Pornography: What About the Spouse?

Oftentimes people that are suffering from addiction focus a lot on their own problems. The anxiety that addiction can cause can make us extremely introspective and disappointed. And while it’s important to be self-reflective and self-critical, it’s also important to make sure that you aren’t being selfish. We can often feel pity for ourselves in these situations, which takes away from the impact that it has on other people.

With any addiction, it’s always important to consider the impact that it is having on other people in your life. You don’t want to be in a situation where you view all the consequences as your own. Pornography addiction can put a strain on every relationship in your life. This is a serious problem for people who have close ties to their family or spouse.

In this article, we’re going to take a look at the impact that pornography addiction can have on your spouse. We will try and help you put spousal impact into perspective. If you want to have a healthy relationship with your partner, it’s very important that you consider their feelings and the different ways it might be affecting them. Even if your spouse is silent about the matter, it doesn’t mean that they aren’t feeling horrible about the situation.


Before you consider the impact that your behavior might be having, it’s important to consider how you’re actually behaving. Someone with an addiction often closes themselves off from those who are close to them. They begin behaving secretively to help cover their tracks and avoid detection. They also begin to stop their emotional involvement in their relationships because they aren’t acting rationally about their addiction.

An addiction is effectively an obsession and it can prevent you from thinking about the things that matter in your life. Pornography addiction can also have a huge impact on your libido and sex drive, even if you don’t realize it is. Remember, you might not even realize the way you’re behaving – it’s important to take a step back and consider your actions and how they may be coming across.

Spousal Impact

In this section of the article, we’re going to take a look at the different ways your pornography addiction may be impacting your spouse. As you read these different sub-points, make sure to consider them in the context of your own relationship. You don’t want to lie to yourself – be honest about whether these instances may be occurring with your spouse.


Firstly, a spouse who has a partner who is addicted to pornography will likely be feeling extremely insecure about themselves. They’ll feel as though their partner has decided to start watching pornography because something is wrong with them. These insecurities may start small, but can end up leaving serious and long-term emotional damage. If your spouse seems less confident in herself, she could very well be insecure about your addiction and your need to find sexual satisfaction elsewhere. This is a major problem for spouses of those who are addicted to porn.

Sexual Dissatisfaction

If you are addicted to porn, your interest in sex has likely declined. If you are in a committed relationship, your partner is reliant on you for sexual satisfaction. It’s important to realize that you are probably have a significant impact on their ability to be sexually satisfied. Take a step back and think about how you would feel if your partner suddenly lost their sexual attraction to you.

Loss of Communication – Isolation

If your partner feels as though you are hiding things from them, there’s a high chance that communication will break down. It’s hard to communicate with someone who you feel is being devious and dishonest. This can lead to your partner feeling isolated in your relationship, which has several mental repercussions associated with it. You probably don’t realize it, but this is most likely impacting you as well.

A Sense of Failure

Many partners of porn addicts feel an overwhelming sense of failure. As a spouse, it’s their job to satisfy you emotionally and physically. If your spouse feels as though you’re distant and uninterested, they will most likely feel as though they are a failure as a spouse. It’s unfair to bestow this type of guilt on someone that you love.


Fear is another impact that spouses may have to battle if you’re addicted to porn. They may be scared that you’ll never be able to quit, which could end up leading to a broken relationship or divorce. The idea of losing you may be an overwhelming fear that has a significant impact on their ability to have a happy life. Don’t underestimate how much your spouse loves you – they may not be able to stomach losing you.

Children Matter Too

Another important thing to consider in all of this is the entire family unit. If you’re having problems with your spouse because of your addiction, this will undoubtedly impact your children. Kids are much more adept at sensing problems than you realize, which can end up causing significant emotional damage. In addition, the stress your putting on your partner might be preventing them from being a good parent.

In a worst-case scenario, divorce can occur – this is not uncommon for people with a pornography addiction. In this case, the emotional damage your addiction causes your family can be extreme.


As you can see, there are plenty of ways that your addiction might be impacting your spouse and your family. It’s important to take a step back and truly analyze the impact that you’re having. It can be easy to be selfish and ignore the obvious, but this will not do you or your family any good. Make sure to try and view the situation from their perspective.

If you want more information on porn addiction treatment and related topics, make sure to check out some of the other resources we have posted on our site. It’s never too late to start your personal road to recovery.

Pornography: What About the Spouse?

How to Help Your Spouse Overcome Porn Addiction

As previously mentioned, it’s not just you that suffers through porn addiction. Whether your spouse is aware of your addiction or not, they’ll most likely be suffering from your behavior. Porn addiction has the ability to impact people indirectly in many ways.

When you begin seeking treatment for porn addiction, it’s critical to consider the feelings and emotions of your spouse. While porn doesn’t feel like a physical affair, it is a form of virtual infidelity and it can often leave a spouse or loved one feeling extremely cheated. If you want to save your relationship or marriage, it’s essential not to be selfish during this testing time.

In many instances, porn addicts don’t realize the amount of damage that they have caused to their spouse and their relationships. As porn addiction is a progressive disease, it can often get out of control before someone is able to seek help or assistance.

If you want to approach your addiction with your spouse in mind, it’s a good idea to seek counselling together. While you might also require individual therapy to help you overcome your addiction, it’s also a good idea to seek treatment as a couple. There are numerous professionals that can help couples as they attempt to overcome various sex addictions and their effects.

Additionally, your spouse might want to seek therapy on their own — you should be supportive of this, as they might need to express emotions to a professional without your oversight. There are therapists that specialize in helping spouses overcome their partners’ porn or sex addictions.

Also, it can be of great help to join a support group. Such groups can provide accountability, advice, and experience, which can help you and your spouse overcome your addiction. In many cases, it can be nice for your spouse to know there are plenty of people in similar circumstances that have managed to overcome porn addiction and restore their lives. Don’t underestimate the power of a strong support group.

In some cases, your spouse may be advised to install tracking software on your electronic devices. While this might seem invasive, it can be the first step in restoring trust between you and your partner. While this won’t solve the problem entirely, it can help you provide physical proof that your firmly committed to your recovery.

Some porn addicts react negatively to having tracking software installed by a spouse. Unfortunately, if you want to show that you are genuinely committed to transparency, this is often a must-do. You should also be certain not to hide devices or access the internet via third-party sources — make a commitment to your spouse to be as honest as possible.

No matter how you approach porn addiction with your spouse, it’s essential to understand the devastating impact it can cause on them. By being supportive and understanding, you can help ensure that your spouse’s feelings are heard and expressed. You should never put your spouse in a position where they are suffering in silence.