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September 09 • SoS

Day 427

Asking for help is tough, really tough.

Telling people why help is needed is nearly impossible for a sex addict. The shame and embarrassment of this particular disease is one thing; the way it can sneak up on you in 'unsexual' ways is just unfair, as addictions go.

This next perspective is probably not accurate, but from where I sit, I can more easily see the path to drug addiction or alcoholism. For example, if you take pills, then you should know to be careful. If you drink, you should notice all the public service announcements about drinking in moderation. But for many of us in the 'S' arena, underlying causes of our addiction are set in our soul long before our first 'acting out' event.

From there, it becomes just as addictive as drugs as our very being tells us we must have more of that affirmation or stimulation, or we will die from the inside out.

I once told a group of pastors that served as my board of directors that I was struggling. I even made the outlandish claim that for the first time in my life, I was beginning to understand how moral failures happen so frequently in ministry. I suggested that sometimes it's the only way out of deepening stress, and sometimes it feeds an unknown appetite.

At that point, I had not yet acted out (with other people). I was determined to ask for help, to not be the guy everyone would later lament that they would have 'helped had they known.' I did ask, and the hearing ears did not know how to answer, so they did nothing. I am not bitter about that, but it is a reminder to me that asking others is not always the answer, even though it is an integral part of humbling ourselves toward recovery.

As hard as it is to ask, it can be harder to know what to do when someone else asks. I want to be ready for that. If I can save someone from one day of my own hellish experience, it will be a good day.



Screaming under water, SOS

Can you hear me calling, SOS

Did it to myself, now I need your help

Alone and overboard yelling SOS

–Joseph, ”SOS"


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