Fight the New Drug

Fight the New Drug Video: My porn recovery story

***To see my featured talk "How Love Defeats Porn" given at the Catholic Information Center in Washington, D.C. click here. ***

Friday, May 4, 2012

Responses from "48 Men's Thoughts on Porn"

It's been a week now since I put up the post 48 Men's Thoughts on Porn .

Typed millions of times across the world
There are many thoughts going on in my head.

For a first, it seems that a lot, and I mean A LOT (in the thousands) of people have read that post.  Partly definitely was because it was endorsed by Jason Evert (thank you Jason, if you're reading), but I believe definitely it's because it's a rare message from a lot of men that people are hungry to hear.

I'm humbled by the amount of praying that has been going on, especially with the 56 people who requested to join Prayers for Purity and are praying for the men and women affected by this epidemic.  Let's continue to pray!  Join the group even, if you'd like!

I've received a number of comments on this blog, Facebook messages, and long e-mails in reply to this post that are heart breaking, inspiring, and humbling.  Here are most of them:



From guys who want to add to the list:

#49
"Wow... suddenly I don't feel like I'm the only guy on the planet fighting this addiction. Like, I knew I wasn't but I never really felt like I wasn't...

Here are my answers to make it 49

1) Like many of your men responding here, I wanted to better myself if even only out of selfish self-betterment but also because I felt embarrassed in front of God. . .

2) I managed to stop on and off, during the times I was off I noticed dramatic changes in myself, positive ones, I've not only improved my relationship with other people but also my self-image and that is something I find more attractive than any other addiction I can think of, I'd be NUTS to go back to porn . . .

. . .This was an amazing read, I have no idea who you are or anything else about you but I thank you so much for posting this blog."
-anonymous

#50

1.)    Pick a time you were tempted to look at porn, but was successful to resist that temptation. Why did you choose to avoid the temptation that moment? 
I was able to remind myself of how I felt after looking at pornography. It makes me feel like a miserable little man reduced to only a shadow of who I really am. I also try and remind myself that its all just a deceitful lie trying to pull us away from God and our neighbors, transforming us into selfish men. 
2.)    What did you do instead with that time?
I went to sleep!

Ryan G


#51
"1. I choose to avoid the temptation because I dropped a pen, got up to pick it up before I started, and felt my rosary in my pocket. I couldn't do that with the crucifix sitting in my pocket. 


2. With that time, I then took that rosary in my pocket, and went on a long walk praying it over and over."
-anonymous


From guys and what they're going through:


"Hey Matt, 
Me and my fiancée just got into a fight today. It was over my addiction . . .and now my relationship is in trouble. With [the addiction] comes hiding and lying and that destroys the trust between two people. 

...I have just visited with me fiancée a priest and asked what advice he had.He said going to get help is the first step. We discussed some ways to combat this issue, one of them was accessibility---trying to find a way to limit [my] access to the Internet, possibly password protecting the computer and placing a program that prevents pornography and preventing history from being deleted. 
Also I am going to speak with him some more and possibly find a support group similar to AA. 
I will be speaking to a counselor 
And I will continue to pray as much as I can. I know I can't do this alone.
Thanks

Since then I have done several things.

I put a Christian background on my computer, I placed something on my computer that opens Jesus's words when ever I open a site that has sensitive material on it. My fiancée added a program that let's her know if I open any bad sites and if I disable the program. 
I have a bible on my bed,
and I confessed to a priest. 
Also I called and will soon be attending counseling to see if anything else helps and as always I pray."
-anonymous

"Hey Matt,
I'm aware this is probably late, and you have so many messages already, but i just wanted to answer your "for men to read, a request" which i want to say is so awesome for us, I am an 18 tyear old male who has struggled with the sin of Pornography for well over 5 years now, and it has gotten to the point where I am so enslaved to it, and I can't break free, it is destroying me so much. I have tried so much, and I will countiue to try new stuff until i m free of this sin. Up until the Sunday before Ash Wednesday I was unable to go 2 days without watching porn. I gave up my computer and now I've gone 5 days without pornography or masturbation . . . I have recently installed X3 watch  to monitor my computer activity, and gave that acess to three close friends. Using this X3 watch, and knowing that my friends would see that was a motivator. . . Thank you so much God bless - 
-Johnny W.


"Hey man I really liked your post, it is a subject I too have struggled with for many years now. Someone 


referred me to this website today, and I thought I'd share, but i think what your doing is courageous and 


timely, and it was quite a coincidence to see your post today


.http://pornharmsresearch.com/testimony-before-congress-the-science-behind-pornography-addiction/"
-anonymous"

"I sincerely thank everyone for their honesty. 
I feel so much encouraged knowing that I am not the only one fighting the same battle."
-anonymous

"Thanks so much! I ran into this article by accident, but it was exactly what I was looking for to show a friend. God bless all 48 of these men, and all others struggling with this addiction. "
-anonymous

"Funny how just reading through ALL your blog posts became my "distractions" (in a good way) whenever I'm tempted to view porn (which, sadly, has now consumed my being and left me so depressed sometimes). It's been about a week now since I discovered this blog. Whichever path you'll eventually take in your personal journey towards your calling, I hope you will continue to write and share them in this blog. Even if no one seems to notice. Last night when the urges came, I went back and re-read all the brave men's and your "agony in the garden" posts. It "distracted" me again and led me to open my bible. . . So pray I did and the first page I stumbled into was a passage revealed to a king that he will be given another fifteen years to live instead of losing his life that day. . . That time frame, it turns out from my readings, coincides with the life span I'm expected to live (given my chronic condition and present age). Is that God's revelation for me to turn back and seek a holier life? I don't know...but my point is I think He is using people and circumstances as instruments. So thank you...even if it would mean leaving my wife and two young kids fifteen years from now (I'm crying...what the heck!)."
-anonymous

"Hi Matt,
I think what you are doing us more manly than most.
I too struggle with this addiction and I hope and pray that we all are always conscious about our vulnerabilities and addictions. Keep it up!"
-anonymous

"I have been struggling with this addiction for some time. It has been taking over my life, my workplace, and my family. My wife will take my kids and run. Hopefully turning to God to combat this awful disease will benefit me in the long run. God bless the work you do."
-anonymous

From women:

"Thank you SO much for posting this article! As a Catholic young woman, I am so encouraged to know there are good, faithful men out there who are striving to say "no" to temptation and to honor women. Speaking as someone who was in a serious relationship with a man addicted to pornography and knows the devastating effects this has on relationships, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for having the courage to fight this battle. I will continue to pray for all of you and all those who are struggling with this addiction. You are not alone and it is worth the fight! Blessings, brothers!"
-anonymous


"Thank you for helping to restore my faith in men. Pornography use by my husband(he has stopped using it)has left me feeling less than a woman. I'm a mother, sister, daughter, aunt-- but I no longer feel like a woman. His pornography use took something from our relationship I fear we'll never get back. I wanted so much to be all he needed but I wasn't. I suppose, in time, I'll feel better. For now, I force a smile and hide in the bathroom when I need to cry. I don't want him to see me cry, it only makes him feel worse. I am broken."
-Kirsten


"As a girl who found her dad's porn and had to confront him on it, I think it's very important to educate every woman of this growing problem and how they can help. I don't think people realize how big of a problem porn is and how it is destroying families. So thanks for making post like this not to just help the men but also the women who are affected."
-anonymous


"Hi Matt!!! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings with us. I read the whole explanation about it and many of the answers in the post. It really surprised me, as a person and as a woman. It made me think about


my own concepts and practices related to sexuality and gave me a kind of hope and courage to fight for 


purity in whole the meaning of the word."


-anonymous


"For all of you that are taking this head on, thank you! Thank you for your leadership and striving to be the men you were made to be. Together we will change the culture. You can count on us women to be praying and rooting for you!"
-anonymous

-----

To move forward, there's a number of things I want to write about, but it's kind of overwhelming.  Although I no longer struggle as much with the temptation of porn, writing about this takes a toll on me.  I mean, I went two months between posts about the topic because I couldn't get myself up to writing about it again.  Please include me in your prayers among the other men, for our perseverance in our fight, and in my case, perseverance to write.

These are topics I hope/plan to write about:

  • The common denominator of guys successful at living without porn: busy with life-giving activity, prayer, a personal reason
  • The emphasis on patience and forgiveness with ourselves: knowing it's not us alone, but Satan at work
  • The emphasis on momentum: it's not about never falling again, but getting up faster each time we do, and building time between falls
  • Addressing the issues of why we fall in the first place: boredom, stress, sadness/depression, loneliness, looking for love, acceptance, intimacy
  • A prayer network on Facebook for Catholic men ages 18-35 called the CORPS that's not just concentrated on porn, but really just a place for Catholic guys to go to and be Catholic men together.
  • Finally, a list of things guys who have successfully fought the temptation of pornography and what they can do to fight for and bring other men out of the mud


Let's all, continue to band together, in this global epidemic.

Amén.


5 comments:

  1. I'd like to add... as a woman who struggled with a porn addiction for 9 years, I appreciate your honesty about this epidemic that's sweeping our country. Please keep women like myself who are still struggling to recover in your prayers, as well.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I would recommend that you share with everyone a link to the Angelic Warfare Confraternity on your posts dealing with pornography and sexual temptation. A lot of people who read your posts would benefit a lot from joining it.
    http://www.angelicwarfare.org/

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello, Matt! I'm a relatively recent reader to your blog - also Filipino, and we have a mutual friend from NC who went to American University with me. :) I am wholeheartedly seconding Andre's suggestion above. I recently joined the Angelic Warfare Confraternity actually because I stumbled upon one of your 48 men who responded and provided a link to the AWC. (http://www.angelicwarfare.org/)

    For easy reference, here is one of the prayers members of the AWC pray daily for each other:

    The Prayer of St. Thomas for Purity
    Dear Jesus,
    I know that every perfect gift,
    and especially that of chastity,
    depends on the power of Your providence.
    Without You a mere creature can do nothing.
    Therefore, I beg You to defend by Your grace
    the chastity and purity of my body and soul.
    And if I have ever sensed or imagined anything
    that could stain my chastity and purity,
    blot it out, Supreme Lord of my powers,
    that I may advance with a pure heart in Your love and service,
    offering myself on the most pure altar of Your divinity
    all the days of my life. Amen.

    ------
    Just reading the few remarks on your blog from broken, struggling, and striving men and women, I feel a need to explicitly state that this confraternity (that I'm newly enrolled in) is powerful in healing and moving forward in God's grace abd protection. If you haven't already done so, I encourage you to read the "About AWC" page on their site because you may be surprised at how very practical this very spiritual brotherhood is. If you have any questions, I'm sure the AWC Director would love to hear from you, and I'm not kidding because he loves this work. (You may know him from CUA because he is a Dominican priest and philosophy professor there.)

    Perhaps you might provide an easily accessible link to the AWC where it will reach a lot of your readers.

    Evie C.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Evie,

      Thanks for the response. You're one of many now who have mentioned this Web site and this confraternity. I checked it out and it looks legit. We should all (including myself) consider it an option. Everyone I've talked to who's part of it says it has helped tremendously.

      http://www.angelicwarfareconfraternity.org/about/

      Would love to meet sometime if you're in the D.C. area, my e-mail is mattaujero@gmail.com

      Peace,
      Matt

      Delete
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