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I was a married woman tempted by porn…

Last Updated: October 1, 2020

Amy Riordan

Amy Riordan is a Christian writer and speaker with a desire to see women’s hearts healed and set free. Her passion is to inspire others to embrace who they were created and redeemed to be. Amy lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two children. She candidly shares her story on her blog, Longing for Intimacy, encouraging women to pursue an intimate relationship with Jesus, the only One who can satisfy their deep longings for intimacy and connection

I was the quiet girl growing up who desperately tried to blend into the crowd. My dad was a teacher in the same school district I attended, and the first day of school each year was pretty much the same. My name would be called, and the teacher would tell me that he or she knew my dad. When I was young, it seemed as if everyone knew him.

This, along with my reserved personality, caused me to constantly be on my best behavior when I was in public. All of this unwanted attention further solidified the importance of not doing anything to disappoint anyone or stand out in the crowd. I never knew that the state of my heart was just as important as who I appeared to be on the outside.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life” (Proverbs 4:23).

I became very good at looking like I had it all together. When you don’t stand out, most people tend to assume that you’re as “sweet” on the inside as you appear to be on the outside. My heart was a mess though, and I ignored that for many years until God started to expose what was in my heart.

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men’s bones and everything unclean” (Matthew 23:27).

How Porn Entered My Life

I got married in my early twenties, and I found myself struggling in ways that I never thought I would. My (former) husband would rent porn movies, and I ended up just watching them with him. That became a very normal thing for us to do. I would also find porn magazines that he hid and, out of curiosity, I would look at them.

I didn’t notice what was slowly happening to me. I was reprogramming my mind to look at women differently. I started to see women in a sexual way. I was opening myself up to things that would affect me for many years to come; I just didn’t realize it until later. He and I eventually got divorced, and I gave my life to Christ a few months later.

When I gave my life to Christ, my whole outlook on life started to change. I knew that if I was going to get married again, he would have to be a man who loved God with all of his heart. I soon met Kevin, and we married a few years later. My life had changed so much, but there were still so many things from my past that haunted me.

Here I was, married to a wonderful, attractive, Godly man, when I one day found myself looking at pornographic websites. I had to fight these continual thoughts and images that would come pounding into my head. No one would have ever guessed that I was doing this, not even my husband—not even myself. I didn’t know how to confess this to anyone, and I felt trapped. I felt so much shame.

The Moment I Began to Change

God really started dealing with my heart and showing me that who I was behind closed doors was just as important as who I was around others. He started pointing out my lack of integrity. God put such a weight on my heart to confess this to my husband one day, so I did.

Kevin extended me so much mercy that day, even in the midst of his pain. While I was looking at that porn, I was committing adultery. Anyone who is involved with pornography has to realize this: If you’re married and looking at porn, you’re committing adultery. That’s how God sees it all. Also, to think that I was trying to live a Christian life while doing this seems hard to believe at this point in my life. God is a merciful God, though, and He forgave me when I truly repented.

Don’t get me wrong, it took quite some time for me to stop struggling in this area so intensely. It has also taken some time for my relationship with Kevin to heal. If you plant bad seeds, you’re going to get bad fruit. When we repent, God will forgive us. There are consequences to all of our actions, though; whether we are forgiven, or not.

Healing Took Time and Focus

I thank God for my pastors who lovingly counseled me through this. After talking to them about it (which was the most embarrassing thing I’ve ever done), we decided to subscribe to Covenant Eyes. I would recommend Covenant Eyes to anyone struggling with online pornography. I have also been so thankful for the Covenant Eyes blog, because it was such a valuable resource for me when I thought I was the only one dealing with this.

Being held accountable for what I look at has really revealed the state of my heart to me, and it has helped me to recognize that I continually need to give God this whole area of my life. He has shown me that I also need to know who I am in Christ in order to change (with the help of the Holy Spirit). It was only when I started getting the revelation of who I am in Christ (and who I am NOT) that I started to see the change on the inside of me that I so desperately needed.

It’s so important to realize that being tempted is not a sin. Let me say that again. Being tempted is not a sin! I used to feel so guilty when I was tempted, and that alone would cause me to fall. Jesus was tempted, yet He never sinned. I have learned not to feel guilty about temptations that come my way. That’s just a deadly trap. What I do with the temptation when it happens is what matters. I have learned to immediately take my temptations to God, and He will always show me a way out.

If this is something that you deal with, please reach out to someone. It’s so important to find an ally as you overcome porn, give the situation entirely over to God, and ask Him to give you a revelation of who you are in Christ. It will change your life! I know this, because it changed mine.

  • Comments on: I was a married woman tempted by porn…
    1. David Frazier on

      Lord bless you Amy for “walking in the light as He Himself is in the light.” Again, I see the truth of “ceasing the behavior does not necessarily glorify God” is in your words of testimony. Allowing God to peel back the (onion) layers of our sin-calloused, prideful, impetuous hearts and deal with our self-love there is where it’s at. I remember how terrified I was to let God smash through the iron doors of those deep dark chambers of self that I had desperately locked with deadbolt after deadbolt. “You can come this far Jesus, but You cannot go in those rooms!”
      I was stuck, and this is why:

      “Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed” (John 3:20).

      However, like yourself, once I did the most difficult thing ever, “come(ing) to the Light so that (my) deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God” (John 3:21), I tasted for the first time what true freedom feels like, and at that point my walk with Christ truly began.

      Praise God for the Light of the world, Jesus Christ, who shined His piercing light into our hearts and scattered the cockroaches of pride, lust, and covetousness.

      Thank you for sharing your story, Amy.

      Reply
      • Amy on

        Thank you for your kind and encouraging comment, David. I appreciate it. :)

    2. Yohan Perea on

      I am not that happy with the image you use with this post…

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        @Yohan – Let me know what doesn’t sit right with you and we can replace it with something more suitable.

      • David on

        I think I know what you mean Yohan – it’s all those legs!!! Is that woman sat on the stool actually wearing anything other than a blouse?
        As a bloke – seeing ‘all those legs’ is like sowing a seed to go look for more of them in the web-sites CE is trying to get me not to look in.
        May be, that’s just where I am in recovery…

      • Luke Gilkerson on

        @David – I can swap that out, no problem. Don’t want to cause others to stumble.

      • Luke Gilkerson on

        Is the image more suitable now?

      • David on

        @Luke – yes, thanks Luke… PS that was another great article you posted for us of Amy – thanks!

      • Connie on

        What are you not happy with? What image? A woman who struggled and kicked an addiction? I’m so glad that her story is being told! Most people think men only have porn addiction but women do to and it’s a real thing! Thank you for sharing. No judgment here!

    3. Yohan Perea on

      Hi David,

      You got my point. thanks a lot for analyzing my comment in such a careful manner…

      Dear Luke, Sir – It’s not that I find that the image is stumbling but it sends out the wrong message which in turn pauses a question about the standards of this blog. Still, I am thankful to you for replacing the image with a much more appropriate one… Appreciate your humble response.

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        @Yohan – Thanks! Before I simply reacted to your comment I wanted to get a better sense of what the problem was. Because of the subject matter on this blog we’re always walking that fine line mentioned in Ephesians 5:3-14, where on one hand we should not have even a hint of impurity (v.3), while at the same time we expose the unfruitful works of darkness for what they really are (v.11). This takes discernment and once in a while I don’t get it right. This is the beauty of our online community—all the people who leave comments. They’re able to give immediate and helpful feedback, which is what the body of Christ is for. It is great that so many people care about the integrity of our message. Thanks again for reading!

    4. Melody on

      Thank you so much for posting this and for being so honest. Your testimony has really helped me, and I am sure it will bless countless others! You are not alone, and I think it is pretty brave of you to be so open and honest about this topic. God bless you!

      Reply
    5. Bobbi on

      Amy,
      Your honesty and transparency will set many captives free! Your willingness to be vulnerable and step outside of shame is powerful. It reminds me of a passage in The Word that says “Jesus became of no reputation”, so if HE didn’t care what people thought of HIM, why should we?
      If the body of Christ began to move in this direction, we’d all be completely healed and set free that demons would run from us ! What an awesome story of taking “that which the enemy meant for our destruction, and using it for God’s Glory”.
      I love the “Christ in you”!!
      Bobbi

      Reply
    6. Alix on

      Very interesting.I struggle on and off with porn.I know it affects my marriage.my intimacy with my wife is so affected due to my sin in this area.my wife is telling me to put this on the laptop but Im struggling to do this.I know Im resisting to do it,even though I know it will help my relationship with God and my wife.I could waffle on all day and tell you my history,but all I’ll say is that I’ve been stuggling with this since I was 8yrs old.I find it very difficult to believe I’ll ever be free.I was set free from smoking overnight,but this is different.I seem to have lost hope.one day free,one day in bondage this has been the cycle for as long as I can remember.God bless.Alix.

      Reply
      • Luke Gilkerson on

        @Alix – Remember: Don’t buy into the lie that you are beyond hope. If I were to wager an educated guess, I would say your porn addiction and your resistance to accountability both have a common root. It sounds (from your brief comment) that you are still clinging to pornography, believing you cannot live without it. You know accountability would open your life up to others and start you on a path of repentance, and a part of you doesn’t want that. I remember it was the same with me. I knew certain measures would cut me off from the path of temptation, so I resisted them because deep down I couldn’t imagine what my life would be like without the porn. Fueled by my sinful love for porn, I believed the lie that porn was filling a void in me that needed to be filled. I eventually had to repent of that belief and say, “My lust of offensive to God. I choose to believe His view of pornography (that it is a cheap and loveless imitation of sex) over my false belief (that I need porn to fulfill me).”

        Of course there is so much more I could say, but perhaps you would benefit from our list of links for guys who are struggling. I hope you find the accountability you are looking for! By God’s grace you will.

      • Gene Landers on

        I was introduced to pornography at age 5 – 12 by my brother and mom. as I became a Christian at age 23. I still kept that part hidden. As it always does, it came out and destroyed a relationship. My first marriage was destroyed by escalating pornography. I remarried and after a couple years it surfaced again. this time I went in to treatment plan, a Program called Pure Desire. It was a Christ centered program. I also had a good counselor who specialized in this. Healing began to happen, I’d have a small set backs but I would get moving on again. Eventually it took and I was healed, but not after contracting HIV. Temptation would still come when I least expected it, But sighing up for Covenant Eyes gave a me a practical way to help me avoid pornography. the group support, road blocks on my lap top and cell phone helped tremendously. God have me a clean heart, freedom to chose not to do it again. Catch yourself before it escalates to more than looking, or eventually you could contract as I did HIV. Get help, get Covenant Eyes on all devices, find support. Let shame be a bridge to the grace of Christ, not a barrier to Him. He accepts you as you are.

      • Annie on

        My husband kicked the habit without covenant eyes. He was addicted since the age of 10, and was always able to bypass covenant eyes or any filter. One day he said a friend who is athiest, but who also does not like porn, asked him why he felt the need to “view himself as a person who struggled with porn”. That was it. He decided to view himself differently and says that was the last day he struggled. He says it made him realize that the only thing that would stop him was himself, not filters or me or God himself. He had to gain the desire to stop, then he stuck to the thing he knew would make his life better. Hope that helps. You do have the ability to stop doing the things you do not want to do.

      • Ed on

        Alix, I have also struggled on and off for many years. Have at yes kicked the habit for years and at times for just.months. while serving in Iraq, I paid $150 a month to have the best internet money could buy. Originally to Skype with my wife and kids. But my position made me a lonely person, I was never one of the guys, was supposed to be a leader so couldn’t congregate with others. In my loneliness, that internet connection became the devil hours and hours of porn watching. I have been back from Iraq for 9 years and I am still addicted to porn. I travel often for work and that males it even worse. I have found that my trigger is loneliness. God bless you

    7. Brittney on

      Okay, this may seem like an odd question but I find it difficult to buy lingerie. I prefer to buy it online for the privacy, but scanning through all that stuff makes me feel uneasy and kind of guilty. I know the kinds of things my husband likes, but I have trouble with the buying process because of the fact I feel like I have to rake through porn to find something. Any suggestions?

      Reply
    8. Robert on

      Hi everyone,

      To kill lust completely, you need to renew the mind with the word. The demon of lust also had to be cast out, so we are lead by the spirit not the lusy of the world. Look at women as sister only! Cast down every though of sexual orientation. It’s a long battle, and you should also pray daily for God to make you hate what he hates and love what he loves in Jesus name. Contact Jesus through his word and pray diligently.

      Reply
    9. Sarah Eccles on

      Amy i can so relate and I’m free of pornography for almost 2 years now. I never realized for a long time that watching pornography as a married woman is adultery. As woman we struggle with this addiction as well and it’s very addicting and ruins so many people’s lives. Thanks for sharing your story it gives many woman hope that there is healing from this addiction.

      Reply
    10. Enie on

      Thank you for sharing your story. I have been addicted to reading erotica for as long as I can remember. I am 41 now so I am going to say about 30 years. I was sexually abused by two different men starting at age 5 so my introduction to sex was very confusing. I liked the attention from them and it sometimes felt good but I was also ashamed. I grew up in the church but never really wanted anything to do with God. One of the men who abused me did it at church. I am a saved believer in God but that didn’t happen till my college years…after i left my parents church. However I still struggle with erotica and now watching porn on the internet. It is hard to find support when you are a woman who is addicted. Most help is only geared toward men. Please pray for me to have the desire to give up my sexual addiction.

      Reply
      • Glenn Hodge on

        To Liz and all who have shared, thank you. You all have just made me realize, once again, just how loving and faithful our one and only God is. My addiction to porn has been a part of my life for a very long time. I say this mainly because I am a 72 year old man and have been married for 51 years. I too believed as long as no one was “hurt” by my addiction, everything was all right. I professed to be a Christian for most of my life until I was caught in a most horrific trap on the internet. You see porn had been a part of my life since I was quite young and continued until about two and a half years ago. I was providentially starting in a new church in the city we live in and our new pastor was kind enough to take on this challenge with my wife and I. He counseled us for just over a year before I was able to see just how critical my situation was. After the counseling and some real hard times I was finally able to see, only with God’s help, that I truly need Him. With some recent issues my wonderful, loving wife reminded me that Satan is a “roaring lion” constantly trying to devour us and he will not let go. Please, please, all of you who are tangled up in this sin, keep seeking help until you find it. It is never too late! God is so good.

      • Amber on

        Enie, you are not alone in your circumstances and struggles as a result. I hear similar stories almost every day. A book and workbook that has greatly helped me and others is Create in Me a Pure Heart by Steve & Kathy Gallagher. You can find it on Amazon. God bless you sister.

    11. LLSP on

      Thank you so much for telling your story and I pray that you continue to. God has been doing a work in my heart and cleansing my soul. This email popped up out of nowhere and I too had been dealing with this and quite honestly didn’t seem to pinpoint that this was an issue. I’m taking this as a sign that God is revealing things in my life that I need accountability in. Thank you for sharing!

      Reply
    12. Godwin Kaaya on

      Porn is a disaster a lot of people are in there although they feel shame to say it. Almost every has gone through it. Porn has devastated many relationships. It is something I wish we could eradicate from the face of the world. Probably, through prayer we can

      Reply

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