Journal Through Recovery Entry 04: Isolating


“So how often are you reaching out to the guys in your recovery groups?”

That was what my counselor asked me yesterday in my session with him. Reaching out?  Does he mean like actually talking to them or just being in group?  No, he meant actually texting and calling other men to “talk.”  There was just one thing my counselor didn’t know.  I don’t know how to reach out and actually talk to men.  These are guys who have problems.  They have issues and they share them openly so I know what they are struggling with.  Why would I want to reach out to them and talk to them?

“You need to start working on building intimacy with other men. It’s how you learn to build relationships.”

Ok, is he really serious? What am I supposed to talk about? And to whom? I know they pass a phone list around…

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Journal Through Recovery Entry 11: Disclosure Day 3


I am watching videos while my wife meets with our therapist on the morning of day 3 of our disclosure. This is an interesting video, related to the science of addiction, that addiction is actually a disease, and the impact on the brain.  The short and long term impacts are staggering and are illustrative of the depths of my addiction and the difficulty to rewire my brain and break out of this place of depression and damage to myself, my spouse and my family.  I keep saying over and over with each new revelation that I didn’t know, I didn’t know, I didn’t know. I am very aware and concerned about not taking responsibility.  I do take responsibility for my behavior.  There is so much here that I didn’t know, or more accurately, didn’t see.

We are discussing my assessment results. I took several assessments when I scheduled the intensive…

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Owning My Sexual Compulsion


Owning My Sexual Compulsion

by james tarring cordrey

One of the great gifts to me in my journey has been my wife.

At the point in my life when my addiction finally came to light she did something crucial: she held my feet to the fire and did not withhold her anger.

She was furious, and rightly so.

In my experience, men whose wives shield them from the anger that arises when the reality of porn addiction is revealed miss out on something crucial.

They miss the opportunity to reckon with the brutal truth that what they have been a part of in acting on their sexual compulsions  has truly brought death into their marriages.

The Biblical teaching that my sin affects the body of Christ was driven home to me when i saw — in unvarnished terms — how it affected my wife.

William Paul Young, author of The Shack

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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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