Desert Solace co-founder Jerri Jorgensen explains how courage to come forward is the first step towards recovery from pornography addiction and other behavioral addictions.
Officials from Desert Solace believe that both behavioral and substance addictions are fueled by an underlying desire to escape shame and pain. For pornography and sex addiction, specifically, shame is both a root cause and often a result of engaging with the addictive bahavior.
“Usually addiction of all kinds is ‘I’m not enough,’” said Desert Solace co-founder Jerri Jorgensen.
She explained that those who fall prey to addiction tend to feel like they aren’t measuring up to the expectations of family members, friends, religious leaders, bosses or themselves.
“And that’s where the pain hits; that can be the trauma,” Jorgensen said. “And then they act out.”
With pornography addiction, specifically, indulging in the addictive behavior is made easier by technology. Because pornography is easily accessible on any internet-connected device, users don’t need to physically go to a store to purchase anything, making the process of obtaining pornography failry anonymous.
This anonymity makes pornography addiction a particularly isolating addiction in addition to being one in which shame plays a major role.
In order to overcome that sense of isolation and shame, one of the most important things a person can do is to come forward and discuss their problems with someone else.
Jorgensen said that “eight, nine times out of ten,” when those suffering from addiction open up to their loved ones, they are positively received. The largest hurdle for most people, Jorgensen said, is building the courage to have that initial conversation.
“The courage is there; sometimes we just don’t tap into it,” said Jorgensen. “We’ve got it. We have love. We have peace. But how often do we tap into those things? They’re always there; we don’t even have to create it.”
Once a person is able to discuss their pain with other people and learn how to effectively communicate and set healthy boundaries with their loved ones, they can chip away at the shame that has been keeping them in addiction.
“This is how we shift the world,” Jorgensen said. “Coming out of our shame, having the courage to reach out and say, ‘This is what I’ve done, this is where I am, this is where I’ve been, and I’m going forward.’”
Desert Solace places an emphasis on communication and connection in the recovery process. For their clients, this is manifested through group counseling with others who are going through the same struggles. Desert Solace also supports clients’ families by offering spouses access to phone counseling sessions.
“The opposite of addiction is connection,” Jorgensen said. “It’s connection to themselves; recognizing who they are at their core. Without all the masks and all the stories and all the stuff that we put on ourselves.”
Jorgensen explained that the first step to recovery is often finding the courage to reach out for help.
“The advice to the suffering is that they reach out,” Jorgensen said. “The days of isolating are over.”
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 Recovery: Finding The Courage To Reach Out
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