San Antonio, Texas

I remember my first encounter with pornography. I was a little girl, still in elementary school. My older cousin came to visit for the summer to babysit my sister and me. She went put a movie in for all of us to watch. It was labeled something harmless but when the video came on, we all were shocked and disgusted. It was pornography. I remember my cousin going to the sink
to throw up and then quickly turning it off.

My father had pornography in our home, labeled as a regular movie and we kids accidentally saw it. Times have changed so much now because pornography is so much more easily accessible and highly graphic and sexual images are so common in television shows, commercials, musical content is misogynistic and disrespectful.

As a mother of 3 boys I fear for how I will keep them safe from being exposed to pornographic images that they did not go looking for. My husband is in recovery for sex addiction and was exposed to pornography in his childhood. Pornography has impacted and impressed so many areas of his life, which consequently affected mine. Pornography has impaired my husband’s ability to connect with me in loving ways. Everything he learned about sex, romance, relationships, he saw in pornography and thought that was what women want and it is a false reality that often times left me feeling alone, used, and treated as an object.

The impact of my husband’s pornography addiction on my life, my self-esteem has been extraordinary. I question my worth, my beauty, and my abilities because if I had done more maybe he would not want the porn on the web. The world for me has become less safe, people are less safe because of how my husband’s addiction had him lie, manipulate and deceive me for years. We have been working on repairing the mess that pornography has left in our lives. Our new normal includes sex addiction therapy, support groups for both my husband and me, countless books read on sex and pornography addiction to increase understanding, accountability partners and couples counseling. We will have to fight and battle this rest of our lives.