If you’re an individual struggling with pornography, masturbation and other unwanted sexual behaviors, our hearts go out to you. As professionals at Renaissance, we have been through our own struggles and recovery from addiction, so we can relate to where you are. Please believe us when we say, “There is great hope!” If we can break free from addiction, so can you! Here are some important insights to consider:
How We Can Help You
IF YOU STRUGGLE WITH ADDICTION
Over time, pornography, masturbation and other unwanted behaviors literally “rewire” your brain, making it extremely difficult and seemingly impossible to break free. You cannot recover with the brain you have today. We will show you how to call upon the power and grace of Jesus Christ to use the principles and tools of the brain science of behavior change to rewire and restore your brain to healthy habits and lasting freedom.
Your brain is nothing more or less than a magnificent, sophisticated computer. It’s a database of information, patterns and habits formed over your lifetime, but it is NOT you. You are an eternal son of God, created in His likeness and image. We will teach you how to stand back as your true eternal self and observe, manage and direct the thoughts and urges of your brain. You will learn to “act” as opposed to being “acted upon.”.
Your unwanted sexual behaviors are only “symptoms” of much deeper issues that lie hidden beneath the surface. We will help you discover and resolve these “core causes” which often include things like shame, anxiety, depression, stress, ADHD, childhood experiences and traumas, negative emotions, disconnection and many more. Until you learn to identify and heal these underlying causes, your addiction will continue resurfacing.
You’ve probably used a strategy of exercising sheer willpower to battle your sexual urges and temptations. But willpower is a limited resource and once you reach a point of exhaustion, you give in to your sexual urges and feel temporary relief from the fight. But afterward, overcome with shame, regret, guilt and a determination to do better, you start the whole battle cycle again—fighting and falling. We will help you learn to use the grace and power of Christ to fuel highly effective behavior change principles, tools and skills that will help you successfully face, move through and replace your sexual urges as opposed to fighting and giving into them.
Over the years, you’ve probably managed to temporarily avoid your addiction only to fall back into it over and over again. This constant cycle of failure can bring us to the place where we feel like we’re “outside Christ’s circle.” We can come to believe that for some reason, He can’t or won’t help us. We are convinced that we’re on our own. Nothing could be farther from the truth! Your Savior Jesus Christ loves and accepts you unconditionally and is always there for you no matter what you do or don’t do! We will help you recognize that you were never outside His circle and that the marvelous power of his atonement and grace is a literal energy and force that you can call upon to help you break permanently free from your unwanted behaviors. We will show you HOW to do this.
- Use the same kind of brain process that got you into your addiction, to get yourself out.
- Effectively identify and regulate your most challenging negative emotions.
- Use simple, daily physical, emotional and spiritual self-care as a safe haven against addiction relapse.
- Uncover and resolve past experiences and traumas that increase the depth and power of your addiction.
- Create an effective relapse-prevention plan.
- Learn how to develop and strengthen the polar opposite of your addiction—human connection and intimacy.
IF YOU ARE THE SPOUSE OF AN ADDICT
When you discover that the man you love is addicted to pornography, the natural reaction is a deep and devastating sense of confusion, shock and betrayal. When you are betrayed by one who has promised to honor, cherish, love and respect you, your world can come crashing down. You may feel as though you “don’t know this man,” wonder if the whole relationship has been a lie, or if you can ever trust him again. Be assured that there is help and healing for you, a full recovery path for him, and real hope for a bright future together
When a spouse’s pornography use or other unwanted sexual behaviors are discovered, the resulting trauma triggered by this betrayal can quickly evolve into a condition known as PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder). PTSD can result whenever the brain tries to make sense of a traumatic experience that is outside the normal or natural boundaries of human experience. When trust is shattered, the betrayed spouse understandably begins to doubt the relationship and bond she has with her husband. This trauma can trigger anger, confusion, anxiety, depression, chronic nightmares, flashbacks and more—all symptoms of PTSD. We will help you recognize, understand and start down the path of resolving and healing this PTSD.
The trauma from betrayal effects thoughts, feelings and can trigger physical symptoms. Anxiety, depression, anger, fear, loneliness, hopelessness, feeling unsafe—these and more can have a detrimental impact on your ability to think clearly, solve problems, connect to others or even function in regular daily activities. A lashing out or a complete shutdown and numbing may occur. Trauma can throw the brain into a continuous state of “fight or flight” producing physical symptoms such as headaches, fatigue, muscle tension, back pain, nausea, insomnia and more. At Renaissance, we will help you acquire the right knowledge, tools, skills and support so that you can begin working through and resolving these symptoms and most especially their underlying core causes.
It is common for a spouse to feel great confusion, shock and even wonder if she somehow has a degree of responsibility for her husband’s addiction. The clear and resounding answer to this question is “NO!” Just as a woman is not responsible for a husband’s drug, alcohol or gambling addiction, she is also not responsible for his pornography or sexual addiction. We will help you set clear, healthy boundaries that allow you to continue loving and supporting your husband, while making certain that the consistent daily work and responsibility for his recovery is squarely upon his shoulders.
In the event of a commercial airline jet losing cabin pressure, passengers are instructed to secure their own oxygen masks first before attempting to assist others. Your first priority is to be aware of and attend to your own healing and well being. The good news is you absolutely can heal and be restored to peace of mind, heart, body and spirit. In the Renaissance program we help you progress on your own personal path of healing, which includes the support of our professional staff, and other women who are facing challenges similar to yours. A central focus of your healing journey is helping you feel, embrace and call upon the unconditional love, tenderness, grace and power of your Savior, Jesus Christ.
After working with many hundreds of couples challenged by the trauma and fallout of addiction, we can tell you by long experience that there is every hope and expectation for your husband’s full recovery, and the complete healing and restoration of your relationship. It will take time, patience and the consistent application of recovery principles and tools, but it is entirely possible. There are many couples that bear witness to the fact that while it was difficult, their recovery experience created a richness of experience, a depth of maturity and wisdom, and a closeness and bond that cannot be broken. Above all, the real miracle is the knowledge that a positive outcome does not depend solely on you. Through the love, grace, tender mercies and atonement of Jesus Christ, wounds can be healed, broken hearts mended, forgiveness felt and shattered trust restored.
IF YOU ARE A RELIGIOUS LEADER
If you are a religious leader, you may be overwhelmed by the growing number of individuals approaching you with regard to pornography and/or other sexual addictions—either the addicts themselves or their spouses. This can be a heavy burden to bear, but please know that God is mindful of you and your desires and struggles to help those you serve. In Proverbs 3:5-6 it reads, Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. We can assure you that protecting and rescuing individuals and families from the devastation of pornography and sexual addiction is one of God’s highest priorities in these perilous times. When you engage in this work you are on His errand and He will assist you.
At Renaissance, the central focus of our program is leading the struggling individual and their spouse to fully embrace and rely upon the love, grace and power of the atonement of Jesus Christ. With Christ as the foundation and center, we teach individuals how to apply the tested and proven knowledge, tools and skills of the brain science of behavior change in harmony with the 12 Steps to attain lasting freedom from addiction.
As a part of our Religious Leadership Support services, we provide free training for Bishops, Pastors, Ministers and other religious leaders on the topic of Protecting and Rescuing Teens and Adults from the Devastation of Pornography Addiction. If you would like to schedule a special training at your location, please contact our Program Director, Mark Kastleman at: firstname.lastname@example.org