Breaking the Chains of Internet Porn Addiction

September 8, 2006

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Much is written about the problems associated with compulsive sexual behavior (a.k.a. internet porn addiction). It saps time, it breeds deception, it short circuits the pursuit of genuine intimacy, it feeds mind games that don’t need to be fed, etc., etc. If you would like to listen to the audio of my presentation in chapel, click here. In addition to that however, I want to provide resources that are helpful in dealing with the problem after an individual has acknowledged the need for healing.

Resources for Dealing with Internet Porn Addiction

The best way to overcome this addiction in my opinion is group therapy that seeks to guide members into a walk of personal purity that reflects godly character. Simply trying to eliminate negative behaviors from one’s life is not enough. Group therapy breaks the bubble of secrecy, holds each individual accountable to several “real” people,” and provides live examples of other individuals’ progress with the same issues. In the Dallas area, here are some recommended resources for group counseling:

  • Brian Craig Individual as well as group therapy.
  • Larry Colclasure Help for wives as well
  • Bruce Cameron Help for wives as well
  • Care Ministries Help for wives (with Ruth Long) as well as men
  • Dale Godby Dallas Group Analytic Practice
  • Bob Dicken 12-Step Groups to fit any need.
  • Call Douglas Barnes, LPC on 214-587-9631 for individual and group counseling. He helps wives as well in groups.

Some individuals are not ready for group therapy, so the next best thing is individual therapy. This can also break the secrecy bubble and provide opportunities to work through embedded issues that reinforce the fear of intimacy and vulnerability.

Some individuals are not able to pay the fees for individual therapy and may not be ready to talk to someone else about their secret life, but do want to learn about the problem. Here are some resources that provide help:

Self-tests

Jump-start workshops

Computer filters – software programs that can be helpful.

  •  XXXWatch – It’s free, for PC and Mac. (Thanks for the lead, Greg)
  • Be Safe (they recently purchased “Covenant Eyes.”)
  • Net Mop
  • Safe Eyes
  • And many more . . .

Books

  • Every Man’s Battle, Arterburn & Stoeker
  • False Intimacy: Understanding the Struggle of Sexual Addiction, Harry W. Schaumburg
  • Out of the Shadows, Patrick Carnes

On-line Workshops

Give me some feedback. If these resources have been helpful, let’s reinforce them. If you know of additional resources that are effective, let’s spread the word.

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How Can I Form A Secure Attachment with My Child?

September 5, 2006

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A serious mommy who wants to provide more than the basic maintenance care for her baby asked me that question recently. She had read my post on Mary Ainsworth wanted to get more practical. I think it’s helpful to look at want Ainsworth herself measured in her Baltimore studies in the mid 1960’s. Using “secure attachment” as the model, she rated four observations: (1) How often was the mother sensitive to her infant’s signals? (2) How much acceptance of the baby did she demonstrate as opposed to rejection? (3) Did she cooperate with the baby’s desires and rhythms or did she tend to interfere, imposing her own schedule and her own pace when feeding, handling, or playing? (4) How available to the baby was she and how often did she ignore it?

It seems to me that these guidelines are more than behaviors. They are attitudes of selfless devotion that manifest in observable actions. This photo by Rosa Maria puts it in visual form for me. There seems to be some special bond between those two.

The Bible talks about “dying to self” as a yielding of one’s will to some higher value (ultimately God’s will) and I think the kind of mothering that results in secure attachment is a wonderful human example of this dying to self. Paradoxically, it results in a life that is fuller and richer for both mother and child.


Consejos – A Special Bicultural Advise Column

September 4, 2006

consejos_horiz.jpgConsejos” is a syndicated column in the Dallas Morning News in which people from the Latino community write in with their questions. Liliana, Daniel and Catherine respond to the questions and also react to each other. It’s neat when they disagree. What makes it special? The one on the right, Catherine, is my daughter. Sometimes I think she’s a wonderful “post-doc” education for me. Here’s a sample from last week. I wish I had these insights when I was in my 20’s.

My husband works too much

07:15 PM CDT on Sunday, August 27, 2006

Question: My husband is a workaholic. We have been married for 13 years, and he has been in business for himself three different times for 11 of them. He doesn’t know how to spend time with the family without feeling guilty about not being at work.

We’re hardly ever alone, and I don’t think he realizes how this has affected our relationship. I am tired of telling him that we need to get out and do things together because our relationship is suffering.

I can’t even say the self-employment is worth it. It barely pays for our basic bills, and there isn’t any extra money to have fun with our three young children. I also work full-time, and am very frugal.

Am I being selfish because I want him around? I am not high-maintenance and can handle criticism, so please let me know how I should handle this situation.

Catherine: There’s nothing wrong with wanting your husband around, but why would he want to hang out with someone who criticizes him and focuses on his inadequacies?

Your husband may be a workaholic because he has more confidence in his work than he does in spending time with you. Have you let him know specific ways he can meet your emotional and relational needs – not as demands, but as information?

If he feels guilty about not being at work, that may mean he carries a huge responsibility to provide for the family, and that he also feels inadequate. The big question for you to ask yourself (and maybe him) is, what are you doing to contribute to his sense of adequacy? Building him up and encouraging him is the best thing you can do.

You can read the whole column on the Dallas Morning News Consejos website.