Posts Tagged ‘masturbation’

No matter the quality or quantity of sex, some people remain hungry for more and more sex. It’s as though they are sexually insatiable. Most often, their insatiable sexual hunger is related to deep-rooted psychological factors. Toxic early childhood relationships can influence their sexual hunger in adulthood. Although sex addicts can be male or female, for discussion purposes, I will use the female pronouns here. Insatiable sexual hunger is not really a desire ─an act of will─ but rather a desperate need, a compulsion that is experienced as a craving. The need is pursued like a drug. Although sex addicts are enslaved to sex, it is far from their goal. Rather, the pursuit of sex is in service of a different goal─ to dispel feelings of inadequacy, depression, anxiety, rage or other feelings that the sex addict experiences as unbearable. Like a drug addict or alcoholic, the sex addict relentlessly seeks satisfaction from an external source to palliate an internal pain. Here’s a little of what goes on in the brain of sex addicts. The brain’s dopamine receptors ─ the pleasure-reward system─ is activated during sex, drugs, alcohol, or gambling. In the case of sex addicts who quickly slide down into despair after the sex act, their dopamine receptors are left hungry for more sex. These primed dopamine receptor, thus, crave more sex. A craving is, thus, set up biologically and psychologically. Fixes provide a state of ecstasy, calm, nirvana. Alas the shot of nirvana during the sex act lasts only as long as the magic of sex wears off. Result? The sex addict is rendered emptier, distressed, and fragmented. To quell these painful feelings, she is compelled to resume her pursuit for her next fix. As you can see, the sex act is not borne out of love, but performs the function of a drug to satisfy the primed dopamine receptors. Of no consequence other than to provide the sex addict with a fix, the sex object is indispensable. Rather than desiring a sexual partner, the sex addict craves the sexual object─ her fix. She is constantly seeking to repair early deprivations and to palliate depression, anxiety, self-esteem blows. How do sex addicts recover? Twelve step programs work for some people. For others, I recommend deep analytic therapy that focuses on visiting the past, but living in the moment, learning coping skills, finding internal satisfaction, pursuing healthy passions that fulfill the emptiness. From an article by Frances Cohen Praver, Ph.D.

by applyingmybeliefs

 John 20:27-29 – Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe.”  Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”  Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”  ESV

Thomas was the disciple who said he wouldn’t believe Jesus was alive after the resurrection unless he personally put his finger on Jesus wounds.  He was also the one that Jesus was talking to when He said, “I am the way, the truth and the life.”  (Jn 14:6)  Little else is known about Thomas from the scriptural records.  Some apocryphal literature has him dying at the hands of the king of India, where he is thought to have served his mission time.

Thomas represents all of us.  In our story we see that he obstinately said I won’t believe until I get concrete evidence, so that I can see with my own eyes and feel with my own hands.  Jesus graciously chastises him about his unbelief.  And then Jesus says words for us down the ages, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believed.”  Almost all of us will not see Jesus until we get to heaven.  We are asked by scripture and the Holy Spirit to believe even though we have not seen, and if we choose to do this we will be blessed in some way.

This is so important for us in recovery to understand.  God wants us to accept, believe that He is going to help us in our recovery, even though we cannot see, hear or touch Him directly.  It is a deep scriptural principle that unbelief is a barrier to healing, or in our case recovery.  God asks us not to just believe in Him, but to believe Him.  When we only believe in Him, we often reject His instructions and go our own way.  When we believe Him, we accept His instructions, and even if we have reservations or resistance inside us, we still obey.  That is the path to healing and recovery that God prescribes for us.

This post was shared as a topic for our Barrayo Men’s Group.  Barrayo is a support group for men who were sexually abused as children.  It meets on Tuesday nights at 7pm.  This is a very powerful group dealing with a very powerful issue.  Healing from childhood sexual abuse is paramount to our overall healing, including that of sexual impurity/addiction.  Please contact for more information on this group.

By Cecil Murphey 

I don’t know the answers to every problem—even though I may sound as if I do. I don’t understand why some of us gain victory almost immediately and for others it takes years. I don’t know why some male survivors fall back in their old patterns and some never do.

I wish I could give perfect answers to every dilemma and shine a bright light on every dark path. I don’t always have enough light for my own path. Even when I know the answer for myself, I sometimes fail to live up to my convictions.

I do know this, however. It’s shameful to admit when we’ve failed, especially after we’ve determined not to repeat our wrong behavior. And that can refer to anything that impedes our progress.
Almost as bad is to fail and deny it. We’re ashamed and try to hide the fact. Or we make excuses for ourselves by blaming circumstances or saying, “Yes, but if he hadn’t . . . ” Such negative responses mean we by-pass a chance for healing.

Admitting each tiny step in the wrong direction can be one positive, small-but-powerful step toward full recovery. 

Codependency underlies all addictions. The core symptom of “dependency” manifests as reliance on a person, substance, or process (i.e, activity, such as gambling or sex addiction). Instead of having a healthy relationship with yourself, you make something or someone else more important. Over time, your thoughts, feelings, and actions revolve around that other person, activity, or substance, and you increasingly abandon your relationship with yourself. Abstinence or sobriety is necessary to recover from codependency. The goal is to bring your attention back to yourself, to have an internal, rather than external, “locus of control.” This means that your actions are primarily motivated by your values, needs, and feelings, not someone else’s. You learn to meet those needs in healthy ways. Perfect abstinence or sobriety isn’t necessary for progress, and it’s impossible with respect to codependency with people. You need and depend upon others and therefore give and compromise in relationships. It’s said that denial is the hallmark of addiction. This is true whether you’re an alcoholic or in love with one. Not only do codependents deny their own addiction – whether to a drug, activity, or person – they deny their feelings, and especially their needs, particularly emotional needs for nurturing and real intimacy. You may have grown up in a family where you weren’t nurtured, your opinions and feelings weren’t respected, and your emotional needs weren’t adequately met. Over time, rather than risk rejection or criticism, you learned to ignore your needs and feelings and believed that you were wrong. Some decided to become self-sufficient or find comfort in sex, food, drugs, or work. All this leads to low self-esteem. To reverse these destructive habits, you first must become aware of them. The most damaging obstacle to self-esteem is negative self-talk. Most people aren’t aware of their internal voices that push and criticize them — their “Pusher,” “Perfectionist,” and “Critic.” From an article By Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT

“When you give another person the power to define you, then you also give them the power to control you.” – Leslie Vernick

An attendee of Castimonia meetings since 2011 is conducting a study of the effects of deviant sexuality on the brain.  He works as a technician at Unique MindCare, a neurofeedback clinic, where he runs an EEG (electroencephalogram) software program which reads electrical brain activity for the purpose of diagnosis and treatment of physical causes in the brain for behavioral symptoms.

They are looking for a minimum of 30 individuals involved in Castimonia who would like to voluntarily participate in a sex addiction study.  Participant involvement is completely voluntary and confidential.

The study aims at examining differences in electrical activity in the brain common within this group’s population compared to other men who do not have these struggles. They expect to find irregularities in areas of the brain known to deal with impulsive behavior, pain and pleasure, fear responses and potentially other areas as well.

This could be used as a way to put a 12th step into action as this research could possibly lead to better understanding the physical reasons to why we struggle as we do and, therefore, later lead to future treatments designed to help relieve symptoms and/or possibly decrease recovery time.  Each participant will also receive a personalized quantitative EEG or “Brain Map”.  A brain map will show you where in your brain there is too much or too little brain activity compared to others your age and can identify strengths or abnormalities that can explain certain, consistent issues. This is a valuable resource which is usually charged at $1,400.00 but will be free of charge in exchange for the participants’ aid to their research.

For more information, please contact Ben or Dominic through any of the following methods;

Phone #s



A question I am frequently asked by wives who have just discovered their husband has been viewing pornography is, “Why am I not enough?”  In fact, some wives will whisper that they were shocked because they were the higher desire partner, as if that is something to be ashamed about.  For these wives, the discovery of porn in their marriage was a double slap in the face. “I was available and I initiated all the time and I was rejected,” they cry out. “Yet all along, he was looking at strangers online.  I don’t understand!”

MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE While I doubt they believe me, I ask wives to consider whether porn has less to do about them and sex and more about something else.  Maybe when their husbands were first exposed as teenagers it was about the sex.  But what if they have gotten into the habit of turning to porn to distract them from something much deeper and darker within their spirit?  It doesn’t make it less sinful or the husband less guilty. I’m not trying to defend their actions.  But the more I learn about pornography, the more deceptive it seems to be and I wonder if there is more to it than meets the eye.

Consider a desert, and a weary man stumbling across the sand, desperate for a drink of water to quench his thirst.  Just above the hill he sees an oasis.  When the exhausted traveler finally gets right to the edge of the crystal clear pool, he realizes he is grasping at hot sand.  It was only a mirage; his mind playing tricks on him.  But up ahead, there is another pool in the distance, so he stumbles towards it.  But he will be disappointed again. HE THINKS HE SEES SOMETHING PERFECT, BUT IT ISN’T REAL AND IT DOESN’T QUENCH HIS THIRST.  That is how I picture pornography.

THE REAL QUESTION With her question, “Why am I not enough,” the wife is really saying, “I want to be the one to quench my husband’s thirst.” Which, at first glance, seems like the right response.  Except with porn addiction, I really don’t think it’s about sex anymore.  That is why wives are not capable of quenching his thirst, because it is no longer a sexual thirst our husbands are after.  It is a spiritual one.   You can’t possibly meet a spiritual need with a sexual fix, whether it is pornography or even an intimate connection with a spouse.  That deep, dark space in your husband’s spirit that he is trying to ignore, forget, avoid, numb, whatever… can only be healed by Jesus.

THE DEEPER NEED So the answer to the question, “Why am I not enough,” in light of this revelation is “You are not designed to meet your husband’s deepest spiritual needs. “  Only God can meet those needs. For anyone or anything else to stand in God’s place, would be idolatry.

In addition, only God’s Holy Spirit can reveal spiritual needs.  That can be difficult to accept for the wife who now understand her husband’s battle with pornography has spiritual roots.  She will want to help the Holy Spirit by helping her husband see the light.  But only God’s Spirit will be able to reveal truth to her husband, convict him of his sin and call him into repentance and actions designed to restore trust.

So what is a godly wife to do?  Is this her new normal?

  • A wife can focus on her own recovery and healing, which is centered in resting in the shadow of God’s love. Drawing close to God daily will give wives all they need to walk the difficult road ahead and answer those hard questions.   As she prays for herself and her family, she can also pray for her husband, that his eyes would be open and his heart would be sensitive to the Holy Spirit.
  • A wife can also read recovery material and educate herself about pornography. If a husband chooses to fight the battle, it will help tremendously if the wife knows as much as possible when she comes alongside him to fight for the marriage.
  • As part of her healing, a wife can seek out Christian counseling for herself, preferably a counselor who specialized in marriage counseling and sexual addiction.  She can also explore if there are any groups for spouses in her area.
  • A wife should also draw boundaries for her marriage based on what she needs in order to begin her healing process.  Again, her growing prayer life, close walk with the Lord and the support of her team will be a tremendous help as she makes difficult decisions and answers tough questions.

The answer to a broken wife’s haunting question “Why wasn’t I enough” is “Only God can meet spiritual needs.”  Hurting wives need to know that is the same answer for them as well.  Only God can comfort and heal them on their darkest days.


She offers help to spouses of sexual strugglers through phone coaching and online spouses’ support groups.

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by applyingmybeliefs

1 Sam 30:6 – And David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because all the people were bitter in soul, each for his sons and daughters. But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.  ESV

The scene is this:

David and his 600 men had gone to fight with and for the Philistines, because he had pledged his group to serve their king.  There was an upcoming battle ahead with the Israelites under Saul, and the Philistine leadership complained to the king about David and his men, this was reasonable because they were Israelites themselves, and therefore they may not be trustworthy in the upcoming battle.  So David and his men were released from their pledge, and they took off home.

Three days later they got to their home in Ziklag to discover that the Amalekites had raided the town in their absence, burned it to the ground and taken every person they found there captive, with all the material goods they could carry.  This included David’s two wives.  Everybody slipped into grief, and eventually every one of his men turned against him in bitterness, and started talk of stoning him.

Did David run?  No, he engaged in a practice we all ought to take note of:

    • Self-Encouragement

Our scripture says “David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.”  The Hebrew word used here is “wayitchazeeq” (root word chazaq) which is more often translated as encouraged himself instead of strengthened himself.

In Christian recovery the need for self-encouragement is evident.  We are constantly receiving messages of condemnation, negative criticisms and heavy judgments.  Some of it comes from inside our own minds.  We must all take a lesson from David’s example here and self-encourage by remembering the promises of God, especially this one:

Rom 8:31 – What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  ESV

Later in our story we see that God delivers the Amalekites into the hands of David and his men, restoring all that had been taken, plus the wealth of the enemy.

The take-away from this is that there are times when we need to practice self-encouragement, it is something we can do for ourselves and it is a scriptural activity.  David went from feeling that the world was against him, to becoming encouraged and then he went humbly to God to ask Him what to do next.  (1 Sam 30:7-8)

When we practice self-encouragement we are engaging in what is described here as “work out”:

Phil 2:12-13 – Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.  ESV

In our recovery there are just some things we have to do ourselves, and self-encouragement is one of them.