to play. did I do ANYTHING to pay for the piano? not at all, I simply learned how to use and enjoy it so that it wouldn't be pointless to me. living a righteous life does NOTHING to save us; it just teaches us how to enjoy Zion when God gives it to us. otherwise, we would not know what to do with it."
posted at 22:57:51 on October 2, 2013 by Anonymous
kickit, relax    
"Faith will produce the work needed to overcome. You cannot earn his grace, you humbly turn to him and it is yours. You cannot earn favor with God. He is no respecter of persons. CHRIST died that we might accept of his gift.

Kickit, what anon said is perfectly fine and it's not your job to be the police for every comment you disagree with. Bud you need to chill out, you are very one minded. Trust people to turn to God in their own way, and trust God to answer them. The works is a byproduct of his love for you. Those in true recovery will tell you that they have no power to stay clean, all sobriety comes from god. no stress just faith, then grace. KICK I don't think you understand the scripture, what I can do is different than what you can do. God knows and will do everything else. Relax"
posted at 23:18:31 on October 2, 2013 by Anonymous


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"Now brethren, the time has come for any one of us who is so involved to pull himself out of the mire, to stand above this evil thing, to “look to God and live” (Alma 37:47). We do not have to view salacious magazines. We do not have to read books laden with smut. We do not have to watch television that is beneath wholesome standards. We do not have to rent movies that depict that which is filthy. We do not have to sit at the computer and play with ographic material found on the Internet."

— Gordon B. Hinckley

General Conference, October 2004