I Have Changed My Ways
After much soul searching and deep honesty, I finally feel ready to share this story as I have a little bit of sobriety under my belt (no pun intended)
I was trying to write out my story now for about a week, but I had a lot of trouble doing so. I found myself repulsed by how I had let myself get this way. Since I started writing, all that keeps pouring into my mind is, "How sick have I been?" and "what did I do to my wife?" I question whether my wife can ever forgive me, or if I can even forgive myself fully. I hope that getting it all out will help in healing me.
The beginning of my story is one of much shame. When I was little, between the ages of 7 and 10, I was molested almost every day by a close family member. This caused me to never learn what true love meant. I could only relate to "lust". When I was around 17, I started to look at p**n and did that very frequently. As I got older, it was something I would do as a stress reliever.
I got married and had my first child, and all of a sudden I felt stress related issues hit me like a ton of bricks. I started looking more and more at p**n. After being married for about a year, it escalated from porn to prostitution. I acted out and went to inappropriate places. I got hooked and I couldn't get out. I battled with the fact that I was cheating on my wife, however I couldn't stop.
About year ago, I struggled hard to kick the habit. It didn't work. I then acted out even more; more porn, more prostitution, etc...
It seems that Hashem had seen my efforts to stop though, and He stepped in. Not long ago, my wife found out and confronted me about it. That was my real wake-up call. She was terribly angry and almost left me right then and there. But when we started talking again she said, "we will get through this together and I will help you find help".
I ended my acting out and I have been clean now for 33 days since finding this website together with my wife.
It is very hard to admit all that I have done, but when you release everything about yourself to others, it becomes clearer in your own mind. The more you tell and the more honest you are with yourself and with G-d, the more it helps.
I admit that I used to lust for women to make me feel better. What I did not realize in all of this, is that my sex life had never been about deeper feelings like true love. Nothing was an "emotion", as my emotion had been damaged by the molestation I endured as a boy. I never thought about the other person for real. She was just an "object" for a physical act.
From now on, my actions must be more then that. They need to actions of love, not just lust. I need to have compassion, and most of all, my heart needs to be in what I do.
I have changed my ways with the help of this website. I have worked on the 12-steps and I am reading the Handbook very slowly and carefully. I pray and talk to G-d a lot. I work on myself by learning to LIVE, and by just realizing what is around me; my wonderful family and all that surrounds me in life - like taking an extra second just to look up at the sky. I am also learning to feel G-d's embrace at all times, especially when things go well, like when I make a good business deal.
Today I am living with the knowledge that I am clean, and without the constant feeling that I am destroying my mind and soul. I was given a "wake-up call" by G-d and I need to use it in the right fashion.
I am thinking positive and living every second. I'm working hard on letting G-d take control over everything, and when I make a decision I ask myself, "is this something that G-d would approve of?" My heart - and all of me - feels so much better.
I look back now and feel very degraded that I once had to do all those things to feel good. I should have just stayed at home and not looked elsewhere, but I can't do anything about the past. I can only move forward and pray that with G-d's help, everything will turn out OK with me and my marriage.
I am living life to its utmost now. I put my life in G-d's hands and try to focus on that which is good and decent about me.
With G-d's help, I WILL WIN THE BATTLES AND THE WAR!!