I read this blog today. It’s a guest post about a women with an eating disorder and a very difficult relationship with food. And it didn’t matter that it was about food, because what she said echoes perfectly my relationship with sex and pornography. I’m never fully comfortable with it. Never. Even in a happy, satisfying married relationship with a wonderful husband, sex is a difficult topic, a over-the-shoulder lurker just waiting to stick its nose in to a previously private conversation and make everyone involved uncomfortable.
When I’ve been sober for awhile, and I really couldn’t give a specific number of days or weeks or months, there comes a time when it’s really just my husband and me in the marital bed. And I revel in that. I’m fully present, and it sort of feels like it’s supposed to, I think. Other times, though, when it’s not been long enough, well, it’s not like that.
Because I don’t really know what it’s supposed to feel like. Too long using words and images as a crutch. I’ve never been physically or emotionally unfaithful to my husband. I’ve never fantasized about another person while I’m with my husband. I’ve never involved another person in any of my acting out. But using words written by someone else to arouse? Oh yes. And it cheats my husband. And our marriage. And myself. And inevitably leaves a very empty, awful feeling afterwards.
I say all this because addiction, any kind, is a means of escape. Of trying NOT to cope (or coping the best you know how). The drug addict, the food addict, the alcoholic, the sex addict, the workaholic…the specifics don’t really matter because all are, at the core, the exact same thing. Some are more “socially acceptable” than others. But all are just a means to and end–avoiding and escaping and numbing and not dealing.
And yes, Jesus heals. But this is something I’ll be dealing with for the rest of my life.