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    How My Husband’s Porn Use Affected Me

    Pornography is an epidemic in our society, our churches and Christian marriages. Just like our previous post said, it can be assumed that virtually every man has either engaged in or battled with pornography at some capacity. 

    I want to share with you my experience as the wife of a man who struggled with porn. 

    I’m bearing my scars so that you can learn how best you can understand and love your own wife through your joint journey in battling porn. 

    Gospel First 

    If pornography does anything well, it is certainly good at exposing how seriously the Gospel needs to be taken in marriages. For me, learning of my husband’s pornography use was a crash course in how devastating sin can be, and how sacrificial and costly grace really is. 

    Even before my husband’s confession, our young marriage was battling. Something was wrong and I couldn’t put my finger on it. 

    Throw in the porn confession, and my world shattered. For me, and for many women, porn use is akin to an affair and causes the same feeling of deep betrayal. For a long time I experienced symptoms very close to PTSD called betrayal trauma from the shock.  

    Though before the confession we had issues, I completely trusted my husband. If I caught him doing something suspicious, I took his word that he wasn’t doing anything. I felt me extending such trust was part of my trying to cultivate a loving and strong marriage. I wasn’t expecting for my trust to be broken in such a way. 

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    This was all made worse by the fact that I generally had felt neglected in our marriage and that my needs emotionally and romantically were not met even though I felt I tried so hard to please my husband. 

    So, the long and short of it is that it was tough. But I didn’t realise how blessed I was. While my husband wasn’t perfect, he repented of his sin in front of me and before God. He was willing to put it away, to fight it. He didn’t want to sin against God or against me. Not many women get this type of response from their husbands.  

    The road to recovery wasn’t easy or perfect. I still felt that my needs weren’t being met and that things weren’t being done to recover trust that I needed him to do. I was angry, bitter and insecure. There were times I just wanted out and would make it known to him. In many ways, my husband’s sin brought out the worst in me also. 

    Beauty of Grace 

    My husband’s porn struggles wrenched out my greatest insecurities and left me feeling raw and vulnerable for a long time. I felt that porn was an ugly demon that invaded the supposed sanctuary of my marriage. 

    But on reflection it also exposed more issues that I feel were worse. While his betrayal was shattering, it couldn’t have been a more fitting depiction of what my sin is like before God. My sin is so great that the Son of Man had to be nailed to a bloody cross and bare God’s hellish wrath for my offenses in His own body. 

    Before I had even confessed my rotten and vile sins before him, he took it upon Himself to pay the penalty for them and call me to repentance and forgiveness while I was still a sinner and ungodly.  

    His grace is so great that He was pleased to make an unfaithful and dirty sinner like me pure. 

    It would take me a while to understand that my husband’s porn use was a living picture of the Gospel in my marriage. It was an opportunity for me to recognise my own sin and selfishness, and experience extending sacrificial grace to him like my Lord did to me. My husband didn’t deserve forgiveness, but I had no right to withhold it. I had an opportunity to love him with a love that Christ loves me with. 

    Sadly, in many ways I didn’t take that opportunity. I would instead prove to myself constantly my own need for the Gospel and God’s grace in my life through my bitterness, idolatry and lack of forgiveness. 

    So husband, love your wife. Try to understand how her heart may be breaking. Seek to meet her emotional needs. Find out what she wants you to do to recover that trust. Make pursuing her a priority. But most of all, love the Lord. Seek Him first and live in repentance. Though you can’t go back, the grace of God can carry you and your wife to a better place of forgiveness and maturity, if you will humble yourself.

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