Your Brain on Porn

Your Brain on Porn Ebook Cover

Watching just 5 hours of porn has been proven to significantly alter how people think. Find out the 5 distinct ways porn warps your brain, as well as 3 biblical ways to renew your mind.

42 thoughts on “How Does it Feel to Be a Woman Addicted to Porn?

  1. This makes me so made the this woman’s Christian friends insist sex is for your her husband to fulfill his needs?! Which is basically reducing her to a hole for her husband to use, and reduces her husband to a sex maniac who “needs” to have sex (which while men AND women usually enjoy and really want sex, it is NOT a requirement). I believe in sex addiction, that is CAN happen, however I think it happens less than the media and church want us to think (eg the senator who had a lot of sex because he was “addicted”). People in the church say you’re sex addicted because you watch porn. That is straight up false. Watching porn and/or masturbating is completely 100% NORMAL and HEALTHY adult sexual behavior for both men and women. It starts to be a problem if you forgo actual intimacy for porn or masturbating, or if it interfere with your job etc. However most women in the church I hear say they are “addicted” to porn, in fact watch it like 2 or 3 times a week max and still have enjoyable romantic relationships. They think they are addicted to porn because they have sexual impulses and enjoy masturbating and that that is wrong (because of harmful church teachings), which it is not (as long as it is not harming their actual relationships). Women are taught to not be comfortable wit6h their sexuality and that being sexual is wrong, my work as a psychologist with this woman would be to help her become comfortable with her sexuality and to try to undo the harmful, internalized, lies she has been lead to believe about how see needs to be “perfect” and”pure” and non-sexual (oh except for being that hole in the mattress for her husband)

    • Marie,

      Thank you for your response. I so appreciate how you would approach the root issues this woman is dealing with–her shame/guilt, “internalized lies,” and view of her sexuality.

      It sounds like you have been misunderstood by people in the church with your views of sexual addiction. How would you approach this woman if her ultimate view was different from your definition of what does and/or does not qualify for sexual addiction?

      -Heather Lundy

    • great I am a minister and I am clinical counselor and I would like to know what resources you have to backup your information you stated about concerning masturbation and pornography on women in the church.I am doing a workshop in May for my church on prevention and overcoming the vice of pornography it will be geared toward the audience of those are not in the church per se. I would love more information from you concerning what you feel should be shared.from a woman’s perspective. I have gotten a lot of information from covenant eyes and I just want to hear from your perspective is a psychologist.

    • Porn and masturbation are not healthy! God created sexuality to be between a husband and wife, not you and yourself, nor you watching others (who aren’t married, often underage, and forced) doing it.

    • No one here is attempting to diminish the sacred union of marriage. With this said, women have a libido and sexual identity of their own. Our bodies were made to experience sexual pleasure, this I what the clitoris is for. I commend you for seeking help for your addiction. Addiction is not synonymous with weakness. Addiction has to do the way our brains and their pleasure receptors. I commend you for the courage to speak out about a taboo subject among women. God bless you and your family.

  2. I would say she needs to confess her sin to someone she trusts, maybe a counsellor, and then she must forgive herself. God says, if we confess our sins, he is faithful tol forgive our sin and he will cleanse us from all unrighteousness…and he does. After confessing your sin, believe that you have been forgiven and refuse to own further shame.

    • Leeanne,

      Your view of grace is so important to this process, you are absolutely right that God is “faithful to forgive our sin and he will cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

      As a counselor, I often hear from women who deal with sexual sin and/or addiction that they seek forgiveness over and over, and they do not see change in their life. Their shame is compounded because they feel like they continue to disappoint God. How would you respond to this?

      I look forward to your thoughts!

      Heather Lundy

  3. C. S. Lewis said “It is wonderful what you can do when you have to.”

    “When a thing has to be attempted, one must never think about possibility or impossibility.”

    It is also said that C. S. Lewis said “We may, indeed, be sure that perfect chastity—like perfect charity—will not be attained by any merely human efforts. You must ask for God’s help. Even when you have done so, it may seem to you for a long time that no help, or less help than you need, is being given. Never mind. After each failure, ask forgiveness, pick yourself up, and try again. Very often what God first helps us towards is not the virtue itself but just this power of always trying again. For however important chastity (or courage, or truthfulness, or any other virtue) may be, this process trains us in habits of the soul which are more important still. It cures our illusions about ourselves and teaches us to depend on God. We learn, on the one hand, that we cannot trust ourselves even in our best moments, and, on the other, that we need not despair even in our worst, for our failures are forgiven. The only fatal thing is to sit down content with anything less than perfection.”

    Never give up. Never give up! NEVER GIVE UP! NEVER!!!

    Be confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
    Philippians 1:6

    And the LORD said unto Moses, Write this for a memorial in a book, and rehearse it in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. Exodus 17:14

    Think about that; Moses told Joshua to write something down that would be read to him REGULARLY. Engage all your senses in the verses that deal with this particular sin and its inverse virtue. When your mind tells you that you want to do sin, tell yourself that you also do not want to do it because The Holy Spirit is working in your heart, and your desires are changed. You don’t want to have caused Jesus pain do you?

    16. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 16. An nescitis, quod templum Dei estis et Spiritus Dei habitat in vobis?
    17. If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. 17. Si quis ternplum Dei corrumpit, 188 hunc perdet Deus. Templum enim Dei sanctum est, quod estis vos.
    18. Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise, 18. Nemo se decipiat, si quis videtur sapiens esse inter vos: in saeculo hoc stultus fiat, 189 ut fiat sapiens.
    19. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness. 19. Sapientia enim mundi huius stultitia est apud Deum. Scriptum est enim (Job 5:13) Deprehendens sapientes in astutia sua.
    20. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain. 20. Et rursum (Psalm 94:11) Dominus novit cogitationes sapientum vanas esse.
    21. Therefore let no man glory in men. For all things are yours; 21. Proinde nemo glorietur in hominibus, omnia enim vestra sunt;
    22. Whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come; all are yours; 22. Sive Paulus, sive Apollos, sive Cephas, sive mundus, sive vita, sive mors, sive prmsentia, sive futura: omnia vestra sunt,
    23. And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s. 23. Vos autem Christi; Christus autem Dei.

    Do anything and everything to keep these verse and others in your mind. Say them every day. Make a song out of them. Tell them to your daughter. Make a poem out of them. Say them in latin.

    Know that your soul will be purified through a crucible of fire, and fire hurts.

    Jesus said “If your right hand causes you to offend, cut it off, and cast it from you: for it is better for you that one of your members should perish, and not that your whole body should be cast into hell.”
    Matthew 5:30

    What good does it do a man to gain Netflix, and lose his soul?

    C.S. Lewis said “It is wonderful what you can do when you have to.” and “When a thing has to be attempted, one must never think about possibility or impossibility.”

    Become aware of your thoughts: See the pattern of deceptive brain messages, uncomfortable sensations, leading to unhealthy and sinful behavior. If you become aware of how your mind works, you can set up preventative measure to stop what you know will almost inevitably lead you to sin. Possibly read the book You are Not Your brain, but be wary of its eastern influence checking it against the Bible. Be aware that those who are thought to have the most self-control put themselves in situations where they will not have to use it.

    Place yourself in a situation where there is no possibility that you will commit the sin you are seeking to avoid in gratitude for our most glorious saviour’s blood to wash all of those given to Him by The Father. To motivate yourself to do this, see your sins as the nails that pierce into Jesus’ flesh and had pinned Him to the cross. Find a place where you will not sin, and put yourself there. Read The Valley of Vision to learn how to pray.

    Always be working. The sexual component of man was natural in the garden before the fall. Work was in the garden. Idle hands are the devil’s workshop. Do not give Satan what he wants. People are not individuals, persons are individuals, and not everyone is tempted the same way.

    The Israelites used to read scripture out loud repeatedly in public. Download old hymns and listen to them repeatedly whenever you are tempted to sin. Which won’t be too often if you do your best to make that physically impossible. Listen to them anyway. Cut off all accesses to devices of technology that could be used to have inflicted pain on the one who died for your cosmic treason. If computers tempt you, turn them off. Have someone disable your internet connection. If televisions tempt you, throw them away. Why would you keep your own trammels? Your child? Surely she will inherent your temptations. The remains of all your possessions will be baptized in fire when Jesus returns, so really, you have nothing to lose but your chains. Throw away your chains, and put on the restraints that God gives you to restrain yourself from sin, If only you spend the time to find them.

    There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. 1 Corinthians 10:13
    If you really want to, you can find a way. There are always small steps to that way, because the journey of a thousand years begins with one second, and dripping water forms stalactites. C. S. Lewis also said “What saves a [wo]man is to take a step, and then another step.” Of course remember that God regenerated your heart when you were spiritually dead, and the devil cannot take those that are predestinated away from Him, but work out your salvation in fear and trembling.

    Not all people are tempted with the same sins. Find someone who is tempted in the same way as you are. Get her to pray for you as you pray for her. Find things that are charged with the idea of cultivating the virtue of self-control you wish to be and keep them in front of you at all times. If you still have not thrown away your computer, make them your wallpaper and screensaver. Paint the walls with the verses you wish to memorize. Consider not eating aphrodisiacs when your husband is away. Consider the costs of being with your husband all of the time. Apply the gospel to all areas of your life. Read the BIble every day to renew it in your mind.

    • Thorongil,

      Thank you for the time and passion your message brings to the readers. Scripture, prayer, and the Holy Spirit are absolutely central–for God is the Healer.

      However, many women come to me exhausted from “doing” and feeling like they do not see any of the changes they so desperately long for in the area of sexual sin. What would you say to a woman who has done all the things you suggest and still struggles?

      -Heather Lundy

  4. Theres many in her shoes and they are coming together to unlock the tools to find freedom. When you have a decade old habit sometimes it takes time to reprogram, but by the grace of God all things are possible.

    For others that are new to addiction & relationship in Christ have experienced supernatural deliverance.

    I know this because Ive been in both camps.

    • Absolutely, Madeline!

      I love the hope and grace that echoes from your message. Our God heals–whether through a long process or a moment. He has a way, in his goodness, of molding a journey specific to each person.

      Thank you for your thoughts!

      Heather Lundy

  5. This article was intense. Thank you for posting this article. In response to the question at the end, my answer is as follows:

    The Holy Spirit opened my eyes to something recently along these lines. It is the word “intimacy”. Webster defines the word “intimate” as “the state of being intimate.” Intimate is defined as “belonging to or characterizing one’s deepest nature.” So often throughout my life I have tried to kill any sexual desire because I am not married yet. I have always believed that since I am not married, then I am sinning for having sexual desires and there was something ultimately wrong with me…this is one of the biggest lies of the devil.

    The devil is a counter fitter. He can only try to copy cat what God does, however, the devil always puts his own spin on it. He tried to twist the scripture with Jesus but Jesus put a boot in His face “He has crushed Satan under His foot”. The devil would like to make all Christians believe that having any sexual desire (when unmarried) is wrong and I am sure it flip-flops when we people get married because he is trying to hide this bit of truth that the Holy Spirit reveals to us throughout His Word. The bit of truth is this: At the root of sexual desire is the root of intimacy. We long for intimacy…we long for the deepest level of intimacy that can only be given to us by a relationship with Christ through the Holy Spirit. Solomon wrote “God has placed eternity in every man’s heart”. God wants to fellowship with us…to be intimate with us. It is why He sent Jesus so that we could have a personal relationship with Him…a real, tangible, touchable relationship that is the Bread of Life and the Water of Life. It quenches our deepest desire. It is why Jesus said to the woman at the well, “whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst”. Read the definition of intimacy again, “belonging to or characterizing one’s deepest nature”. Our deepest longing is intimacy with the Living, Breathing, God.

    The problem is this: growing up we were never taught how to deal with this deepest desire of intimacy that is reserved for God and God alone. From the time of elementary school, I was forced to be a world that overly emphasizes “sex” and all that comes with that. I was never taught how to deal with that in detail. The churches that I grew up in hardly ever talked about porn. As a youth, I was never taught how to combat porn addiction. If somebody ever brought it up, they were viewed as a heathen.

    My point with all of this is that our deep desire for intimacy with God is deeper than sex, friendships, relationships, etc. The reason I resorted to porn in my early life was because my soul had this longing for true intimacy with God, yet the only way I knew how to answer that longing was with porn and masturbation. That problem continues through marriage. I once believed that once I get married, my longing for intimacy will end because my intimacy with my wife will meet that longing…but that is another lie from the devil. IT CAN”T! Only Jesus can meet that longing and deep desire. Why do Christian men and women that are married struggle with porn? Because deep down they are trying to meet that longing that their marriage with their spouse was never meant to fill (although they believed it would).

    You commonly hear this in Christian Marriages: “Jesus needs to be the rock”. Yes, Yes, and Yes! Jesus is the Rock of ANY relationship…not just marriage. He should be the rock for relationships with friends, family, spouses, etc (reference the different types of love in the Greek). We are taught to love our neighbors as Christ loved us. Men are taught to love their wives as Christ loved the church…do we see a pattern…we can only love people (friends, family, spouse, etc) the way Jesus loves us and how we love Him.

    Intimacy is no different. Intimacy is apart of the love of Christ…we just don’t realize it. The principle is still the same. How can we have Godly intimacy in marriage? By having the deepest intimacy with God. Then and only then will a man and woman be able to have an intimacy together. Sex is only a piece of that…ask any married couple that has been together for years and years…sex is only a piece of that puzzle.

  6. Second Part:

    So what does that mean for Christians like myself that are single and awaiting for the spouse that God has for them? It means what He already told us through His Word that we need to walk in the Spirit to not fulfill the desires of the flesh. Apart of walking in the Spirit is having deep intimacy with God. Spending time in His Word and His Presence…worshiping and praising Him…longing for His presence in our life. This is how we combat porn addiction…how we combat the struggles of waiting for our future spouse…etc.

    It is amazing to think that the God of the universe…the creator of all things wants to have intimacy with me…a little speck of dust. God is awesome! Praise God!

  7. Third Part:

    I would also add that another way to combat the enemy’s attempts is to use the former temptations that enemy uses against you as something to trigger your response of needing personal intimacy with Jesus. I know my flesh and so does the enemy. When those temptations come up, instead of responding with lust or in the flesh, I focus my thoughts toward Jesus realizing that my soul is crying out for intimacy with Him. So, I worship, pray, pray in the Spirit, dance, sing, praise, and seek His presence. It is just a tool to add to our belt of mighty weapons He has given us to wage our warfare against the enemy and the kingdom of darkness. “Our weapons are mighty for pulling down the strongholds of the enemy”. God has the victory!

    • Jeremiah,

      I am so excited to hear the freedom you have experienced through Christ! There is absolutely victory in Christ.

      I once heard that an idol is anything that holds your affections more than God. I think that definition points to your thoughts about intimacy–God must have our deepest affections.

      What would you say to this woman if she replied, saying, “I feel like God is my greatest love, and yet I still struggle. I can’t shake the lies that keep leading me back to those websites, etc.” This is a hard question I have women ask me.

      I look forward to your thoughts.

      Heather Lundy

  8. Hey!!! As a 15 year old girl that has been addicted since i was 11 1/2 i loved this article!!!!!! thank you sooooo much!!!! As a writer, i think that you captured this wonderfully!!!!! a few questions: how do you know when you are “past” the addiction??? like yes, i’ve stoped watching it, but i still think about what i saw. ALOT………email me if you can for other questions!!! thanks!!!

    Frannie

    • Hi Frannie,

      That is a fantastic question and there is not necessarily a simple answer. I think being “past” the addiction looks different for everybody.

      Spiritually speaking I think a good rule of thumb is considering: what has my affections more than God? What do I think, talk, pursue most with my time?

      What do you think symbolizes being past the addiction?

      Best!

      Heather

  9. Hi,

    This is the first time I have sought real help for my addiction. It started when I was 8 years old (I’m now 29, married, 3 kids). I can’t find any real reason for it; grew up in a Christian home with loving parents. I’m now a mom of 3 girls and so ashamed of myself. This story above is so familiar. Everyone’s responses resonated with me in one way or another, but in particular the C.S. Lewis quote stating “It is wonderful what you can do when you have to.” It brings to mind the verse that with God all things are possible.

    This quote and verse made me want to up my discipline and take real steps towards breaking the addiction using internet filters, accountability, and actually reading my Bible every night/day. I can’t expect God to do everything for me (i.e. supernaturally removing the addiction). God still allowed Paul to struggle with sin even when he asked for God to remove it from him supernaturally. Its going to require work, hard work. But for the sake of my beautiful children and my wonderful husband, I’m willing to put in the work to break the habit.

    I’m no counsellor and I don’t have a shred of advice for others struggling with this issue, except to say that you’re not alone. You’re not weird. You’re not unlovable. You’re not dirty. Jesus is the only clean thing in me and I’m ok with that truth. Now its my job to put in the hard work to try and break this addiction (with God’s help of course!).

  10. Hello, I hope I am not too late to respond?
    I have found myself in the same place as the lady in your article. I do not think I have the whole answer, but this is how I am dealing with my ungodly yearnings.
    1. Know your weaknesses – Be aware of when you are tempted and what tempts you and avoid these things.
    2. Resolve to repent – Even though repeated sins can bring great discouragement, don’t let them send you into hiding from God. Always return to Him in surrender. (Remember, if your sin is causing you pain then your heart is still tender towards God and you are not a lost cause.)
    3. Have confidence – not in yourself and your own abilities but in God and His ability to carry out the work He has started in you. Trust Him for daily victories.
    4. Remember we’re forgiven – we are little etch-a-sketches; wiped clean each time we come to God through Christ Jesus.
    5. Put things in perspective – the only thing continuous and unending about our life is not our struggle with sin but our standing with God in Christ Jesus. Everything else is just momentary… which brings me to…
    6. Live in the moment – At this moment I am thinking of God; working and living for God. Moments before that I sinned. I gave in to yearnings, or I lost my temper, or I acted selfishly. In the next moment I was filled with remorse and repented and threw myself on the mercy of God. In the following moment I remember that I am forgiven and I return to trusting in God. I do not plan to sin. I do not wish to offer my body to unrighteousness. I hope in every moment that my next one will honour God. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t. I don’t get hung up on what was. Like Paul I look ahead, forgetting what is behind; and instead run with purpose in order to win the prize.
    7. Focus – Ultimately, the only way I can find any peace at all from this sinful world and my own sinful desires is to fix my eyes upon Jesus. He is the author and finisher of my faith and dwelling on anything else, even my own mistakes; as tempting as that is, will only get in the way of God’s inevitable plan for me.

    This is my reality… I live it everyday.
    I hope it helps.

  11. Well. Take it lightly..You have loving daughters and loving husband…These are the strenghts of yours which when kept in mind will help u engaged in ur mind so much that nothing else can come to your mind. Read the inspirational stories and motivation stories of people who have started from bottoms up…read about WILMA RUDOLF. When she was born, drs said she wont be able to walk…she was having kind of polio.But she had a will. Can you imagine…She won in Olympics. You should take inspiration from her. Engage in Productive things and not in things that give u an instant kick at the cost of every thing. Read motivational quotes…you wil Win :)

  12. Sorry your reading this, because your in the same boat I am. Was thinking of looking at porn, and thought maybe it’s just not a guy thing. I came across these articles and it gave me strength knowing that women suffer through this just like me. What I have found so far is this statement:
    I am redeemed by the blood of Jesus. My God? so loves me, and rocks my world every min of every day. I have a choice to make, every day and every min. And that alone? gives me strength, the fact that I see this sexual lustful desire as sin gives me hope. Because if I simply did porn without caring I wouldn’t be saved and the Holy Spirit wouldn’t be convicting me for God disciplines those He loves. When I remove look at my hormones for what they are, and the thoughts for that which they represent, I find peace because I am able to get a bird’s eye view of David Smith, and I see myself struggling against a horrific monster… myself… All I have to do is say ‘I am desire to die, so that Christ will live through me’ as the old prophets said before me ‘Come Holy Spirit, Come’

  13. I’m a middle aged female married to a disabled man who has been institutionalized for a few years, so it’s like being a widow in a lot of ways. My porn problem is a little different than the one in the original example. I don’t look at pictures of men or sex scenes in movies. My weakness is looking at pictures of women. It’s not that I lust after them, but rather that I’d like to look like them. I don’t feel alluring in my own body. My husband was very attentive and I knew he loved me, but I’ve never felt that desirable to him. Also, he always wanted me to have an orgasm every time we made love. In order to do that, I would have to fantasize in my mind about porn images I’d seen of alluring women, imagining myself to look like that. I never seemed to be able to get excited enough to orgasm just from the reality of being with him. I have had so much guilt over this habit of fantasizing, but nothing has ever seemed to help much. Don’t get me wrong. I love the Lord–a lot! Sometimes I wonder if the problem is not really a problem, that it is a natural part of my sexuality the way God made me, and that we make too big a deal about our little sex hang-ups. Anyway, years ago I tried to explain to my husband that I was trying to quit fantasizing and that I’d prefer that he not expect an orgasm out of me every time, but he never seemed to understand that, and I finally gave up trying to explain it. So for the past few years, he’s been living in a facility and I have access to the internet, so the porn plus masturbation thing has been pretty tempting. I really don’t know why sex has to be so complicated. I feel like it is the first thing I’m going to ask the Lord when I get to heaven….’What on earth were You thinking when You made us male and female?! What a mess!’ But I figure I will take one look at Him and look around heaven and it will all make sense. It will have something to do with us being the bride of Christ, and perfect intimacy, etc. That’s in the sweet by and by. But as for the nasty now and now, it is a very discouraging battle and it seems like there really is no one to talk to about it.

  14. I don’t honestly know any solution. I’ve been a sex addict (not porn) since I was sexually assaulted. I’ve tried counselling and a little bit (I have covenant eyes-that helps a lot). But I’m at loss As to what to do and how to fix myself.

  15. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with you – you seek/crave the feeling of another person wanting you and you want to feel sexy – porn takes you to that place – and that’s ok. There’s always things in life that aren’t fare and you have to decide what part of your life is more important…being wanted or being a wife and mother and occasionally watching porn on the side because you can’t get what you need in your current situation. Stop hating yourself and just be ok with whatever you decide and be happy – I too am in the exact situation as my to be husband shows no interest in having sex – we have been together 9 years now – and we’ve never had sex. Yes it’s hard, but I had two choices – leave him to find meaningless sex with other men or love him as he does me and watch porn every now and then to feel satisfied – talk with your husband – maybe buy some nice under garments. If nothing works then you have a choice – live with it and be happy or leave and try finding what you think you so desperatly need – it’s your life – do you.

    • Okay, that sounded just like something Oprah and every worldly fake Christian and non-believer would say to justify his or her own actions or to be “tolerant” of others. It’s also something I imagine Satan whispers into people’s ears, “Mmm, can’t believe your husband won’t have sex with you. So unfair. Well you know, you can always satisfy yourself then everyone wins and no one gets hurt. Forget about what Jesus said about lusting is just as bad as adultery. We want you to be happy. There’s nothing wrong with a little body worship or pleasing your flesh.”

      God tells us that we shouldn’t even have a hint of sexual sin amongst us and that we need to put to death our lust (Read it: Eph 5 and Col 3). I’m not a fanatic soap-boxer I’m just laying the truth out there. I know exactly how it feels. I too am addicted to porn. And yes, I do recognize that when I know these verses and still go for the porn I am in fact being a media-stereotypical-Christian-hypocrite. But the Lord is merciful and knows my situation. He is faithful when I turn from my sins. Not that we should play this card until the record breaks-God will not be mocked-we reap what we sow. Sin is pleasurable for a season but it robs us along the way. It always has consequences regardless of the Lord’s forgiveness (i.e. David and Bathsheba’s baby). Habitual sin is not something you should get yourself caught up in.

      I do it mainly out of stress . . . and I’m a repressed 25-yr-old virgin so that plays into it. However, I don’t delude myself by buying into the secular, “Oh, your only human. You have urges and need release. If it makes you happy take care of business. As long as you’re not hurting anyone. At least you’re not sleeping around with real men. At least you’re not shaking up. Just take care of your needs and it will all work out.” I know what I’m doing is wrong. I don’t pretend otherwise. The Spirit convicts me every time before and after. I know it is wrong because God tells me so through the Word and in the Spirit (thanks God: Heb 12). So now, the real problem is long-term, forevermore, cold turkey repentance.

      The rest of my opinion is directed to the writer of this article:

      Thanks for sharing. I know what it feels like to meet the expectations of delicate little dew drops and innocent Virgin Mary replicas within the church. I also have no one that I really trust to share my secret–I’m afraid my Bible partners would look at me differently and slowly create distance until we are no longer friends. Also, it would be pointless if they have no idea what it’s like to struggle with this addiction. What can they say but a hollow, “Keep trying! You’ll get there!” They have no idea that mind addictions are extremely enslaving because we don’t have to sneak out to get a bottle of alcohol or meet with a drug dealer. We can just stare off into the distance or type a few seconds on our computer and bam! Instant high off of our endorphins.

      The Church has really dropped the ball on this one. Nobody is open about it enough to create an avenue for internal female sufferers, like myself, the writer, and all the women who’ve written in the comments, to go to for encouragement. At least men can travel maybe an hour away to get help from another church that host’s sexual problem Bible studies. The only thing I could find in my state for women would have cost me $200 for the books and the presentation plus a long commute. The Body just pretends like we don’t exist, like women’s sex drives are equivalent to a 90-yr-old woman, like their teens and college students are not sleeping around because they won’t let them get married until they are on the precipice of middle age, and like 80% of their couples are getting divorced. I feel like the Church in America and maybe the West in general is like the church of the Laodiceans, “You say your are rich but I can see that you are wretched, and miserable, poor, and blind, and naked”.

      So, I have no real answer for the fellowship dilemma about our little secret. You need to ask God to direct you to brothers and sisters who you can trust to share this burden. Also, I encourage you to continue to seek out followers of Christ who have a foundation in the Word. It sounds like you aren’t getting what your spirit thirsts for at your current church. Find some believers who are just completely and brazenly head over heals for the Lord. They exist, they really do. It might take you a few years and a lot of searching to find them but I promise you they are out there. Their desire for God will rub off on you and you’ll focus less on your sex drive and more on God—a statement from personal experience. You could also step up and be a leader in this realm. You could secret-agent-like tell women that if they have problems with romance novel addictions (start slow–little better than just flat out saying “PORN addiction!”) they can come to you. And maybe that is the good that will come out of this horrible part of your life (Rom 8:28). Maybe you’re supposed to be the one who counsels other women. Don’t be discouraged if your counselor sucks because he/she can’t relate. It’s a solitary and lonely habitual sin to fight against but the Lord is always with you and on your side.

      I empathize with your musings. I tell myself the same things, “Why do you keep doing it? You know it’s ruining your life. I’m tired of this. I’m tired of you. I wish I didn’t have a sex drive. I wish I lived in a country where they performed FGM on me . . . actually I don’t. Thank you God for your mercy in that I was born in North America.” The Word tells us not to be discouraged, to boldly go before the throne to receive grace, and to press on in the Lord.

      That shame that you’re feeling comes from Satan. Any kind of guilt or regret that doesn’t work itself out so you repent and that hangs over your head and makes you feel crappy all week long is Satan’s little lie. When you ask God for forgiveness he forgets the sin. There is no condemnation so you should not feel shame—you should move on/repent/live by the Spirit/”I do not condemn you so go and sin no more”. That shame and guilt does not come from God. That dirty feeling is a lie. You ARE clean. Christ washes all our sins away. He is faithful when we ask for mercy. Even when you are planning to sin, Jesus is constantly interceding for you against Satan’s accusations because he loves you. There are no secrets with God and in spite of that, God is FOR you. There is no reason why you cannot smile and shower love on your daughter. You are made righteous in the name of our Lord Jesus. You were washed and sanctified (1Cor 6:11). There is nothing holding you back from looking your daughter in the eye and smiling back at her.

      The paragraph above lists the fundamentals of the normal Christian life. We sin, we ask forgiveness, we repent, and we press on in the Lord. Many of us, and I do too, get stuck at the sin and forgiveness portions but the normal Christian life is lived out in the repent and pressing on portions. Through suffering and fire we are refined. A great book to read for more detail is “The Normal Christian Life” by Watchman Nee.

      Sister, you CAN go on. The Lord will sustain you, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Here are the main things that keep me going. READ YOUR FREAKING BIBLE! “How can a young man keep his way pure? By living by Your Word. Your Word have I hid in my heart, so that I may not sin against you.” And if you are reading the Bible then READ IT MORE! Also YOU NEED TO PRAY! When you pray, ask God to soften your heart and keep it burning for Him. The worst thing that can happen to porn addicts is when they cut themselves off from God. “Gosh, the fundamentals really just seem so simple that they can’t really work because they haven’t in the past.” Lie! That is a lie. Keep track of how much you read and pray in a day and see how that affects your porn addiction. For me, the more I pray and read the less likely I will be going for the porn.

      I’m just going to lay it out: You are a child of God. You are a sacred temple for Him to dwell in. That is pretty amazing. God lives in you. You are his heir. You no longer have to wonder who you are. Ravi Zacharias is a great speaker that travels across the world and answers the deep hard questions such as “Who am I?”. You should hop onto YouTube and listen to him.

      Lastly, the saints in the Bible are always a great encouragement. Notice how John was a judgmental, proud little “thunder brother” in the gospels but when he’s an old man writing his epistles he’s all about love. What do you think happened between 20s-something John and crotchety-old-man John? The Lord was dealing with him. Same thing with Paul. After he converted he went away from all Jews and the Christians to live out there in the gentile countries for 17 years—alone with God. He went away as a mass-Christian-murderer and came back as a man-of-God burdened to see the Church grow. The Lord dealt with him. We are all trapped in our minds and for those of us who indulge in porn addiction, even more so, but that does not deter the Lord. He is dealing with us. We just need to be open to him so he can continue working in us. So read that Bible and pray.

    • I want to make sure you aren’t misunderstanding the purpose of this article. The purpose here is not to justify the woman’s emotions as rational, godly, or good. As the introduction says, women in this situation are dealing with shame, guilt, conflicting messages, feelings of worthlessness, and a profound sense of being misunderstood, and this woman is a case-study of that.

      The whole goal of the post is to for you, the reader, to dismantle the ideas and lies and truths embedded in this statement. If that’s what you are doing in your comment, thank you. I just want to make sure you understand our intentions here.

  16. This is my message to women all over the world who feel this shame.
    STOP. there is absolutely no reason to feel shame, we do not get to choose what we like and dislike we just do, ergo any woman who enjoys porn is fortunate that they have something in their lives that give them pleasure, our lives are short and there is too much pain and suffering in the world.

    Both men and women have testosterone in their blood and this chemical element creates the desire to fornicate for which we need sexual stimulation, which is what we find in porn, without fornicaton we would not exist as a species.

    I personally love porn and recommend it to everyone, enjoy who you are and stop living a lie, maybe then the catholic church leaders would stop interfering with little boys. we live in hope.

    • There is reason to feel shame if lust is immoral. It seems you and the author of this post are on different ends of the spectrum. What do you believe about the nature and origin of morality?

      The species would most certainly exist without fornication: its called married people having sex and having babies.

    • T stenton:
      I definitely disagree about porn being good!! It is an enslavement…..one of many ways that Satan stops believers from fulfilling Christ’s plan for their lives. It becomes a distraction, a shameful secret, and pulls you away from God. I speak from experience. I have ‘overcome’ my addiction through Christ, but it still lingers, a trap waiting to pull me back in. And Satan used it to shame me and keep relationships shallow, as I could not be open and honest with people for fear they would judge me. I know have an accountability partner and have shared my story with several people and God has done great things through it. Satan tried to keep me from being an effective Christian, but God has turned my mistakes and failures into glory for him. I still wish it hadn’t happened; I wish that I won’t have to tell my future husband what I’ve done, but I know that God heals and will use me for His glory, despite my failure. I am reedeemed!!!

  17. I’m not a woman. I am a girl. Barely hit puberty. I am addicted to watching Internet porn. I masterbate when I watch it, but I don’t think masterbation is my problem. It’s the fact that I watch porn, porn is what helps me though. So I don’t know. Masterbating keeps me from doing what I want to do, but masterbation is better with porn, so that’s what I use. maybe if porn didnt have such a heavy impact on my life, masterbating would be okay. But it’s not. I cry after I masterbate and swear I will never do it again. But the urges are so powerful! When I read this I was thinking, this could be me in 10 years. So I want help. Please. I just need a little help.

  18. Thank you Lotd for this article. I am sitting on the couch with my two little girls having a mini heart attack. Because just two hours ago, I watched a porno and envisioned my husband with another woman. I’ve been masturbating since the age of 4 (dry humping my dolls)etc up until now. I am ALWAYS wanting sex, my husband is physically unattractive (he’s been gaining lots of weight) he used to be addicted to porn. He gave his life to Christ and is so boring in the bedroom. He always climaxes before I can and I lay awake at night horny and ashamed. Every chance I get I watch porn and please myself. I feel horrible about my addiction but I just want to say THANK YOU for this article and all of the responses! I will be reading this again and praying for help. To be honest, I don’t want to stop masturbating. I know how to pleasure myself ten times better than any man has ever. I’ve been addicted for so long that mentally I can’t even fantasize about my husband. He won’t let me or him use toys, there is barely any foreplay, he rushes through sex. I’ve gained a tiny amount of weight but I am dieting and trying to lose it but I always try to make myself presentable and wanted. I dunno what to do. I want to hump my husband all the time! My libido is crazy! It was scary because after we had our second child? I was horny so bad that I would cry. My husband and I didn’t make love after we had my second and so I would masturbate and when he wanted to make love, I would fake it the whole way through and watch porn after he went to sleep. If I didn’t have my daughters or husband home, I would watch porn all night until my hand fell off. I can’t just watch one. It’s like a competition- let’s see how many times I can make myself come. I also struggle with self hatred of my race and my husband cheated on me mentally with his exes who were either white or Hispanic so I use those pornos as triggers to up my climax whenever I watch porn. I can get of ten times watching a black man with a Hispanic woman and just imagining it be my husband. It’s horrible I know but I dunno how to stop it. I feel ugly and worthless as a black woman. I used to be bi sexual and sometimes I miss having sex with women. I have a lot of issues I know.

    • Have you spoken to your husband about this? if not, I recommend first speaking with a trusted friend who can counsel you about this, and then approach your husband about it. He needs to know about your sexual desires.

  19. I know how you feel. I just came across this because I have a similar problem as you. I too, am a married woman. I was introduced to sexuality and porn at a young age. I’m not Christian and I don’t judge you for being one, I believe in God, but I don’t have any religious help for you here.
    The first thing you need to do is just accept yourself. It is natural to want to feel good and think of how much stress you release when you do these things.
    The problem here is that you are removing true intimacy from your marriage and life in general. This is where you should be more concerned, rather than ashamed.
    It is normal for you to question your attraction to your husband. We grow older and bodies change. Do not lie to yourself. I understand where your friends are coming from, but Clearly you do not agree with them, so Don’t try to be someone you are not. They probably just aren’t embracing their sexuality as much, or don’t have high sex drives so they don’t understand. Do not trivialize and objectify yourself. Did you really marry a man who would be okay with you just laying there under him just so he could get pleasure? I am sure he wants you to be happy, but he doesn’t know that you are missing anything. Just ask yourself how much of the attraction is being lost due to lack of intimacy, and you comparing him to other men.
    Natural masterbation and masterbation to porn give you two very different responses in the brain. Either way the brain sees an orgasm as a wonderf stimulant and reinforcement. When climax regularly occurs with the use of porn, it becomes addictive. I don’t know how often you look to porn in times of stress or loneliness, but hopefully you can understand and forgive yourself. There is a reason it is not so easy to walk away from. It is not because you’re selfish, you are just embracing it in all the wrong ways.
    Please do not swallow this and hide in shame. Be honest with your husband and tell him how you feel about lack of intimacy. If there are things you’ve seen that you want to try. Do not be ashamed, let him know about the lack of intimacy and your pattern. He may be jealous, but he has used porn and honestly probably has since you’ve been married.

    If you only watch a few times a year, you should stop beating yourself up. It’s ok. If you are doing this frequently, you’re not a freak, but it is truly taking away from your marriage and needs to be fixed.
    If you’re being judged and told how to feel by your religious community, step outside for help. Morally, it is clear that you are not okay with porn. This is why you feel shame. Mentally, you’re being negatively affected by your porn use. This is more of a mental, well-being issue right now. Once you’ve independently are able to realize what you’re dealing with, use your religion to keep you strong and on the right path. There is nothing selfish about a woman who cares about her own needs in bed. Express and explore those needs with your husband. I am sure he will be more than willing to help you with these things. Just remember his needs too. You can be a good Christian with a great sex life too. Don’t deny yourself of that. If women weren’t meant to feel pleasure through sex, God wouldn’t have given us a clitorous. Sorry if that’s vulgar, but it’s true. Good luck to you.

  20. Hi, everyone. I am 19 years old and have struggled in and out with pornographic images. When I think about where it all started, I realize that it started off all so innocently. I was in middle school. I had to use the computer in the morning to do an assignment for class, but the computer was acting strange…it had a really bad virus on it, and pornographic images were popping up left and right. I did not understand where all of this was coming from. At first, i flinched at the harsh images, but then I studied them out of curiosity. It was only for a short while, before I told my mother that a virus was on the computer. After that event in my life, I was exposed to pornography in similar ways. Like I would search for some images on Google and by chance come upon some pornographic images. I started searching on Google for pornographic type images on purpose and would delete the history so no one would find out about it. I also was into cartoons called anime (Japanese animation) and manga (Japanese comics) some were innocent and child friendly, but some were not and were even pornographic. I grabbed onto the good ones, but learned about the adult ones later. The way I justified myself was that I would look at unseemly animated figures rather than real-life ones. But what I learned is that it still has the same effects on you. I had decided a few years ago that I didn’t want to do this anymore. In middle school is also when I began to go to church regularly and I received Christ as my savior. So I felt really ashamed of my secret problem. I asked God to help me never do it again in high school. I felt so ashamed and the images I put into my brain tortured me dayin and day out. I felt so guilty and ashamed of myself I felt like a pervert! I felt hopeless. And I havent looked up pornographic images in at least two years (maybe three) but last night i did it again (now I’m in college and I’m 19 years old) … I felt …feel horrible. I thought the bad habit was gone but i slipped up! Big time. I searched women addicted to pornography this morning in an attempt to get some information and help for my problem. I always thought that there was something wrong with me because I am a girl who enjoys watching and looking at pornography. I thought I was alone, but now I see that I am not alone in this struggle and that there are even women with husbands and children who fight this battle. Seeing all of these stories have really encouraged me! I will keep trying and never give up fighting and someday these strongholds will be eliminated from my life. Thank you everyone; you have really been a blessing to me!

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