When Your Spouse is Addicted to Porn

Apr 6, 2024

It can be unnerving to find out that your spouse has a porn addiction. This revelation makes you wonder what went wrong in your marriage. However, it’s important to know that you didn’t do anything wrong. You might also feel that you’ve been betrayed. 

Recent studies have shown that women who describe their experience of finding out their husband is addicted to porn is similar to how women find out about their husband having an affair. Most women are shocked to learn that their husbands have been keeping this from them. 

That’s because porn addiction brings feelings of shame, guilt, and secrecy. You might wonder why your husband never mentioned what he was going through. All you want to do is love and support them, which is a step in the right direction. 

On the other hand, it’s just as normal to feel anger and confusion. Porn addiction is not just an obsession with pornography. It’s a serious mental condition that can cause damage individuals and families. 

Signs Your Spouse is Addicted to Porn

There are numerous signs associated with porn addiction. If you wonder if your spouse is addicted to porn, you should be aware of some of the most common signs:

  • Catch your spouse masturbating more than once

  • Decreased interest in sexual intimacy 

  • Porn affects his daily responsibilities and relationships 

  • Increases porn use despite hitting rock bottom

  • Job loss, financial problems, or separation due to porn use 

The Damage Porn To A Family

Porn addiction is a compulsive disorder that can cause devastating effects on one’s emotional and mental health. It’s also detrimental to one’s family, marriage, and children. 

It can have detrimental effects on those associated with the addict. You might notice that you and your children have been emotionally and psychologically affected by your spouse’s porn addiction. Because of this, long-term treatment is necessary for both the individual and their family to recover and heal from this addiction. 

How it Impacts Wife & Children

Both porn and sex addiction can cause serious consequences to one’s life. It can negatively impact their relationship with their spouse, children, friends, and other family members. 

Increased porn usage causes cravings for promiscuous behavior, emotional distance from his wife and family, loss of interest in family life, and cynicism about relationships. This can also lead to infidelity and divorce. 

According to research, porn addiction is similar to drug addiction in which the user gets a “high” every time they look at porn. As a result, they become desensitized to violent and graphic forms of pornography. 

The individual might also normalize the objectification of women and promiscuous behavior. Wives of porn addicts suffer from the emotional and psychological harm of this addiction. Their confidence and self-esteem decrease as a result.  

A study into the wives of sex addicts found that 70% of those women met the criteria for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which is a mental health disorder that develops when a person experiences a traumatic or terrifying event or series of events. In this case, this would be their husband’s porn addiction. 

Your spouse’s addiction can also cause you to feel abandonment, anger, betrayal, depression, distrust, embarrassment, and loneliness. As you can see, your spouse isn’t the only one who needs treatment.

It’s just as important for you to recover from the trauma of your spouse’s porn addiction. Children and teens also experience trauma from their parent’s porn addiction. Viewing porn at a young age can have devastating consequences on your kids later in life. 

They might have a distorted view of relationships, sex, and the world itself. You might also notice that your kids are desensitized to sexual acts and sexual violence. Research has shown that boys who view pornography at a young age can exhibit aggressive and violent behavior toward women. 

The child of a loved one who’s addicted to porn may struggle with mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, lack of motivation, difficulty concentrating, and negative self-image. 

What Do I Do if My Husband is Addicted to Porn?

If you realize that your husband is addicted to porn, you should create an emotional First Aid Kit. This offers self-care techniques and prepares you for long-term healing alongside your partner. 

Your emotional First Aid Kit should include a combination of educational resources about porn addiction, activities and hobbies you enjoy, spiritual practices, and creative and therapeutic outlets. You should also take care of yourself during this challenging time. 

Make yourself a priority as your husband gets help. Avoid alcohol and caffeine, eat a sensible diet, exercise, and get enough sleep. Listen to your emotions and signs your body is telling you.

Breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness activities can help you find peace. Don’t isolate yourself during this time. Rather, find trusted individuals you can connect to, whether they’re your friends, a support group, or churchgoers. 

Birches Health offers comprehensive porn and sex addiction support for individuals, couples, and families. Take a free assessment today. 

Resources:

When Your Spouse is Addicted to Porn

What to know about porn addiction

Pornography addiction: A neuroscience perspective

The Traumatic Nature of Disclosure for Wives of Sexual Addicts

Problematic Pornography Use and Physical and Sexual Intimate Partner Violence Perpetration Among Men in Batterer Intervention Programs

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