How did I get here? I guess I have to go back to the beginning to really see how. When did I first become addicted to pornography? I'm really not sure but it wasn't something I saw coming or wanted to admit for a long time.
Going back to the beginning I would have to say that it was through seeing R rated movies as a kid. We had the movie "Commando" before I was 9 and I can remember a small part in the film where the actors are fighting in a hotel room and break through the wall into the next room and a girl pops out of the sheets topless. I can remember watching that scene over and over with my friends. What I didn't know then that I know now is those images where the start to an addiction that has plagued me since I was 16.( I am now in my 30's)
My addiction was mostly to "R" rated movies. I looked for the ones that seemed to be filled with as much skin and illicit behavior as possible. I would wait until everyone was asleep and then pull them out from underneath my mattress and go watch them. This continued until just before my mission(LDS members are encouraged to serve a mission for the Church for 2 years, typically from the age of 19 - 21) For those glorious 2 years I was focused and able to refrain from relapses into pornography. I thought I had it beat and returned from my mission with a false sense of safety. Within a couple of months I was into Internet pornography and online chatting. I was single and although I knew what I was doing was wrong I wasn't ready to give up the "high" I got from my digressions. My pornography addiction affected my church attendance and soon I was skipping out when ever possible. I started falling behind in my classes at school. I found my actions and focus was getting as much "action" (the clothes stayed on)as possible with as many girls as I could. It was the only thing that I cared about. Looking back I think I was addicted to kissing girls, and the "high" came from trying to find the next girl, but underneath it all I was still looking at pornography and doing "other things" while I watched. Those feeling I was generating inside me soon took me further down the path of degradation than I ever thought I would go. My addiction took away my moral compass and my sensitivity to the spirit. It left me alone to face Satan and the temptations he was throwing at me. I was of course no match and soon gave in. I fell of a spiritual cliff. It woke me up to what I was doing and brought me back to activity in the church, but I wasn't ready to really face my addiction and because I didn't deal with them the way I should have with in months I was back to my old ways. This life would have continued up and down for who knows how long but God sent me an angel and I was able to somewhat clean up my life and get married.
I thought that marriage was the answer. I was in love and happy. I thought that combining those two things with the fact I was able to finally take part in the scared act of creation without guilt and in the approved arena meant I would be free from my addictions forever and for a time I was. The fact that I had never admitted to anyone including myself (except half heartily to my bishop) that I was truly addicted to pornography didn't seem to matter and I was able to walk away from it without a real scratch. WRONG. After a while I was back to looking at pornography and hiding it from the person I loved most. She of course found out and after a while even though I broke her heart she forgave me and I promised to stop. I told myself that I would and for a while I did but just like always after a while I let my guard down and I was back to my old habits. She found out again and this cycle repeated itself again and again.
My wife could only take so much and after my addiction turned to gambling as well she left me. She didn't move out of the house or have me move out of the house but I saw that I had become a different person to her and she was leaving me emotionally. I was moving out of her heart. I don't know when it was I finally started to wake up but thank goodness it was before it was too late(I hope).
Today. Here I am. I am a recovering addict. Pornography, Gambling, lying, and who knows what other habits I am trying to recover from. I don't show my emotions and and hate talking about it. So I have found this medium as hopefully an outlet to help myself and others. I haven't "given in" to my habits for some time but I am scared that it will happen again and what that might mean for my family. I am done ignoring my problems and ready to face today and do what I have to to make it to tomorrow clean and free from my addictions.