PornEffect3

In addition to the toxic effects of sexual dissatisfaction at home, and the slow erosion of marital oneness with the wife you love – another seldom discussed effect of indulging in pornography is – apathy. Men quit trying to find that closeness and oneness they once enjoyed with their wife – so they escape to fantasy world that imitates it – which in turn further fuels the problem they wish would get resolved. They simply quit trying.

Apathy sets in as you begin to agree with the enemy’s voices that “nothing will ever change at home“, or that “she will never understand my needs“.

A popular men’s magazine recently carried an article that stated that men too quickly conclude that things will never change at home and therefore continue to justify their indulgence in fantasy and self – gratification.

Men are a strange lot. We will fight through physical pain, endure business and financial setbacks and will even sacrifice our own desires for our family and friends – but when it comes to working hard to achieve greater oneness and intimacy in our marriage – we most often take the easy way out, and do nothing.  We too quickly reach the false conclusion – what’s the use? Why is that?

Is it because we are embarrassed that it hasn’t happened automatically, and our manhood is threatened? Maybe we are too dang proud to admit we have a problem (opportunity) and need to work together with our wife to break through it. Another option is  – that we just go passive when we come up against difficult obstacles that require talking and praying with our wife about them.  Finally – I think men are prone to choose a faux tranquility at home instead of facing the intimacy issue head-on and doing whatever it takes to reclaim it.

Have we read any books about achieving marital oneness and intimacy lately? Attended any seminars? Talked with our older man friends about how to achieve it? Visited with a trusted pastor or counselor for input?

These options require that a man admit to his wife (and others) that their intimacy level is not what he would like it to be. Chances are great that your bride is already keenly aware of it too and has been wishing/praying you would take the lead in discussing it with her – and proactively finding a resolution.

You see, most couples struggle with the same thing. One of the top three reasons for divorce (not to mention marriages that settle for less) is always “lack of intimacy”. So why isn’t everyone talking about it? Why don’t we openly dialogue about it and try to help one another overcome it? Honestly? I really don’t know. My best guess is one thing – Pride.

We don’t want other people to know we have a problem somewhere in our marriage (duh) and so we just keep up the facade that everything’s “okay”. Everyone seems “okay” at church, at home, at lunch – so we should be too. That’s my best guess. I’d love to hear yours.

I say – let’s start talking about it. We (men) pretty much stink at it, and need to help each other get better. Better yet, we need to spend some quality time with our bride talking about how to recapture one of God’s greatest joys in marriage.

We can do this!

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About Rob

Married to my high school sweetheart for 40 years. Blessed to be a frequent speaker at marriage and men's conferences, retreats and seminars. Author of 4 books on marriage. Check out resources at allinmariage.org.

One response to “PornEffect3

  1. Paul Kroger

    Rob, thanks for your challenging articles. I benefit from your ministry and wanted to weigh-in on this vital subject of pornography and today’s segment.

    One of the traps we face as a Christian man (it is even worse in the secular world) is the loss of respect that accompanies admitting any hurt, habit or hang-up. This loss of respect attacks the core of what we are already wrestling with in our relationship with our wife that has contributed to the sinful behavior.

    Look at the swirl of distain surrounding Jay Cutler’s decision to no longer play in last Sunday’s NFC playoff game. In the minds of some of his teammates, fans and sports fanatics, he simply took the coward’s way out. Conversely, it possible that Cutler’s move was courageous! He chose to sacrifice his role in orchestrating a win (which was unlikely if he continued to play since his ability to perform was diminished) and let his understudy potentially lead the Bears to victory and own the limelight. The backlash of Cutler’s decision reinforces why many men will not let down their guard or facade no matter what the cost.

    Overall, the Church gets an “F” for failing to create a culture that invites authenticity. A Christ-like environment encourages a courageous admission and confrontation with sinful debilitating habits(especially among men, because when men feel safe and lead out in confession and repentance, women and revival will follow).

    My experience in over 30 years of vocational ministry confirms that there is a direct inverse relationship with respect and boredom. The less respect a man receives from his wife, the greater his level of overall dissatisfaction with the relationship and boredom (along with host of other desires like the need for significance) increases. Boredom in the bedroom is directly related to the degree of respect a man receives from his wife. Sexual variety is less about the environment and position, than it is about a woman’s frequent choice to make her man feel welcomed, wanted and affirmed in love-making. Flirting with your man, words of commendation/praise (i.e.” bragging on your boy” in private and public), initiating intimacy – these don’t have to be a fantasy left to the internet or movies – wives, make the choice to “get in the game” with your guy. The results will be worth the effort!

    Let’s commit to be a catalyst for changing the culture of the Christian community and throw our support behind ministries like Celebrate Recovery. Let’s applaud and assit the MEN that step forward and say, “I have a problem, can someone help?”

    By the way, my comments don’t negate the need for demonstrating personal responsibility on our part as a husband, or the need for continued spiritual maturity, both factor into our level of sexual boredom and how we deal with it.

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