Principle 2: Accepting that we need help
The first key to recovery is “acceptance.” We need to accept that we have a problem and that we need help. Otherwise, we will read through the Guard Your Eyes website and Handbook and say : “they aren’t talking about me.”
One member of our forum wrote to a newcomer:
I am considered by many people to be a Talmid Chacham. I tried every eitza there is, both with mussar, sifrei yirah and divrei chizuk. I tried to punish myself and I almost drove myself crazy in driving myself crazy, and in agonizing over how low I was. And the only solace I found was to sit in front of the computer and continue feeding my addiction. Listen up my good friend, you have come to the right place and you will be helped. And it will cost you a lot less than seeing a professional, and you might even be lucky enough to save your good name. But having said all that, you will only be saved if you admit you are an addict! I know it hurts. It hurt and it hurts me too. Yes, I am an addict. Yes me, the father, husband, Talmid Chacham and neighborhood Askan, is an addict. It still hurts me to write you these words. But we must admit it in order to be helped. If you want to keep on riding on the Teshuvah / Nefilla roller-coaster, be my guest. But you will just continue making more addictive behavior neuron pathways in your brain, which only get harder to reverse.
Some people are willing to “say” they have an addiction, but coming to terms with what that really means - and acting like they are ill and need help is another matter.
To quote the Big-Book of Alcoholics Anonymous:
“Acceptance is the key. The addiction is a disease and sobriety is not a matter of willpower. When we stop living in the problem, and instead live in the answer, the problem goes away by itself.”
Truly accepting that we have a problem may sound like a difficult step to take, but it is actually freeing to finally face the truth about ourselves and know what we are up against.