God, I can’t do this. I can’t stand living another day enslaved to this addiction. I try and try and try to stop, but I can feel myself beginning to drift toward the inevitable.Long gone are the days when I had myself convinced that I could manage this. I hate myself and everything that I’ve become. How did I even get here in the first place? It seemed so harmless at first. Just some harmless looking. No one needed to know. But after awhile the quick looks turned into staying up half the night binging. After that stopped giving me any sense of satisfaction, I started to fantasize about things I swore I’d never do. Now I’ve been doing them so long I can’t remember much about life before. I have put my family, my job, my life, my entire existence at risk. I hate myself and everything I’ve become. I want to die. I will never change. I can’t do this.
God, I can’t do this. I can hardly breathe. Ever since I found out what he’s done I’ve been walking around in a daze. I don’t know what to do next. I can’t eat. I can’t sleep. I keep asking myself what I could have done to prevent him from doing what he did. I go back and forth between wanting to kill him and wanting to cling to him and not let him out of my sight. How could this have been going on for so long and I never knew it? Am I that blind? That stupid? I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. Forgive him? Divorce him? And what am I supposed to tell the kids? I need somebody to tell me what happens next. He has ruined everything. I love him, but I hate him, too. I don’t know how I’m supposed to make it through the day. I can’t do this.
God, I can’t do this. This is not what I signed up for when I went into ministry. It wasn’t supposed to be this hard. What ever happened to preaching the Word and having people obey it? This is so dark, and there’s so much hurt. I don’t know how to care for him and get him the help he needs without making her feel like I’m going too easy on him. And how do I validate her anger and all she’s feeling without just kicking him out of the church altogether? Is it even possible to minister to them both? I want our church to be a safe place for people to be honest, but I’m not sure of how to accomplish that. And if I do, how will I ever keep up with all the hurting people? I wish I could find a way to get ahead of this problem; it seems like by the time I find out about it, the damage seems irreparable. This is too much. I can’t do this.
You’re right. You can’t do this. This is too much for you. You can’t manage it, heal it, or fix it. On your own.
But I haven’t left you on your own. I am with you. I am walking with you every step. When it seems like I’ve abandoned you, I haven’t. I know it doesn’t feel like it right now, but you haven’t been left to figure this out yourself.
I will help you. Exactly how and what that will look like isn’t something you can know right now. I’ll care for you in a number of ways, using other people along the way. I can provide help for you through wise counselors and trusted friends.
Now I want you to take a step. I know you’re afraid, maybe embarrassed, possibly convinced that nothing will change. Reach out to someone. You need relationships. You need to connect with people who will show you my love and grace. I promise you that even though you feel alone, there are people who understand. Reach out.
I am here. And I can bring healing.
Give it time.
We’d love to help you know how to take your next steps. Contact us and let’s talk.
Greg Oliver was a worship pastor for 15 years before his secret addiction to pornography and sex was exposed in January of 2009. Since then he has been on a journey of recovery, coming to know God better and experiencing His grace like never before. He and his wife Stacey have experienced deep healing & restoration within their marriage, and through the ministry of Awaken they walk with individuals, couples, and ministry leaders to help them experience connection and healing in the midst of sexual brokenness.