It is odd to think about porn in terms of addiction. I am in no position to say whether or not porn is an addiction, however the language of recovery helped to conceptualize the process I needed to go through in order to change.
Recovery came with a price. Getting healthy and walking in sexual integrity (integrity in general) cost a lot. There is no way to spiritualized this cost. I had to pay it with tears, confession and accountability.
Recovery’s price is brutal honesty. Healing demands confession. The more I healed the more I realized how sick the system in which I lived. Granted I was a part of its creation.
At first the ex-wife participated in recovery. She went to therapy and attended meetings with me. Once recovery demanded that she stop being a victim she stopped. When recovery asked her to take responsibility for her own chaos – recovery for her ended.
So did the marriage. The healthier I got the angrier she got. By ’08 it was done. We limped along pretending but in reality it was dead.
I reached a point where my sanity required her recovery – I couldn’t maintain soberity and live in a system that resisted honesty, boundaries and integrity. For her part she found counselors that sympathized and encouraged her victim mentality.
For 3 years we pretended all was good. But it wasn’t. I was ready and willing for emotional and spiritual intamicy. She wouldn’t, she couldn’t – unless the system was sick she was unable to function.
I made one final plea. We rushed to counseling to somehow magically fix it. Her response: “I found some one else.”
It was done – the coffin was nailed shut. The pain in my kids eyes, the fire growing in my belly, and the hatred in hers – it was done. She had become evil and to her so was I.
During this time (between ’09 & ’11) I spent a lot of time in isolation. God had given me the time to think, pray, and grieve. I didn’t understand at first what I was grieving but soon realized that it was the death of two lovers: porn and marriage.
Divorce is never right. I sinned against my wife. I suppose she had every right to hate me. I sinned when I signed the final divorce decree. No matter how I justify it or rationalized it the death of the marriage was evil.
From the beginning we never could connect emotionally. From the beginning a tempest raged between us. From the beginning we compromised. God was an after thought. God was an illusion. We were self directed heathens pretending to be godly.
We both stabbed each other’s heart. We both cut each other to the core. I was bad and so was she. For all my wrongs I accept responsibility, and for the wrongs against me I extend forgiveness.
I do not regret for one moment ending that marriage. I do not look back and wish it could have been different. I feel pain and sorrow at the pain in my children’s eyes. I am saddened to see how depraved and sick the ex-wife’s life has become.
So yes, recovery cost me a marriage.