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There are a lot of reasons to tell your spouse about your addiction. Sometimes it’s obvious that you need to do it, sometimes it’s not so clear.  But in general, there is no question that you should tell your spouse about addiction to pornography or sex, for instance. In this case, not telling can do major damage to your marriage and family life.

Should I Tell My Spouse About My Porn or Sex Addiction?

Yes, you must tell your spouse about your addiction. It is the best way to deal with challenges while in a relationship. Addiction to sex or porn is not different from other addictions. The longer you keep the secret the more serious it gets for your mental health. For instance, can you imagine the stress you undergo because you have kept a secret from your loved one? How do you say you love them while you hide sensitive things from them? It is true that coming out clean is a challenge because you do not know how they will react.

The uncertainty behind telling the truth is the reason most people keep secrets. We all fear facing the consequences of our actions. It becomes worse when our secrets involve the people, we love the most. However, the only way to attain redemption is by coming out clean. You must be open and tell them about your addiction(s) regardless of the consequences. It is the only way you can keep a healthy relationship or marriage. So, how do you go about it?

When Is the Best Time To Tell Your Spouse About Your Addiction?

The perfect time to tell a truth is a challenge for most people. It could be because there may never be a perfect time at all. You can only find a comfortable time to talk about certain topics. Before you come out clean try to observe your spouse’s mood. Sometimes people might be tired from work or from having a long day. It is not the right time to dump your confessions on them and expect a positive outcome.

Before you proceed, talk to them about general matters and observe their mood. You can crack few jokes to calm them down or keep them easy before you introduce your issues. Also, do not ambush them with your confessions. You can ask them if they can have a serious conversation at that time. It will allow them some time to shift from a happy mood to a serious conversation mood.

They will become curious and may push you to start talking immediately. Do not fall for the pressure as it could lead you to premature confessions. That would create communication problems. Also, ask them to hold any questions until you finish talking. Sometimes people will interrupt you by asking too many questions. It can be irritating, and it may defocus you from your path to confession.

So, before you start talking about serious matters try and find a moment when the mood is positive. Check with your spouse if they are ready to have a serious conversation. You can also give them a heads up. Tell them you want to talk to them on a specific day. It will allow them to get ready for the conversation. Make it clear that it is something important but be careful not to drive them into overthinking. Do not be tense or too serious it helps calm them down and keep them patient until that day or moment comes.

What Is the Best Way To Tell Your Spouse?

When you get to the conversation, you will need to break it down into steps. You need to make sure they understand your problem so that they can know how to respond.

The first step would be to tell them the general category of the problem you face. If you are addicted to sex, then point it out as the main issue. Do the same if it is porn addiction.

Second, do not make the conversation too long. Sometimes we beat about the bush rather than making our statement clear. Also, you can bring in the idea of you getting professional help to beat the problem.

Discuss your options with your spouse. Do not fear talking about how you want to go about it. Share your thoughts and allow them to bring in their ideas. You can compare the options and come to a general conclusion.

Remember to allow your spouse to ask questions if they have any. Try and answer as many of their questions as possible. Be truthful with your answers. Honesty plays a significant role at this point.

After telling your spouse about your addiction do not seek immediate acceptance or forgiveness. People need time to absorb such shocking news. Demanding a speedy response can lead to fights. In this case, you can hold their hand and allow them to decide their reaction.

If your spouse is upset, remain as calm as you can as showing frustrations on your side will only make things worse. You need to keep the situation under control to have any success.

The Don’ts When Telling Your Spouse About Your Addiction

It is not easy telling your spouse that you have been keeping secrets from them for a long time. But it is the right thing to do. However, you need to know what to avoid during this step to avoid making things difficult for you. The following is a list of the things you must avoid when discussing your addiction:

1.Remaining silent until you get caught

The first thing to avoid is staying silent out of fear or assumptions about the outcome. The more you remain silent the more difficult it gets for you to tell the truth. Also, if you expect your spouse to find out before you start talking, it is a recipe for disaster in your relationship. People tend to get more upset when they catch you in the act than when you come out clean. Also, by deciding to talk about it, you get to control the situation. You can set the best time and the right mood in which to speak to your loved one. The earlier you talk about it the easier it gets for you to explain yourself and be understood.

2.Telling Partial Truths

Another big mistake would be telling a partial truth. The moment you decide to tell the truth you must tell the whole truth. Do not leave anything to chance as it could put you back to your initial position. When your spouse finds out that you told half the truth there is no guarantee that they will trust you again. Do not leave out important aspects of your addiction confession for the sake of the future of your relationship. Also, there is a chance that your spouse may keep information from you once you show distrust.

3.Do not shift the blame to your spouse

Many times, people refuse to take responsibility for their actions and they shift their burden to the other person. Do not be this type of individual. Be fair to the person you love by taking full responsibility for your actions. Remember, you made the choice to do what you did on your own. You did not consult your spouse or sit them down to talk about your challenges if you felt they were the cause of this problem. The moment you take responsibility for your actions your spouse will learn to respect you.

4.Do not be offensive or use crude language

For some people the way to redemption is through hostility. They fear facing their challenges, so they become cruel to their spouse in their attempt to confess. Be mindful of your approach when talking about sensitive issues like pornography or sex addiction. Your spouse’s feelings are involved too, and the information may affect them for a while. So, try and make the conversation as soft as possible but do not seek sympathy. You are on the wrong and seeking redemption not on the path for finding sympathy.

Sex or porn addiction is a problem like any other addiction. There is no shame in seeking help or talking to your partner about your challenges. Remember, over thinking the outcome will create fear and keep your from telling the truth. Many partners will love you enough to support you at your worst. Be loving enough to share your worst with your partner. If possible, always seek professional assistance after you inform your partner.