How Does It Feel to Be a Woman Addicted to Porn?

While each woman’s experience is unique, there are general themes for the woman addicted to porn and/or sex: shame and guilt, conflicting messages from church and culture, feelings of worthlessness, and a profound sense of being misunderstood.

How does it feel to be a woman addicted to porn?

This is a glimpse into the world of female porn addiction:

I’m so tired. Tired of myself, my choices, my life. Shame overwhelms me when I look at my sweet, six-year-old daughter, Ellie. She is a picture of innocence with beautiful brown curls falling over her big brown eyes. She hugs me with all her might, but if she really knew her Mama, she wouldn’t look my way again. Neither would Tim.

Tim thought he married the head of a Christian sorority with an untainted background and life. I covered who I really am so well I barely knew myself. I saw our relationship as a way to escape my shame. I thought my issues would end when we got married. I threw away all those sexual fantasy books, and I tried to put filters on my laptop. Our pre-marital counselor talked only about my husband’s past porn use thankfully. So, I began my fairytale marriage with my image intact.

My fairytale lasted six months. Tim had to start traveling more, and because we had just moved to Seattle, I job-searched during the day from home. I wanted to catch up on Grey’s Anatomy, so I open my personal Netflix account, and an image of a “new release” flashed across the screen. A porn movie I hadn’t seen. All of that idle time at home with Tim out-of-town left me wanting and here was a perfect release.

Fast forward nine years and six months. I am exhausted. I hate myself. With a Bible study to lead, two precious girls to mother, a twenty-year mortgage to pay—a nice home, complete with white picket fence—I am but a shell with no one to help me.

I’m not saying I’m a victim. No, I am failure. I fully see that. What’s more, I am alone. I have no one to help me. I once tried to tell my dear friend—our pastor’s wife—about my problem, but she said I was mistaken, that women don’t have issues with sexual addiction. She said that sex is for our husbands and we help them with their physical needs; I simply need to deal with my selfishness.

I remember a “sex” series at church that suggested I am the “Virgin Mary” when I get married and that my husband is the one who has to deal with restraining himself prior to marriage. If only they knew it was opposite for Tim and me—it’s still opposite.

Maybe it’s these wrinkles that keep forming? Tim is simply uninterested in having sex with this wrinkly, dimpled body. Besides, he’s not much to look at, either. How refreshing to see a man’s great body online, especially when the look in his eyes suggests he wants me. If only Tim cared enough about me to take care of himself. At our women’s Bible study, Suzie scolded me when I shared that my husband has let his body go and that I find him less desirable. She said sex is for our husbands and that we are the prize. I felt like a failure when she said we should look like a prize worthy of pursuing.

I can’t live like this anymore. My white picket fence is but a white-washed tomb. I don’t know where to go for help. I’m condemned, dismissed, or misunderstood. I want more for my daughters, my husband, myself. Internet filters help me avoid accidental slips, but they can’t cure my heart of this compulsion.

A friend of mine did mention a wonderful counselor she’s been seeing for marriage issues. Perhaps I’ll call her. But what if she doesn’t understand? That would be the last straw. If a professional can’t understand my suffering and shame, I don’t know what I’ll do. But I can’t go on this way. It’s time for one last resort. I want to feel clean. I don’t want these secrets anymore. I want to smile when my daughters smile at me. I want to know who I am and I want to be me…whoever that is.

If you were counseling this woman, what would you say to her?


You aren’t alone. There are other women who struggle with porn. Read their stories and encouragement below:


Heather Lundy completed her master’s degree in counseling from Denver Seminary and is now a counselor at Southeast Christian Counseling Center in Parker, CO. She loves connecting the art of writing with her passion for seeing transformation in the church. In her free time, Heather enjoys exploring the treasures the Rockies afford as well as creating pottery at home in her studio.