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Question 123

Q: If a woman’s husband is into pornography, what should she do about it?

Asked by: Julie

A: Well Julie, first of all, let me say, I’m so glad that you connected with us, and your question is one that thousands of women ask, particularly because of the ease of access through the internet.

Let me start by saying that shaming your husband will probably not help him. Remember that if he is honest with himself, he already has enough shame. That’s why those who practice pornography always do it in secret, because they know that if someone were to find out, the shame would be absolutely overwhelming.

What you need to do is to come alongside of your husband and help him see the seriousness of his habit—his addiction. Let him know how deeply he has hurt you because of his practices. That’s important for a husband to understand. There’s a tendency on the part of men to blow it off as something that isn’t too important or they minimize it, but men need to know that to the wife it’s a huge issue—and your husband needs to know that too.

Now I need to ask you, is he willing to get help? I hope so, and if so, he needs accountability; he needs a group of men who are going to hold him accountable. There also needs to be an internet program put on his computer that not only blocks pornographic material, but also holds him accountable between men of God. Many churches either have something available or can lead you to a resource they recommend.

However, if your husband says that he doesn’t want to change, if he says he’s going to continue to live this way, you’ve got a really tough choice that you’ll have to make, particularly if there are children in the home. You don’t want them to grow up in that kind of an environment. So something is going to have to be done. There are boundaries that will have to be put in place, so that your husband’s addiction doesn’t affect the children.

Your husband also needs to know that you’re not going to put up with this indefinitely. And so, as my final word to you, both you and your husband need counseling. Go to someone you can trust who can work out a program for both of you, particularly seeking the deep repentance of your husband because what he needs to do is get right with God. Be determined that with God’s help, and the help of others, the future is going to be different than the past.

Click here for our blog post on family internet safety.

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