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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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13 Comments

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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December Week 3
How a Dirty Girl Came Clean

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Studies show more than 20 percent of Christian women are addicted to pornography, and I was one of them—here's how I escaped my guilt and shame.
Freedom from Sexual Addiction

Freedom from Sexual Addiction

To find healing, you have to come out from hiding.
Confronting Sexual Sin

Confronting Sexual Sin

There is no sin beyond God's redemptive healing power.
Shining a Light in the Darkness

Shining a Light in the Darkness

A letter from the editor

ratings & comments

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Displaying 1–3 of 13 comments

Dear FailedAgain

September 11, 2014  4:17pm

You will never find victory with porn with that kind of perspective. 1. You have hurt and betrayed your wife. It is a natural act for her to want to show her body to you - let alone have sex with you! If you are truly apologetic of your behavior - you will TRY to win her back. It is YOUR job as a leader of the household to not just lead the home - but also lead in the bedroom. Meaning - it is your duty to romance your wife in a way that she will want to have sex with you! Some examples will be uplifting her, telling her she is loved and wanted, and maybe even helping around the house. Wake up! You are the man, please have a backbone! 2. Do NOT blame your wife for your porn addiction. What a messed up idea. You are addicted to porn because of your lust - not because of your wife. How devastating for a wife to be betrayed and then be blamed for it! 3. Unless you see the horror of sin, cry out to God, and stop blaming other people for it. You will NEVER find victory over porn.

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LovingAnyways

August 21, 2014  5:47am

I love my wife. I enjoy porn. My wife loves me. She hates porn. God loves our love for each other. A woman should be loved and accepted exactly how she is and so should a man. High sex drive, no sex drive, or anywhere in between, it doesn't matter. Learn what would make life more wonderful for your spouse and custom build provisions for it. Don't try to force a spouse to be something they are not and fly in the face of culture to defend your spouse and celebrate who they are. "... Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law." Romans 13:8-10

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Christina

July 06, 2014  8:05pm

This was a really timely article for me because I was ready to find a way to leave my husband. He's not satisfied with pornography; he looks at every single woman - even takes pictures of them and then shows them to me! It doesn't matter who he is with or where he is. It's as though he doesn't know what he is doing and when confronted, denies it vigorously and tells lies about it - even to himself. There's not enough room here to explain why this article was so very helpful but it touched on everything I knew to be true and I am deeply grateful to Dr Schaumberg for it. I'll follow this advice. I have already prayed for him, for me and for our marriage. I, at least have peace, knowing that only God can fix this. "In Christ alone my hope is found. Here in the love of Christ I stand"

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