The hardest part of any journey is often the beginning. This is certainly true when it comes to the journey of making change—especially one that involves overcoming an addiction.
It’s no secret that habits are tricky to deal with. In trying to help people understand how habits form, Psychology Today explains, “Old habits are hard to break and new habits are hard to form. That’s because the behavioral patterns we repeat most often are literally etched in our neural pathways.”
As you can see, habitual behaviors, such as compulsive pornography use, come as a result of a chemical process. Each time you engage in the behavior, you are going down a pathway in your brain. Like a footpath, the more you walk on it, the more defined it becomes – making it the path you’re most comfortable taking.
How to Approach Your Loved One
Why does understanding the nature of habits matter? Well, if you know someone who needs pornography addiction counseling, it is important that you have an idea of why the problem exists in the first place.
You may be hurt by your loved one’s addiction—and you are allowed to be. But in order to talk to them about pornography addiction counseling and help them help themselves, you need to consider your approach carefully.
3 Things to Avoid
When you approach your loved one about pornography addiction counseling, avoid:
1. Condemnation. Do not say that you would never have hurt your loved one the way they have hurt you. Consider a habit or behavior you wish you could improve and realize that we are all prone to different addictions. While some habits may be more egregious than others, none of us is immune from developing addictive behaviors that can be harmful to ourselves or others.
2. Guilt mongering or humiliation. The person battling the addiction probably already feels an intense amount of guilt and will not respond well to humiliation or being made to feel guilty. In fact, this may cause your loved one to continue to deny their problem and resent you.
3. Making threats. Giving your loved one an ultimatum or outlining the consequences you will execute will only lead to a lack of trust. They will also be less likely to want help.
3 Things You Should Do
1. Receive guidance. It’s not easy to know how to approach someone with a destructive behavior. LifeStar can help give you the tools you need to approach your loved one with a pornography addiction.
2. Give your support. Everybody’s situation is different, but try to help your loved one know that you are willing to lend your support through their pornography addiction counselling. Even if you are struggling with their addiction, let them know that you won’t turn your back on them as they seek healing.
3. Give them information. Help them find the information they need to start making changes. LifeStar’s outpatient treatment program has a wealth of information and services to help guide you and your loved one to recovery.
We know what a great struggle pornography addiction can be for all parties involved. Lyndon Johnson observed, “Peace is a journey of a thousand miles and it must be taken one step at a time.” While the journey may seem long, the sooner it begins the sooner healing can take place.
If you have any questions about how to start the journey to recovery, please contact LifeStar today. We have been fortunate to help many people conquer their addiction and transform their lives.