“I never hated myself more than when I was being dishonest.” - Richard
“Healthy boundaries are not about controlling his behavior, it is about me feeling safe.” - Becky
Richard and Becky's story is an amazing story of honesty, creating boundaries, finding God, and ultimately the path of healing and hope. Richard does a great job of talking about how he has found acceptance with God even though he’s not perfect. Becky shares how she has been able to support Richard while creating boundaries and safety for her own healing.
Richard grew up in a home that was very difficult to feel connection and affection. His mother did not hug him because she felt it was too sexually charged and so he could never really feel safe. His dad was not affectionate either, because he probably was on the autism spectrum. His dad was very distant. He also experienced bullying and didn’t feel like he could get help or support. His mother only heightened his curiosity about porn by telling him that it is very easy to find porn on the internet, so be careful. This opened the door of exposure.
Combine that with how Becky grew up with an emotionally and mentally abusive father and you have an unsafe environment for both of them. Becky was also molested by a neighbor and she talks about how she masked her feelings by being the perfect student and child. She did not want to rock the boat.
When Richard and Becky started dating in high school, Richard actually confided in her about his porn and masturbation addiction. At seventeen years old, they were longing for connection and it helped Richard to actually be honest for once. Richard ended up going on an LDS mission and came back and they got married seven weeks after he returned from his mission.
Richard was hardly ever there for her in the beginning of their life together. He was supposed to be going to class but instead would skip and act out. When Becky needed him most, that was when he seemed to be the most distant. They tried to go to counseling about 17 years ago. However, at the time therapists were only concerned about helping people with drug and alcohol addictions. They had no idea how to help with sex addictions.
It was a few years later when Richard and Becky found an answer to both of their prayers. They started to find resources in therapy, 12 step, books, and other resources to start on their recovery path. There have been a lot of different things that they have challenged, questioned, prayed about, gotten help, and started to change. Becky really needed the boundaries to feel safe. She realized this after a few years of her own therapy and learned that she could not control him with the boundaries. Richard found huge healing in reframing his relationship with God and realizing that God loved him even when he isn’t perfect. This was a big shift when we started inviting God to carry the burden of his addiction instead of Becky. He also started to find supportive relationships with other men, which was a big change for him. Another big change was Richard embracing being constantly honest. He has worked on being honest and open while Becky as worked on being able to hold space and have boundaries to support him.
They have both realized their need for a Savior and connection to Him. Richard said that he never would have thought he would consider Christ as his friend, but he does now. Becky and Richard and Becky are still on their recovery journey and healing but shared that being in recovery has definitely been worth it. Even when there are days that are not so good. Please listen to their heartwarming story of betrayal and redemption despite having several other areas (like we all have) to work on with Christ infused in their marriage.
“If we are honest, we can get through anything.” - Becky
Unashamed & Unafraid
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