• Shayden Bertagnolli

Dear Wife of a Porn Addict,

To whom it may concern,


I would like to send my heart-felt compassion to you for enduring such a hardship. There are few things an innocent wife can endure that compare to finding out, catching your husband, or being admitted to that he has a porn problem. To you is given a boulder, to which only you get to carry. It's heavy, bulky, burdensome, and exasperating. You never agreed to receive such a gift, yet there it is, hurting every muscle, scratching every vulnerable spot, and ever reminding you of its presence.


If you're like most women, you don't know what to do from here. It's likely he's experiencing the greatest freedom from shame he has ever experienced, because his secret is now over. Yet there you stand (or sit), hurting at every provocative girl on TV, movies, and more. You sting each time you see him even looking down at his phone. You can't sleep if he's not in the room. You feel insecure at each request for sex, not knowing if he is comparing you to what he's already viewed on his screen. You are insecure about you now...period. You become scared once again, when he promises not to do it again...for how could he go from addiction to nothing. You cringe at thinking you are the one who has to police him, as if he is your son. You attend church, get-togethers, outings, vacations, and at every female passing by you want to glance and see if your husband is looking. You feel lonely with this because you are ashamed to talk about it with others. There are times you can't even ask "How are you?'' for fear of what he might say. You wonder how to trust again. You second guess why you might not have ever seen this coming, or if he had been lying during the entirety of your relationship. The list goes on.



For you, life has now changed. Trust broken and integrity in question. What do you do? I would love to give some advice. YOU ARE NOT THE PROBLEM. You are not to blame. You are not the reason. You are not the excuse. You have done nothing wrong. Yes, your relationship might be slipping and not be where it needs to be, but that is different. You see, pornography isn't so much about lust and perversion, as it is about loneliness and abandonment. Your husband is lonely due to his own choices. He is scared to death you and/or others in his life will leave him if this is found out. This is why the secret has existed. This secret has created a vicious cycle, ending at shame and despair, and starting again at running from the shame and despair using pornography. The pornography numbs the feeling of being rejected. It numbs the senses he has concerning morals and values. He becomes a slave to it, and nobody knows it, not even himself. All he knows is he can't stop doing this alone.

You have to ask yourself a question...are you committed to him or not? Are you willing to see this through? Do you have ultimatums, time limits, or deal-breakers? From my experience, when a wife is able to work through this with him, success is very likely. I have seen and heard from many people who attribute much of their recovery from sexual addiction/problems, due to a supportive wife. You might be asking yourself...that's great and all, but who and the hell is going to support me...I'm the one hurting...not him? This is the irony. His recovery shows itself in his willingness and outward attempts at helping you recover. His recovery lives and dies in his becoming more and more vulnerable with you as time goes on. This requires active recognition of your inner experience on a daily basis. This requires honestly accepting the pain he has created and doing something about it. You see, this is likely something he has wanted to do since the very first time he "messed up," but was scared to tell you and move forward, thus the cycle began. His recovery lies in his restitution of your pain. He cannot control how you accept his attempts at restitution, but it is his to try. The more this occurs the greater will be his ability to love you and himself again. Loneliness and abandonment fears will diminish and the need for porn can subside.

It's easier said than done, and therapy is very useful for this. You will breath softly again. You will come to trust him again. It's a problem we all are experiencing in one way or another. Unfortunately, your's is especially experienced on the front lines.

Sincerely,

Shayden J. Bertagnolli

0 views
Contact Motyv

© 2020 - Motyv. Shayden J. Bertagnolli. 435.315.2520. shayden@motyv.org. 2485 Grant Ave. suite 315, Ogden, Utah 84401

  • Facebook
  • Instagram