13 Porn-Free Years: A Therapist’s Path from Pain to Purpose

LifeSTAR Central Valley Blog


Today I celebrate 13 years free from pornography addiction. It has been a amazing journey and I am so grateful for it. As I celebrate another milestone, it is my honor to give back to those who are lacking hope in their battle against sex addiction. Here is the first chapter of my new book Life After Lust, called My Path Out of Porn Addiction: A Therapist’s Journey. May it give you a new vision for recovery as you pursue your path from pain to purpose.

 Chapter 1

My Path Our of Porn Addiction:

A Therapist’s Journey*

Essential Mindset #1: Recovery from sexual addiction is difficult, possible, and worth the effort.

Essential Mindset #2: Past pain that made me vulnerable to addiction must be addressed for healing to occur.

I came into the world surrounded by love. Kind to animals and humans alike, I was a…

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How to Battle Lust (VLOG)

LifeSTAR Central Valley Blog

Battling lust

For those who don’t struggle with compulsive lusting, this video may not make sense. Those seeking recovery from lust addiction will get it. Are you committed to acknowledging your vulnerabilities and making a battle plan for success? If so, you’ll find my vulnerable VLOG on preparing to battle lust helpful.

Click here to watch Battling Lust at the Baseball Game

Wondering how the game went? To view the follow-up video click here

Forest Benedict, LMFT, SATP, Clinical Director of LifeSTAR of the Central Valley and author of Life After Lust. If you benefited from this article, please “follow” us on this blog and on Twitter, “like” us on Facebook, and SHARE this article and blog with others. Thank you!

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I Lied to My Wife, Now What?


I Lied to My Wife, Now What?
by Jeff Fisher on October 21, 2012

So what are you going to do now?

What do you think you ought to do?  Do you feel bad about it?  Are you trying to avoid the thought about it and put it in the past?

Maybe you think, “I’ll feel bad about it today, but I’m going to do some good things for my wife and make up for it.  Then I won’t feel so bad.”

Or you think if you push it away you’ll feel less guilty about it tomorrow.  Has that been your strategy?

Maybe you don’t think it really matters.  It’s not that big of a deal.  She probably lied about things too.  I’ve done a lot worse things in the past.

Or the most popular thought:  “I know if I tell the truth it’s going to make things worse. …

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What I Wish I’d Known Before Watching Porn


Lauren Dubinsky wrote a very powerful article on what she’d wish she’d known before watching porn.  What stood out to me the most was that some, if not all of these items were what I wish I’d known before watching porn.  I have listed her “wish list” below with my comments at the end.

I wish that 10 years ago someone had educated me on pornography. What it is, what it does and what it reaches in and destroys in the hearts, minds and bodies of men and women.

I wish that someone would have told me that researchers have suggested it sabotages your sex life.

I wish someone would have explained how dopamine, the chemical that is released every time you experience pleasure, drives you to return to what provided that feeling before.

I wish someone would have told me that the kind of pornography you’re most…

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WHAT if porn killed its users more than emotionally?

Porn Recovery UK

Watching the Porn Recovery UK twitter feed yesterday (26 October) we were struck by a tweet talking about the sad story of Amy Winehouse’s demise and how a coroner was expected to hear that her death was caused by alcohol withdrawal and not as a result of a drug overdose, as was initially reported. The interesting point for us at PRUK is the way this illuminates the difference between the therapy culture that has grown up around drug and alcohol misuse but not around the issues that people suffer with when they become porn dependent. Does it have something to do with the fact that porn does not kill its users physically – even though it certainly can emotionally?

We continued to think ‘But what about the people involved in making porn?’ In particular, what about the men and women essentially risking their lives each time they have sex for…

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Could you be a virtual abuser?

Porn Recovery UK

558746_95753303Back in spring, PRUK talked to an ex-porn star via Skype about her time in the industry. (We hope soon to bring you an article from D, who has a huge amount of insider knowledge that she has shared with us.) There was one sentence in particular during our conversation with her that struck us deeply at PRUK: ‘You’ll not be able to tell it if you’re watching my movies, but in 4 of them I was raped …’.

The appalling situation D found herself in is echoed with traumatic content on the users side of the fence as well. Dave, a mid-30s professional man says: ‘You are watching videos – one minute it’s sex that you are watching […] there are some real smiles, you can see the person’s getting off on the sex, if you look close. [But] if you graze the Internet for porn like…

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Seven Warning Signs of Affairs for Pastors and Other Church Staff


by Thom Rainer

The conversation is always sad, always tragic. The pastor who left his church after a two-year affair with another church member. The student pastor who has been out of vocational ministry since he had a brief sexual encounter with his assistant.

I have spoken with countless numbers of these men and women. And each time I am reminded of how much I need to love God with all my heart, and to be totally devoted to my wife.

Though the conversations are both sad and tragic, I do learn from them. And after dozens, perhaps a few hundred, of these conversations, I see patterns. These patterns become warning signs for any of us, lest we be so naïve to think we have no vulnerabilities.

Because the conversations were informal, I cannot say for certain which among them were the most frequent warning signs. So I provide…

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