Friday, April 22, 2011

There is Hope

So. I am an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and have been my entire life. My struggles with pornography began in 2003 out of a mix of boredom and curiosity. For years now, I have felt like one day I would share my experiences, and that from the things that I've learned, that I would be able to perhaps help just one other person in their struggles. My intent is not to talk about the details of anything, but just how the gospel of Jesus Christ has and is changing me, and helping me through this painful addiction. If you are a woman who is struggling, or know of a woman who is struggling with pornography, let me know. I know that it is difficult, and I know that having someone to talk to can make all the difference in the world. So this is my attempt to reach out to you. If you are a single woman, you are in good company cause so am I. I don't know what it is like to have this struggle in marriage, but if you are married, hopefully there will be something here that can help you too.

As for where I am currently, about two years ago I got myself to a very good place. I went about a year without any slip-ups or anything. I was happier than I've been in a long time. Then about a year ago, I began to slip back into things, although not to the extent that I had been involved previously. So for the past year I've felt like it has just been hanging around a little bit, and I'm ready to be done with it forever. It has been almost three weeks since my last slip-up, and I am working with my bishop to become worthy again to go to the temple. I love the temple with all my heart. I want more than anything to be worthy to be there, and to be worthy of being in the presence of my Savior. His Atonement is what has got me to the point I am today. Nothing else in this world could have taken away the guilt and pain I have felt, and replaced it with feelings of pure love. I know He loves me. I know He loves you too. It took me a really long time to come to know that, but now I know.

Speaking of the Atonement, I have gained a new appreciation for it recently. Because of a line in my Patriarchal Blessing, I had been praying for the Lord to shelter me from Satan and his temptations. I just pictured myself curled up in the loft of a big, sturdy, metal barn (which was the Savior protecting me). Everyday I would pray for that shelter, and everyday I would give thanks for that shelter. It got to a point where I realized that I couldn't just stay curled up all the time in that loft, because I would never grow. I would never become stronger. So my prayers changed. Now I pray that the Atonement will strengthen me from the inside, that it will change me, and who I am, so that I will be able to overcome the natural woman that is in me. Everyday I pray for the Atonement to change me, and everyday I give thanks for the changes that I see. Some days they are very subtle, other days they are more noticeable, but everyday the Lord strengthens me.

So anyway, that is my latest lesson learned. I know there will be many many more, and I am excited to have a place to share them. Again, I hope that someone might be able to find some sort of strength from what they find here. I would absolutely love it if I could help just one person, even if its just a little bit, so please, let me know if there is anything I can do. I've been there. I understand. And I know that it is possible to come back, and to feel loved again.