…the parched land shall become a pool, and the thirsty lands springs of water…(Isaiah 35:7)

To the Spouse of a Sex Addict

By Rex Goode


By Duane Call

Used By Permission

To the spouse of a Sex Addict (a Child of God who is addicted to Sex in any way),

I do not know your name and that is unimportant. What is important is that I hope I can help you to understand a little bit about your spouse’s problem. I want you to know, before we really get started, that I have asked for the help of our Father in writing this to you. I want you to also know that what is said here is from the perspective of experience, not theory!

I have been a pornoholic for over thirty years. I am not proud of that; but, I am grateful to a loving God that has lead me by the hand and given me answers to my prayers. At first I thought I was lost; that no one including God could or would release me from the terrible hell in which I lived. You see, your spouse is an ADDICT. Your spouse is ADDICTED to something that completely controls them. They have very little, if any, control over the addiction. They are nearly or completely at the mercy of whatever it is that they are addicted to!

Some people are addicted to “socially acceptable” things: overeating, overspending, controlling the lives of others- stuff like that. Others of us are not as fortunate to be addicted to these things that society does not condemn. We are addicted to things like sex, sexuality, drugs, pornography. These things are not accepted by society and certainly not by the Church. When a person finds themselves in this trap it cannot help but affect others, especially those closest to them: family. You are one who is so affected; but, if you understand the drive and the problem just a little bit you can be a great source of help and hope to your afflicted spouse.

I hate to hurt your ego or your vanity by what I am about to say; but here goes: One of the first things that you must understand is that this ADDICTION has very little to do with you. Most likely this comes out of your spouse’s past. Addictions are used to cover up and to hide from the pain of something in our past that we do not want to deal with. Our addiction is in our life to protect us from the blame and the shame of whatever it is that makes us want to “use.” “Using” is defined as participating in our addictive behavior. In my case pornography was to cover the lack of intimacy that my father refused (or was not able) to give me. The point I am trying to make is that you are not part of the problem; you can be part of the solution.

It is doubly hard with this certain addiction (pornography) for the spouse to separate themselves from the problem. After all, my spouse would not participate if I was better in the physical love department, right? This is one of the common enemy’s biggest lies. Remember it does not have anything to do with you. It does not even have anything to do with the level of love that your spouse has for you! It is totally separate from you. Does an alcoholic drinking have anything to do with the level of love for his spouse? Of course not. Many spouses of alcoholics try and take the blame for the actions of their spouse and that is not right either. Your spouse has a “sickness” that needs to be treated. The blame and shame underneath the “using” needs to be dealt with and removed. Then the addict will be able to learn other ways of handling the underlying problem should it arise again.

Another thing that spouses of pornoholics do is that they try and compare themselves to the actors in the pictures or movies. Or they think that every time their spouse wants to show their love for you by being intimate that they are comparing you to the actors. Both of these statements are designed by our common enemy to drive a wedge between you and your spouse; to eventually destroy your marriage. Again, the addiction has nothing to do with you. Addicts “use” or act out because they are in pain and do not see a way to get out of the pain. I remember my wife getting so angry when she found a movie I had tried to hide. She did not need to say a word. I was already beating myself to death with shame, guilt, humiliation, and of course more pain. More pain because I was not strong enough to beat this habit on my own. And much more pain because I had hurt my wife- again. I spent thousands of hours on my knees praying for this terrible monster to be taken from me. I would make promises to myself and to my spouse. I would force myself away from the material every time I saw it. I would white knuckle myself to do what was right. I knew I could do it this time. I knew I would be able to beat it. But, like all addicts, I would eventually wear down just like a piece of granite under a stone saw. I kept failing and falling. Every time I fell I became more bloody from the falling. I knew my wife was hurting- I was causing the pain. I did not know how to stop because every time I was near this material- I HAD ABSOLUTELY NO CONTROL!! The tension inside of me began to make me sick because I was so determined to beat this terrible monster that controlled my life. I stole money, I lied, I did what I had to do to FEED my habit. I was sick– and I finally gave in to the knowledge that I was sick. I gave up on the notion that I could FORCE the monster out.

Finally, I was lead to a therapist that understood my “using” and was able to tell my wife how to be less of an addition to the problem. I was also lead to a Twelve Step Program for Latter-Day Saints. Alcoholics Anonymous is the most successful thing EVER to return derelicts to productive society. Nothing else, not counseling, not behavior specialists, not mind doctors, NOTHING, can even come close to its record. Other groups have splintered off from Alcoholics Anonymous to take care of other addictions; but they all use the same basic twelve steps. A group of addicts who were members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints saw the great success of these principles and said that if they worked they must be “true principles.” And if they were true principles they would be found in the gospel; the scriptures. This program has helped me not only with my pornography problem but with others as well. I have not looked at pornography for a long time now; but if I do, in the future, I know how to “pick myself up, dust myself off, and start all over again” without beating myself and my family to death because I failed.

One last thing: Neither you or your spouse will benefit from this program if you are not ready for it. But, when you are, you will find a group of addicts who can help you. In Alcoholics Anonymous they say “to God as you understand Him.” In this fellowship we refer to Him by His name: Jesus Christ, the Atoning One.


Thank you for taking the time to read this. You really didn’t have to, you know. If it helps then my prayer has been answered. May the Lord of Heaven guide you in your search for happiness. May He be able to bless you with all good things.

Duane Call

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