back to square one
By terrym
4/9/2012 9:55:40 AM
Man I hate having problems with porn and masturbating, I do want to stop, I need to go to a meeting I think. How are they, how do they help?


this is what our meetings are like    
"Hi Terry:

All meetings are held in church building, usually away from other meetings, and usually in a part of the building that is more private, with its own entrance. Above all anonymity is crucial, it is important that participants feel safe coming and that they won't be recognized going into a meeting. Signs should indicate only that this is a LDS Support meeting. There should be signs where to go, at all entrances to the church. The dress is casual, only first names are used. Even titles as Bishop and President are not used in this setting, we are all equals. Even the missionaries go by their first names. The chairs are all in a circle, or semi circle. Interesting note. (Many participants do NOT attend their home ward or stake group, but go as far away as possible to avoid recognition).
The meeting starts by a welcome by the group leader and introduction of themselves and the facilitator. Participants are asked that cell phones be turned off or at least on vibrate. A volunteer is asked to say the opening prayer, (non members X members and dis-fellowshipped members may pray, this is not an "official church meeting")
The mission statement is read. Any announcements are given. The 12 steps are read by the group, each person reading a step, and then the lesson is read, everyone reading a paragraph or two, if someone does not want to read they can just pass. The Lesson usually lasts 10 to12 minutes. The meeting is then turned over to the facilitator. He conducts the sharing portion of the meeting. Each person is given the opportunity to share. If someone does not want to share they just state their name and say that they pass for now. After everyone has had the chance to share, the meeting is opened up for questions. The same rules apply as regular sharing, speak only in the “I form” Questions are only answered by directing comments to the WHOLE group and not to the person who asked the question. We only share what experience we have personally had, we are not there to give advice or fix each other. The remaining time is used up; the meeting should not go over time. Sharing may be about the lesson or about anything going on in their life that might be of benefit. When it is the persons turn they say “my name is _______ and everyone says hi______ then share. The Sharing is a safe place to open up. No matter what is shared, profound or not so profound, at the end of a persons sharing everyone says thanks_______.
Sharing is like a focused subject, testimony meeting. No one is interrupted while sharing, no preaching is allowed; everything said is in the "I" form and not the "you" form. After sharing the group leader gives some closing thought and a closing prayer is given.

I am a recovering addict from a 35 year porn and m addiction. I found out that I was not alone and that I was not uniquely broken. I found a room full of brothers that have fallen down the same pit as I and we work together to pull each other out. I have a testimony of the pornography addiction program the church sponsers. Below is my testimony of it.
I have been associated with the program for 7 years now. The program WORKS! Because, is based on the Atonement. I feel the Spirit so strong in each and every one of these meetings, it is a witness to me that the Lord especially loves the broken hearted. He truly leaves the 90 and 9 and goes after the one, or the group of ones who comprise our groups. Those who come know that this is the right place for help. It is a place where the Atonement is taught in such a way, that those who are in spiritual darkness can behold the light again, and be able to feel the love of our Savior again, and the support and love of those who have also been also been caught in the same snares of this mortal world. The Atonement is taught step by step in a way that can unlock the cleansing and healing power of the Atonement. Going to church alone will NOT cure addictions; I am living proof of that. All my knowledge and decades in the church did not prepare me for the clarity and insight I have since learned, by attending these meetings. I had all the knowledge but did not know how to put that knowledge together to make the Atonement real and personal in my own life to the degree I now have. If you ask anyone in the program they would tell you that this program should be part of every Sunday school curriculum in the church. Everyone needs to know the knowledge found in this program. The meetings provide a safe environment, here a person can share and be completely honest without being judged or ridiculed or shamed. Everyone there, sometimes even including the missionaries, share their same weaknesses. It is nice to know that you are not alone in your weakness, that you are not uniquely broken. That others are going thru the same trials as you are, and in the same boat, who are struggling as you are. As it says in the mission statement, it is through sharing that we solve our common problems; there is no better place to learn what works and what does not work than by hearing others, who are just like you, as they share of their lives with you. As you attend a meeting and are without hope I promise, you will find it. Our meetings are full of Hope and love.

This is a place where one can be truly honest with OTHERS about their problems, and with THEMSELVES. Addicts are good about minimizing and making excuses for their weaknesses. Many addicts are in DENIAL (Don't Even Notice I Am Lying). Our meetings are a safe place where these weaknesses can be brought up and dealt with. It is in these meetings where we practice true Christianity: We mourn with those who mourn and we rejoice for those who are having success. Each of us in the group learns from the successes and yes the failures of others. Many use the support group as an accountability tool, knowing that they would have to confess to the group if or when they slipped. WE ARE A FAMILY in these support groups. We pray for each other, and we miss those who are absent.

Another reason for success is that some addictions like the ones I work with, deals with pornography and there is a lot of secrecy and shame that goes with this addiction. It grows like a fungus in the dark and thrives, but when it is brought into the light it withers and dies. We bring this addiction into the LIGHT in a safe place, because everyone else in the room has the same problem. Addicts learn that the lies that Satan has been using on them are the same lies he uses on everyone else, and once in the light, darkness flees. If the Lord has saved one person from this affliction, AND HE HAS, He will save all, what He has done for one He does for all.
The support group is not a replacement for church or going to the bishop, In fact no one can go thru the steps without working with their bishop and attending to the basics of reading, praying, writing, and attending church. The program is a supplement of the above. I am grateful for this program for what it has done for me. I am so grateful to The Church that is so caring for those of us who are lost and provided this program to help Fathers children.

Hope this gives you some info
your brother harvey"
posted at 17:23:42 on April 9, 2012 by harveyf
"ARP meetings work. I have gained so much hope and strength from going. Try and find a PASG group which deals with sexual addiction specifically where the ARP deals with general addiction.

Go and draw from the strength of those seeking recovery just as you are."
posted at 19:46:13 on April 9, 2012 by rachp
Wow, Harvey    
"I'm just starting out on my journey in battling my addiction, but I hope that I am able to get to a point like you are in. Thank you for sharing. I am hoping to go to my first meeting soon."
posted at 00:12:40 on April 10, 2012 by fatherofone
Yeah, They Work    
"..but don't start off wrong by putting your confidence in them. They are only a group of people. We must as Christian mormons put our trust, hope, faith & confidence in Jesus Christ. We must put him first in our lives, make him our foundation, upon which all other things will be builded on. You can improve the relationship with yourself through these meetings which wil help you live a more meaningful life. But be careful, just watch your self and your progress, the most important thing is for you to improve your relationship with God, which... the addiction isn't helping. Once you get your wounds in front of the surgeon's light where he can see em', that's when he can actually work on them. Remember though, your body heals on your own, and you can't be doing the things that harm. Just follow doctor's orders: Be honest, talk about it (meetings), pray sincerely, read the Word of God, and abstain. And you'll be good!"
posted at 21:06:47 on April 11, 2012 by regal777

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"One of the great myths in life is when men think they are invincible. Too many think that they are men of steel, strong enough to withstand any temptation."

— James E. Faust

General Conference, April 2002