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Your Husband Looks at Porn: Now What?

Your Husband Looks at Porn: Now What?

Well-seasoned advice from a husband on how to respond when your spouse is struggling
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Typically the event doesn't start with a confession, but by discovering your husband has a secret problem with lust, masturbation, and pornography. Faced with horrifying acts of betrayal, your reactions may range from sadness to depression, anger to rage, to sexual disinterest, to having an affair. Obviously, this is a relational problem between you and your husband; it's a breach of trust with the love of your life. You promised to forsake all others when you said, "I do." Very few couples getting married recognize that all marriages are a fragile covenant consummated by two sinners with seemingly good intentions. While strong love and commitment go a long way, it's never enough—sin is always going to express itself with some level of hurt and pain. It's always the grace of God that ultimately makes any marriage survive unfaithfulness and become more meaningful and glorifying to God.

Whether you've been married just a few months or for more than 25 years, your worst fears are realized when you discover hidden sexual sin. Every moment of joy, satisfaction, and intimacy you've known with the man of your dreams seems to have been shattered. What was real now seems unreal. What was true intimacy now feels like false intimacy. What was a trusting relationship is now filled with paralyzing mistrust. This relational mistrust becomes the main element between you and your husband in the struggle to move forward.

All marriage relationships are complicated. Unfaithfulness takes the normal complications to the tenth power. There's no formula, "Do X, and then Y will logically follow," but instead it's a process of radical change, not only in your husband's behavior, but also in his spiritual, relational, and sexual maturity.

Where did it all begin?

You need to understand that your husband's lust, masturbation, and pornography use did not begin when you "gained 20 pounds," or "lost interest" in sex. Neither is it because your husband is visual and sexually hardwired. Women are sexually hardwired as well and are increasingly becoming addicted to pornography.

Long before you met your husband, his problem with looking at porn began, probably around age 11. Pornography is more accessible than ever, but the problem has become more extensive in conjunction with what has always lurked inside each of us: The drive to "look" isn't an overpowering sex drive or an addiction to sex, but an overpowering, demanding, selfish desire. Pornography, with its inherent ability to be secretive with easy accessibility, uniquely meets that demand. The essence of your husband's condition is an unwillingness to be told what to do spiritually, relationally, and sexually. You need a new man, not just a change in behavior.

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ratings & comments

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Displaying 1–3 of 8 comments

Not Ignorant

February 03, 2014  3:58pm

There are several women I have met & spoken with who have desired deeper intimacy & more sex with their husbands who do not pursue or seem to desire them physically. Quite often (more so then not) porn is in the picture & the woman is completely crushed. If she didn't feel miserable before she now feels utterly and completely worthless after discovering that her husband has chosen an ungodly path in pursuing sexual gratification, even when she has never withheld herself from him but rather been the one seeking/initiating any love-making between them at all. These women often feel as though they've been hit by a truck & then had someone come back with a bat to finish them off. What do women who are experiencing hurt from their husband's porn addiction in these situations do? I agree with a commenter that this is not right> "add to our burden the shackles of being responsible for keeping our husband from not "falling off the cliff." This is God's job not the wife's she's incapable of it.

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edmac

January 17, 2014  3:11pm

I completely disagree with the statement that looking at porn didn't start from lack of sex. I know of people who look at it for that reason. I will not go into detail. I do understand what is being said and I think it is true, but to say people don't do it for that reason is incorrect.

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sinner

January 17, 2014  4:01am

Scott, it's easy to define appeal and pursuit, but it's too fine a line to draw when a man is attracted and then what? I struggled with this all my life, though I've never succeeded in pursuit, but Jesus makes it clear once you even look at a woman lustfully, he has committed adultery. When will you start repenting, instead of spouting semantics? It is better for you to gouge out your eyes than for your whole body to be thrown into the lake of fire. Go figure.

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