For those who have been wounded in the trap of pornography, there is hope for healing, no matter how serious the injury.
The word “pornography” is often associated with addiction. Pornography addiction is a serious and real problem. However, “addiction” doesn’t necessarily describe every user, and the term shouldn’t be automatically applied to everyone who struggles with pornography.
In “Recovering from the Trap of Pornography,” published in the Ensign and Liahona, Elder Dallin H. Oaks lays out the degrees of pornography use, ranging from accidental exposure to addiction-level use.
Elder Oaks says that it is important to understand the difference between deliberate pornography use and use that has intensified to become compulsive pornography use. No matter where someone falls on this spectrum, these are the steps that Elder Oaks prescribes to anyone whose life may have been infected by pornography.
- Commitment to a plan
- Accountability and support
- Endurance in faith
But prevention alone is not enough to deal with this issue. Pornography is so prevalent that we are frequently exposed to it without our consent. Accidental exposure, like coming across pornography when we are walking down the street or changing the channel on television, is not a sin. However, we must respond righteously so that the Spirit can guide us to safety.
“All of us need the Atonement of Jesus Christ,” says Elder Oaks. “Those struggling with pornography need our compassion and love as they follow needed principles and steps of recovery. Please do not condemn them. They are not evil or without hope. They are sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father.”
Find more insights
The Church has a 12-step program, and a new video series describing those steps.
Overcoming Pornography is a Church website devoted specifically to pornography addiction recovery and focuses on how to apply the Atonement of Jesus Christ.