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Men Overcoming Homosexual Pornography: Rooting Out the Source of Temptation (Part 3)

Last Updated: February 21, 2014

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Guest Author

Want to write for the Covenant Eyes blog? Share the story of your journey to freedom from pornography. Let us know how you overcame porn or how Covenant Eyes has made a difference in your life or the lives of those you love.

Continued from Part 2

Choosing to be set free

Understanding the source and meaning of attraction alone will not free us from pornography. To be free from pornography we must come to the conclusion that it is not good for us. Do you truly believe that the pornography in your life leads to an emotional, relational and spiritual death? Apart from all other people and their expectations of you, do you choose to be free from pornography for no one but yourself? In other words, if there were no one around you who cared whether you participated in pornography, would you choose to refrain from it because it is blocking a fulfilling life for you? Most men of whom I asked this question honestly answered by saying, “no.”

This is a test of the human will to determine if we are really willing to give up pornography for a more healthy means of meeting our emotional needs. If you answered “no,” it is not the end of the journey, but rather the beginning of an opportunity. The opportunity is to choose ‘yes.’ You do have a choice to take control of your life. You are in control of your choice to seek out pornography. No person has ever been free from pornography who did not choose it for himself. Conversely, many men who have returned to pornography are attempting to change for the purpose of finally becoming accepted by someone, or to get someone off their back.

If you answered “no,” then I encourage you to seek the Lord and ask him to change your willingness to pursue meeting your needs in a healthy way and resisting pornography. One man made this choice and his action included discontinuing his Internet service in his home. Another man chose to only use his computer in a public space of the home so that he was never in secret. A man who truly wants to be free from pornography is a resolved man, to do whatever is necessary to distance himself from exposure to pornography.

A man who has not chosen to divorce himself from pornography says the use of such determined actions are too extreme. He rationalizes his need for his computer use without restraint and believes that he can control himself. He can control himself, until his urge becomes strong, and then he lapses into an addictive trance and needs emotional comfort. He argues that he can be free from pornography and yet continue to use his computer to access pornography.

The human will is like an emotional gate within us. If we consciously choose to avoid pornography at all costs then the emotional gate is closed tightly. That doesn’t mean that we will never have setbacks. If we keep pornography as a secret and do not take deliberate steps to block ourselves from it then the emotional door is still open and we will continue to access pornography. Most men who continually complete the cycle of the pornography and masturbation experience regret this phase of the addiction cycle in which vow to never use pornography again. This is different than an act of the human will.

The act of the human will to avoid pornography takes place during the moments when we reflect and think about our life and what we truly choose: a life of liberation, or of captivity. The man who willfully chooses to avoid pornography realizes in his spirit that the only way to a fulfilling life is to rid himself of pornography. He is willing to submit to being accountable by using Covenant Eyes and other tools that inhibit his path to pornography. He releases control of access to pornography because he admits he cannot control himself when he is most vulnerable.

The journey to recovery from same sex pornography requires uprooting the source of temptation. The source is the pain, disappointment, rejection and father-wound that has been covered up for years. When we go beyond the surface behavior and uncover the roots of pain, we can overturn the years of coping with negative emotions for which pornography was used to sooth. We begin by turning our will to choose change. We look beyond our circumstances and begin to believe that even though we think our condition is incurable, there is a cure, there is a way. As long as there is a savior Jesus Christ, there is a way to be healed from pornography.

Never give up!

. . . .

robertbrennanThis post is by Robert Brennan, the director of Apokata Psychotherapy Services which is a professional network ministry of Exodus International and a professional psychotherapy service for those struggling with same-sex pornography and opposite sex pornography. He is a graduate of Western Seminary in Marriage and Family Therapy, and he regularly speaks to churches about recovery from same-sex attraction. He practices in San Francisco and Fremont California.
  • Comments on: Men Overcoming Homosexual Pornography: Rooting Out the Source of Temptation (Part 3)
    1. thank u for them help full words bless you ,iam really stugling very very hard with my christian partner james who says hes a christian who is addicted to porn and is getting worse it has taken complete hold of him he hids it usually forom me computer mags but now its porn movies and resenty let it on our bed which he watched on my lap time coputer while i was visiting my family in sydney, we live in the country, when i found dvd which had fallen behind bed he said,its your problem deal with it except me for what iam or leave me and this realationship we are not married and live in sin and i hate it i even tried boosting up our sex life to stop him from practising porn which is very wrong in god eyes.idid love him but iam not so sure any more he makes me feel sick and depressed and i drink alchol if i get to deppressed which is sin full in its self he also drinks alcahol everyday and smokes pot some times, i beleive hes running from his problems through all of his addictions i think i may be addiction also i have tryed so manys times not to give in to his sexuall needs but nr always wears me down, he beleives god will hael him of his addictions and he dosent have to a thingto help himself because god will do it for him he has changed so much in 8 years of and on realation ship we have been living together for 2 years and he still wont fully commite to me in marriage am i just being used for his on sexuall graditude we hardly do anything to gether any more its just his work which take up most of his time; please help me god bless you karen

    2. jean-claude

      i truly realise the huge damage i have been causing since i watched homosexual porn and realise with tears in my eyes that i feel an incomplete man unable to willfully desire a woman, i aknowledge the serious trouble porn is posing in my life and how i feel isolated unable to relate to my closest friends and tell them how much i am suffering, i sought appropiriate help, and try as much as possible to fulfill myself with affection from my male friends to deliver self confidence and feel accepted but still cant do away with it

      • David

        I suffer from the same addiction and have struggled for years. I know that I must uncover and talk about the underlying reasons for the same-sex addiction. I know that I am saved and forgiven through Christ. I have trouble forgiving myself and believing that I am worthy. Suggestions?

      • Jake

        How is this going now? I have the same problem.

    3. I appreciate the hard work you have invested in freedom from porn. At the heart of your investment is the desire to be become healthy and to survive apart from porn. When there is a realization that porn is damaging you have reached an important crest. This realization is that while porn is alluring and you find yourself giving into it, that repeated exposures to it leaves you feeling empty, guilty and beat down.

      The compounded impact of porn is to increase guilt which is a form of self hate. While this is a dark place, the continued confirmation of internal damaged is our conscious telling us that porn exposure does not deliver the expected results. As we firmly are convinced that porn does not deliver, we have a greater motivation to exercise our will in making change. Until that point in time we will be on the fence, ambivilant.

      The nature of porn is addictive. In other words it offers a mood altering high when needed. In order to be free from this we first must yield ourselves to others. Disclosure is the gateway to freedom. In doing this we discharge the secret of our addiction and allow others to love us out of the addiction. We are looking for love in porn, so we allow others who are emotionally safe to love us by showing us that they accept us even thought we deal with porn.

      Lets get on to what you can do for yourself. For the man dealing with unwanted same sex attraction, the first circle of safe relationships are other men who are dealing with the same thing. Exodus International (exodusinternational.org) groups provide a structure for men to interact in a way that demonstrates acceptance of the person. These groups are critical because they stand for recovery and protect against unhealthy sexualizing of relationships. When we disclose our addiction in these groups we find that other participants in fact do not reject us as we reject ourselves. As we find acceptance by others over time we can learn to accept ourselves. A healthy posture for the addict is to be able to say that they are struggling with addiction and when they fall they do not beat themselves up but rather they get back up and move forward on the journey.

      Psychotherapy helps to examine why the addiction reoccurs. Understanding the underlying fantasy that we are seeking out porn for results in the discovery of underlying needs that are not being met. When we apprehend these needs we will feel less guilty and more hopeful as a man that has some greater control of stepping into change in an intentional, assertive way.

      Healing ministries such as Living Waters are excellent programs. Living Waters was designed by people who have experienced recovery from SSA themselves and God has led them to address the issues that are at the root of sexual brokenness. It takes courage to go to one of these groups and to put yourself out there is risky, however, if you earnestly invest in the process God will meet you there. The power of these ministries is actually prayer. Allowing experienced inner healing pray leaders to pray for you and to allow the Holy Spirit to do what he wants to do at that particular time. Ultimately healing comes from entrusting this journey to the Holy Spirit’s leading. He is leading all of us into some form of healing and it’s really a matter of our desire to look for it, listen and accept his work in us.

      Bless you,
      Robert Brennan, MFT

    4. Gordon

      As a Christian, Porn has been a very alluring trouble for me, since 2010. Got my own lap-tap, as I’d wanted, and had no intention to use it for Porn. Didn’t even cross my mind to get into that. But, I was already struggling with same-sex issues, and Lust, the “M-word”. Once I got the PC, it didn’t take long before I did end up getting hooked. Lately I’ve managed just 2 on-line visits so-far, this year. Better than before, but, I want it gone completely out of life. The shame and self-hatred viewing SS Porn has caused has been more costly than I ever imagined. It was not worth the first glance. I struggle between self-forgiveness, the LORD’s Forgiveness for me. I feel HE must be so angry, yet, who could blame HIM. But, I know HE loves and is Merciful, too. But, viewing men is so addictive. I wish to be held by other men. The SS images appear as intimacy but, I know that it’s a lie. It’s the getting the real thing, SS Christian-type friendship is the bigger challenge. Even more, having Yahushua (Jesus Christ) as my Best Friend is most important. So many things in this Article ring true.

      • Nathan

        I know some of what you’re going through. I don’t watch it for the intimacy but for the power struggle. For some reason I crave the masculine guys taking control, overpowering the weaker man, and taking advantage of them. It’s hard for me too because I typically relate with bisexuals. I do look at straight porn too but I always feel bad for the girl, which is why I don’t watch it as much. If feels like rape to me when it’s heterosexual. I’ve always felt like an underdog. I think that’s why I crave the guy-on-guy stuff especially when there’s a clear dominator in the act(s). I guess I’m living this fantasy where I am the tough guy in control and on top. This along with my clearly low self esteem breeds the addiction. I’ve had moments where I can go a year at a time without looking at porn, then access becomes available. I realize now it’s 10X harder to live purely with all the technology, especially cell phones because they’re small. I’ve looked at porn with people in the next room and no one’s noticed. Sorry stuff. I’m 27 years old now and I realize now it’s kept me from fulfilling my dream to have a family and settle down. It’s ruining my life. Thankfully I don’t struggle with depression but life is definitely a rollercoaster. I hope my story helped, man. God help us all. Seriously.

      • Chris McKenna

        @Nathan have you taken any steps to seek help? It sounds like you desire freedom from this struggle.

        -Covenant Eyes

    5. kriss93

      Hey. I can relate. I don’t wanna this in my life, I want a family, children, and etc.

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