life, pornography

Spare Me the Details

 

quas, Creative Commons

quas, Creative Commons

“I must warn you that what I am about to share with you is very dark.”

So began an article I read via Facebook last July.  The featured image was of a very cute, wholesome-looking fourteen-year-old girl.  The article was written by a reformed porn actress recruiter who exploited and preyed upon very young women and girls.  It was depressingly eye-opening.

The article brought to mind the ad that ran daily in my university’s newspaper – the one that promised big bucks for modeling.  The ad seemed creepy and the money seemed too good to be true.  But there the ad was, in my face, day after day, wearing me down.  And as my bank account grew weaker, so did my common sense.  “What’s the harm in calling and asking?,”  I finally inquired of my roommate.  “Go ahead,” she replied.  So I called.  “Modeling and light massage” is what I was told.  I did not know what “light massage” meant, exactly, but I knew I wanted no part of it.  So I quickly hung up the phone.  We still used wall phones back then.  And then I spritzed the phone with lysol – just in case.  Ewww.

Now I know what became of some/many/most? of my fellow co-eds who did not hang up their phones.  Now I know what could have become of me.

The article went on for paragraphs detailing how the perpetrator lured the young girl further and further into decay – from “innocent” modeling into full-blown hardcore pornography.  He also detailed how he ruined her life in the process – how it is still ruined.

By the end of the article I was angry.  I wanted to smack him – HARD!

As the article progressed, the pictures he included became more and more inappropriate.  Perhaps he was trying to show the evolution from wholesomeness to defilement.  But I felt like he was exploiting her all over again.

It felt like he was providing a fix to any pitiful sex addict that might stumble upon it.

Or – to be generous – at least potentially triggering a recovering addict.

It made me mad that, in the end, he is reformed (unless he’s not and the article was an insidious attempt to “innocently” lure in new users… wait, that might be too dark on my part.  But I might as well admit that it struck me that way.  I have a very strong and reliable sense of discernment). And, in the end, he is making money off of his book and speaking engagements, while she is still strung out and homeless, trying to rear her child in poverty.

I hope he’s throwing some of the money her child’s way, because not only did he ruin her life,  as the title of the article states, he also got her child’s life off to a very rocky, rocky, rocky start.

Then yesterday I started following a Christian blogger who is a recovering porn addict.

He wrote a book on how to break the addiction.  When I speak to kids, I warn them to steer way clear of that stuff.  But sadly, for some it is too late, and then parents and teachers ask me to suggest resources.  So I read an excerpt from his book.  And it made me say, “Ewww.”  I could have done without the details.  And then it occurred to me that for some, those details would be a trigger.

So I commented my thought to him.  And he sent a suitable reply saying it was tricky and unavoidable.

Except that David gave no details whatsoever when he confessed his sexual sin with Bathsheba.  And we, the readers, understand perfectly well what happened without them.  What he did share was how the sin affected him:

When I kept silent,
    my bones wasted away
    through my groaning all day long.
For day and night
    your hand was heavy on me;
my strength was sapped
    as in the heat of summer.  from Psalm 32

And how he regained his strength:

Then I acknowledged my sin to you
    and did not cover up my iniquity.
I said, “I will confess
    my transgressions to the Lord.”
And you forgave
    the guilt of my sin.  from Psalm 32

And what the consequences were:

Now, therefore, the sword will never depart from your house…  Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity on you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will sleep with your wives in broad daylight…. because you have shown utter contempt for the Lord, the son born to you will die.”  from 2 Samuel 12

As a recovering addict, the blogger should know better.  A recovering food addict would not describe the taste, sensation and ritual of eating a box of frozen hostess cupcakes to readers who might just stumble at those words – who might run to her stash hidden under the organic chicken and frozen green beans in her downstairs freezer.

A recovering alcoholic would not describe the glorious burning sensation of the alcohol traveling down his throat and into his veins, warming and calming his body.  Even if he was describing it in the context of saying alcohol ruined his life.  A true recovering alcoholic, If he really cared about helping others, would just say, “Alcohol ruined my life.”  Any details would be about the damage he did to himself and others. Anyone reading it who was an alcoholic/recovering alcoholic would not need the experience described for them – they live(d) it.

Writing books about one’s sexual addiction is a tricky business – it is obviously very easy to warp into exploiting one’s disease and/or enticing others.

So here’s my question and my challenge:

Would someone PLEASE write a book about how to break a pornography/sex addiction that does not include any descriptions of the acts.  Those who are caught in that web already know what the acts look like and they are trying to keep those images out of their heads thank-you-very-much.

Would someone please write a book that I can actually recommend to a teen or parent without worrying that they will be sucked in, or relapse?

Maybe I am a pornophobe.  So what?  Sex is one of God’s greatest inventions and pornography wrecks, wrecks, wreck it.  And I’m sick of it.

New Year’s Eve, after our truly special dinner, the four of us played Scrabble.  We played the deluxe, mahogany-encased Scrabble that my daughter gave us for Christmas.

Before playing one of his words, our guest – the father of two very wholesome, healthy, well-adjusted young adults (one a newlywed and the other a college student) – apologized for what he was about to lay down on the board: n-u-d-e.

I wish the writers of books and articles on pornography and sex addiction would be that kind of a gentleman, with that level of sensibility.  Amen.

© The Reluctant Baptist, 2015

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23 thoughts on “Spare Me the Details

  1. kowsdontski says:

    I love your image of a spiderweb. Perhaps that would be the images we need to see, including the unsuspecting fly wrapped in the spider’s “cocoon.” And the words? “Oh what a tangled web we weave . . .” Beautifully stated. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree that neither offenders nor the uninitiated need to read the details of any type of abuse. Whenever I come across an article that includes unnecessary details, I think either the writer wants to relive the acts or hasn’t confessed his sin to God. After you’ve accepted forgiveness for any sin, there’s never a reason to express it so vividly — not even as a teaching aid.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. thehealingwife87 says:

    I agree completely. My husband is a sex addict and we have to be SO very careful of the books we buy for this. We used Dr. Milton Magness’ “Stop Sex Addiction” when we went through a very long and painful 3 day intensive where my husband bore his soul and every secret he had ever kept and lie he ever told (which is a vital part of addicts staying in recovery… To get all the sexrets out on the table). No only do we have to be so vigelant with these books, but with everything we bring into our home, tv, magazines, movies, music. It’s all sexualized these days. It’s exhausting. But that is our task from God, to gaurd our hearts, no? Thank you for your post 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The Southern Observer says:

    Hello Miss,
    I’m almost hesitant to comment for fear you’ll think me addicted to pornography. Not so, but I’ve been addicted to many other things, all self centered in nature. Your post I read just minutes after I made a post on my site, and truthfully, it makes me want to delete my site altogether, but I made a promise to my wife. Words are so very powerful Miss, use them carefully. I so very much struggle with my writing. I feel the overwhelming urge to write about my life, my thoughts and actions so as to reconcile it, but on the other hand, I feel guilt for all the things I’ve done and for still entertaining my actions. As a Christ follower, I know I’m forgiven. Those around me tell me I should accept His forgiveness, that my transgressions are cast as far as the east is from the west, and yet, like the Apostle Paul stated so eloquently, “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.” (1 Timothy 1:15 KJV). I hope I’m not over-stepping my boundaries Miss, I so appreciate all I’ve read on your site, and appreciate your comment to me. I’m just saying that I’m so very torn as to how much is appropriate when it comes to writing.

    Kindest thoughts,

    Like

    • Oh my goodness, Southern, I just read Heredity and it is brilliant. So poignant and so well written. You absolutely should not delete your blog. You did not share anything that would cause anyone to stumble or relapse.

      You are right, words are very powerful. The pen is mightier than the sword. That is why we must be honest with ourselves about why we are choosing to share certain details. I suggested to the blogger who struggles with an addiction to pornography to use this filter: Don’t share any descriptive details that you would not read aloud to your grandmother.

      Perhaps you can ask yourself whether what you are writing would make you thirsty if you were reading someone else’s words. The very fact that you are concerned and wrestling with it tells me that you are a trustworthy writer. So write on, ‘cuz I’ll be following you.

      And do not fear, I am not here to assign addictions to anyone.

      All the best,
      -trb

      Like

      • The Southern Observer says:

        Truly, I thank you for your response. You must know in your heart that I’m not looking for ‘Followers or Likes.’ I suppose I was just thinking out loud and your post was in fact the catalyst. I so hope you didn’t take offense or think that I was questioning your choice of words. In fact, I suddenly feel more disqualified than ever to post a comment to anyone. Have a nice weekend Miss, Tis my pleasure to make your acquaintance.

        Like

        • Don’t sweat your comments too much, you’ll settle into it. I regretted just about every comment I made when I started blogging six months ago. Now I only regret some of them.

          I did not take offense. I ran the post past my husband before I published it, asked him whether it sounded too harsh (he’s got a pretty sensitive internal harsh-o-meter). He assured me that it wasn’t too harsh, said I nailed it, hit the nail right on the head. So I published it with the confidence that I was not being unkind. You are free to express your thoughts. That’s what starts a dialogue and allows us to know one another. You have a nice weekend, too.

          Like

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  6. Well. I’m coming in late on this one, but had to add my voice to the chorus 🙂

    I remember back in the ’70’s and ’80’s when a couple of hard rockers got saved and went around giving their testimonies. One of them spoke very little of his horrible lifestyle, just giving God the glory for redeeming him before he was so far gone into drugs that his brain would have been fried. The other guy spent a lot of time describing his “trips,” his illegal drug purchases, the physical danger he was in from the dealers, and so on. The former had a powerful and lengthy ministry. The latter? Not so much. After the first year or so, never heard from him again.

    Going back even farther, when I was 12 or so my dad brought a speaker to the church named George Mensik. He was a born-again survivor of the Chicago gangs of the ’30’s, lived a very violent and ugly life, did time in prison.

    Got saved.

    Never capitalized on his sensational life. Always lifted up Christ, who lifted him out of the miry clay and set his feet upon a Rock!

    Liked by 1 person

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