If Your World Just Fell Apart
For some of you, your world just fell apart. You’re in a crisis brought about by sexual struggles. Here are some helps on what to do and where to start.
If you are a wife – Read Marsha’s blog below to those who are new to sexual addiction.
If you are a husband – Read Jeff’s blog (underneath Marsha’s) to the men with sexual addiction, and check out his Podcast link
Push play to listen to Jeff and Marsha talk on the subject “If My World Just Fell Apart, Now What?”
KEY PAGES ON OUR SITE FOR THOSE IN CRISIS
Jeff and Marsha’s Story
If Your World Just Fell Apart
Helpful Websites / Podcasts if You’re in Crisis
The Hotlist: Books For Those New to Recovery
”My World Just Fell Apart, Now What? – For the Women”
FOR THE WOMEN- Here’s a blog Marsha wrote soon after we started our Porn to Purity site
These are the things I wish someone would have said to me in the first few weeks to follow:
- I am so sorry this is happening to you. This is unlike any pain you’ve ever known. The consequences of your husband’s sin has ensnared you as well. It isn’t fair. You did not deserve this. It is not your fault.
- God has not abandoned you or your husband. He knew this day would come. He has actually made provisions to care for you in very specific ways during this season of your marriage. Seek Him hourly. Write down verses that speak of his loving kindness towards you. Trust His promises. Don’t stop praying. Don’t push Him away for letting this happen to you. Looking back, I believe Jeff getting caught was the best thing that ever happened to our marriage. It was a necessary event so repentance and true healing could began. I’d much rather live in a painful reality where hope exists than in a blissful lie.
- You need to share your pain with someone. Our society and our church has made sexual sin a secret sin, which only makes it more destructive. Find a Christian woman that you can be real with. Let her pray with you and share Scripture with you. Let the Body of Christ minister to you. Some people do not know how to respond to a revelation like this – they may not know what to say. They may not be able to deal with it and their silence will be painful for you. Prayerfully, find someone else that you can confide in. Ask them to check on you daily. When your world is broken, the loneliness is unbelievable but the truth is a Christian is never alone. The Holy Spirit it always there to minister to your heart. And a Christian friend is like the shoulder of Christ.
- Don’t share your story with everyone. Don’t use this as an opportunity to show the world how sick your husband is. Don’t punish him by pointing out his sin to others. Don’t set yourself up as the victim. It’s not that you don’t deserve comfort. You do, but not at the expense of your husband. Be very careful with your righteous anger. In reality, his sin is no different than yours. Prayerfully determine who you should share your story with. What is your motivation to share? If it is to publicize his sin, stop. Let God handle the consequences of his sin. That is His territory. Your job is to focus on the healing power of God in your own heart.
- Your marriage can survive this. Others have. Mine has. It may help to read books from those who have been on a similar journey. I was really comforted when I realized that others had felt similar feelings of abandonment and hopelessness. I was encouraged by what they had learned from the Lord. In some ways, I feel that reading their story motivated me along the path of grieving rather than staying stuck in that pit of hopelessness.
- Seek Christian counseling. Find a Christian counselor who specializes in sex addiction or intimacy issues. It may be expensive, but the insight you will receive from a counselor knowledgeable in this area will be priceless. We struggled whether we couldn’t afford our Christian counselor, but in the end, I didn’t think we could afford not to go. I was determined to address our issues head on. Our entire marriage was hanging in the balance.
- Don’t blame yourself. I can’t speak from experience here, because unlike most wives, I didn’t blame myself at all. I didn’t feel guilty or unattractive. I was just mad. And then I felt sad for my husband, my self, others who were in bondage in secret. But I understand that many women, most women, feel devastated to know their husband was “cheating on them” whether it be physically or emotionally. Be assured, this has much more to do with your husband and how he views himself than it has to do with how he views you.
- Don’t make any major decisions or changes. You are on an emotional roller coaster and just getting through a day may seem a chore. Do not try to make any major decisions regarding your marriage, your future, or your home during this tender time. Because we were in ministry, our denominational leaders pressured my husband to leave the area. In hind sight, the additional drama of selling a home and relocating to another area was not in our family’s best interest at the time. The priority should be on allowing Jesus to do some major spiritual surgery so he can begin to heal your wounds and your marriage. Everything else is secondary.
If Christian counseling is not an option, find out what resources are available to you? Do any churches in your area have a Celebrate Recover y group or sexual addiction ministry? Find out what they have available for the spouses.
Above all, just take it one step at a time, knowing the Lord walks with you all the way.
FOR THE GUYS- This is a article Jeff wrote for the Porn to Purity blog and recorded on Episode 031 of the Top Tips For Sexual Purity Podcast. CLICK HERE for the MP3 file of the show
My world is falling apart – Now what? When the bomb goes off in your life, things are hazy, you are in crisis, your world begins crumbling. Maybe your spouse leaves you and takes the kids. Maybe you lose your job. Maybe your friends are distancing themselves from you. Maybe even people at church are not responding well to you.
Here is a HOT list of things you’ve got to focus on, right now!
1. Realize You Are Not Alone – The fact that you found this website and this blog is evidence that many have gone through it. A majority of men have sexual sin in their lives. A majority of marriages are affected at some point by sexual sin.
2. Talk to Someone about it – This is critical. You have no idea how important it is that you talk to someone! You need to find a Pastor, counselor, best friend, or a Sexual Addiction group that you can talk to. Tons of people go through have experienced what you’re experiencing, and you need to talk to them.
3. Stop Your Bad Behaviors – Parts of your world are crumbling, yes. And consequences will hit. Things will probably get worse on their own. But if you decide it’s no use, you should just give in to the wrong behaviors, you might as well just go on a sexual binge, you’ll really make things worse.
4. Don’t make any big decisions yet – You’re in crisis, and whether you know it or not, you’re not going to be able to think straight. This is why you’ve got to talk to someone quickly.
5. You’re Problem Developed Over Time – You may be wondering, “How did this happen?”, “I have no idea how I got to this place, or into this relationship” When you really look at it, you do know. We make a series of small choices with our behaviors. And our minds have been lustful, fantasy-driven. When we start acting out, it doesn’t take long to start crossing major lines.
6. Things Will Probably Get Worse Before They Get Better – Some of the truth about your sexual sins have gotten out or shared, but the consequences have not fully hit yet. You are starting to feel the guilt, regret and experience some of the consequences, but the consequences of years of bad behavior are deep and wide.
7. No Problem is Too Big For God – Your slide into sexual behaviors were not a surprise to God. He may have been keeping you from hurting yourself and your family any worse. He knows what’s going on. He’s still in control of the universe, and can be in control of yours. He loves you. He is able to help you dig out of the crisis. Your are not promised a rosy resolution to this, but you are promised God’s presence