Wives: When it Feels Like Your World is Falling Apart | IntegrityRestored.com

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Wives: When it Feels Like Your World is Falling Apart

17Aug

About the Author

Dr. Peter Kleponis Dr. Peter Kleponis

Peter C. Kleponis, Ph.D., SATP-C is a Licensed Clinical Therapist and Assistant Director of Comprehensive Counseling Services in Conshohocken, PA. He holds an M.A. in Clinical-Counseling Psychology and a Ph.D. in General Psychology. Dr. Kleponis has over 18 years of professional experience working with individuals, couples, families and organizations. He specializes in marriage & family therapy, pastoral counseling, and pornography/sexual addiction recovery. He is Certified in the Diagnosisand Treatment of Sexual Addictions by The American Association of Christian Counselors' Light University, by Dr. Mark Laaser's Freedom Begins Here Program, and by Dr. Todd Bowman’s SATP program. Dr. Kleponis has been a guest on several EWTN television programs including Women of Grace, Franciscan University Presents, Crossing the Goal, EWTN Bookmark, and At Home with Jim & Joy. He is also a regular guest on Relevant Radio's On-Call program. Dr. Kleponis travels throughout the country educating people on how to win the battle against pornography through his Fighting Porn in Our Culture…and Winning! program. He is the author of two books, The Pornography Epidemic: A Catholic Approach (2012) and Integrity Restored: Helping Catholic Families Win the Battle Against Pornography (2014). Dr. Kleponis is also founder of the Integrity Starts Here Catholic recovery program for pornography and sexual addiction. He works with individuals and couples from around the United States and internationally in-person, by phone, and by Skype. For more information see his website, www.peterkleponis.com.

Comments (11)

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Diane - December 16, 2018 11:16 am

Hi,

I’m currently having the same situation as mentioned in the article about Karen. “Emotionally, cycled through many painful emotions: anger, sadness, fear, shame, embarrassment” all at the same time. It started with him keeping in touch with his “ex-girlfrind” behind my back, addicted to porn, searched history of life chat, live video chat & caught him masturbating, always lying & always act innocently, always love to drink alcohol without any limit or hiding it from me & likes looking at girls although it will hurt me in front of my childrens. But after 2 years plus now, nothing seems to work out. My relationship with my husband is getting worse than before. We have been arguing & fighting almost every single thing. We kept arguing for like almost every week & we keep silence with a cold shoulder for up to 3weeks without any sex nor talking to each other. Whenever we in our cold & silence war, we would sleep on different beds or do things separately. I’m feeling trapped because I feel like I need to stick by him because I have 2 children who is 11 years old & 10 years old. The thing is, I have a husband who will always denys for the things he had done & somehow he can twist & turn things another way round like I’m in the fault instead of blaming himself. He can sometimes twist things by giving me a kind of smile & him being a very annoyed person. He has a temper that he would likes to push me around & saying many hurtful things to me & he now always shows it in front of both my children’s of what he can be with his temper. He always loved to hit himself or knocks his head on the wall when he is alone at the leaving room. He is from a broken family & now I feels like my family is going into that direction as well. I’m currently feels like my feelings are changing like the love I used to have for him is not the same anymore. I’m always tried my best to not give up & to stay by his side but always falls into disappointment. All I want is to get out of this life without him. All of his ego, selfish mistake had blinded my very own family who thinks I was going crazy, that thinks I’m in delusions & that they had took my to see a psychiatric & I was under medication for a month. I stopped the medication as one of my uncle told me I don’t look pale & unactive & at that time, during my medication period, I had undergo without any feelings of emotions. Now I clueless in my marriage & relationship with my husband. To me I have lost the trust for him, I felt unsecured with him as my husband, I just feel like we are a stranger to one another, I feel used by him for my 5 years of relationship & 12 years of marriage. What should I do? He is always promising to change but he never did, always saying sorry & now he never listen to the things we tried to share & communicate with each other anymore. In need of some advise please, thanks

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    Kim O'Day - February 13, 2019 4:14 pm

    Dear Diane,
    I am so sorry you are going through this and suffering so much pain. It must have been so difficult that you had to deal with the additional pressure from your family. But, Diane, I promise you there is hope. Hope for your healing and hope for your husband and your marriage. The first thing I would recommend is counseling either together or individually, even by yourself if you have to. Secondly, know that your husbands addiction and difficulties are not yours, you didn’t make them, things that happened in his life, early traumas, etc. are usually at the root of these problems. He can heal from them if he gets to the bottom of the struggles, but that is his choice as to when. You on the other hand, can choose today to be healthy and start your own journey towards healing. Please check out bloomforcatholicwomen.com for a great community of women who know exactly what you are going through as well as tips and courses from some of the leading therapists dealing with betrayal trauma which it sounds like you are suffering. Also, please find someone local you can speak to professionally, a counselor or therapist who can walk with you side by side in this daily journey.
    With our prayers,
    Jim O’Day
    Executive Director

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Kim O'Day - February 13, 2019 4:18 pm

Dear Rosemarie,
I am so sorry. That must have been quite a shock. However, believe me when I say there is hope, there is healing and you can rebuild the trust. Please check out bloomforcatholicwomen.com for a great community of women who understand first hand exactly what you are dealing with and tons of great information on how to survive this day by day as the healing begins. Just a quick note of encouragement too, your husband asking for forgiveness is a huge first step on his part. Most won’t.
God bless your journey,
Jim O’Day
Executive Director

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Bea - March 6, 2019 3:43 pm

I am married to porn addict of 40 years I only found out 6 months ago. I cannot tell you how much pain deceit sadness and cheap I felt. He has stopped watching porn. But is angry , verbally abusive and shows no remorse for his deeds . He is kind to everyone else but me. He has not touched me or had sex with me for over 25 years. I stayed because of children and grandchildren I am sorry his messed his mind up on that sick dirt he watched. It has turned him into a very weird person Even though he cannot see it he blames me for being a lousy wife. Which I never was I pray and cry a lot I try to deal with him but I think the porn has taken it toll on his brain and he will never be normal again. I will deal with it I have been lonely my whole married life. Thank god for friends They helped me

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    Administrator - March 11, 2019 11:28 am

    Dear Beatrice,
    I’m so sorry you are dealing with this. It is truly a rampant scourge wreaking marriages worldwide and in increasing numbers. However, there is hope. There is healing possible for you, for your husband and for your marriage. Please check out bloomforcatholicwomen.com for a great place to start. This is an online recovery and support community for women like you, who are suffering from betrayal trauma due to their husband’s pornography use. This will be a great program to help you heal and also to help you gain some practical tips and tools to work on your journey through this difficult issue.
    As far as your husband goes, know this, he is wounded as well. His wounds helped cause his pornography addiction, his wounds keep him there and his pornography use has absolutely nothing to do with you.
    Again, I’m so sorry. I can’t imagine what you are going through, but I do know there is hope , with prayer, counseling, accountability and support you both can get through this.
    May God bless you,
    Jim O’Day
    Executive Director

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    Margret - March 17, 2019 7:57 am

    My situation is similar to yours. I’ve been married to my husband for 32 years. I found out he has had a porn problem his entire life along with an alcohol problem. When I found out he had progressed to illegal porn it devastated me. He’s a truck driver and I found out he was drinking while on the road and using porn. He ended up having a triple coronary bypass along with stents due to his bad lifestyle. After that surgery and the porn use he isn’t the same person. I want to leave him but his health problems have left us in a bad financial way. I feel so trapped and feel like most things he tells me are lies, and many times I feel such hate for him. I feel he has destroyed me with his porn and alcohol abuse.

      Avatar
      Administrator - June 4, 2019 3:42 pm

      I’m so sorry you are dealing with this. It can absolutely feel completely devastating, but I promise you, there is hope. Have you checked out bloomforcatholicwomen.com? I think you’ll find this to be a valuable resource to help in your healing from this betrayal trauma. My contact info is below, and as I completely understand the financial hardship you are going through right now due to your husbands health concerns, I’d be happy to provide you a free subscription.
      May God bless your journey….
      Jim O’Day
      Executive Director
      jimo@integrityrestored.com

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Kimberly Tierney - April 26, 2019 4:27 pm

Hello, I hope to find that you and your husband made it thru the difficult times of porn watching. I have found my husband has been doing it off and on for the whole 26 years of our marriage. I knew that he had playboy magazines when he was younger but I guess I have not thought of him downloading videos on the computer. He is totally ashamed as he should be. I have been crying and going thru all the feelings we go thru when this happens. All I have is God right now and some prayer warriors. My husband wants to be rid of this terrible thing as he describes as despicable and worse. I believe in what the bible says in Romans 8:28 We know that by turning everything to their good God co-operates with all those who love him

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    Administrator - June 4, 2019 3:39 pm

    Dear Kimberly,
    My prayers and those of the team here at Integroty Restored and Bloom for Catholic Women are with you both. Have you checked out our bloomforcatholicwomen.com site yet? It has tons of information, resourcces and a great forum community of women like yourself who are dealing with the aftermath of discovering their husbands porn problem. Could be great place to start for your mutual healing…
    May God bless your journey!

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Mary Elizabeth Hughes - August 31, 2019 11:56 pm

This was an interesting read, and I was able to follow your thread up to the point of,
“By understanding pornography addiction as a disease and not simply a moral failing, Karen could begin to forgive her husband.”

Here, I will have to differ.

It sounds as if you believe forgiveness and trust are synonymous. Forgiving a wrong is easily done through the power of the Holy Spirit; because it is not of ourselves, but of God.

Trust, on the other hand, is earned; and forgiveness is our gift of understanding. I believe it is easier to forgive a moral failing, because we are all of the same flesh. “Let him who is without sin, cast the first stone.”

I also don’t believe that pornography usage is an addiction, nor is it a disease. I would go so far as to call it a condition, because it is lust and therefore a moral failing.

“Choose you this day, whom will you serve…” When all is said and done, it all comes down to choices, where one’s choice can lead into bondage of sin; or some another choice can lead to life.

We are all in the same boat here; we all have to choose. Likewise, everyone has emotional baggage of some sort, and I believe that the general rule of thumb pertaining to porn users is to reinforce the idea that they are helpless. No one is twisting anyone’s arm to click on porn…no one.

Therefore, I believe our choices are a direct response to what we want to do, you and me included; and anyone, male or female, who engages in porn, had already stepped away from their relationship with God and their wives before they ever clicked it on.

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    Administrator - September 4, 2019 9:41 am

    Dear Mary Elizabeth,
    Thank you so much for your comments! We always get excited to see someone is actually reading our posts, listening to our podcasts , etc. and engaging with us!
    I do not believe that forgiveness and trust are synonymous, in fact forgiveness is usually only a step in the relationship healing, a step that must take place before trust can be restored however. Trust will take a lot of work and effort to be restored but forgiveness can be a more short term healing goal. It is true that the Holy Spirit plays a role in forgiveness, but it can also be said, that through the power of the Holy Spirit and hard work by the couple, trust can be restored as well.
    Completely agree that we all have moral failings, however for a myriad of reasons including brain chemistry, endorphin dependence, etc. , we cannot look at pornography usage as simply a moral failing and try to address healing from that perspective. It just won’t work.
    With the average age of exposure now 8 years old when it comes to hardcore pornography, we are setting up a generation of addicts before they even reach their teens!
    The definition of Addiction is : ” a person, activity, or substance used to escape from negative feelings ( physical and / or emotional) despite experiencing negative consequences or being aware of the potential for negative consequences and doing it anyway.”
    Sex and Porn addictions differ from other addictions in that they are hardwired responses in our most primitive brain that we are activating – Fight -Flee-Fornicate and Eat-Sleep-Procreate. These are hardwired ( literally in the neurons), and chemically created in the brain( dopamine, delta FOSb, serotonin, etc.). So when we introduce accessible, affordable(mostly free), and anonymous online pornography to our brain, it becomes hyper stimulated and craving for the “supernormal stimulus”. This is a behavioral addiction cycle and also in the broadest sense of the term, a chemical addiction. Yes, the chemicals we become addicted to are not external to our bodies, like nicotine, cocaine, etc., but rather internal chemicals we produce like dopamine and in fact even brain produced opiods…yes, we make them in our bodies. There are now over 200 brain science studies that recognize the changes in the brain during and because of pornography use. Will everyone exposed get addicted…no, will far too many… absolutely.
    True, no one is twisting anyone’s arm to view porn, or over eat, or drink to much, but something causes these addictions. We must look at the differences between chemical and behavioral or process addictions to start to get to the answer. Impulse, Compulsion, Addiction is the general path, but why. Well with porn and sex addiction, usually trauma in the early life, doesn’t even have to be a “Big T” trauma, but even a lot of little ones affect the brain and our future potential for addiction. So how do you know when it’s an addiction or just a bad choice? Well, it’s not about the amount or frequency, but rather what is happening in the brain. For example, would we ever ask someone, how many drinks does it take to become an alcoholic?
    What we have found for true healing to occur is a combined approach:
    Strong spiritual life and guidance
    Qualified and specialized counseling
    Accountability
    When we combine these approaches, the addict is able to recover and move into the life God has planned for he or she.
    Again, I thank you for your comments and hope you find our material relevant insightful and informative.
    God bless,
    Jim O’Day
    Executive Director

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