Desert Solace co-founder and family liaison Jerri Jorgensen explained how, for those struggling with pornography addiction, sometimes ‘letting go’ can be a step towards recovery.
Jorgensen said that it’s important to think of addictive substances and behaviors as just one of a number of options for dealing with stress and negative emotions.
Those suffering from pornography addiction are often viewing pornography compulsively as a way “to avoid, to escape, to numb the pain” said Jorgensen. People who are addicted turn to their substance or behavior of choice when their negative emotions become difficult to bear.
Jorgensen said that shame fuels sex and pornography addictions more than other kinds of addictions. As a result, when people with a pornography addiction try to “resist” watching porn by telling themselves that they “mustn’t” indulge or that they’re “bad” for wanting to watch porn, that can feed an “addictive cycle.”
People who act on their addictions “feel like a piece of crap again because they’ve acted out,” Jorgensen said. “The pain comes in again. What do they do to relieve the pain? Act out again. That’s what we call the addictive cycle.”
Rather than telling themselves that they “must” stop viewing pornogrpahy, Jorgensen suggests re-framing pornography use as one of several options available to help them cope with their emotions.
“We recognize that (the addiction) is there,” Jorgensen said. “It’s not that we run to it. But if we realize it’s there, and we go, ‘Huh, this is an option for me. I can definitely do that. But if that’s an option, so is this (other, more healthy behavior).’”
Desert Solace seeks to give clients the ability to understand and cope with negative emotions such as shame. They also help clients find healthy ways to express those feelings without using addiction to mask them.
“When we let go of that resistance, our world opens up, and we have options,” Jorgensen said. “We live in the world of possibilities. And sometimes we just get this tunnel vision that we think it has to look a certain way. Our lives don’t have to look any certain way.”
Once clients let go of their vision for the “perfect” version of themselves and their lives and start learning to love who they are and the world they live in, the need to turn to addictive substances will often subside.
Jorgensen said Desert Solace encourages clients to find out “what works for (them).”
“What works for me in this stage in my life is sharing my story and assisting other people,” Jorgensen said. “And letting them know that there’s hope.”
Desert Solace is an inpatient addiction treatment center in St. George, Utah. Desert Solace specializes in the treatment of pornography and sex addictions. Additionally, they offer treatment programs for gaming, gambling and substance abuse. Their inpatient facility for porn, sex, gaming, gambling and substance addictions features professional, licensed counselors, a professional chef, equine therapy and more. With ongoing outpatient support for patients and their loved ones via phone calls and online messaging, Desert Solace believes in involving the client’s family in the pornography and sex addiction recovery process.
Note: Article contributed by KHTS AM 1220 & 98.1 FM
Pornography Addiction And The Law Of Nonresistance
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