3 minute read

Where to Find an Accountability Partner

Last Updated: November 13, 2020

Jeff Fisher

Jeff Fisher and his wife Marsha live in Raleigh, North Carolina. They run PurityCoaching.com and have helped hundreds of sexual strugglers, spouses, and church leaders find help and resources. Jeff has podcasted for the last six years about sexual purity through his Top Tips For Sexual Purity Podcast (iTunes). Jeff can be reached at jeff@puritycoaching.com.

Are you ready to find an accountability partner but don’t know where to look?

Accountability partners are friends at the deepest level. They are people with whom you will share your slips, struggles, challenges, and victories. These allies are people who will support you whether you’ve had a good, bad or ugly week. These special people take time to find, but they may not be as far away as you think.

Once I entered my sexual addiction recovery, it took me about a year to find the right accountability partner. I don’t think it has to take you that long. Fortunately, there are some pools of people around you that may make it easier. When you’re looking for an ally in your fight against porn, start with the pools of people who are already in your circles.

Pools of People Where You Find Accountability

  1. Close friends – Who are your current close friends? Safe friends who know your story make the best accountability partners. Even if a close friend doesn’t know your story, they could be receptive to your need for accountability.
  2. Old friends – Go back in the past. What old friends did you have from high school, college, work, or church that you could get back in touch with? Who in your past was a support to you? Old friends can be brought up to speed quickly and will probably be a good option. It doesn’t matter if your friend is in a different part of the country, technology give us many good ways to reconnect.
  3. Church small group member – If you’re in a church, you’re already in a place where you can get support. Yes, church members have sexual struggles just like the rest of us. They just don’t talk about them and they’re good at hiding them. Whom have you connected with in your church? Whom do you have a good chemistry with? Maybe it’s time to test the water?
  4. Minister – A relationship with a minister is a good relationship to have anyway. Set up an appointment with your pastor, priest, deacon, or teacher. Most ministers understand the need for safety and confidentiality. Maybe your minister can help you get started for the first month while you look for another option. Or maybe you have a minister who has the time to enter into an accountability relationship with you.
  5. Counselor – A counselor is always a solid option. There is cost involved. Using a counselor long-term for your accountability needs might get expensive, but they will do a good job. Counselors also understand confidentiality. It is the nature of their profession be a safe place for people to share deeper struggles. A counselor might also be able to help you with other local resources in your area you don’t know about.
  6. Support group – I love this option! A support group is an instant group of friends that will understand your struggles and probably a good pool to find an ally or sponsor. Look for purity group in your area or online.
  7. Spouse? – For many of us it’s difficult for our spouse to be our accountability partner. Our spouses are natural allies, but they may have been damaged by our sexual struggles. As your marriage heals, your spouse will be able to help more. If you do accountability with your spouse, make sure you don’t load him or her down with the whole thing. Keep looking for others to help you and shift the load.
  8. Family member? – For some of us, no. Family members are good general support, but it’s sometimes hard for them to ask the tough questions. I do know several sexual strugglers who have a close family member that are helping them. You may have a unique relationship with a sibling, parent, or cousin. If that’s the case, give it four weeks and see how it goes.
  9. Accountability Jumpstarts – At PurityCoaching.com we have a program called Accountability Jumpstarts. We can be your accountability partner for up to three months. We will help you build your key accountability questions, monitor your computer accountability report, and develop a long-term accountability strategy. We also offer and optional spouse’s meeting to make sure we are supportive of both marriage partners. The code COVENANTEYES15 will give you 15% off of this service.

Other Accountability Thoughts:

  • Take a risk
  • Start small and work your way up as trust is earned.
  • Agree to a trial period of 4-6 weeks.
  • Commit to it. No excuses. You don’t want someone who is half-hearted.
  • Keep trying. The right person is out there.
  • Don’t forget it takes time to move from acquaintance to friend to trusted friend.

As long as you’re willing to take steps of courage with the people God has already placed in your life, I think you’ll find a good accountability partner. Remember, you have to be the one taking initiative. You have to make the call, shoot out the email, set the appointment, and test the waters.

You can do it! Keep plugging away until you find the right people to support you and walk deeply with you!

  • Comments on: Where to Find an Accountability Partner
    1. jason on

      Having worked in a courtroom, the last thing I would do in the year 2015 is trust anyone. I have seen people become sex offenders for crimes against imaginary people, porn that embedded in music they downloaded, for having sex with their wife on a beach, taking a wizz in the woods, and a litany of other crazy scenarios. I understand people want to have a pie in the sky attitude towards things but that is not the real world. Do you know how they determine child porn? By eyesight. I have seen men look at legal porn and the girls looked young so they received a child porn charge. I even saw a person receive a child porn charge for turning in someone who was looking at child porn. If you google this on the net, you can find that case. The last thing I would do is trust anyone. Courts do not work like you think they do. Dont ever give anyone ammunition to use against you. It is kind of like the age old adage about divorce court. The sweet woman you married is not the same woman in a divorce court. Sad to say but in 2015 you do not want to give anyone more information about you than they need to. Really think about what I said. We give people sex offenses and destroy lives over crimes that never happen against imaginary people. That is the insanity of what is going on out there.

      Reply
    2. Mixed Feelings on

      I have mixed feelings on this. I don’t trust people and have seen too many people screw over other people. I also have watched porn. To me, it is no big deal. It gets boring after a while. Porn is only a big deal if you make it a big deal. We also kid ourselves — everyone is looking at it. Website traffic clearly shows this.

      But if you want to talk to someone, then that might help. Who knows? I just think that biologically we are meant to have sex. It is a huge part of our chemical makeup. Science shows this clearly. Man wants to fight biology. A biology good created.

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        No doubt we are biologically wired to have sex, but this hardly means we are wired to watch porn. Porn is a far cry from healthy sex. Fighting against a temptation to watch porn is not about fighting biology. There is no healthy biological function to masturbating to porn—not even from an evolutionary standpoint.

      • Mixed Feelings on

        Actually, there is a healthy biological function for masturbation. It is called not going crazy from not having sex. Also, here are several articles that say there are benefits to masturbation.

        http://www.menshealth.com/sex-women/masturbate-every-day
        http://www.webmd.com/women/features/female-masturbation-5-things-know
        http://www.everydayhealth.com/sexual-health/dr-laura-berman-the-health-benefits-of-masturbation-for-women-and-men.aspx

        It is the year 2015. Not 1615. Nothing wrong with masturbating and frankly, there is no difference between masturbating to porn or to images in your head. This puritanical nonsense must eventually end in America. You may think you are making things better but really repressions leads to worse consequences.

      • Luke Gilkerson on

        These studies are really about the health benefits of ejaculation, not the health benefits of masturbation (these article misquote or misinterpret the information). When you look at the various studies on this subject, the results are quite mixed because researchers often assume all orgasms are created equal. They aren’t. Even the makeup of semen is different when you compare masturbation to vaginal intercourse.

        Now, this shouldn’t surprise us: sex is good for the species, so it shouldn’t surprise us that there are built-in health benefits to ejaculation. But then it also shouldn’t surprise us that masturbation (which has no benefit for the species) doesn’t come with the same benefits.

        Once researchers started differentiating between masturbation and vaginal intercourse, they noticed more consistent trends regarding health benefits. Compared to sexual intercourse, masturbation is correlated with fewer health benefits—or even increased health risks—for many health conditions (fewer prostate abnormalities, less prostate cancer risks, satisfaction with one’s mental health, lower depression scores, lessening the likelihood of schizophrenia, improved erectile function, faster recovery from stress, etc.).

        But this is aside from the point of the article (I was merely responding to your it’s-futile-to-fight-biology statement). The point of the article is there are men out there who want to stop looking at porn and accountability is a very helpful goal to accomplish that.

    3. GB on

      Thank you for the science lesson. Very useful information!
      More information that might be helpful to remember (wish I was taught about this)… is that masturbating to porn can lead to impotence, low sex drive, and a loss of interest in real sex. This is information I plan on making sure my children understand at the age appropriate times. If a person is going to make the decision to participate in this behavior, it would be helpful to understand just what you are choosing. Aside from the emotional, moral, and cultural impacts of pornography… lets look at how it impacts your sex life. We all want to feel confident in the bedroom… when porn is involved it messes with expectations, connection, and PERFORMANCE! Some day, I hope we understand as much about the dangerous side affects of porn and how the industry is manipulating and getting people hooked… its a stretch, but similar to nicotine and cigarettes. At one time it was no big deal and acceptable to smoke. If people want to smoke that’s within their rights but we all know the impacts it has on health. Porn comes at a cost, and its just NOT COOL guys. Not cool at all.

      Reply
    4. GB on

      I need to stop saying ‘you guys’… I mean Y’ALL. (Men and women.)

      Reply

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