I saw this short 5-minute video of Dan Hall from the Scratching the Surface documentary; a documentary dealing with pornography and sexual addiction in the church. Dan speak about how he was caught and what he does now in his own recovery.
An open meeting simply means that there will be men at this meeting who have not openly acknowledged a struggle with maintaining sexual purity or having a sexual addiction. As we all know, almost every man struggles with some sort of sexual purity issue, however, not every man is required to be open in admitting this issue. I have invited the church’s pastoral staff and elders to this meeting as well as various therapists from around the Houston area.
I hope the regular attendees to the Saturday morning meeting will make an extra effort to attend this open meeting in celebration of 2 years of service for God in the realm of sexual purity. Please feel free to invite any man you know over the age of 18, even if they say they don’t struggle with sexual purity. Attending an “open” meeting may help them ease into their own recovery rather than thinking they are attending a meeting for sex addicts.
My God, how did it get to this point? What happened to me? I had everything I wanted in life and yet, I wanted more. It began with my lust-filled fantasies. I was obsessed with sex and my sexual fulfillment. I started pretty young. I knew my father struggled with his own sexual purity issues. He never talked to me about it but made his repentance public. But how did I get to this point of my life? How does someone with power, money, and prestige come to this point in their life??? This truly is rock bottom.
My lust was insatiable. I wanted to be sexual with every woman out there. I would mentally objectify and obsess over them. I would masturbate thinking of these women. I would even fantasize about our sexual encounters, masturbating each time. When this wasn’t enough, I had to fantasize about more extreme things such as forcing a woman to be sexual with me. Why? Well, no healthy woman would want to be with someone like me, so in order for a healthy woman to be with me, I would need to take her by force! Masturbating to these extreme fantasies fed my neurochemical addiction. What wasn’t given to me, I would take by force!
And then she appeared, my own half-sister, my father’s other wife’s daughter! Funny how I didn’t notice her before, but now she was everything I ever wanted in a woman, or so I fantasized. I couldn’t stop thinking about her. Each time, I would become aroused and masturbate; I would fantasize more and more about her. I wanted her so badly, but she never paid attention to me. I would stare at her every time we would get together, obsessing over what I could not have. Even her brother saw the obsession in my eyes. This obsession became a compulsion, and the compulsion led to me taking what would not be given to me, even taking it by force! My cousin gave me a great idea, to trick her into being alone with me. I wish I could blame him for this, but it was a long time coming, starting early on with only my mental lust.
And so I went ahead with the plan. I acted sick, I told my father that it would make me feel so much better if my half-sister cooked my favorite meal and brought it to my bed. I saw her walk in, my heart began to beat faster and faster, I pretended not to eat the meal and quickly told the servants to leave my room; I wanted her to feed me with her own hands.
And thus it began, I could not take “no” for an answer. I grabbed her and told her, “Come to bed with me, my darling sister.” The sickness and perversity in that statement was enough to push me over the edge. I needed to say something like that to enhance my neurochemical high. I had been obsessing, fantisizing, masturbating, so for so long about her that I needed the extreme for me to become sexually arroused. “Normal” sex with her (or any other woman) just wasn’t enough, it needed to be perverse! My heart beat faster and faster and my arousal grew. She said, “Don’t be foolish! Don’t do this to me!” She knew it was a very wicked thing, not only to rape but to rape one’s own half-sister. The more twisted the fantasy, the stronger the high of my addiction! She even tried to convince me that our father would allow us to be married, but I was so far gone into the addiction that none of it registered with me. And then I finished my horrendous act.
The feelings of shame and guilt filled my mind. “What have I done?” I asked myself quietly. I have defiled my virgin half-sister, and for what? I am so disgusted with myself, and so I transferred that hate and disgust to her. I screamed that she leave the room and summoned my servants to take her away. She screamed in utter disgust, not only did I rape her, but then I had her kicked out. She left crying, there would be no justice for her, not until today, two long years later. My father made sure to protect me, his oldest son, as long as he could. After all, I was supposed to inherit his company; I was the next in line! Two years is enough time and this punishment has been in order since the crime was committed.
And now I lay here in a pool of my own blood. My half-sister’s brother exacting revenge on me for what I did to his sister. I am slowly dying, I can feel the blood draining from my body, where are my other brothers, have they left me to die alone? Is this the price I must pay for my addiction: Death? Do people really die because of their sex addiction acting out? Is this the ultimate consequence? I have truly hit rock bottom, no, I am much farther beneath rock bottom. I didn’t think it could get any worse, and it has. I only wish I would have listened earlier to friends and family about my problem, that I had sought help for this addiction before it reached the point of raping my half-sister, and now suffering the ultimate penalty; death.
The above fictional account is based on the chapter written directly above, where King David’s oldest son Amnon rapes his half-sister Tamar who is later avenged by her brother Absalom who murders Amnon. Whether Amnon suffered from a sexual addiction is unknown, not enough of him is written in the Bible. However, from what is written in 2 Samuel 13, we can see how Amnon could not control his obsession. Did he rape a woman before or after his assault of Tamar? We don’t know, but chances are his sexual impurity was not an isolated case. Furthermore, his lust for Tamar (and possibly other women) was not hidden – Absalom (and perhaps others) knew about it possibling enabling Amnon in his addiction.
Such a sad state how King David, a man after God’s own heart, protected his son for two years even though Amnon was clearly guilty. Unfortunately, we don’t know how many times King David protected Amnon from the repercussions of his actions. Chances are, since King David protected Amnon from the punishment for rape, that he probably protected him from all other “lesser” issues arising from Amnon’s sexual impurity.
It is unfortunate that rape occurs, and sexual addiction is never an excuse. There are many sexual addicts in prison because of rape. These men allowed their fantasies to go too far, it wasn’t enough to act out sexually, but they had to force others to fulfill their fantasies and reach that next level of chemical high. It all starts with a lustful thought, where it goes from there is up to us.
Take what you like and leave the rest.
Working Step 6
In working step 6 I need to come to an understanding of God and who He is in my life. I also need to be able to re-word step 6 as follows: We were entirely ready to have God, not me, remove our defects of character. In adding those two simple words, I have come to understand that it is God, not me, who will remove my defects of character. There is nothing I can do to help this other than be entirely ready.
Understanding that there is a difference between wanting and being entirely ready is very important. In the past, I wanted God to remove my defects of character, but I was not entirely ready. I had grown up using these defects of character to protect myself, to survive. Some of these defects of character such as lack of patience, anger, and control helped get me through college and early on into my career as an engineer. I would use these defects of character to my advantage, not realizing that they would be part of my demise and are at the root of why I would act out constantly with my sexual addiction, my rage, alcohol, or drug use.
In order to understand my acting out behavior, I have to understand that my “malady has roots” and these roots are my character defects. I can cut down the tree of “sexual addiction” on my life, but if I don’t cut out the roots, then the tree will continue to grow. Side note, I actually experienced this recently when I tried to cut down a tree in my back yard. Although, I cut it down, it was still partially connected to the roots, as I had to leave the roots in because they were so deep. Within a few days, green leaves were growing on what was left of the tree, laying on the ground. Then, after removing the actual tree, the roots started sprouting new stems with leaves. With enough time, a new tree would have grown in the old tree’s place. I finally had to kill the roots in order to ultimately kill the tree. So too, must we identify and kill these roots, or have our higher power do it. We have to be entirely ready to have God remove the roots of our addiction, for if we do not, then the “addiction tree” will continue to grow!
When we are entirely ready to have God remove these defects of character, when we have finally had enough of our acting out in various ways, when we have finally said enough is enough, and been truly entirely ready to have God remove negative character traits which use to keep us alive, we can move on to Step 7.
In working this step study, I read from two different books, The Twelve Steps for Christians and the SAA Green Book.
Take what you like and leave the rest.
I saw this 6 minute film trailer a while back. I was reluctant to post it because a few of the short scenes concerning prostitution (no nudity, etc…) may be triggering to some sexual addicts early in recovery. I hope that they can look past it and watch this trailer. At a minimum, skip to the 5:06 mark and listen to what Melinda Giovengo, Executive Director of Youth Care, has to say about the reality of prostitution. Also, at the 1:50 mark, you can hear a man who knows he has a problem, but hasn’t identified his sexual addiction and the explanation on “why” he did the things he did even though he didn’t want to “hurt people.”
This project is a raw look at prostitution and trafficking in Seattle, one of the busiest hubs for trafficking of women and girls in the US. With footage taken on the streets of commercial sexual exploitation as it happens, as well as interviews of leading experts on prostitution and pornography, the Rape For Profit team exposes the viewer to the utter depravity and degradation of commercial sex in our communities.