Today I finished reading another book Derek recommended I read called “Clean” by Douglas Weiss PhD. The goal of reading this book was also to better understand people like Derek who suffer from sexual addiction.
The book opens up by sharing some startling stats: 25% of all internet searches entail pornagraphic requests, 42.7% of internet users view porn, 35% of all downloads are of porn, 51% of pastors say internet porn is a temptation for them, the average age of kids viewing porn for the 1st time is 11 and 90% of kids have viewed porn online. These stats are very troubling.
The devil can seduce and reduce you. Unfortunately not enough churches address this growing issue. This causes men to not even realize he is in a battle, hence they have no plan. A big way to fight this battle is have an accountability partner you can trust. (I am Derek’s accountability partner) Another way is self-imposed punishment such as eating a raw onion or no cell phone or even wearing a rubberband on your wrist and snapping yourself to remind you to be clean. Some other people try to combat the temptations by reciting a Bible verse each time they are tempted.
A formula the author uses in the book is U + P = D. U is “you”, P is “porn”, and D is “destruction”. The more you feed yourself porn the more destructive your life becomes. Not only that, it affects your relationship with your kids, friends, family, etc… In fact, 94% of kids from a man with this problem have: trust issues, difficultly in emotional intimacy with their spouse, and have trouble expressing their feelings. However, if one follows U + C = L, where U is “you”, C is “clean”, and L is “life”, one can prosper.
The author discussed the basic 4 steps how a person falls prey to sexual addiction.
1. You create a high chemical reward when you release sexually.
2. You bond or connect to that image.
3. Your body stores this bond so you are attracted to that person or image in fantasy or realty.
4. Your environment or fantasy world can recreate this landmine.
Therefore, when one sins sexually, your body stores these things for better or worse.
Another great part of the book I thought was helpful is when the author said when one starts looking at a woman lustfully as an object, remind oneself that she is 3 dimensional and not just 1. She is another human, a mother, a daughter, a sister in Christ, etc…You see them in relational context. This will make it much harder to lust after them.
The church needs to change their “DON’T ASK, DON’T TELL” policy of engagement with sexual addiction because it causes this disease to grow exponentially in the church. The church needs to initiate programs to hold people accountable, provide a way to confess when they mess up.
I am glad I read this book so I can continue to learn more ways to help / understand people suffering from this disease. Perhaps I could take some courses to be a sexual recovery coach once out of prison.