Sisters, you are not alone
By dog
9/16/2011 11:32:13 AM
I'm somewhat new to this site, but I've done a lot of reading of previous blogs, and there are several things that concern me. One is how people beat themselves to death for their addictive behaviors, and another is the fact that every sister who blogs here seems to think that she's the only sister who has a sexual addiction, and therefore, she's extremely abnormal and extremely sinful.

I sense that there are a lot of sisters who don't come forward -- neither to their bishops, nor to this website nor to any support groups -- precisely because they perceive of porn, mb, sex, etc., as being "a man's problem", or that if there are women who have these problems, they're not members of the Church. This perception couldn't be further from the truth.

About 2-3 months ago, I watched a BYU television production in which the host interviewed a BYU connected social worker about sexual addictions. The interview went to the topic of women with porn problems, and this social worker said that in a recent study, they found that 40 % (forty percent) of the young people who were consumers of porn were females.

When I spoke to my bishop last Sunday and voiced my concerns about sisters being afraid to come forward because they feel that they're the only ones with these addictions, he remarked that they're also reluctant because they have to confess to someone of the opposite gender. Then he said, and he chose his words carefully, "I've had several cases of this already." He's only been bishop for about a year, and ours is a small ward. He probably only has "several" cases of men with a sexual addiction, including mine.

Decades ago, I was attending a very large student singles ward at the University of Utah. A member of the Relief Society presidency in that ward confessed to me that she had (the previous week) masturbated for the first time in her life and that she was "addicted." I advised her to go to the bishop. This was several decades ago, before "addiction" became the buzzword it is now. BTW, she got married in the temple to a worthy man many years ago. I'm certain that she was not the only sister in that ward who had such an addiction. And I feel HONORED that she would confide in me that way. And I felt no trace of judgment towards her, just compassion, and I told no one else about her transgression. I think that bishops feel the same way when transgressors confess to them, whether they be sisters or brothers.

So if you're a sister -- or a brother -- with an addiction or an inappropriate sexual behavior or transgression, please come forth to your bishop and begin the path to recovery and happiness. And if you feel so inclined, sign up on this website and blog as you wish. We'd love to hear from you.


Wud Up Dog    
"What's your story? We'd love to hear from you too"
posted at 17:02:04 on September 16, 2011 by They speak
They Speak    
"I was logged in under another name, but it wouldn't let me post under that name. I was "ddg", but I had to sign up under another name, so I chose "dog". I'm an old bachelor, and I've have had an MB addiction for decades, but with periods of abstinence. I white knuckled a couple of times, and at other times, I just didn't feel like doing it (for a couple of years or longer).

Nobody suggested that I was an addict until a bishop did about 5 years ago. I had no problem admitting that I was an addict, and tried therapy and group meetings, but they made me worse. Something led me to this site, and I've purchased the 12 step manual and I'm going through that and meeting with my bishop weekly. And I'm ten days clean and sober.

Anyway, I had planned to give my story one chunk at a time rather than giving you a huge autobiography all at once, since I'm much older than most of the people who post here. But I might give a huge bio later this evening or within the next few days.

For now, respect

In the meantime, you might check my response (as "ddg") to TaintedLove's blog "Why, Just Why?!?!". I really wish that addicts would feel better about themselves and know that they're good people -- really good pepple -- but we have special challenges."
posted at 19:17:36 on September 16, 2011 by dog
Sometimes I just feel like stooping down and writing with my finger in the dirt.    
"As a man, as a husband and father, as one who has, with the power of the Atoning Blood of Jesus Christ, escaped the world of Pornography and sex addiction, I can only say this: The Lord has made us in His image, Male and Female. We are fallen creatures and are carnal, sensual and have to deal with one of the most powerful forces in the universe - sexual arousal and sexual fulfillment. And we have to keep this powerful force within the bounds that the Lord has set.

Animals act by instinct. Animals are on automatic pilot and have no choice when their reproductive process is activated. We have choice. We do not have the ability to stop our sexuality. I am not a therapist but I do know that sexual fulfillment in marriage among Latter-day Saints creates beautiful families, well rounded character development, love, happiness, joy etc. etc. What happens when a sexual relationship between husband and wife is one sided? What if there has been abuse, both as a child or as a young adult?

The issue here is MB. It is something that our youth are talking about all the time. It is something that adults are dealing with all the time. Women who never achieve orgasm resort to it. It is common to see it talked about in G rated movies like in the movie "Transformers" that all of our children have seen.

Will it make us go blind? No You single mom's with young boys who are starting to have Nocturnal Emissions, (wet dreams) what do you tell them? Several of the General Authorities have talked about Masturbation in the General Priesthood session.

I am a healthy male, a grand father and I still feel urges to "release". I refrain and one of my tools, as a man is that I consider my "seed" as sacred. Onan in the old testament was struck dead by the Lord for spilling his seed on the ground. He was practicing birth control. This is not quite the same as just masturbating just to get release. What is my point? What do I have to contribute here and still retain the "Spirit"? The answer has already been given. We keep all of these sexual behaviors within the bounds that the Lord has set.

Who am I to judge another? MB has been around since the son's and daughters of Adam and Eve. It is a sign of our fallen nature. Shame and guilt are also a sign of our fallen nature. I get alarmed and concerned when this shame and guilt gets out of control and becomes TOXIC and the person gets locked into a life script that they can't get out of."
posted at 07:29:16 on September 17, 2011 by 3R's
What do you think?    
"As I have thought about the frequency of posts concerning MB and also the frequent mention of it in our PASG 12 step group I feel that it is something that is very prevalent among us. Our Administrator (my mission president so to speak) ( I am an Elder in this program) ...he has asked that when someone wants to "share" that they refrain on mentioning MB as one of their addictions. This makes sense to me. For instance, they say "hello, my name is Hercumer and I am addicted to Pornography, Masturbation and Lust. This has become a trite saying. Everyone says it almost as if it were one of those prayer sound bites like "please bless this food so that it may...." Rather, our administrator suggested that we just say "hello, my name is Allowhishis and I am addicted to Porn."

MB can exist without ever viewing porn. Is it an addiction or a symptom of something missing from our life? I have no answer to this. I listen to Dr. Laura and she has quite a different understanding of what Porn and Masturbation is. Personally, I think that I need to look the other way when I am involved in a moving party for some member and I discover a vibrator under their bed. LOL... Brothers and Sisters, let us go forward and work out our salvation relying wholly on the Merits of Christ. Let us not judge one another. If MB is something that is out of control in your life it is symptomatic of something that is even bigger. MB is not the root of the problem.

Thanks Dog for this post. It has prompted me to re-read "He Restoreth My Soul" by Bro. Donald L. Hilton, Jr. , MD

Thanks again sister, My name is Mike and I am a recovering addict who has been restored, redeemed and in recovery."
posted at 10:17:02 on September 17, 2011 by 3R's
3R'S, I'm a dude    
"not a dudette. Though I've never been married, I've had excellent relationships with sisters and many of them have confided in me or asked my advice on personal (romantic or related) matters when they felt they couldn't turn to others. In turn, I've learned a lot about sisters, about how they think and feel.

My perception is that there are a lot of sisters who are holding back precisely because they're sisters and they are not experiencing the healing power that comes from Jesus Christ and His Atoning Sacrifice. If you go back and read some of the sisters' blogs and responses, they feel that toxic shame (or what I call "grimy" shame) and berate and belittle themselves until they "get locked into a life script that they can't get out of," as you so eloquently put it.

And thank you for your wise words. You and others have helped me to begin unraveling the tangled roots of my problem, whether it be termed an addiction or just a very ingrained bad habit. I feel that I've started on the path to real recovery, not just abstinence, as I deal with the roots of my problem.

As far as whether MB is a sin, a transgression, a bad habit , or an infraction, or an addiction, I don't know. But this I do know, even if they allowed me to have a Temple Recommend and attend the temple regularly in spite of my MB habit, I want a cure. I am SO much better a person without it and I get so close to the Lord when I don't do it. So I want to stop it for good, and I invite everyone else, male or female, to do so if they have a similar problem.

Peace to my brothers and sisters."
posted at 16:09:53 on September 19, 2011 by dog
Dude - my bad!!!    
"Your post is, (and I'm sure of this) read by many who are troubled by MB, both men, women, teenage girls and for sure our young men. MB has been practiced in every culture and clime. To me it is part of the Porn experience. Far too many of our youth and young adults engage in petting and mutual MB.

Plain and simple, Masturbation is a weakness and shows a lack of control. Chronic obsessive compulsive masturbation is a sign of serious social and emotional problems, addiction and all of its attendant evils. Not every sex addict is an outright pervert but all voyeurs, all predators, all pedophiles are deeply into Porn and MB. Many of them buy male enhancement drugs to further their addiction. And the isolation deepens and the loneliness set's in and instead of having the Countenance of the Savior in us, (Alma 5:14) we have the countenance of Shame. I thank the Lord daily for His abounding love and His power of Deliverance. Amen Dog"
posted at 22:23:46 on September 19, 2011 by 3R's
Love this discussion    
"3R's: great post... full of protein... It made me think of one of my favorite quotes is from Spencer Kimball “Sin is the result of deep and unmet needs.”

I wish somehow... we could all understand that an Addict (or anyone who sins) is NOT a LEPER or FLAWED or WIERD or BAD -- we are people with deep unmet social and emotional problems... we are suffering the effects of the fall... and we all desperately need Jesus Christ to heal us. I believe we all will be held accountable (to the degree we understand this in our relation to other people)

Dog: I totally respect you for your concern about women... NOONE is talking about this right now... "secrets = sickness" (systemically and individually) Richard G. Scott gave a talk on the beautiful nature of woman once.. and encouraged men to create 'a private crusade' to build up women and help encourage modesty. I believe women are God's crowing act of creation... and I believe that a woman full of the spirit of God is the most beautiful aspect of this world.

I think it's the flipside of Porn... satan always provides a counterfeit to the real thing... and I truly believe that the beauty of a woman of God can captivate a man 100X more than the fake beauty of a porn star.

I've met a few women in my life that totally accept themselves, and reflect the love of God, and is fierce in her feminine unconditional love. Frankly, besides the love of God and the Holy Spirit... I believe a woman's nurturing love... is the most motivating and powerful force for Good in this world.

I really hope and pray... that we as a church can make strides in this area... so many women have self-esteem issues... and feel like they are not good enough in relation to the cultural norms we are living in (porn or not).

I need to learn much more about how I can build up women... defend them... I think we all could learn more about how to do this... would love ideas if anyone has any..."
posted at 01:52:02 on September 20, 2011 by gracefull
So right.    
"For me, I knew I had a problem. If it was wrong for men then it was wrong for me too. And I see MB as a problem because it keeps so many of us from the temple, from God. I see Porn and MB as 2 separate problems. I know that they have been in my life at least. And they are equally as bad for me. I knew I had a problem but it took me a long time to want to change. Because I knew changing and repenting would involve talking to the Bishop. It's embarassing for a a girl. Especially since the first time I went in, we had to talk about what kind of porn it was: men or women. It's a difficult topic to discuss. For my brother, he knew about half of his friends and most of the world had a problem with it. I thought I was the only one.

So many of my friends would make comments like "why do we have internet filters in girl's apartments?" I don't think it is as prevalent in women but I do think that people need to be more aware of it. It is a problem. And I hate thinking in my head "we have internet filters here because of girls like me".

That is why I love this site. That is why I love the programs in the church. Because it helps us to connect and be united and not feel alone. I hear about girls younger than me who feel alone and I just want to go around the world helping them understand. Helping them see that they aren't a mutant.

Thank you DOG for caring about us sisters. We care about you too."
posted at 19:16:27 on November 14, 2011 by iamstrong
don't be too hard on yourself,    
"IAMSTRONG - I just wanted to reply to your last comment about having internet filters "for girls like you" -- I think you're being too hard on yourself. I can understand some of your concerns about being a girl with this problem - but the reason we have internet filters are to protect everyone. We are sexual beings by nature and now that I have a filter on my home computer (because of my husband's addiction) I feel safer too. I have had things pop up on accident before, I'm sure we all have - and it causes the Spirit to leave. Not only that but all addictions have to start with some exposure somewhere. I wish I would have had a filter a long time ago. I am highly in favor of everyone having one to help prevent inviting that into our homes/apartments/dorms . . ."
posted at 21:53:03 on November 15, 2011 by crushedwife
"I have to agree with CRUSHEDWIFE about your being too hard on yourself. I speak with the experience of many years and I can tell you that probably half of those girls who wonder out loud, "Why do we have internet filters in girl's apartments," are covering something up. You are young and you don't know that people can tell a lie in the form of a question, but they often do. In addition to becoming righteous, you should also develop wisdom, and half of wisdom is discernment.

Please remember what I said above (and the very reason I said it) about 40% of the young consumers of pornography being girls. And these were (I think) LDS girls. Perhaps another 10 percent were lying, and the real figure might be more like 50%.

Whatever, if I were a temple worthy young man (and I once was), I would love to marry someone just like you, someone who has been there and has overcome, someone who understands and is not judgmental, someone who is so good and wonderful that I couldn't help but be a better man for knowing you.

I think that young man is in your future; just keep doing right things and don't give up on yourself, ever. Keep going to the temple, and fight whatever way you have to in order to remain pure. Stay in tune with the Spirit, take the sacrament worthily, meet with your bishop and support group, keep good associations, and avoid evil entertainment. I would avoid movies altogether, at least the ones coming out now. Find alternatives, like DOING things, not just watching them (like skydiving, tennis, hiking, etc.). So learn to DO things, whatever they might be, and you'll find life to be a lot more interesting and exciting.

And I do care deeply about sisters. When 3R'S above mistook me for a sister, I took it as a compliment. I want to be more like them (more like you).

So keep your head up, sister, and become that spectacular woman God intends you to be. And that's a message for all sisters."
posted at 16:41:25 on November 16, 2011 by dog

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"Strength comes from uplifting music, good books, and feasting from the scriptures. Since the Book of Mormon was to come forth “when there shall be great pollutions upon the face of the earth” (Morm. 8:31), study of that book in particular will fortify us."

— Russell M. Nelson

General Conference, October 1988